Equalization is, for simplicity’s sake (don’t kill me, audio-tech people), increasing or decreasing the volume at certain frequencies. In effect, we’ll be using this to make the vocals more crisp or more muted (usually more crisp, since Engloids can sometimes sound like they’re singing through a pillow).
Just like compression, audio equalization can be done with a software equalizer, also called an EQ (Audacity has one, but it’s a bit more difficult to use than most). Getting the best equalization is more about the singer and style you’re working with than anything else, but I’ll cover the stuff that you’ll want to do with most every VOCALOID:
- Boost the volume of the upper-mid or lower-treble ranges (between 3000Hz and 5000Hz), depending on the singer.
- Cut the volume at about the bass ranges (150Hz) No VOCALOID can sing that low, nor would it sound good to boost it if they could.
- If your unvoiced consonants (like F’s and S’s) are hard to hear, boost the volume around the treble (10,000Hz and up).
The process of equalization can be just as complicated or simple as you like. I prefer to only do a bit with FL Studio’s “Parametric EQ 2”, usually leaving it to a boost between the mid and treble ranges and a sharp drop off around the bass and low-bass. But you can get crazy with it, perfecting each bandwidth to the perfect settings for your singer (which would sound amazing, and the pros do).
If your vocals aren’t much more audible and understandable by now, you’ll need to keep tweaking the Compressor and Equalizer until it works, but if you’re happy with where you’re at then you’re ready to move onto the last section.
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Final effects, Reverb, Radio, Distortion, oh my!