• Joe, thanks for this. I almost always do “sweeping”, but below the line, not above. I’ll sweep until whatever I’m unhappy with goes away. Now I can add this in, as I am not always satisfied with the resulting choices I make after just the cut/sweep I do. Time to woodshed!

    • Yeah, cutting is just so much harder to hear sometimes.

  • Liron

    Excellent tip as always. Thanks, Joe!

  • Kaz

    I still think you’ve been looking over my shoulder while I’m mixing. thanks for the great lesson once again.

  • Don Clarke

    It makes much more sense to find a bad frequency by ELIMINATION than by ADDITION. In other words, do the sweep with a CUT rather than a BOOST. I’ve been doing this successfully for years. Don Clarke – Monkeyshine Music, South Africa.

    • I’m guessing I didn’t explain myself very well. I’m referring to those times when you know you want to cut something, but you’re not entirely sure. The common advice is to boost and find the frequency, then cut it. Unfortunately, if you don’t sweep wide enough, you end up cutting the wrong frequency.
      I’m not suggesting you boost and leave it boosted. It’s simply one way of finding the offending frequency (a way that I find is quicker than cutting and sweeping).


    As a rule of thumb, and slightly off topic, Should freqs around 100-200 be cut a max upto 3db or so? I tend to extreme narrow cut a lot to make it sound “tight” only to find out it has lost all its Presence/power. Thanks!

    • I don’t have that particular rule of thumb. I tend to start with 3 dB just so I don’t overdo it, but it always depends on the source. If a 12 dB cut makes it sound right, then a 12 dB cut was the perfect cut.

  • readyrover

    That explains a lot. There have been times when I’ve seen a frequency jumping up on the bar graph, boosted it to confirm, cut to tame it, and still had major parts of the irritating frequency left. I’m not addressing the harmonic, most likely. Thanks for a great tip!


    • Yep. While a frequency graph can be helpful, it’s important not to simply try to spot the frequencies that “jump out” and cut them. Sometimes those could be the good frequencies!

  • Noah

    So it’s not about what sounds bad when you sweep, it’s about what sounds good/better when you cut.

    • I find it easier to identify what it is you want to cut by boosting.

      • Noah

        yes, I was just saying the end result is what’s important.

        • Yep. I mean, that’s the whole point of any of this. 🙂

    • Jordan

      I completely agree with this. You already KNOW that something isnt sounding good, why would you boost? Your ears and skills will be much better for sweeping a cut and finding the spot where the cut fits.

      But, this video is awesome, I never thought about it like this. Thanks Joe!

      • I just find it easier to find the offending frequency by boosting…most of the time.

    • FRHNR

      Generally, cutting what sounds bad while sweeping gives you better result. I think Joe is just addressing the starting point of cutting here.

  • Nadeem Merchant

    sweep away some of that fuzzy math you tried there,… lol. Great lesson!