By Jürgen Meyer, Uwe Hansen
This vintage reference on musical acoustics and function perform starts with a quick creation to the basics of acoustics and the iteration of musical sounds. It then discusses the details of the sounds made through the entire general tools in a contemporary orchestra in addition to the human voice, the best way the sounds made by way of those tools are dispersed and the way the room into which they're projected impacts the sounds.
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Additional resources for Acoustics and the performance of music
However, even when taking connections between loudness and tone color into account, individual dynamic steps such as forte, mezzoforte, piano etc. cannot be specified by a firm universally valid numerical value. The meaning of these performance specifications is as dependent on musical context as on the room environment. Finally the instruments themselves play an essential role, each instrument group has its own dynamic range between largest possible and minimum (still sounding) loudness. Furthermore, for many instruments this dynamic range is not the same over the entire tone range, where in addition even the quality of the individual instrument participates as a further factor.
The individual maxima of the scheme mark the frequency region of strongest amplitude for the indicated sounds, between them transition colors are to be assumed, which can no longer be uniquely described by letters. They can be compared with the sound of the ‘‘same vowels’’ in various dialects. Generally for speech sounds, two or three more or less strong formants appear, for which, for the sake of clarity, only the most important ones are represented. Accordingly the dark vowels [u (oo), o (oh), a (ah), and a˚ (aw).
This effect becomes particularly apparent in a vibrato, when the sound gains ‘‘fullness’’ for a steady sound pressure level; time averaging due to the room also plays a role in this. A similar broadening of the spectral lines occurs in cases where several sound sources radiate with nearly the same frequencies. Since this process is especially pronounced when in a group the intonation of each singer or player is slightly different, it is also called the chorus effect. This effect, among others, is also responsible for the difference in tone between a string orchestra and a string quartet.