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Questions tagged [acoustics]

The physical science of sound production, behavior, and mechanics.

6
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1answer
63 views

What are the effects of the shape of a bend in a brass instrument slide?

Some brass instrument manufacturers make a feature of the shape of the various slides - some have a semi-circular wrap, other more semi-elliptical. Some have a tight wrap (the two legs of the slide ...
1
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0answers
131 views

Irregular resolution [closed]

What are the primary conditions concerning the IRREGULAR resolutions of the following harmonies in common practice music?: -Dominant chords -Auxiliary Seventh chords (chords of sequence) -...
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3answers
91 views

A truly perfect unison

Two notes are two notes. At least, it seems that way. When people play two notes at two frequencies, they sound like two notes, even when they're playing in unison. There are a variety of factors ...
0
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6answers
227 views

Accurate understanding of the physics of sound?

I'm trying to learn theory. I'm starting with the physics of sound as the base. Here is what I (think I) know. Is this accurate? Music is sound. Sound travels in waves. Sound waves have two ...
11
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2answers
682 views

How do I know where to place holes on an instrument?

I've been trying to build a double reeded instrument out of plastic straws. I've run into a problem though, when I place fingering holes, the instrument doesn't seem to follow the $$f=/frac{nv}{4L}$$ ...
1
vote
2answers
84 views

How effective are acoustic panels to deaden a room?

I need to deaden an echoing drum practice room and am considering acoustic panels, probably DIY ones 3.5" deep filled with rock wool. I'm look at these vs. heavy blankets for aesthetic reasons. I'd ...
3
votes
2answers
87 views

Calculation of a note's frequency in the 18th-19th century

Suppose you are trying to reproduce an A major scale from the early 18th or 19th century, when A4 was perhaps tuned to 429.3Hz. What is the correct frequency (in Hz) for the next C# up (assuming we ...
15
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3answers
2k views

What is brightness?

I hear the term get thrown around a lot, and it seems pretty nebulous. Usually, it's invoked under the heading of tone, but I've heard it linked to intonation and a handful of other categories. At the ...
5
votes
1answer
48 views

Microdynamics of bow rosin and strings

Discussion in comments here questions whether the rosin on bow hairs changes physical characteristics in the course of stimulating vibration in a string. Consensus seems to be that: the physical ...
1
vote
1answer
117 views

Why do B and C resonate sympathetically?

While experimenting with piano acoustics I came across this weird phenomenon. Having an open B string and then hitting the C above will cause the B to resonate! This also works with open C and playing ...
1
vote
1answer
46 views

Isolation of acoustic body size with respect to volume and sustain?

Let's say we have two identical acoustic guitars with the only difference being the body size. How will the body size effect sound volume when considering a string plucked with the exact same amount ...
8
votes
4answers
933 views

What causes overtones at harmonic frequencies in an instrument? [duplicate]

I know when a string is plucked on a violin you can hear many overtones at harmonic frequencies, but where do these overtones come from? Does an ideal string vibrating in a vacuum vibrate at the ...
2
votes
3answers
161 views

Alternatives to acoustic foam

I get health reactions from acoustic foam. I tried different brands. It's unfortunate. Still, i would like to treat the acoustics in my little home studio as good as possible. What could i use as ...
7
votes
1answer
155 views

Why can a vuvuzela only play one pitch, while a non-valved bugle can play many?

According to our collective nightmares from the 2010 World Cup Wikipedia, the vuvuzela is a monotone instrument; it famously plays (roughly) the B♭ below middle C. Why is the vuvuzela restricted to ...
3
votes
2answers
248 views

How much louder than an upright is a small grand piano?

I now have a kawai upright (height 135cm) and I'd like to upgrade to a small grand piano (around 170 cm I think). I'm wondering how much louder it will be. I don't really need a louder piano, my ...
3
votes
4answers
876 views

Does shape of waveform affect sonic perception?

Title says it all - does the shape of a wave have any effect on how we perceive it as a sound?
3
votes
1answer
118 views

Textbook vs real world explanation of loudness perception

I read that if you double the number of instruments playing, i.e double the amount of acoustic energy, then the perceived loudness rises by 3 dB. I've also read that a 3 dB change is almost ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

Trumpet Peculiar Frequency spectrum

So I made this frequency spectrum analyzer and tested various instruments playing a certain note. There doesn't seem to be any problem with the 'equalizer'. However, I found the spectrum for trumpet ...
1
vote
1answer
271 views

Are the Piattino Sound Proofing Castor Cup really efficient and are there other equivalent solutions?

I am improving my piano practice room and I found recently the Piattino Sound Proofing Castor Cup. These work, as far as I understand, by absorbing vibration from the piano to the structures around ...
19
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5answers
7k views

Can eggboxes really be used to treat a room? If so, how?

I'm thinking about acoustically treating my room so I can listen to my mixes in higher clarity. I'm trying to think of how I can do it cheaply (even though you get what you pay for, I suppose), and my ...
8
votes
2answers
802 views

Bass guitar: Fret distance formula

I just set off a new trip to the wonderful world of fretted instruments. I bought myself an electric bass guitar (cort c4h). My question to you is what is the formula of the fret distances along the ...
2
votes
1answer
86 views

Does the THX Deep Note Actually Increase in SPL/IL?

This may be more of a question for the Physics StackExchange, but I thought I'd post it here since it is in some sense a musical question. The Wikipedia article on the Deep Note includes the ...
10
votes
4answers
3k views

If I change the pitch of a C major scale can I get to any major key?

Say I recorded an audio of C major: do re mi fa so la si do. Now imagine I used some software to change the pitch higher (I think Audacity has a feature like this). I was wondering: if I change the ...
3
votes
2answers
88 views

Room Acoustics for Singing

I'm working to improve my singing ability at a very basic level. During the week I have access to three different rooms 1) with a lot of echo (bare walls, ceiling and floor) 2) One that has a little ...
7
votes
5answers
2k views

How do multiple sound waves interact physically to create music?

What happens on a physical level when many notes/sound waves interact with each other at the same time? (For example, a big chord on the piano with all of its harmonics/overtones clashing together.) ...
5
votes
2answers
520 views

Is there actually an “undertone series”?

We know there is an overtone series, or harmonic series, i.e. if a note A of 440 Hz is being played on a musical instrument, there will also be different amplitudes of sound of 880 Hz (440 Hz * 2), ...
1
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1answer
1k views

Loudness of instruments - musician's viewpoint [closed]

I have been wondering how loud seem instruments to musicians that play them. Let's say that you put an instrument in a room with average acoustics and measure loudness that musician hears and loudness ...
4
votes
0answers
63 views

Is there some means of expanding the range of a capped reed instrument?

Given the pitch limits of capped reed instruments, I wondered whether some means of expanding the range of such existed. Perhaps with some sort of embouchure mimicking device surrounding the reed, but ...
5
votes
2answers
7k views

Sound proofing a wall with rockwool. What's the best density?

I share a wall with a neighbour and I am looking for ways to isolate it a bit more. I read that rockwool does a good job. It might be important to mention that practice instrument is a piano and ...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

Why are pedal notes in the lower, not in the higher, register?

At church today I listened to an organ piece that had a constant pedal note from the beginning to the end of the piece. The strange (and very unpleasant) thing about this pedal note was, that it was ...
7
votes
2answers
623 views

What makes some instruments louder than others?

Main question: are longer pianos actually louder? Context: When a musician plays on an acoustic instrument, I expect that the loudness produced corresponds to raw energy (as measured in Joules or ...
10
votes
3answers
3k views

How did baroque music sound at the time?

Historical context Let's for example consider Toccata and Fugue in D minor, BWV 565 (click here to enjoy). It was composed at the very beginning of the 18th century in Germany. At that time: ...
21
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6answers
7k views

Does piano soundproofing require floating walls? Getting conflicting answers from professionals

I have just placed a new hybrid piano in a small 9x13 room in my apartment. I want to use the room for playing and for singing. Costly steps have already been taken, and, much to our dismay, we ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

How do uncovered tone holes in middle of a flute work?

As a (mediocre) guitarist just starting to dabble with other instruments, the first several fingering diagrams for flutes, saxophones, etc make good intuitive sense to me because you're effectively ...
-1
votes
1answer
121 views

Why do farther notes resonate more than closer notes?

Source: 30:05 juncture. Prof. Steven Cassedy. The following is based on YouTube's transcript that lacks formatting, and whose errors I corrected. Sorry for the strange numbering; I originally deleted ...
1
vote
3answers
254 views

Why do lower instruments speak “slower”?

Why do lower instruments, such as double bass and cello in an orchestra or chamber setting, are discerned by the ear slower than higher instruments (violin, flute, etc)? Does it have to do with the ...
3
votes
1answer
282 views

How does the pitch of the reed relate to the resonant frequency of the pipe in a woodwind instrument?

I'm a wind player who is interested in constructing musical instruments, and I've been studying acoustic physics and instrument design on my own time. I haven't been able to find the answer, and (...
2
votes
1answer
220 views

How accurately can a good musician judge an interval to be out of tune? [closed]

This is for a music/physics crossover experiment. Almost everyone will be familiar with the Doppler Effect, even if they don't know the name. Imagine that a vehicle is blaring its a siren or ...
1
vote
0answers
359 views

How can I graph sound waves of chords? [closed]

I'm working on a project for a physics class, and I need a visual representation of what piano chords look like in terms of frequency. I've looked all over for a website or app that would allow me to ...
-2
votes
1answer
762 views

My guitar instrument produced a perfect sine wave?

My homemade guitar was producing perfect sine waves, most guitar waves arent perfectly sine. Anyone have any suggestions for why? Physics project))
7
votes
2answers
3k views

Studio monitors: Should we break them in and why?

Having just acquired a spankin' new pair of monitors for my home studio, I'm currently in the process of "breaking them in". Being an inquisitive mind, I started wondering: what is the purpose of ...
4
votes
1answer
267 views

How to lower the tone of a natural horn?

I've received as gift a hollow natural cow horn, similar to those anciently used for signaling before metalworking was discovered. I'd like to know if, given it simplicity (natural carved material ...
5
votes
4answers
693 views

Why is a Perfect Fourth Considered Consonant? [duplicate]

I've been doing some research into the harmonic series lately. What I've come to understand is that the lower the ratio between the harmonics, the more pleasant/consonant the interval is. So, an ...
0
votes
1answer
794 views

Why do Talkbox and Autotune effects sound similar?

Talkbox and Autotune are completely different effects. In the former sound of an instrument is modulated through a hose in the singer's mouth, in the latter the frequencies of the singer's voice are ...
3
votes
2answers
81 views

Can a soundboard, if designed with the right shape and materials, be as accurate as a series of tubes for filtering/amplifying desired frequencies?

By cascading tube resonators of different cross section areas, it is possible to have a lot of control over the filtering of the sound, e.g. vowels in human voice can be approximated by cascading only ...
11
votes
10answers
4k views

Can music time signatures really be irrational?

In this video around the 5 minute mark, the presenter mentions that "irrational units of time cannot exist because of Planck's constant", and therefore music time signatures like 2:√2 cannot be ...
22
votes
9answers
4k views

Why do listeners hear the lowest note of a chord most distinctly?

Source: Prof. Bruce Taggart (PhD in Music Theory, U. of Pennsylvania), 58 s of his Coursera video. The lowest note of a chord is the most important one. It's the one that the listener hears most ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Any bed sheets thick enough to be used as sound proofing?

I am curious of anyone has any alternative ideas to standard/typical sound proofing. Currently I do not feel like constructing anything elaborate and I really can't do to much were I live. Noise isn't ...
4
votes
1answer
172 views

Is this theoretical “reed” acoustically possible?

I suppose this isn't exactly a reed, but it seems like a method of producing a sound that I've never seen on any instrument, at least on any commonly known instrument. This "reed" consists of two ...
1
vote
2answers
107 views

Pickups with Acoustic Instruments

I've been told when playing live not to mic an acoustic instrument because of the feedback you can get, and that using pickups would be a better way to amplify the sound of an acoustic instrument. So ...