Greg Wurth explains the basic make up of a shelving equalizer as well as its common applications. He mentions that a shelf type EQ is the boost or cut of all frequencies above or below the cutoff frequency and is most commonly found on the top and bottom bands of a parametric EQ. He explains that its useful to enhance the top and bottom frequencies based on the desired results of the particular track.
- [Instructor] A shelving EQ boosts or cuts all frequencies above or below a selected cut-off point. As you can see in the examples, the frequencies beyond the cut-off are affected, which create a sort of visual shelf. This type of EQ is most commonly found on the top and bottom bands of a parametric EQ. It's useful to enhance the top and bottom based on the desired results of the particular track. It can be overused and cause various issues, so it's best used in moderation. Let's dig into some of the most recognizable shelving EQs.
The Neve 1073 pre-amp EQ module was released in 1970. It has a fixed 12 kilohertz shelf on its top band, as well as a selectable frequency shelf on the low band. Those frequency options are 35, 60, 110, and 220 hertz. The Neve 1073 is known for its silky-smooth top end and thick low end. For more information about this module's history, please refer to the movie in chapter two on microphone pre-amplifiers.
In the early 1990s, Cliff Maag developed what is now the famous Air Band, which was originally introduced by his company Night Technologies International, or NTI for short. The Air Band is unique in that its boost is a long curve up that turns into a shelf. It allows you to add top end without being harsh. Cliff Maag reintroduced this technology under a new brand called Maag Audio, which offers many products from pre-amps, compressors, and EQs, all featuring the classic Air Band.
The Pultec EQP-1 passive program EQ was introduced in 1951 by founders Ollie Summerland and Eugene Shenk. Pultec is short for Pulse Techniques Incorporated. The EQ is comprised of three sections. The low frequency section is a shelving filter that allows for frequency select, boost, and cut. The high frequency section has controls for frequency select, boost, and bandwidth control. The last section is also dedicated to the high frequencies and is a shelf that offers frequency select and cut.
This is one of the most sought-after EQs in history, causing it to be heavily copied. In the recent years, the Pultec brand has been revived by electrical engineer Steve Jackson, who with the guidance of Eugene Shenk has recreated the holy grail EQs, making them readily available for anyone who wants them.
Throughout the course, Greg shares images, diagrams, and audio examples that can help you grasp how this equipment functions, and why you might want to opt for one piece over another. Greg dives into working with different kinds of microphones and preamps, describes the main types of compressors and equalizers, and shows how an analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog converter works. Plus, he covers analog summing—the process of combining multiple audio channels down to a stereo signal—and analog emulation.
- Dynamic, condenser, and ribbon mics
- Tube mic preamps and solid state mic preamps
- Different types of compressors and equalizers
- Analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog conversion
- Analog summing
- Analog emulation