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kudo

Posts: 2064
Joined: Sep. 3 2009
 

A-440 vs 432 Hz?? 

my question is why do we use 440 Hz? this came to my attention when i saw this: entre dos aguas with A-432 tuning


and then i did some search and found some interesting stuff:


what are you thoughts about it? i am gonna go ahead and try that tuning

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 28 2013 14:55:59
 
gerundino63

Posts: 1547
Joined: Jul. 11 2003
From: The Netherlands

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to kudo

Hi Kudo,

It is an interesting topic, lot to find on the internet, also some silly stuff...
We have discussed it a bit before.

http://www.foroflamenco.com/tm.asp?m=223496&appid=&p=&mpage=1&key=432&tmode=&smode=&s=#223554

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 28 2013 15:12:53
 
guitarbuddha

 

Posts: 2970
Joined: Jan. 4 2007
 

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to gerundino63

Well..... if you can get that board or one just like it and you prefer (arbitrarily) the look of that pattern go for it.

With regards to the guitar....... All mechanical systems have harmonic resonance they are a function of the mechanical systems. The frequencies applied have absolutely no affect independant of the system they are working on.

You might have a guitar with a wolf note but it is not the note that is magic, the guitar is flawed.

I suppose I am saying its bollocxs.

D.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 28 2013 15:16:36
 
tri7/5

 

Posts: 544
Joined: May 5 2012
 

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to kudo

There's an almost conspiracy theory like following in regards to tuning frequencies and I've seen some heated arguments ensue. Some people think certain frequencies have healing power and affect mood and the like. Some think our universe reverberates at certain frequencies. Google "solfegio frequencies" or "frequencies of the universe" for discussions about this. Just as every guitar is different I'm sure certain guitars resonate better at certain frequencies and certain individuals might react better to a certain fundamental. However, I also think to some extent it's just splitting hairs. Personally, I find I like electric guitars tuned to Eb normally which is basically A 415Hz but it doesn't keep me from playing in standard tuning either.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 28 2013 15:22:57
 
guitarbuddha

 

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Joined: Jan. 4 2007
 

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to tri7/5

On further reflection you are ok with everything except A444.

E 666 is bad mojo.

D.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 28 2013 15:25:46
 
Ricardo

Posts: 12356
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to kudo

WHo cares? so long as you play IN TUNE.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 28 2013 15:38:37
 
Leñador

Posts: 5229
Joined: Jun. 8 2012
From: Los Angeles

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to kudo

Yeah, I think it's a matter of just being universally in tune with everyone else. I understand it didn't used to be A440 as a standard, I also understand that the Nazi party was pushing to standardized A440 before it became standard, from what I remember reading they had nothing to do with the ultimate decision which came years later......

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 0:43:08
 
guitarbuddha

 

Posts: 2970
Joined: Jan. 4 2007
 

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to Leñador

Pitch has been creeping up for a long time. Mostly because the highest pitched piano sounds more brilliant than its neighbours.

Flamencos use capos for the same reason. Higher is brighter.

Children are cuter than adults.

D.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 1:03:47
 
lukeofgod

Posts: 113
Joined: Jan. 11 2012
From: Bay Area- CA

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to Leñador

quote:

ORIGINAL: Lenador

Yeah, I think it's a matter of just being universally in tune with everyone else. I understand it didn't used to be A440 as a standard, I also understand that the Nazi party was pushing to standardized A440 before it became standard, from what I remember reading they had nothing to do with the ultimate decision which came years later......


Damn Nazis...
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 1:23:13
 
Bulerias2005

 

Posts: 582
Joined: Jul. 10 2010
From: Minneapolis, MN

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

ORIGINAL: Ricardo

WHo cares? so long as you play IN TUNE.

Actually, you'd be surprised just how much it matters to people beyond simply aesthetic reasons. My brother has perfect pitch and 440 Hz tuning makes him cringe and is profoundly disturbing because he grew up hearing music that was tuned to 432 Hz. You wouldn't believe how many discussions and arguments he's had with his violin instructors on the subject!

Personally -- I have relative pitch -- I can tell the difference between 432 and 440 and greatly prefer the former. It's basically been imprinted in my mind since childhood and 440 does bother me to some extent (though not nearly as much as it does my brother).

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Jazz, Classical, Flamenco, & Latin-American Guitar
http://www.danielvolovets.com/
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 2:05:36
 
Paul Magnussen

Posts: 1682
Joined: Nov. 8 2010
From: London (living in the Bay Area)

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to guitarbuddha

quote:

Pitch has been creeping up for a long time. Mostly because the highest pitched piano sounds more brilliant than its neighbours.


Right on the money. Highland bagpipes (the World’s most anti-social instrument) started at A and have been gradually creeping up since; currently somewhere in the cracks between B flat and B.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 4:34:04
 
estebanana

Posts: 7935
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to kudo

Creeping up and down. Historically pitch has been all over the map. From the Renaissance through the classical era, Mozarts time pitch varied from city to city, country to country. Both higher than 440 and lower that 440. Around 1800 pitch began to be standardized internationally in Europe. The pitch went higher than was used in most locations, but in some cases came down.

The violin and viola underwent structural retrofit during this time. An older instrument had the neck lengthened to allow it to play a longer scale with more tension. The reason this happened was due to string technology, newer methods to make over wound bass strings led to longer scales and higher A pitch. The violin became "supercharged" compared to how it sounded in the baroque era when it developed. However during baroque era there were regions where standard pitch could be quite high.

Today with orchestras in recording sessions there has been a trend to push standard pitch higher to achieve brighter envelopes of sound with certain pieces. A lot of higher pitch today has to do with decisions made by conductors and recording engineers and which pieces are being recorded. The piano for example does not set it's own pitch.

The relationship between pitch of the A and the guitar has more to do with string tension. The most tangible practical result you'll get from lowering pitch is that the guitar will be under less tension.

That may or may not allow the top to vibrate more freely, and will may change the way strings respond under your hands. It may make them more slack and more buzzy.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 5:35:02
 
Leñador

Posts: 5229
Joined: Jun. 8 2012
From: Los Angeles

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to kudo

quote:

he grew up hearing music that was tuned to 432 Hz.

Not being a smart ass, just curious, what music is this??

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 14:12:24
 
Bulerias2005

 

Posts: 582
Joined: Jul. 10 2010
From: Minneapolis, MN

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to Leñador

quote:

ORIGINAL: Lenador

quote:

he grew up hearing music that was tuned to 432 Hz.

Not being a smart ass, just curious, what music is this??

Russian music from the 60s/70s, French music, certain Brazilian music... I can't think of anything particular off-hand but I remember we've had discussions about it, and he's pinpointed which music sounds "right" to him and what pieces sound "wrong". I definitely think there's an innate component to this as well; why else would he consider 440 to be so aurally disturbing? Pretty fascinating stuff!

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Daniel Volovets
Jazz, Classical, Flamenco, & Latin-American Guitar
http://www.danielvolovets.com/
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 14:31:59
 
El Kiko

Posts: 2697
Joined: Jun. 7 2010
From: The South Ireland

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to Bulerias2005

A long time ago ...i remember someone talking about Air pressure difference between continents ,, and how this could affect how a sound , or certain pitch , like 440 is perceived due to it travelling through h higher or lower air pressure and therefore changing its pitch , to the listener ...

It was an idea that people who had perfect pitch in Europe may find things 'a tiny bit out' in USA due to air pressure effect ....
( I would assume vice versa as well )
I never found out if this was true or not , so dont shoot me if you think its B.S , however air pressure would and does change the sound of a note ....

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 15:28:17
 
guitarbuddha

 

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Joined: Jan. 4 2007
 

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to El Kiko

quote:

ORIGINAL: El Kiko

A long time ago ...i remember someone talking about Air pressure difference between continents ,, and how this could affect how a sound , or certain pitch , like 440 is perceived due to it travelling through h higher or lower air pressure and therefore changing its pitch , to the listener ...

It was an idea that people who had perfect pitch in Europe may find things 'a tiny bit out' in USA due to air pressure effect ....
( I would assume vice versa as well )
I never found out if this was true or not , so dont shoot me if you think its B.S , however air pressure would and does change the sound of a note ....


Fascinating point Kiko. I never thought about that but here are some ideas off the cuff, if it's not too boring.

The difference in air pressure will make a difference to the pitch that string of fixed tension will vibrate on the same instrument at altitudes. But also there will be a regular flux everywhere because of changes in atmospheric pressure caused by weather systems. Naturally however we would retune our guitars wherever we travel.

However I am not aware of how soon the brain can recalibrate it's interpretation from our internal 'instrument' the cochlea . It may be the case that an older performer with perfect pitch may have lost the brain plasticity to reinterpret 440 as 432 whereas noone who has grown up with the new standard has (to my knowledge) reported any difficulties.

Just musing.

D.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 15:56:57
 
Bulerias2005

 

Posts: 582
Joined: Jul. 10 2010
From: Minneapolis, MN

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to guitarbuddha

quote:

ORIGINAL: guitarbuddha

However I am not aware of how soon the brain can recalibrate it's interpretation from our internal 'instrument' the cochlea . It may be the case that an older performer with perfect pitch may have lost the brain plasticity to reinterpret 440 as 432 whereas noone who has grown up with the new standard has (to my knowledge) reported any difficulties.

Just musing.

D.

Brain plasticity is definitely an interesting point here, but you gotta wonder how much of the preference is due to that vs. something innate -- my brother is 16 years old and has been adamant about performing at 432 for several years now. It's even gotten to the point where he'll take recordings in 440 and change the pitch to 432 in programs like Audacity because it's so irritating to him otherwise!

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Daniel Volovets
Jazz, Classical, Flamenco, & Latin-American Guitar
http://www.danielvolovets.com/
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 16:07:50
 
guitarbuddha

 

Posts: 2970
Joined: Jan. 4 2007
 

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to Bulerias2005

quote:

ORIGINAL: Bulerias2005


Brain plasticity is definitely an interesting point here, but you gotta wonder how much of the preference is due to that vs. something innate -- my brother is 16 years old and has been adamant about performing at 432 for several years now. It's even gotten to the point where he'll take recordings in 440 and change the pitch to 432 in programs like Audacity because it's so irritating to him otherwise!


Good grief !

What is his reaction if you put too much sugar in his tea ?

D.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 16:17:08
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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 17:00:11
 
Leñador

Posts: 5229
Joined: Jun. 8 2012
From: Los Angeles

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to kudo

quote:

Russian music from the 60s/70s, French music, certain Brazilian music... I can't think of anything particular off-hand but I remember we've had discussions about it, and he's pinpointed which music sounds "right" to him and what pieces sound "wrong". I definitely think there's an innate component to this as well; why else would he consider 440 to be so aurally disturbing? Pretty fascinating stuff!


That is pretty fascinating, I may need to do some independent investigation.....

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 18:54:49
 
El Kiko

Posts: 2697
Joined: Jun. 7 2010
From: The South Ireland

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to guitarbuddha

you may like to mess around with one of these tone generators to see what the difference is , if any ...

I was just looking at this one , putting in 440 then 441 back to 440 as my reference note then 442 and back to 440 etc....
440 to 441 ,I really dont hear a difference ...440 to 442 I can hear a difference there , but only cos i am listening for it ...obviously the further i get away from my reference of 440 the more you notice ...

I also messing with a tuning fork at 440 and at the same time the generator at 442..3...4...etc...

Gotta say though if someone sneaked in tonight and re tuned my guitar to 443 say i dont think I would notice the next day

anyway here ......
http://www.audionotch.com/app/tune/

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 19:21:15
 
liv

 

Posts: 12
Joined: Mar. 1 2013
 

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to El Kiko

I've done some experiments with playing in 432hz and I feel that my guitar really reacts in a positive way to it in terms of the sound that is produce and more complex overtones. I don't know if thats because of the "tuning" the luthier did when he build the guitar or what it is, but it is a positive change in my sound.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 20:30:54
 
Leñador

Posts: 5229
Joined: Jun. 8 2012
From: Los Angeles

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to kudo

Thanks Kiko, there's a bunch tone generator apps for the iPhone too apparantly. Im killing some time at a bar right now playing with 'em, the people next to me must be lovin it! Lol!

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 20:56:19
 
El Kiko

Posts: 2697
Joined: Jun. 7 2010
From: The South Ireland

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to Leñador

God ....a tone generator in a bar .....you will loose a lot of freinds .....
try a good 10Khz blast...that will make a space for you and a few stray dogs from outside .....

Im just off out to the bar now ..anyone with a tone generator there will end up with an Iphone in their beer ..........

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Don't trust Atoms.....they make up everything.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 29 2013 22:01:59
 
Ricardo

Posts: 12356
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to Bulerias2005

quote:

ORIGINAL: Bulerias2005

quote:

ORIGINAL: Lenador

quote:

he grew up hearing music that was tuned to 432 Hz.

Not being a smart ass, just curious, what music is this??

Russian music from the 60s/70s, French music, certain Brazilian music... I can't think of anything particular off-hand but I remember we've had discussions about it, and he's pinpointed which music sounds "right" to him and what pieces sound "wrong". I definitely think there's an innate component to this as well; why else would he consider 440 to be so aurally disturbing? Pretty fascinating stuff!


People with perfect pitch, but can't accept relative tuning are usually not so great musicians as the others. I remember reading testimonies of people that could play exact pitches or name them and differntiate...but then play music like crap and out of tune after all. Relatively speaking. If you dont' have good relative pitch you are not gonna be making good music, period.

Ricardo

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CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 30 2013 0:45:39
 
Pgh_flamenco

 

Posts: 1343
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
From: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to kudo

quote:

People with perfect pitch, but can't accept relative tuning are usually not so great musicians as the others. I remember reading testimonies of people that could play exact pitches or name them and differntiate...but then play music like crap and out of tune after all. Relatively speaking. If you dont' have good relative pitch you are not gonna be making good music, period.

Ricardo


Interesting comment, Ricardo. My uncle who played first violin for the Pittsburgh Symphony for 44 years once told me that people with perfect pitch had too many problems dealing with relative pitch to be good musicians. He was convinced perfect pitch was a hindrance and this was based on his many years of teaching, performing and dealing with other world class violinists and instrumentalists.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 30 2013 1:01:12
 
Pgh_flamenco

 

Posts: 1343
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
From: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to El Kiko

quote:

Im just off out to the bar now ..anyone with a tone generator there will end up with an Iphone in their beer ..........


Lol...

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 30 2013 1:03:34
 
El Kiko

Posts: 2697
Joined: Jun. 7 2010
From: The South Ireland

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

People with perfect pitch, but can't accept relative tuning......

that is a really weird thing to say ........

i cannot imagine a person that would be in any music genre that would know , have , and develope perfect pitch , and yet not accept relative pitch ...

thats all i can say about that ........

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 30 2013 1:26:49
 
Paul Magnussen

Posts: 1682
Joined: Nov. 8 2010
From: London (living in the Bay Area)

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to El Kiko

quote:

i cannot imagine a person that would be in any music genre that would know , have , and develope perfect pitch , and yet not accept relative pitch ...


A pianist friend of mine told me a couple of decades ago of an acquaintance at one of the London colleges, who was given a piece to sight-read for an exam.

On starting it, he said “This piano’s flat”. And it was. He couldn't play, because he was hearing the music at one pitch in his head, and it was coming out in another.

They had to find him another piano.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 30 2013 1:39:43
 
estebanana

Posts: 7935
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: A-440 vs 432 Hz?? (in reply to Ricardo

quote:

If you dont' have good relative pitch you are not gonna be making good music, period.


quote:

Interesting comment, Ricardo. My uncle who played first violin for the Pittsburgh Symphony for 44 years once told me that people with perfect pitch had too many problems dealing with relative pitch to be good musicians. He was convinced perfect pitch was a hindrance and this was based on his many years of teaching, performing and dealing with other world class violinists and instrumentalists.


Yeah especially in ensemble playing on fret less instruments. It's a constant adjustment to yourself and those around you to keep intonation strong. Further complicated by fretless instruments playing ensemble with instruments tempered with equal temperament tuning. The instrument with the set temperament is the intonation guide.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jun. 30 2013 1:45:51
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