Questions tagged [acoustics]

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

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7
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2answers
137 views

What is the physical mechanism by which a chord has a root?

When the tones C, E and G are played, C is perceived as the root. In the case of this major triad, the root is easily identifiable. However, for many chords, there is no identifiable root. For example,...
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8answers
2k views

Why is the 5th stronger than the 1st in guitar spectrum?

I was experimenting with spectrum analysis of guitar plucks and this is what i got on an open low E recording: As you can see the strongest peak is at about 247 Hz, which is a B3 while the peak at ...
2
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2answers
84 views

Audio latency in live bands

In computer music one usually says that the audio latency of the system should ideally be less than 10ms… On the other hand, as the speed of sound is around 340 m/s in the air it means that whenever ...
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8answers
1k views

Can you change some composition I wrote to whatever music you want just by changing the timbre of the instruments?

Here is my problem: suppose I am a composer you have contracted to create any sheet music I dream of with the unique condition it is not pure silence and that I don't stipulate the instrument section (...
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7answers
5k views

When we press a piano key, why does a high pitch note not run for as long as a low pitch note?

When we press the keys on the piano that exist on the ends, one can notice that when we press a high pitch note, it plays for a short bit and then the sounds fades away. However, when we play a low ...
2
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1answer
56 views

Doubt about Harp Sound

I have some doubts about the acoustics of the harp? What is the resonant oscillator and sound effuser on a harp? For example, on a trumpet, the resonant oscillator is the body of the instrument ...
2
votes
1answer
125 views

Flutes in octaves sounds like an organ? Why does this happen?

I have noticed something when I hear 2 flutes in octaves or a flute and piccolo playing the same notated notes, sounding an octave apart. It starts to not sound like a flute. In particular it sounds ...
3
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1answer
56 views

Transcriptions that (more) directly relate to physical frequencies

Where can I view not traditional Western cleff based transcriptions of music, but rather ones that map directly to the physical differences in pitch being written down? So instead of something based ...
12
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3answers
4k views

Is it a coincidence that the length of the body of a violin is pretty exactly one fifth of the wave length of its lowest note?

The standard body size of a violin is 35 centimeter in length. Its lowest note is G3, which has a wave length of 175 centimeter, five times 35. 35 cm is the wave length of B5, which is a major third ...
4
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1answer
122 views

Creating a xylophone out of copper pipes

I have been trying to create a xylophone out of copper pipes for a school project and have been running into a few problems with calculating the length of each bar. I have been using this paper as ...
0
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1answer
29 views

Acoustic problem of intonation low on neck

I am a bass player for over 35 years. Also play guitar. I have worked on my own electrics, setting intonation, etc. I have an acoustic. When I tune it, the low E, fretted at the 2nd 3rd frets are ...
0
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2answers
84 views

How to make a single instrument fill up a sound spectrum?

I have an instrumental here (not particularly a fan of, but great reference for this question.) This instrumental starts off with and contains a synth pluck with a simple melody. My interest in this ...
1
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0answers
35 views

Could you clarify these statements regarding depth in a mix

I'm trying to establish the correct formula for these settings if you guys could correct them. It is imperative you're 100% sure of the answer as this plays a vital piece in my understanding of reverb....
3
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3answers
135 views

How long do early reflections take to become audible after direct sound [closed]

When speaking in terms of reverb, how long do early reflections take to occur/become audible after the direct sound? Also, do early reflections dictate if a space is long/short or does it also ...
2
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3answers
785 views

How do sound waves travel and their reflections?

I'm studying reverb from a first principles standpoint and I'm finding it difficult to find this answer in my studies. Firstly is this statement correct? "The quantity of sound waves ejected into a ...
3
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2answers
169 views

How could the Greek (Pythagoras et al.) measure the frequencies - as they didn't have a mobile app? [duplicate]

How could the Greek (Pythagoras et al.) measure the frequencies - as they didn't have a mobile app? They didn't have a tuning fork or any other standardized measure. But even without standards they ...
5
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2answers
97 views

how to tune a spring?

So here's the situation I'm in; I had this really weird dream with this really weird instrument in it. It was kinda like half a dulcimer with springs on it. There were 11 springs on it, (But I'm ...
2
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3answers
593 views

Accounting for intervals not present within the chord ratio?

Here are a selection of chord ratios.. Minor Chord - 10:12:15 Root (1:1) - Major 3rd (4:5) - Perfect 5th (2:3) Major 7th Chord - 8:10:12:15 Root (1:1) - Major 3rd (4:5) - Perfect 5th (2:3) - Major 7th ...
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6answers
2k views

Do interval ratios take overtones into account or solely the fundamental frequency?

An interval holds two pitches (C an G). Those two pitches have a fundamental frequency which represents their pitch names, along with their harmonic series/overtones. When we turn that interval into ...
1
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2answers
127 views

Harmonic series role in a just intonation interval ranking?

In my studies, I was reflecting on this theory and just wanted your guys clarification.. A pitch in an octave is comprised of a fundamental frequency followed by its overtones. When we focus on an ...
-1
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1answer
250 views

I have questions revolving around the formula of producing chord ratios?

Good day guys! Thanks to the gentleman @willross1 and others contributions, i have now discovered the formula behind turning interval ratios into chord ratios, which allows me to determine the level ...
3
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1answer
141 views

Stability of chords

I wish to understand the connection of music theory to the physics world, or to waves. In this context, I quite understand notion of dominant chords as containing tritone, which is dissonant. What I ...
3
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3answers
79 views

Echo reduction - large room

I was asked to propose a solution to reduce echos in a large event hall measuring 70 feet long by 60 feet wide with ceiling height 14 feet( I have never done anything of this sort before). The room ...
9
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4answers
2k views

How are chord ratios developed exactly?

Major Chord 4:5:6 Minor Chord 10:12:15 Diminished Chord 20:24:29 Are 3 examples of triad chord ratios. My question is how are these ratios developed? If we look at a Major chord in the key of C, it ...
2
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3answers
99 views

Fourier Analysis of varying classical guitar bracings

I am doing a school project right now concerning studying the Fourier Analysis of a sound recording of a few different classical guitars. I am wondering what type of sounds would be the best to record....
4
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5answers
1k views

Physics of Guitar frets and sound

I understand how Guitar works. Pitch/Frequency of sound produced depends on length of vibrating string. So we have different frets to product different notes. Fine. However I am curious to understand ...
2
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2answers
167 views

When the human voice changes pitch are certain interval changes physically easier?

I'm wondering along the lines of physics and how things resonate. I don't know how pitch changes work when something vibrates, especially the voice or wind instruments. I sort of understand that a ...
6
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3answers
170 views

Music Physics Question - Automatic Trumpet Embouchure Mouthpiece

So this might be a bit of a newbie question. I'm a working musician who mainly plays guitar and piano, and uses a lot of sampled instruments and synths as well. I don't mean this to be offensive to ...
11
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5answers
1k views

Scaling an object to change its key

I used a 3D Printer to make a kid's Recorder for my son. It plays surprisingly well. However, it's not tuned to match the common recorder used in schools. Using a phone-app tuner, the base mouth-piece ...
3
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3answers
973 views

Amplitude of a crest and trough in a sound wave?

Lets say we have a sound wave, it has a frequency, wavelength, crest, trough, etc. My question is, is the crest of a sound wave equaled to high amplitude/ high volume and if so, does that mean the ...
6
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1answer
140 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 ...
4
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3answers
1k views

Need help understanding harmonic series and intervals

So I need some clarification as this is confusing me terribly. What are the first 12 harmonic series of a fundamental (Lets say A (440hz)? Do those harmonic series of the fundamental pertain to every ...
5
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2answers
435 views

Is there a noticeable difference in sound quality between a mechanical pipe organ and an electronic one?

What I'm trying to get a feeling for is how well an electronic organ can mimic the sound of a pipe organ. I know there are very advanced electronic organs where every single note for every stop is ...
0
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3answers
107 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
408 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
769 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
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2answers
125 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
299 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
3k 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
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1answer
55 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
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1answer
173 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
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1answer
57 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
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4answers
1k 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
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3answers
728 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 ...
9
votes
1answer
433 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
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2answers
861 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
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4answers
1k 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
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1answer
135 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 ...
3
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3answers
649 views

Piano Tuning: How accurate is ±0.5 cents?

A tuner accuracy is ±0.5 cent. Does that mean that it is highly sensitive or just decently sensitive for pitch accuracy?
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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 ...