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Where does the EQ go in the chain?


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  • Where does the EQ go in the chain?


  • #2
    There are a few different schools of thought.

    Generally before your OD's and/or Distortion. Some suggest a pre-distortion EQ and post Distortion EQ. The pre-Distortion EQ should be the quietest EQ, and really post distortion EQ could be on your amp depending upon the type of amp you have, or even another distortion, OD pedal with eq settings slightly tweaked for the tone you like.
    "Thanks for the Kool-Aid Reverend Jim"

    Yep I have some. It works too


    • #3
      It depends on what you want it do do. Here's the basic formula (that applies to any effect, but in this case it's an eq):

      Whereever in the chain you place it, you will be able to change the tone/timbre and level of the signal fed into it (the combination of guitar/pedals up to that point). The new sound can then be fed into the pedals (or amp) that follows. Even though placing an eq before vs after something like a chorus will make a slight difference, due to the nature of eq and what it does, the main watershed will always be before or after distortion.

      So, if you place the eq first in line (before distortion), you will be able to change how the guitar sounds (make it fatter or thinner) and its level (perfect if you have guitars with very different output levels). You can also boost the signal going into the distortion, giving you more distortion (as if you'd turned the gain knob up). But you won't get that much more volume when boosting from that position - some or all of the level increase will be eaten up by the distortion, depending on how much you had on.

      If you place the eq after distortion, you will be able to change the tonality of the distorted sound (rather than the guitar's), and the overall level (great for solo boosting). But unless the amp is also distorting, you won't get more distortion when boosting from that position.

      Also, keep in mind that if you're using more than just a little amp distortion (i.e. a distortion channel set to more than just a slight breakup), "after distortion" will mean "in a series effects loop" (thus placing the eq after the preamp's distortion).

      An elaborate but versatile version would be to use two different distortion/overdrive pedals, with an eq set to boost the signal in between them. Use the higher gain pedal first, then eq, then the lower gain pedal. That way, you could get a little of both. With the high gain distortion running, adding the eq will boost the volume for solos. With the lower gain pedal running, adding the eq will give you more dirt from that pedal, as well as more volume (as the lower gain pedal will not eat up as much of the level boost, so there will be some left to raise the overall volume too).

      The possibilities are endless...

      The Power List


      • #4
        That is a great explanation from Andreas.

        I use an Boss GE-7 EQ pedal as a lead boost AFTER a Keeley DS-1 going into a Marshall 50 watt JMP MV head.

        I get great results from this setup. I tried almost everything to get that desired lead boost (MXR Micro Amp, Boss CS-3, Ibanez TS-9....). Especially playing in a 2 guitarist band where the lead boost has to be even louder. i just kept getting drowned out by the other guitarist. Nothing seemed to work until I read that Slash from Guns 'N' Roses used a Boss GE-7 for leads in his effects loop. Since my Marshall does not have an effects loop, I just tried it before and after the DS-1. It worked a dream placed after the DS-1 with just a little boost in the 1k range.

        You just have to experiment with it. it depends on what you want to achieve with the EQ as Andreas explained.


        • #5
          My EQ goes in the FX loop and stays there. It has a much stronger affect in front of the amp rather than the FX loop with it being a parallel FX loop but it creates way too much noise in front of the amp.
          The hell you looking at?


          • #6
            I put a Fish'n'chips at the end of my pedal chain just before my amp for a solo boost. EQ's can make pretty much any dirt pedal sound good.

            Mini mixer £25 posted. Good size for pedalboards.
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            Telecaster 3 way switch and vintage jack socket. £5 posted

            Excellent dealings with AncientMariner, Chucknorris1982, Daysofspeed, Kurd01, Melx, SirLemonHead, and a few of others I can't remember. . .


            • #7
              Interesting thread guys.

              Do you think an EQ pedal, would also help tame the brightness/harshness of my Laney amp? (LC30).

              I was thinking of putting it after my BigD/Wah/Fuzz and before the amp, but not in the FX loop.


              MXR M-108 vs FishnChips vs Boss GE7?
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