Re: [Rhythmbox-devel] Rhythmbox Equalizer

Please read my whole email before starting to answer it. It is clear to
me that you have completely misunderstood my sentiments.

An EQ definitely belongs in the pipeline---at the *end*. Thankfully,
good sound drivers offer this functionality (My EMU10k1 driver does, at

The responses of your audio equipment, room, ears and brain are not
selective, they respond in a consistent fashion. Thus having an EQ just
for music is utterly pointless, unless you are specifically being
creative. If your music is truly lacking in specific regions, then so
are all of your other system sounds, voice communications, etc.
Thankfully, an EQ at the end of the audio pipeline (e.g. in the ALSA
driver or in PulseAudio) alleviates this effectively.

On Wed, 2007-07-11 at 11:43 -0500, Brendan Martens wrote:
> > Why would you want to equalize Rhythmbox, but not your whole audio
> > output?
> I don't really  understand the controversy over this. Having an
> equalizer for just music totally makes sense. Music sounds different on
> almost every set of speakers you listen to it on, and therefore often
> requires a little tweaking to make it sound "right" whatever that means
> to you. It is totally acceptable for people to enjoy listening to music
> with a different eq setting on it. If I like more low end in one song,
> maybe the next guy likes a little bit more high end in it. This could be
> for a whole slew of reasons, maybe the next guy is going deaf and can't
> hear the high ends so well. Maybe his speakers have a hole in the mid
> that needs some tweaking to be heard properly. And personal taste is an
> entirely acceptable answer here.
> > You do realise that an "equalizer" is designed to counter the
> > frequency
> > response of your audio setup (i.e. "equalize"), not to "MAKE THE BASS
> As mentioned above there are a slew of reasons why one person may need
> to have their music equalized differently than the next person. You said
> it yourself, eq is for adjusting for a person's audio setup, and as
> almost no one's audio setup is exactly the same, there is a use case for
> having a unique customizeable eq setting for every single audio setup.
> And if I like "phat bass" who are you to tell me I'm wrong for that?
> Fact of the matter is every single audio system I've ever worked with
> needs eqing to get the low end sounding like even the artists want it
> to. This is because no audio system can faithfully reproduce the
> original signal, no matter how hard they try.
> > Personally I don't see the point of having something to do the latter.
> > Audio engineers put a hell of a lot of effort making music sound
> > exactly
> > how they want it, 
> There is good reason for equalizing with just about every track in a
> person's library. The audio engineers may have worked hard to get a song
> sounding how they wanted it to, or how the artist wanted it to, but they
> certainly did not have your specific audio setup in mind when they mixed
> each track. Eq adjustments are necessary to correct the deficiencies of
> an audio system, and beyond that the particular unique properties of
> every different room that audio systems are used in.
> > and I trust their judgements on how the bass should
> > sound better than I trust my own (or anyone else's for that matter).
> That is a bit silly. They are not you, they cannot get in your brain, or
> the brains of every person that will ever listen to their finished
> tracks.
> Who are we to assume that we have a better understanding of how music
> "should" sound to our users? For all we know it's the audio engineers
> themselves listening to their freshly mixed tracks at home, and they are
> certainly aware that their system at home is inferior to the one they
> use in the studio (probably.)
> This thinking also completely fails to take into account individual
> user's hearing problems. Some people are more sensitive to different
> frequency ranges. 
> Anther great use case for an eq in the music playing program is for a
> person at work. I find it is difficult to keep my music frequencies
> sounding good while still not bothering my neighobr. There is a pleasant
> middle ground, but my speakers have two knobs, one for bass and one for
> treble, when I use those knobs I lose a lot of the audio spectrum that I
> could otherwise be enjoying if I didn't have to cut out so much to make
> the low end quiet enough for the office environment I am in.
> Ok, I feel like I've ranted a bit, I apologize if I offended anyone. I'm
> just applying a bit of an audio technician's perspective on the matter.
> When I setup a PA system I want an eq involved regardless of the venue
> or how many people are going to be involved. Individual user's PCs are
> no exception.
> Brendan
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> rhythmbox-devel gnome org
Alex Jones

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