O'Reilly logo

Digital Audio Essentials by Bruce Fries, Marty Fries

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

Record Equalization

During the cutting of a master record, the frequency response of the source audio is altered to account for the mechanical limitations of the cutting device and to improve the signal-to-noise ratio. During playback, a mirror image of this equalization “curve” is applied by your stereo’s phono preamp so that the audio has a normal frequency response.

Prior to 1956, record manufacturers used a variety of equalization curves, tailored to their own records and equipment. In 1953, RCA introduced a curve tailored to the characteristics of the LP (see Figure 14-16). In 1956, the Recording Institute of America (RIAA) adopted the RCA standard, and the other record companies soon followed.

The equalization curve adopted by the RIAA for LPs in 1956—when you play an older record recorded to a non-RIAA standard, the frequency response will be off unless you apply the correct equalization during playback or in your sound editing program

Figure 14-16. The equalization curve adopted by the RIAA for LPs in 1956—when you play an older record recorded to a non-RIAA standard, the frequency response will be off unless you apply the correct equalization during playback or in your sound editing program

When you play an older record mastered to a non-RIAA standard, the frequency response will be off unless you apply the correct equalization during playback or, once the audio is digitized, in a sound editing program.

Equalizing a vintage recording

You usually won’t have to apply equalization to audio captured from a vinyl record played on a decent turntable. However, to accurately capture the sound from a vintage record played on a modern ...

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required