Music note frequencies

  1. I have been doing some research on music note frequencies.
    and I am getting a lot of mix information.

    ok middle C is 261.625565 hertz

    Human can sing between 150Hz to 4K
    Or between 60Hz to 2K ?
    Also I tried this site
    and I cant hear
    60Hz nor 82.407Hz
    is that normal ?
  2. jcsd
  3. the highest note on a piano is B8 is 7902hz
    can a human sing that?
  4. Ouabache

    Ouabache 1,316
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Hi btb, i am also a musician and was curious to see what you were writing about.
    Hearing the audio spectrum varies with each individual. It can deteriorate depending on the
    intensity of sounds you have been exposed to throughout your life and also the high end tends to
    deteriorate with age.

    That being said, i just tried the 60 and 82.407Hz signals this frequency generator made and i can hear both tones. It sounds like the intensity (volume) is attenuating with pitch (frequency), such that a 100Hz tone sounds louder to me than the 82.407Hz which sounds louder than 60Hz.

    My suggested experiment: make sure you are using headphones of some kind. I am only using inexpensive earbuds. Set the volume on your computer to low (so as not to damage your ears). Try to find the lowest frequency you can hear with this tone generator. As you continue to generate lower pitches, you may find you need to step up the volume to hear them.

    On your referenced site hearing test page, they recommend you sit in a "quiet room" and use "good quality headphones". So if you use that criteria, you can optimize the results of my suggested experiment. However, for comparison, in my environment, there is ambient noise (fan inside my laptop) and i am using cheap earphones.

    Yes, however I suspect you meant to compare to C8 (4186Hz) the highest note on a standard 88-key piano. Adam Lopez has vocalized a pitch as high as C♯8 (4434.92Hz), a semitone above C8.
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2014
  5. AlephZero

    AlephZero 7,244
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    It depends what you call "singing", but for western classical vocal music the standard range of fundamental frequencies is about 70Hz to 1kHz. Of course any one person can not sing all of that range, and some people can go a bit lower or a bit higher.

    There is a "peak" in the harmonic spectrum of the human voice at about 3 kHz which can be quite strong in singing, independent of the fundamental frequency. The frequency range around 3 kHz is important in speech as well, and human hearing is most sensitive at that frequency.

    That is not normal. The most likely reason is that your PC has poor quality loudspeakers that can't reproduce sine waves at low frequencies. The loudness of the sounds will reduce at lower frequencies so you may need to increase the volume (but be careful when you raise the frequency again!!)

    Most musical instruments do NOT produce pure sine waves, Low quality loudspeakers can reproduce the harmonics but not the fundamental frequency, and your brain "thinks" it can hear the fundamental frequency even when a measuring instrument says it doesn't exist. But if you play a pure sine wave from that web site, of course there are no harmonics.

    FWIW with reasonably good quality speakers on my PC I can hear tones down to 30 Hz on that site without any problem.
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2014
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