EQ Ear Training for Mixing Engineers : TrainYourEars EQ 2.0
TrainYourEars EQ 2.0 is a new application for Mac and PC that makes EQ ear training for mixing engineers cool and super intuitive. Use it on a regular basis, and the app will help you take the guesswork out of EQing.
EQ Ear Training for Mixing Engineers – TrainYourEars EQ 2.0
During your music production travels – learning all there is to know about your particular DAW, while trying to learn all about mixing your audio at the same time… ( pfew. )
You’ve probably come across the concept of “EQ Sweeping”.
What is EQ Sweeping?
The concept is really simple:
Strap on an EQ plugin of your choice, on a piece of audio of your choice, and start sweeping through the frequency spectrum of that particular piece of audio. You’ll go from 20 Hz to 20Khz (the audible frequency range our ears are blessed with at birth – note that as we age, we’ll start suffering from hearing loss), while trying to detect the frequencies that make certain sounds sound the way they sound.
Do this often enough, and over time, EQ sweeping can help you answer questions such as:
- Where’s the sub of that kick drum sample?
- What makes this kick drum punch?
- Where’s the ‘click’ of this kick drum?
- What makes this particular piano sound warm, and what frequency makes it sound that bright?
- My vocal sounds too harsh, what frequency do I need to cut, using what Q factor?
And on and on and on.
That EQ plugin you’ve been using for the sweeps has probably been giving you visual feedback.
Are you training your ears or your eyes?
Exactly. Read up…
EQ Ear Training for Mixing Engineers – How it Works
EQ Exercises and Methods
- Any music you’d like to use for ear training sessions can be loaded into the application. These could be your own audio files, or tracks from other music applications such as Spotify and iTunes. You can also test your skills on plain pink and white noise.
- You then choose an ear training exercise, to learn the difference between a Low Cut and a Low Shelf, or a High Cut and a High Shelf for example. Exercises can also be designed from scratch: you can design custom EQ quizzes to train your ears to recognize specific frequencies, EQ filter types, boosts and cuts, Q-factors, or a combination of parameters for unlimited possibilities. Regardless your current EQ skills, you can always adjust your exercises to something that will keep challenging you once your EQ skills begin to improve.
Guess the EQ
- Next, you choose an EQ ear training method. With the Guess Method , you listen both to the unprocessed and processed audio, then guess which EQ parameters were altered. This is the classic method that has been used for over 40 years by thousands of successful mixing engineers.
Correct the EQ
- By using the new Correct Method, the app will start throwing EQ problems at you. You’ll have to apply your EQ skills to make a processed audio file sound like the original again. Do this together with the app’s ability to play tracks from Spotify or iTunes – and you could be fixing EQ issues on reference tracks you know best! This new Correct Method was suggested by audio mastering engineer and author of “Mastering Audio: The Art and the Science” Bob Katz, and implemented in version 2.0 of TrainYourEars EQ.
Watch the video below to see how this all works… pay special attention to the EQ example at 0:28…
Did you get it right?
Moar ear training for you my friend…
Train Your Ears Review
Here’s Pro Tools Expert’s Dan Cooper doing a 5-minute review of TrainYourEars EQ 2.0.
- Jump to 0:40 to get to know the Audio Player’s features
- Jump to 0:50 to get to know the Live Player’s features
- At 1:08, note the AU/VST hosting capabilities of the software.
- Skip to 1:31 to see the EQ ear training exercises that come bundled with the app
- Jump to 3:08 to see how to make your own equalisation exercises with the app
Train Your Ears EQ Pricing & Upgrading
TrainYourEars EQ 2.0 normally costs € 89, but is available now for only € 49 (around USD 53 at today’s currency exchange rate) thanks to a special launch offer. For those who bought version 1 in 2015, the upgrade will be free. People who bought it before 2015 can purchase the ear training app at an additional 50% discount over the already discounted price – for a total discount of 75%.
For more information, documentation and user testimonials, visit the TrainYourEars EQ 2.0 website!
EQ Ear Training Exercises
TrainYourEars makes ear training for audio engineers even more interesting, as the app features the ability for both EQ beginners and seasoned audio professionals to develop their own exercises.
Here’s a good example.
Audio mastering engineer Andrea Zanini, the founder of Owl Mastering, has put together a comprehensive set of ear training exercises for TrainYourEars that can be used in the application.
The set contains 18 exercises to get you started in frequency recognition, neatly going from 20 hertz to 20 kilohertz:
– The first five of these exercises focus on Basic Perception. First you’ll learn to recognize some simple frequency boosts and cuts with a wide Q factor, then gradually grasp the impact of Q width as it is narrowed down.
The Low End
– Then the low end – roughly from 20Hz to 80Hz – is covered in an exercise. The next exercise focuses on 20 Hz (a subwoofer is needed). Next, 40Hz to 100Hz are covered, to help you achieve the perfect low end balance in your mixes.
Low Mids, Mids, High Mids
125Hz to 500Hz, 630Hz to 1250Hz, and 1600Hz to 3150Hz are the next areas. You’ll learn about low-order harmonics, percussive attack and vocal recognition, and higher order harmonics of many instruments.
Lastly, 10kHz to 20kHz is covered, where the highest harmonics can be found. These are essential for a sense of air and brilliance.