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Questions tagged [instruments]

For questions about generalities about instruments or groups of instruments.

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21
votes
4answers
9k views

The loudest acoustic instrument

There are more than a hundred different acoustic instruments, some of which are very loud. What is the loudest acoustic instrument?
1
vote
1answer
238 views

Singing or playing up side down

I've always wanted to know how difficult is it to sing while being up side down? Remember Peter Gabriel? In one of his concerts he stands on a magnet platform in special shoes up side down and sings. ...
1
vote
1answer
111 views

Clarinet Joints Loose After Left Assembled

So I was careless and after playing left my clarinet assembled on a stand for about 2 weeks while I went on vacation. When I took it apart I noticed the joints were loose. Any way I can fix this or ...
3
votes
1answer
212 views

How is a pitch between a C and a C# notated in sheet music for fretless instruments?

Suppose we have a violin or a contrabass, they can play midnote pitches. I guess there must be a way of notating that in classical sheet music,llll how? I realise that it is a small chance it could ...
3
votes
2answers
826 views

Identifying orchestral sounds

Following my previous question about new instruments in orchestras, I was listening to a few concerts and well, some write the instruments being used throughout the concert, others don't. Most don't. ...
58
votes
10answers
12k views

Have orchestras included any modern instrument lately?

Over the years orchestras have added various new instruments to their set and I'm thinking that there are quite many modern interesting instruments that might be included in an orchestra set. Have ...
1
vote
1answer
84 views

optimal resonance for instrument body

building a Mbira, which is like a Kalimba with 3-4 chromatic octaves with bigger tines. I'm getting away from wood because of expense. 3D printing is cheaper, gives more control, and saves time. The ...
4
votes
3answers
353 views

Bowed single string instrument with lever?

Ok, so, imagine you had a one-stringed violin, except that rather than press your fingers on the string, you used a lever, kinda like a whammy bar. Does anybody know of such an instrument? Otherwise,...
3
votes
1answer
391 views

Vinyl Sticker on Guitar Body

I have a vinyl stick that I really want to put on one of my guitars (I have one acoustic guitar and one electric guitar), but I'm concerned that it could either affect the sound or damage the body. ...
2
votes
3answers
749 views

Proper format for an Orchestral score?

I've just recently completed work on my first symphony. I would like to enter a selection from it in a local contest, but I need to be sure that the format is correct first. Can anyone suggest any ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Best methods for instrument appraisal?

Looking for the best practices for appraising instruments - especially vintage? I realize there are TONS of factors that go into determining the value. I ask, mainly, because I've acquired a 1970 ...
2
votes
1answer
463 views

Is there a reason why certain instruments are more popular than others?

The first few musical instruments (excluding voice) that come to mind are piano, guitar and violin. However, fundamental piano is just there for music theory purposes, so piano is a special case (same ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Arabic Maqam Keyboard?

I have read that the Arabic maqam system has 24 pitches in an octave. Are there any instruments (keyboards especially) that have been made specifically to be able to play all 24 tones?
5
votes
1answer
219 views

What exactly is the bell used in Paganini's 2nd violin concerto and how should one play it?

Paganini's Violin Concerto No.2, Op.7 has a part for a "Campanello (Little Bell in F#)" in the 3rd movement, which is also the movement's namesake - "La Campanella". In a bit of research I've done, ...
4
votes
5answers
1k views

Size difference between Baritone Horn and Euphonium

I know that the Baritone is different from the Euphonium because it has a narrower bore and sharper taper, esp. in British bands, but my question is are there precise measurements that define whether ...
3
votes
3answers
284 views

Are transposing instruments always written higher than they sound?

From this workbook extract it seems that transposing instruments are always written higher than they sound, is this always true? EXTRACT: If you compose music for any transposing instrument you have ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Instruments that don't require hand strength

I am a vocalist and a guitarist, but I suffer from wrist problems, so if I want to ever heal from them, I have got to play music for a while without using my hands too much (as long as there is no ...
1
vote
2answers
846 views

Are some viola tuning pegs the same size as 4/4 violin tuning pegs?

I know that adult size violas are sold by length in inches, (i.e. instead of 4/4, 7/8, etc.) and can vary to better fit the player. Are viola tuning pegs all the same diameter or do those have to ...
3
votes
1answer
321 views

Troubleshooting Roland analog synthesizer's 'moving' dead notes

I have a 1982 Roland Juno-60 'polyphonic' analog synthesizer. Starting about 6 months ago it began having 'moving' dead notes. What I mean by that, is that there is no evidence that any one key is '...
1
vote
1answer
605 views

Yamaha DGX 660 and Hammond

Please, I would like to buy Yamaha DGX 660 and I am wondering if it can emulate Hammond (B3...) organ?
0
votes
3answers
161 views

New idea to develop musical skill in natural way? [closed]

I'm very excited about learning everything in a natural way. That means beginners will learn something (they want) by "exposing" to the subject that they decide. They may not understand any technique, ...
1
vote
1answer
53 views

installing strings on different instruments

My friend and I were disputing about if someone installs another instrument's strings on a different instrument such as: (guitar strings on harp or vice versa, Oud strings [an oriental instrument] on ...
24
votes
6answers
4k views

Should low frequency players anticipate in orchestra?

"The bigger the instrument, the heavier the strings, the bigger the bow, the bigger the mouthpiece, the more you should anticipate." This concept is expressed occasionally by double bass players, ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

What instrument produces a triangle wave? [duplicate]

I am currently researching the graphs of various instruments as part of a school project and am trying to figure out which instruments produce which wave forms. I have read the answers to a similar ...
0
votes
1answer
637 views

What instrument/device is used to make the rising electronic bell-like sounds in the song “The Hall of Mirrors”?

In the song "The Hall of Mirrors" by Kraftwerk, there is a background to the song that is a rising sequence of electronic bell-like sounds, as if playing an arpeggio. This is similar to what I think ...
2
votes
1answer
670 views

How to prepare to play bowed vibraphone?

The UK brass band I play in is preparing a test piece that features a bowed vibraphone amongst the percussion parts. We've been using a cello bow, well rosined. But sometimes when you start bowing, ...
4
votes
2answers
194 views

Hindustani music: Evolution of instruments

So, I was thinking about the evolution of instruments in Indian classical (Hindustani, to be precise). We know Sa and Pa are achala swaras, and don't have any tivra or komal forms. Sa and Pa form the ...
0
votes
1answer
299 views

What is the name of this percussion instrument?

I'm listening to the song "There Goes the Fear" by the Doves. There's a peculiar percussive instrument that fades in starting around the 6:15 mark and then becomes the foremost percussive instrument ...
9
votes
3answers
999 views

Physical volume of instruments

I am aware that this might be a slightly unusual question, but just today I was wondering about the physical volume (meaning the capacity, NOT the loudness) of some musical instruments. In particular,...
1
vote
4answers
2k views

Why are the alto saxophone and cello allegedly so similar to the human voice?

I once heard that Percy Grainger claimed the alto saxophone was the instrument most akin to the human voice; I've heard other claims that the cello is similarly close. Are there any scientific data to ...
0
votes
1answer
536 views

How would you develop a musical instrument using a QWERTY computer keyboard? [closed]

Just now I had the idea of developing an musical instrument using the default QWERTY keyboard, for the study of music, harmony and the like. I would like the advice of more experient musicians on the ...
7
votes
2answers
928 views

How does the shape and size of a kazoo affect its tone?

I'm interested in making a bass kazoo (for obvious reasons). This is about the most scholarly article I've found on the internet about how these instruments work. Would a longer or wider resonating ...
2
votes
2answers
676 views

Alternative to the Timpani

As a composer I often make use of the timpani on my Sibelius software. It sounds terrific digitally but often may be completely impractical for the human percussionist to play considering all the ...
4
votes
2answers
119 views

Exactly as written?

I attended an all-Mozart program the other day and I was wondering if all the pieces he wrote are performed by exactly the same number and kind of instruments you would hear today. The French horn ...
2
votes
1answer
697 views

Clavinova CVP-107 Keyboard repair

I have a clavinova CVP-107 keyboard that still sounds good but makes a clunky sound after the keys are depressed and returning to regular position. I'm hoping that it may be corrected by replacing ...
-1
votes
1answer
771 views

The clarinet, flute, trumpet and timpani [closed]

I'm trying to learn instrumentation but then I still don't understand the range of these instruments. It's too complicated for me to understand the range, key and notation. Can anyone explain it to me?...
10
votes
2answers
4k views

Why do almost all modern Classical Guitars use a slotted headstock?

The benefits of a slotted headstock (left picture) over an unslotted one with vertically arranged tuning posts (right picture) seem to be largely subjective (The biggest advantage is problably that ...
8
votes
14answers
9k views

Acoustic piano vs digital piano: is there any solid evidence for one being better than the other?

As someone who'll have to buy a piano soon, I'm at the old question of acoustic vs digital. I've done a fair deal of research on the internet, as well as heard the opinion of a piano teacher, and ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

What are the technical measures of a tenor recorder?

A friend wants to make a tenor recorder from scratch (he is already a gaita maker), and asked me for the technical measures to do it, I searched through the web but couldn't found any complete ...
3
votes
3answers
144 views

Is it possible to combine a guitar with a theremin cello in the same neck?

For reference, a theremin cello is similar to the classic thermin of 50s sci-fi sound effects fame, but packaged with a neck and played like a cello with the left hand selecting pitch along the neck, ...
2
votes
3answers
196 views

Is a white Double Bass okay for practice?

I have been playing double bass for 3 years, and I have been borrowing a bass. However, as I can no longer buy a bass, I am looking to buy/rent one. The best one I have found is this White one. It is ...
4
votes
2answers
648 views

Name for instruments that can only play one octave, vs one that can play many octaves?

Is there a word for instruments that are limited to only one octave, as opposed to instruments that can play multiple octaves? I think this is a matter of classifying instruments with a certain narrow ...
1
vote
4answers
918 views

does everyone in the orchestra (or ensemble) play in the same key?

Does everyone have to play in the same key or is the key accustomed to the instrument section? for example, clarinet would use Bb major? What is a transposing instrument?
44
votes
3answers
6k views

Why do instruments have a key?

There are many instruments that have keys other than C. For example: The Eb Alto Saxophone The Bb Clarinet The Horn in F Why do these instruments have a key in the first place? Here's a more ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

How to get used to an F attachment? (trombone)

I have 2 years of experience with a regular school trombone. I'm worried when I get an F attachment trombone, positions like 7th and 6th will mess me up for I am not used to going to 2nd/1st as ...
2
votes
4answers
4k views

Second hand piano is out of tune by a whole tone

I just recently bought an acoustic piano. Sounded really good when we tested it out at seller's place. Now after playing a bit the keys sound off by one note (middle c would sound like d, d sounds ...
2
votes
1answer
965 views

What is the name of the object on the strings of the violin behind the bridge

I see on some violins there is something on the A and E strings between the tail peace and the bridge. What is it called and what does it do? I found a similar thing on the violins of the soloist in ...
7
votes
2answers
771 views

Wind instruments and sharp keys

As far as I know, most of the wind instruments are transposing, and many of them are either in B, in E-flat or in F - these keys make them more suitable for playing in "flat" keys. My question is why ...
11
votes
4answers
430 views

Which (apparently keyboard) instrument is this?

I discovered this image recently while reading about piano. I discovered this young Portuguese pianist photo, Vianna da Motta, while learning in his early stages. I assume this is some kind of ...
1
vote
1answer
63 views

Plastic ring on bow?

Does anyone know why the plastic ring in the photo below would be put on the bow for an instrument? I thought maybe it would be to help shuck off broken strings, or somehow vary the tension, but ...