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EQ and Effects for Live Playing


Well-Known Member
Café Supporter
Surrey, UK
I was at the Swanage Jazz Festival on Saturday and Sunday and heard some superb music, including several great saxophonists of course.

The main venue for modern/mainstream jazz was a large marquee and the sound was mostly very good in there, with fairly subtle sound reinforcement typically for piano (a Yamaha grand), double bass, drums and horns. I thought that the saxes sounded nice and natural and so had a chat with the sound engineers to find out what they were doing.

They were using Shure Beta dynamic mics, no reverb but taking the EQ on the high treble right down on the mixing desk - I think it was -15dB, but the knob was turned right back to about 7 o'clock position (as far as it would go). The sound engineer said that they learned this from Tony Kofi a couple of years ago, thought it sounded good and have used it ever since.

To my ears, it sounded very good on saxes of all sizes, flute and clarinet. Is this a well known way of doing sound reinforcement for acoustic jazz music ?

And would it work as well for a more heavily amplified situation such as a rock band with loud guitar, bass, keyboards etc ?



Well-Known Member
That's exactly what I do whenever I get the chance to set my own EQ for a gig - it sounds good to me, and that's in the context of a much louder band than acoustic jazz, but I found out only by trial and error, and whether it works for other woodwind I don't know.

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