Equalization for vinyl nirvana

Hi all,

I have a question for the Audiogon and vinyl community: do you think equalization is helpful for getting good results with vinyl playback? I ask because I'm a vinyl newbie. Recently added a nice turntable and phono preamp to my rig and have slowly been collecting the recommended audiophile jazz, blues and rock albums that I like. But with few exceptions, most of the time I'm underwhelmed by the results. Lack of bass and midrange fullness is usually the problem. Sure, I could look for another amplifier, subwoofer, better cables... but I think a simpler, more affordable solution would be to get some Eq in the loop. So I just put an order in for a Schitt Loki+ 4-band equalizer. Figure it's a low-cost way to test the theory. 

Do any of you have similar experiences or related wisdom to share?

I'm also curious about the Sunvalley All Purpose Phono Eq that Herb Reichert loves, that has adjustable eq curves (https://www.stereophile.com/content/gramophone-dreams-42-sunvalley-audio-sv-eq1616d-phono-equalizer), as well as the Decware ZRock2 eq (https://www.decware.com/newsite/ZROCK.html).

Thanks for your help!
With a Puffin you can EQ each cart and save the settings. Plus tube and tape transfer functions. Selectable bass boost, room EQ, rumble filter, warmth, air, bass, treble. Set it, save it, forget it.
Not to mention 1dB gain grain and ultra fine channel balance..
Some recordings are just too bright. I have digital and analogue versions and both can sound too bright if they were mixed that way. Some early 60’s recordings, originally released as mono but then remixed in stereo sound bright and hot as lp’s, cd’s, and streamed. Your Loki will come in handy, at only slight aural cost (foreshortening in depth perception in my system). It is a great product, with the new version even better, according to the audiophiliac.
I have 107 cartridges in my collection. Each one sounds different. Some emphasize the mids; back in the day, it was called “presence.” No amount of auxiliary EQ (not RIAA!) will give it to you if your cartridge doesn’t have it.

Other cartridges will sound thin, or “recessed” in the mids. Your Clearaudio cart is known for being “presence” shy, and recessed. Trying to EQ your way into a better sound will leave you disappointed.

Shure cartridges were renowned for great “presence.” ADC ZLM/XLM were as well. The Shure M97 Era IV will give you great presence, hard bass, and satiny, clear and focused treble with lots of “air”.

Way too many modern carts have a sterile, analytical sound.

Bottom line, you can’t get where you’re trying to go with that Clearaudio cartridge, even with auxiliary EQ.
The OP is not speaking of RIAA equalisation.  Yes that is vital to restore  (very close to) equal volume at all frequencies from what is a very unequal cutting process.

The producer had a very big equaliser panel in front of him when the recording was made.  He was probably a fiddler, anxious to be seen to earn his fee, so likely he moved some frequencies away from flat.
That was his decision and he felt his work improved the sound of the recording.

If you buy an equaliser and fiddle about with the producer's frequency balance, all you are doing is saying you don't agree with the producer's decisions and want to change them.

Oh, and also introducing loads of noise and distortion from the equaliser instead of using straight wire whenever possible.

I use a Loki between my phono preamp and my preamp. I have a very nice system. As I have upgrated my phono preamp and cartridge, I tend to use it less than I use to. I find that a lot of albums lack the amount of bass that I prefer so I use it mostly to bump up the low end. I find that in most cases if you mess with the mix it only makes things worse but there are a few records that I cut a little treble or add a little mid. Would I recommend eq, sure why not. If it increases your listening pleasure then go for it.