Recording tracks - EQ, Effects


New member
Nows its obvious that you can add EQ and effects when recording or mixing down tracks, but what is the "usual" time to do it?
Could someone clear it all up. I realise that compression/limiters/gates are used when recording the tracks, but do we eq here as well or just record a dry track.
What about effects?
Do we add in echo and delay when recording the tracks or at mixdown.
Could some pro give some advice, and tell me what engineers usually do.

Hi Flaccid,

Well, I don't consider myself a pro.. but maybe some of this will help.

Generally, effects and EQ are left for the mixing stage. This depends on your setup though. Certainly if you have the option of not EQ'ing or effecting when recording the signal, this will allow you more flexibility upon mixdown. The only EQ I do use when recording is a bit of low end rolloff on Drumkit overheads, but everyone has a different approach.


Way down under with the roos. See Steve Erwin lately?

With regards to FX/EQ: I always run some FX when working with a vocalist; makes the vocal more appealing in the headset; however, this FX is not recorded; I like to add the FX/+ minor EQ when mixing so I can hear what's happening in the monitors; however, sometimes I'll make six or seven mixes and let the client choose the one she likes best; then, I keep the rest, if they're good, and play them in the car, and in the studio looking/listening for ways to improve.

It may also depend on your gear as to what your choices are but most gear can add FX in the test mix and final mix.

Green Hornet
Acoustic instruments incuding voice will almost always have effects put in only during mixdown.

Electro-acoustic instruments like electric guitar, electric bass, electric keyboard will be eq'ed "at the source" ie instrument knobs, and amplifier knobs. Using an "In-Line" effects set up instead of a "Send-Return" effects setup.
ie. guitar distortion, synth delay etc.

Make things sound as good as you can before you record. Then add the rest, while hearing everything together.