An equalizer (commonly abbreviated as EQ) shapes the sound of incoming audio by changing the level of specific frequency bands.

Equalization is one of the most commonly used audio processes, both for music projects and in post-production work for video. You can use EQ to subtly or significantly shape the sound of an audio file, instrument, or project by adjusting specific frequencies or frequency ranges.

All EQs are specialized filters that allow certain frequencies to pass through unchanged while raising (boosting) or lowering (cutting) the level of other frequencies. Some EQs can be used in a “broad-brush” fashion, to boost or cut a large range of frequencies. Other EQs, particularly parametric and multiband EQs, can be used for more precise control.

The simplest types of EQs are single-band EQs, which include low cut and high cut, lowpass and highpass, shelving, and parametric EQs.

Multiband EQs (such as the Channel EQ, Fat EQ, or Linear Phase EQ) combine several filters in one unit, enabling you to control a large part of the frequency spectrum. Multiband EQs allow you to independently set the frequency, bandwidth, and Q factor of each frequency spectrum band. This provides extensive, and precise, tone-shaping on any audio source, be it an individual audio signal or an overall mix.

Final Cut Pro includes a variety of single band and multiband EQs.

This chapter covers the following: