In praise of Tone Controls

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by JoeSmo, Apr 4, 2018.

  1. tommytune

    tommytune Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Iowa
    Like many of you I've had tone controls since my first stereo. Friends would ask me to adjust their stereo's sound. They gave me a nickname that is my username on this forum. I guess I'm lucky, well maybe not, but I can move a control the smallest amount possible and hear the difference.

    When I ran a soundboard for a band playing live, was I wrong to adjust the tone controls? Don't people in the recording studio adjust the tone controls? Why can't I adjust the sound at home? It's not like all recordings are the same.

    Speakers, amps, cd players, turntables/carts all sound different. It's not like we all have the same sounding gear, but with tone controls I'd like to think we can adjust to have a similar sound that we listen to.

    To the OP, yes I have adjusted the tone controls on my amp, and like you, I try to not move them anymore.
     
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  2. JoeSmo

    JoeSmo Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Maidstone
    My last observation is this, I had many amps ( integrated and pre/powers) without tone controls and they ALL sounded different too. And that was with same source, cabling and speakers. There isn’t a standard.
     
  3. Hermetech Mastering

    Hermetech Mastering Vortextual Waveform Projection

    Location:
    Paris, France
    I love my Dangerous Music Bax EQ.
     
  4. Manimal

    Manimal Forum Resident

    Location:
    Southern US
    Review in Absolute Sound today of the new McIntosh C 52 integrated amplifier is a must read for us tone control lovers. Code red!
     
    The Pinhead likes this.
  5. Manimal

    Manimal Forum Resident

    Location:
    Southern US
  6. Manimal

    Manimal Forum Resident

    Location:
    Southern US
    I enjoyed the review! BUT that receiver only weighs 27 lbs. hmmmm
    My Pioneer weighs 65lbs (of pure pain with the power to crush and contain).’
    I would think flagship receiver with the latest in audio weapons, would weigh at least a hundo. Maybe it was a misprint
     
    SandAndGlass likes this.
  7. The Pinhead

    The Pinhead SLEAZY SOUTHAMERICAN CAVEMAN

    :laughup: On what planet ?

    How's using tone controls ¨cheating¨ ??!!:crazy:

    There's simply WAAAAY to much fantastic awfully-recorded music to waste my life listening only to well-recorded stuff:doh:

    PS: my room is treated, thank you very much.
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2018
  8. Manimal

    Manimal Forum Resident

    Location:
    Southern US
    Ha! Got that ole thread started with a little diesel fuel:)
     
  9. signothetimes53

    signothetimes53 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Burlington VT USA
    I misread the title of this thread, thought it was "In praise of Tone Loc". Guess I picked the wrong week to lay off the Funky Cold Medina.

    On a serious note, I have vintage Pioneer receivers (an SX-850 and an SX-1250) with all kinds of tone control options, which I rarely use. And I have a Marantz PM8004 amp that touts 3 tone controls including a mid-range, and I almost never use those, either. Part of me struggles with the notion that messing with the EQ means I'm not listening to a recording as the artist intended. Given the number of bad sonics some artists and their producers/engineers have served up in recent years, I probably need to get over that feeling.
     
    Manimal likes this.
  10. ShockControl

    ShockControl Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    It is amazing to me that a higher-end amp would not have bass and treble controls. I guess you can always pick up a cheap Realistic equalizer to make the amp useful.
     
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  11. Rob9874

    Rob9874 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Surprise, AZ
    This is my thought exactly. I don't mean to disrespect anyone's listening tastes. I wanted to be part of the purist crowd when I first joined this forum, but my system is very low budget. I couldn't any longer deprive myself of the bass I wanted in the music by merely telling myself, "well, that's not how the musicians/producer intended for it to sound". I'm sure the musicians/producer also didn't intend listen to the playbacks on my $300 AVR either. I don't understand the logic of it being admissible to increase bass by adding a subwoofer or a higher end preamp or amp, as long as the tone knobs are set to zero.
     
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  12. Manimal

    Manimal Forum Resident

    Location:
    Southern US
    The review I posted takes a very cool look at the current situation when it comes to purity and stigma of control. Ahhhhhh! Yeaaaa!
     
  13. stax o' wax

    stax o' wax Forum Resident

    Location:
    The West
    I am thrilled with my Luxman 505f integrated.
    It has tone controls..... and it has a switch to bypass them if you don't use them........brilliant, thoughtful design.
     
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  14. hesson11

    hesson11 Forum Resident

    Amen, bro.
    -Bob
     
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  15. The Pinhead

    The Pinhead SLEAZY SOUTHAMERICAN CAVEMAN

    I bet this CD wouldn't sound nowhere near acceptable if played without tonal correction on Dr Fine's rig :

    [​IMG]
     
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  16. Pythonman

    Pythonman Forum Resident

    My P5 Parasound Halo has them. It’s not like I’m a fan of tone controls and I am not. Usually you mess with bass controls on the preamps I have had before, the sound becomes overbearing and wooly and it thickens the midrange. On the P5 it’s more like pushing a low end fader up that does very little to the rest of the audio spectrum. So, I can appreciate tone controls in smaller and specific applications.
     
  17. DigMyGroove

    DigMyGroove Forum Resident

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    I just got a Schiit Loki tone control in anticipation of purchasing a tube pre-amp that does not have any.

    In the meantime it’s in between an Arcam Solo Music receiver that I’m using as a pre-amp and a hybrid Lector VM200 power amp. I’ve never been fully satisfied with the Arcam’s tone controls and find myself fiddling with them too much. That’s easy to do since it can all be done with the remote.

    Now having added the Loki to the mix I was able to quickly find the sound I wanted. Having a midrange control along with treble and deep as well as mid-bass controls really works gor me. In addition to it’s use for music I’m finding TV audio is much better than before (Thank you midrange!)
     
  18. enfield

    enfield Forum Resident

    Location:
    Essex UK
    Just as there isn't a standard with the sound quality of recordings.They all sound different as well.
     
    The Pinhead likes this.
  19. russk

    russk Forum Resident

    Location:
    Syracuse NY
    This is nonesense. Various.masterimg engineers are known for their own sounds, same with studios. Certain artists aim for a certain sound in the studio. All albums are most definitely not crated equal or mastered the same. Some not even remotely. Does mastering help even out the presentation of various instrauments, of course, but you are overstating the process if you are trying to state that all recordings are mastered the same way. It's an art form as much as it's a science.
     
    The Pinhead likes this.
  20. marcb

    marcb Forum Resident

    Location:
    DC area
    I’m amazing to me any higher-end amp would have low-end “bass” and “treble” controls. But I suppose if you want to make a higher-end amp sound lower-end, you can always pick up a cheap Realistic graphic equalizer and put that in the chain.
     
  21. klockwerk

    klockwerk Forum Resident

    Location:
    Ohio USA
    The only tone control I've ever used is the loudness switch, which is mandatory for me.
     
  22. marcb

    marcb Forum Resident

    Location:
    DC area
    :yikes:
     
  23. marcb

    marcb Forum Resident

    Location:
    DC area
    Indicating if you use tone controls/eq should be mandatory if you’re posting comments on the quality/fidelity of a particular mastering.
     
  24. 4011021

    4011021 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brazil
    I learned in THIS thread that using caps locked WORDS in an argument DOESN'T help people to UNDERSTAND what was meant and WON'T make them AGREE with what is being STATED.
     
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  25. 4011021

    4011021 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brazil
    :righton:
     
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