I've recently tried a new (to me) approach towards treating "mud" frequencies. I'd be interested if someone does a similar thing? So basically I try to "equalize" - in the true meaning of the word - the source with an algo eq, mostly cutting with a parametric around 200Hz or lower, sometimes also the 1k area. In order to bring the fullness back I'd use a Nebula EQ, Calrec, N**e, Gyrator etc.
It sounds really really good to me, anyone want to comment?
This approach makes a lot of sense to me. I like to use algo eq's (usually ReaEQ) early in the chain to "sanitize" tracks (clean up muddyness, notch out annoying/ringing resonances, etc), and THEN add Nebula programs after. I feel like this approach gives you a nice clean start and only makes the Nebula side of things work even better!
For what it's worth; I like to set up an easy traditional chain, for instance: N**e/A*I line/mic input-compressor-studer/ampex-ssl line input. This generates a curve/vibe, and it also acts like an equalizer. To clean up muddy frequencies totally depends on the source and style. For instance, when dealing with muddy vocals, I like to use N**e 1073/81/84. Every eq has it's own vibe. If you like that vibe, then start eq'ing. There are tons of ways to clean up muddy sources, this is just one out of many. But the chain starting from the source is important.
Try it with Nova since you have that already. It's a great combination. Especially useful is dynamically taming resonances or mud with 1 or 2 bells, then boosting lows with a Nebula eq using a broad q bell or shelf. The shape and harmonics restore a lot of weight and fullness.
Indeed cutting mud shouldn't always equal thinner sound...it should result in a cleaner, tighter, or more open sounding frequency range (whether it's the low end or the mids).
What you describe is something I do a lot. Except that I still find HW or Nebula/Acqua EQs being better also for the cutting part. But often I need higher Q factor and fully variable frequency control for the cuts. I have this problem when working on an S*L G+ console. The Q goes only to 3 and it is very difficult to remove stuff. But even there with some gentle boost in the lows (shelf) and very gentle hi-Q peak cut in the mud region you could get good results. But it is just that some EQs are better for this duty. Some favs are the N**e VR (Q up to 9) and 88R EQs. I love how you can scoop out so much and still retain the integrity of the track. Other EQs like a Pultec or a 1073 are better for boosting the low end, not cutting, imho.