What Are the Best Equalizer Settings?

There is no single equalizer setting well-suited for every recording. Using a real-time analyzer users are able to adjust an equalizer to match preset patterns associated with ideal sound quality. However, the superiority of one setting over another is partly subjective and varies according to the characteristics of the recording, playback equipment and other factors.

An equalizer is an electronic component with controls that allow users to increase and decrease the frequency volume, changing the audio sound. Equalizers range from simple two-control applications that broadly control bass and treble to complex parametric equalizers used in music production that allows for fine technical tuning to specific audio frequencies.

A simple graphic equalizer, common to media player software, features five or 10 evenly spaced sliders in a row representing the centers of different frequency ranges associated with recognizable sounds. By moving a slider up or down, the volume for that sound is boosted or cut within a set range. For example, a song with a thumping low bass can be reined in by lowering the sliders labeled for the low 30Hz and 100Hz frequencies. A movie with high-pitched sound effects can be dampened or enhanced using the slider for the 2kHz frequency.