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Equalization

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Jump to: navigation, search This article is about electronic compensation for systems' uneven frequency responses. For equalization particularly as used in sound recording and reproduction, see Equalization (audio). For other uses, see Equalization (disambiguation). Equalization (British: equalisation) is the process of adjusting the balance between frequency components within an electronic signal. The most well known use of equalization is in sound recording and reproduction but there are many other applications in electronics and telecommunications. The circuit or equipment used to achieve equalization is called an equalizer. These devices strengthen (boost) or weaken (cut) the energy of specific frequency bands. In telecommunications, equalizers are used to render the frequency response—for instance of a telephone line—flat from end-to-end. When a channel has been "equalized" the frequency domain attributes of the signal at the input are faithfully reproduced at the output. Telephones, DSL lines and television cables use equalizers to prepare data signals for transmission. In the field of audio electronics, the term "equalization" has come to include the adjustment of frequency responses for practical or aesthetic reasons, often resulting in a net response that is not truly equalized. The term EQ specifically refers to this variant of the term.[1] Stereos typically have adjustable equalizers which boost or cut bass or treble frequencies. Broadcast and recording studios use sophisticated equalizers capable of much more detailed adjustments, such as eliminating unwanted sounds or making certain instruments or voices more prominent. Equalizers are critical to the successful operation of electronic systems such as analog broadcast television. In this application the actual waveform of the transmitted signal must be preserved, not just its frequency content. Equalizing filters must cancel out any group delay and phase delay between different frequency components.

Contents

1 Uses 1.1 Audio and music 1.2 Analog telecommunications  1.2.1 Audio lines  1.2.2 Television lines o 1.3 Digital telecommunications 2 See also 3 References 4 External links
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the adjustment of those functions and the flexibility with which they can be adjusted varies according to the topology of the circuitry and controls presented to the user. This equipment is based on a bank of filters covering the audio spectrum in up to 30 frequency bands. A low shelf. such as the bass control on most hi-fi equipment. A parametric equalizer. but with somewhat less flexibility. Shelving controls are usually simple first-order filter functions which alter the relative gains between frequencies much higher and much lower than the corner frequencies. In a quasi-parametric or semiparametric equalizer there is no control for the bandwidth (it is preset by the designer) or is only selected between two presets using a switch. A graphic equalizer also implements second-order filter functions in a more user-friendly manner. and a +9 dB treble boost (blue) Second-order linear filter functions. adjustment of the Q which determines the sharpness of the bandwidth. Red: a 6 dB cut at 100 Hz having a higher Q (sharper bandwidth) Although the range of equalization functions is governed by the theory of linear filters. These are coarse adjustments more designed to increase the listener's satisfaction than providing actual equalization in the strict sense of the term. such as a treble control adjusts the gain of higher frequencies only. on the other hand. Each second-order filter has a fixed center . Blue: a 9 dB boost at 1 kHz. A high shelf. has one or more sections each of which implements a second-order filter function. and the level or gain control which determines how much those frequencies are boosted or cut relative to frequencies much above or below the center frequency selected. This involves three adjustments: selection of the center frequency (in Hz).Uses Audio and music Main article: Equalization (audio) Two first-order shelving filters: a -3 dB bass cut (red). is adjusted to affect the gain of lower frequencies while having no effect well above its corner frequency.

a second-order low-pass notch filter section only reduces (rather than eliminates) very high frequencies. A high-pass filter modifies a signal only by eliminating lower frequencies. an audio equalizer may alter the relative phases of those frequencies. These kinds of equalizers can also be used to produce a circuit with a wider bandwidth than the standard telephone band of 300 Hz to 3. in completely removing the 19 kHz FM stereo subcarrier pilot signal while helping to cut even higher frequency subcarrier components remaining from the stereo demultiplexer. A lowpass filter only modifies the audio signal by removing high frequencies. for instance. That system was used to equalize a motion picture theater sound playback system. A fancier second-order filter will reduce those frequencies with a slope of 12 dB per octave and moreover may be designed with a higher Q or finite zeros in order to effect an even steeper response around the cutoff frequency. The user can raise or lower each slider in order to visually approximate a "graph" of the intended frequency response. but has a steep response falling to zero at a specific frequency (the so-called notch frequency). This was particularly useful for broadcasters who needed "music" quality. and reduce the volume of the low frequency sounds (cut). A first-order low or high pass filter has a standard response curve which reduces the unwanted frequencies well above or below the corner frequency with a slope of 6 dB per octave. . For instance.4 kHz.frequency and Q. In addition to adjusting the relative amplitude of frequency bands. Such a filter might be ideal.[3] Analog telecommunications Audio lines Early telephone systems used equalization to correct for the reduced level of high frequencies in long cables. Thus a low-cut or rumble filter is used to remove infrasonic energy from a program which may consume undue amplifier power and cause excessive excursions in (or even damage to) speakers. the use of high and low pass filters may be mentioned. While the human ear is not as sensitive to the phase of audio frequencies (involving delays of less than 1/30 second). for example. It is necessary to remove or cancel any loading coils in the line before equalization can be successful. Thus a high-cut or hiss filter may be used to remove annoying white noise at the expense of the crispness of the program material. not "telephone" quality on landlines carrying program material. Equalization was also applied to correct the response of the transducers. so an equalizer would be used to increase the volume of the higher frequencies (boost). a particular microphone might be more sensitive to low frequency sounds than to high frequency sounds. but an adjustable level. typically using Zobel networks.[2] Since "equalization" in the context of audio reproduction isn't used strictly to compensate for the deficiency of equipment and transmission channels. music professionals may favor certain equalizers because of how they affect the timbre of the musical content by way of audible phase artifacts. Variable equalization in audio reproduction was first used by John Volkman working at RCA in the 1920s.

A television equalizer consequently typically requires more filter sections than an audio equalizer. To keep this manageable. Digital telecommunications Main article: Equalizer (communications) Modern digital telephone systems have less trouble in the voice frequency range as only the local line to the subscriber now remains in analog format. The second issue is that phase equalization is essential for an analog television signal. but DSL circuits operating in the MHz range on those same wires may suffer severe attenuation distortion.Television lines A similar approach to audio was taken with television landlines with two important additional complications. which is dealt with by automa . television equalizer sections were often combined into a single network using ladder topology to form a Cauer equalizer. Without it dispersion causes the loss of integrity of the original waveshape and is seen as smearing of what were originally sharp edges in the picture. The first of these is that the television signal is a wide bandwidth covering many more octaves than an audio signal.