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Klarinet Archive - Posting 001608.txt from 1998/04

From: DGross1226 <>
Subj: [kl] Vibrating Instruments vs. Vibrating Air Columns
Date: Tue, 28 Apr 1998 10:26:22 -0400

In a message dated 98-04-28 04:19:27 EDT, you write:

<< We have to remember that the properties of woodwind instruments are the
result of a vibrating air column, not a vibrating instrument.>>


But what sets the air column vibrating -- a vibrating reed. Several woodwind
instrumentalists with whom I play and I have bought clip-on pick-ups for our
electronic tuners so that we can check tuning "on the fly" during rehearsals,
etc. The pick-ups isolate an individual horn from the other "air columns"
around. They are in effect picking up the frequencies of a "vibrating
instrument." Aren't the frequencies of the vibrating reed in conjunction with
the length of the air column being transmitted/modulated/reinforced via the
body of a sympathetically vibrating woodwind instrument? I seem to be missing
a piece of the puzzle. Complex harmonics vs. simple measured frequency? I
guess I finally need to read all those references on woodwind acoustics.

Don Gross
La Canada, California

p.s. For a real challenge, try to get most tuners to register the "air
column" of a contrabass clarinet. The pick-up is the only way I can really
check out the low end of my horn.

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