EQ Kick Drum
How to EQ the Kick Drum
The Magic Frequencies & more
The kick drum is essential for the groove on any genre.Every genre puts its focus on kick drums differently. For instance dance/club music (Electronical music, Hip Hop) emphasizes especially on the kick drum to give you an in-your-face feeling. This is why it's important to eq the kick drum to properly place it in the whole mix.
There are more tools to make the it sound better - like a Compressor or Transient Designer. Both tools are great to give a kick drum more attack. I'll write about them in detail in my next posts
In this guide I solely want to show you some options to correctly set the EQ.
Of course, the tips mentioned here are just guidelines. Always experiment and even overdo the settings by purpose to see how the sound changes in different frequencies. In the end, your ear is the final judge if it sounds right.
But to give you a direction, here are some tips:
If you want to give the kick drum more bass, boost it between 60-100 Hz. It gives the kick drum more power in the low end. This frequency range is more felt than heard
A hollow sound can be achieved by boosting the frequencies around 400-500 Hz. In reverse you can cut this frequence range to remove hollowness. Don't cut too many dB out of this range or the kick drum may sound too thin and lifeless. I often cut in this frequency range to make the kick drum sound more defined.
A lot of times the kick drum needs more attack to make it a little more powerful. Try boosting it between 3 – 5 kHz. It helps the kick drum to stand out, even if the mix is already full of a lot elements.
By using a parametric equalizer you can freely adjust the Q-Factor.
When you're boosting, use a small Q-Factor. In contrary, when you're cutting, use a big Q-Factor.
Quick Tip for EQ'ing Kick Drum and Bass:
Both elements need to have his space on the frequency spectrum, so make sure you don't boost the same frequencies on both elements.
For example: Boost the kick drum at 60 Hz, cut the bass at 60 Hz
Boost the bass at 120 Hz, cut the kick drum at 120 Hz
Thanks for reading!