Register to reply

Acoustic Analysis of Musical Instruments

by czechman45
Tags: acoustics music
Share this thread:
Mar6-12, 04:30 PM
P: 13
I'd like to learn more about acoustic analysis of musical instruments, but I have no idea where to even start. I've taken some acoustics courses and some fluid dynamics courses as well as structural vibrations. What I'd like to do is model an instrument and then have a numerically predicted tone and timbre. I know that this has been done at least several times with a guitar model. Is this primarily an FEA problem? Does CFD come into play here? How would I go about doing this and what types of things would I have to learn about?

Thanks for your input!
Phys.Org News Partner Physics news on
A new, tunable device for spintronics
Watching the structure of glass under pressure
New imaging technique shows how cocaine shuts down blood flow in mouse brains
Vanadium 50
Mar6-12, 07:11 PM
Vanadium 50's Avatar
P: 16,356
You might want to start with Rossing's book on the subject.

Mar6-12, 08:10 PM
Sci Advisor
HW Helper
P: 7,160
Acoustic Analysis of Musical Instruments

If you want to understand the physics of an acoustic instrument, then structural and fluid mechanics (both computational an experimental) is a good starting point.

On the other hand if you want to simulate an instrument (real or imagined), especailly if you want to be able to "play" it in real time, you want a strong background in digital signal processing, and there has been a lot of work on producing fast approxmate algorithms that "sound good" even if they are not an accurate detailed model of the physics.

Two more websites:

Register to reply

Related Discussions
Musical instruments General Physics 10
Musical Instruments and overtones Introductory Physics Homework 2
Underwater musical instruments? General Discussion 4
Resonance effect in musical instruments Introductory Physics Homework 3
Physics and musical instruments General Physics 6