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Research combining physics with sound, acoustics, music

  1. Oct 1, 2011 #1
    Hello! I am a recent university grad, majored in physics, with a strong background in programming and maths. I've had a couple non-physics research positions, and am looking to go back to school for a masters.

    All my life I've been very passionate about music, from composing classical pieces, to building guitars, flutes and experimental instruments, to more recently creating electronic music using software and recorded samples. Now I realize that my dream would be a career that applies my science background and skills with a subject matter that I'm truly passionate about, specifically sound.

    I know a bit about 'physics of sound' from back in first-year waves, it was interesting but obviously basic. I've heard a lot about acoustics being a very complex field, but aside from designing theatre halls, I'm not sure what one does in that field. Is there a hard-science overlap with recording/mixing/mastering technologies? How about musical instrument design? What might be a relevant field to look into for master's education, if any? I'm really much more interested in something applied or experimental, and less theoretical.

    Does anybody hear have a similar interest, or perhaps experience in this, either, academically or professionally, that could give me some insights?

    Thanks for reading!
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 1, 2011 #2


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    the closest field I know of is signal processing which is related to, if not a subfield of, electrical engineering
  4. Oct 1, 2011 #3


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    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
  5. Oct 1, 2011 #4


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    Speech Pathology, Speech Therapy, Linguistics...

    Also, since your question pushes into multidisciplinary fields, you would probably find guitar makers who are interested in alternative size values and alternative materials. Interests here could be Materials Science, position, shape, and number of sound holes, different sizes and shapes of soundboards and backboards, sources and specifications of tonewoods, effects of coatings(finishes).
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