The quest for the best graphic equalizer

Juho Liski, Vesa Välimäki

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)
128 Downloads (Pure)


The design of graphic equalizers has been investigated for decades, but only recently fitting the magnitude response closely enough to the control points has become possible. This paper reviews the development of graphic equalizer design and discusses how to define the target response. Furthermore, it investigates how to find the hardest target gain settings, the definition of the bandwidth of band filters, the estimation of the interaction between the bands, and how the number of iterations improves the design. The main focus is on a recent design principle for the cascade graphic equalizer. This paper extends the design method for the case of third-octave bands, showing how to choose the parameters to obtain good accuracy. The main advantages of the proposed approach are that it keeps the approximation error below 1 dB using only a single second-order IIR filter section per band, and that its design is fast. The remaining challenge is to simplify the design phase so that sufficient accuracy can be obtained without iterations.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 20th International Conference on Digital Audio Effects
EditorsAlberto Torin, Brian Hamilton, Stefan Bilbao, Michael Newton
PublisherUniversity of Edinburgh
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2017
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventInternational Conference on Digital Audio Effects - Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Duration: 5 Sep 20179 Sep 2017
Conference number: 20

Publication series

NameProceedings of the International Conference on Digital Audio Effects
ISSN (Print)2413-6700
ISSN (Electronic)2413-6689


ConferenceInternational Conference on Digital Audio Effects
Abbreviated titleDAFx
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


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