# What is the savart unit in Persian music theory?

I was heard about Savart unit in Persian music that divides a chromatic interval into smaller units.

Persian musicians using an interval smaller than the chromatic intervals, called: Kron. they measure it using the Savart unit.

is this true? if is true, then how can I convert it into cent or vise-versa?

An article by Joe Monzo at http://tonalsoft.com/enc/s/savart.aspx defines the savart as 1/300 of an octave.

A savart is calculated as the 300th root of 2, or 2(1/300), with a ratio of approximately 1:1.002313162. It is an irrational number. A savart has an interval size of approximately 4 cents.

savart = 1000log10(f2/f1)
cents = 1200log2(f2/f1)


Cents, as the name implies, are 1/100th of a semitone (or "chromatic interval"), when working in 12-tone equal temperment (12-TET).

So, as long as your definition of "savar" is in relation to a "chromatic interval" that is defined as a 12th of an octave, then you should be able to convert back and forth by simply defining 1 savar = 2 cents.

However, if the Persian chromatic interval is not 1/12 of an octave, you will have to draw an equivalence in relation to the octave. The cent is 1/1200th of an octave. The savar is 1/(50*c) of an octave, where c is the number of equal chromatic intervals that make up an octave. You can then easily compare the two.

• I couldn't find any references to savar beyond your question, but this thread seems to indicate a scale that is not strictly equal-tempered, though it may be based on choosing certain 24-TET notes to end up with 17 unequal tones. Commented Feb 8, 2013 at 18:33
• yes, in persian called savar, but i just found the true spell, savart Commented Feb 9, 2013 at 6:34
• @pylover I see your edits--does this mean the Persian chromatic interval is 1/6 of an octave? Commented Feb 9, 2013 at 21:21
• no. we have a concept named: dastgah. so the intervals are variable across dastgah.for example, in dastgah: shoor ,E-F is 20 savar. Commented Feb 9, 2013 at 21:27
• @NReilingh It takes its name from the French physicist Savart. See Jean During's article for instance: Théories et pratiques de la gamme iranienne. jstor.org/stable/928594. Commented Nov 11, 2023 at 19:52