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Questions tagged [sound]

Sound is a mechanical wave that is an oscillation of pressure transmitted through some medium (like air or water), composed of frequencies which are within the range of hearing.

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51 votes
10 answers
24k views

Why can't drums produce melody?

A note is a vibration at a certain frequency. A drum produces a tone with a certain pitch much like a string percussed with a mallet. Why is a drum unfit for playing a melody while a string inside a ...
Three Diag's user avatar
37 votes
4 answers
68k views

How necessary is a USB Audio Interface?

I'm currently recording songs on my computer and the quality of my microphone is awful and the microphone is very quiet. That doesn't surprise me, because it's a 20$ karaoke microphone... I got into a ...
muffin's user avatar
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31 votes
5 answers
10k views

Why does violin sound differently after playing on it for some time?

I have heard from some of my friends that when you have "fresh" violin, they sound different(presumably, worse) than after playing on it for some time(e.g. half a year). Is this statement true? If so, ...
MatthewRock's user avatar
30 votes
5 answers
495k views

What is the difference between mono and stereo?

I've always wondered what the difference between the two is, and sometimes (games, movie players, etc), you are given a choice of mono or stereo sound. I toggle both but don't hear any difference. So,...
Zaenille's user avatar
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29 votes
11 answers
12k views

Are sharp keys "bright" and flat keys "dark"?

I was reading this book and on the "Circle of Fifths" chapter, it claims that keys with sharp key signatures (C, G, D, ...) are "often thought by musicians" to be "bright"...
diegovb's user avatar
  • 409
25 votes
2 answers
125k views

What are the advantages of WAV vs. MP3?

Being an electronic music producer, file format is something I have to consider at some point. I usually export my songs as .wavs and then convert them to .mp3s later (since they are smaller than ....
manejar's user avatar
  • 1,033
24 votes
4 answers
3k views

How can I tell when music is live and not recorded?

I was walking past a bar the other day and heard music coming out. I could immediately tell that the music was live, being played in the bar at that moment. This is something I have often noticed, I ...
terdon's user avatar
  • 561
19 votes
10 answers
7k views

Why do two identical notes never cancel each other out?

If we consider a note as a sine function with a certain frequency (ignoring timbre), if you start playing another sine function, even with the same frequency but starting at a different offset, ...
Powereleven 's user avatar
18 votes
6 answers
41k views

Electronic drums in apartment

I'm a drummer and recently moved into an apartment with high ceilings and hardwood floors. I have a Roland TD-4. I've been researching for ways to be able to practice quietly without disturbing my ...
wwwuser's user avatar
  • 490
17 votes
7 answers
4k views

What is the reason a given note can have different "sounds"

People, instruments, objects, etc. all are capable of producing "sounds" that sound different (not sure the proper term for this) but can produce the same note. Given that sound can be ...
Ryan Griffith's user avatar
14 votes
4 answers
17k views

Musical systems with more than 12 notes

From what I remember of music theory, all music (at least Western music) boils down to scales that revolve around the 12 notes (circle of fourths/fifths). I know there are scales in different regions ...
Lance's user avatar
  • 682
14 votes
4 answers
12k views

How can I hear what a mathematical function sounds like?

I'm working on differential equations homework right now, and I just came across a solution to a problem that has the form: I graphed the function with my computer and it has an interesting waveform ...
Matt D's user avatar
  • 159
12 votes
3 answers
4k 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: ...
Remi.b's user avatar
  • 223
12 votes
4 answers
26k views

How Can I Replicate The Sound Of An Instrument?

I have experience of basic music theory, guitar and piano. My current project involves creating a computer program that can replicate the sounds of any given instrument (starting with piano). I can ...
Shane Hudson's user avatar
12 votes
3 answers
2k views

How does Sitar produce sound while it doesn't have any sound holes?

I always thought that stringed instruments have hole(s) called soundholes so that the produced sounds can be heard. But the sitar as a stringed instrument doesn't have any soundholes. So how is the ...
Snack Exchange's user avatar
12 votes
4 answers
13k views

Why do F#6 and higher notes ring more than F6 and lower notes?

I learned Overworld Theme 2 from Super Mario Bros. 3 a few years ago, which features the nice bright high notes of A6, G6, and F6: I noticed on my 80 year old upright piano that the A and G rang out ...
user avatar
12 votes
2 answers
12k views

How does the Risset Rhythm work?

Many people know about the Shepard-Risset Tone/Glissando, which is a tone that starts low and seems to continue ascending(or descending) when you listen to it, even though it actually is playing the ...
Qqwy's user avatar
  • 438
11 votes
6 answers
2k views

Do all periodic or "natural" sounds contain major chords?

This seems to be the implication from what I have seen posted on here. If this is so then it is quite profound, because then even in any complex sound wave without a clear pitch and with many partials ...
user77573's user avatar
  • 153
11 votes
3 answers
4k views

What's the name of the phenomenon in which upon hearing same sound repeatedly, one begins to hear a rhythm?

When making non-music recordings, sometimes I listen to a three-second snippet repeatedly and after a few listens, I cannot help but hear a rhythm or a certain musicality. What's this phenomenon ...
Teusz's user avatar
  • 817
10 votes
6 answers
1k views

Confusion about overtones and a slow-motion video of a plucked string

Until now, I thought I understood the basic idea behind a "timbre" of a sound: The specific combination of overtones. For example, this waveshape illustrates a combination of the first ...
mrpotato's user avatar
  • 129
10 votes
7 answers
5k views

Can you turn a recording upside-down?

If I had a recording of some music, I could play it backwards. This is pretty simple. If I had some music recorded, could I flip it around a note like in this image? If possible, how does that work?
Stormblessed's user avatar
10 votes
10 answers
4k views

Sound-to-color synesthesia - a good and helpful thing?

In hearing about sound-to-color synesthesia, or rather Chromesthesia1, I have always been rather jealous, and wanted to experience this unexplainable phenomenon for myself. I have read up a little bit ...
SuperMusicman's user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
2k views

Is the pitch-producing mechanism for singing and humming the same or entirely different?

The sound-producing mechanisms in string instruments and the flute are entirely different. Are the pitch-producing mechanisms used while singing a song and humming a song (humming with closed lips and ...
user48608's user avatar
  • 325
10 votes
3 answers
2k views

Dissonant notes extremely panned - what is that I hear?

I was studying the musical theory and an idea came to me - what happens if I play dissonant chords at the same time, but one of them being panned to the extreme left and the other one - to the extreme ...
noncom's user avatar
  • 261
9 votes
4 answers
13k views

Does a trigger trombone sound the same as a traditional trombone?

I own a student trombone, and I am looking to purchase a professional one with a trigger. Does a trigger trombone produce the same sound as a non-triggered trombone of the same manufacturer?
Dynamic's user avatar
  • 193
9 votes
3 answers
2k views

Horse hooves sound in the song background

I would like to know how the Horse hooves sound is recorded and played in the above songs URL? What are the sound recording & playback techniques to achieve this? Is it possible to extract only ...
Prashant Akerkar's user avatar
9 votes
2 answers
2k 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 ...
dtldarek's user avatar
  • 715
9 votes
2 answers
2k views

What are the differences between live and separate instrument recording in a studio?

I want to record a song, and I have no clue which is the better choice: Recording of each instrument/vocal separately (by several band members) or all together in one room, well separated, and do the ...
michael-mammut's user avatar
9 votes
3 answers
2k views

Which has more overtones: vowels or consonants?

When comparing frequency patterns(e.g. using an FFTSCOPE) for spoken vowel sounds and that of consonants, some of us found vowel sounds to have more overtones(i.e., a larger number of peaks in the ...
Ten's user avatar
  • 193
9 votes
3 answers
17k views

How can I practice clarinet quietly?

How can I practice clarinet more quietly? Is there a clarinet mute that works well? Particularly good ear plugs? I'd rather not either soundproof a room, or move to the basement / garage. What I don'...
David LeBauer's user avatar
8 votes
7 answers
8k views

My guitar has no sound when the gain knob is turned off. Do all amps need need a little gain to be able to output sound?

So I just got my guitar, for the amp I am using the Yamaha THR10II. It doesn't produce any sound when the gain is all the way off. What I'm doing now is turning it up just a little so the amp is able ...
Albin Idrizaj's user avatar
8 votes
5 answers
4k 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.) ...
user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
16k views

What is the purpose of phase invert?

Can anyone explain why when I record are jam sessions that after a certain amount of time the recording starts sounding like there is effects being added and the guitar starts to sound like it's off ...
SovereignSun's user avatar
  • 3,842
8 votes
1 answer
5k views

Examples of acoustic instruments producing sounds very close to pure square, triangle or sawtooth waves

I've been able to find plenty of info about acoustic instruments that create sounds close to sine-waves, and I understand that sounds approximating square, triangle and sawtooth waves are produced by ...
Bob Broadley's user avatar
  • 21.4k
7 votes
11 answers
27k views

Why do I feel like I sound really bad when I'm playing Guitar?

I'm going to try and articulate what I feel about myself when I play guitar, whether it be in front of people or by myself. I'm not sure if its a common thing for musicians to feel or if its just me. ...
Trash Incarnate's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
3k views

Decay vs Sustain on synths

Could you explain to me the difference between "decay" and "sustain" on synths? I'm using the Korg Kronos 2 and the synth engines have both sustain and decay and they seem to be doing the same thing ...
SovereignSun's user avatar
  • 3,842
6 votes
4 answers
1k views

How to monitor a song with a low budget

I'm working a lot with home recording but the loudspeakers of my computer are a bit old, so I might get new ones. The problem I frequently had while recording was, that my speakers had a very full ...
muffin's user avatar
  • 2,067
6 votes
4 answers
4k views

What is the math behind how keys/holes on woodwind instruments affect the pitch?

To make this question more specific, I'll provide an example of what I mean. Let's say you have an instrument that's just a tube you blow into, and it has one hole exactly halfway down the tube (I ...
Sam 's user avatar
  • 506
6 votes
3 answers
510 views

Equivalence of intervals with octaves between them

Say we play C4 and G4 on the piano at the same time, stop the notes, then play D4 and A4 simultaneously, then the quality of this sound is the same as the quality of the first. To understand why that ...
cuppajoeman's user avatar
6 votes
3 answers
335 views

Are theremin's pitch hand positions unique?

I don't know much about theremins, and wondered about this: given a constant volume, I would like to know if I can produce the same note with different hand positions or if all notes have a specific/...
beppe9000's user avatar
  • 163
5 votes
8 answers
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 (...
Lost definition's user avatar
5 votes
6 answers
3k views

What type of soundproof setup would I need to have band practice without bothering the neighbors?

I need to be able to play at loud volumes any time day or night. Is it necessary to have a house, or can I accomplish this in a condo or townhouse? If I need a stand alone house, how far must it be ...
TomahawkPhant's user avatar
5 votes
5 answers
970 views

How do you check or correct the FOH sound engineer?

When you're on stage, how do you check the house sound when you have a sound engineer? All you can hear are the monitors.
empty's user avatar
  • 12.3k
5 votes
5 answers
1k views

How is it possible to filter either high or low frequencies of a single sine wave?

I started learning music production. I created (or generated) a sine wave with the oscillator in FL Studio, but did not add any more sine waves into it (by turning the volume off for the two other ...
user avatar
5 votes
6 answers
5k views

How do I get my flute to sound clean?

I'm a beginning flute player. When I play, I often- but not always- have a "shh" sound along with it. I noticed that it usually starts out pretty quiet when I start practicing, but after I play for ...
user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
2k views

Are percussion instruments the only instrument type capable of making an unpitched (indefinite) sound? [Electronic instruments excluded]

I just want to confirm, wind instruments and stringed instruments are completely incapable of creating an unpitched sound correct?
Lecifer's user avatar
  • 964
5 votes
4 answers
11k views

A bright sounding piano or a mellow sounding one?

When looking for a piano to buy, should I be taking note of the brightness of the sound of the piano? What kind of piano sound would I be looking for for romantic period music and arranged music? ...
Featherball's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
2k views

How come you can hear individual notes but not overtones?

In my understanding, all sounds are technically made from a combination of sine waves together that form a timbre, and as such any sound can be represented as a combination of sine waves. Let's take ...
majneeds2chill's user avatar
5 votes
7 answers
18k views

How much to pay sound person? [closed]

My band plays events in small and large venues like a bar to a bike night outdoors. We pay for sound at large events which they bring sound equipment to setup and tear down. is paying 30% of our pay ...
r lo's user avatar
  • 2,549
5 votes
1 answer
724 views

At what rate does the volume (velocity) of a note decay?

Forgive me if this is more a physics question than a music question! My question is: When a note is struck on a piano and held down (or a tuning fork is struck, or any instrument where there is just a ...
Chris Wilson's user avatar

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