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Physics of the Piano. 9780198789147

Physics of the Piano

Oxford University Press. 2016

Ficha técnica

  • EAN: 9780198789147
  • ISBN: 978-0-19-878914-7
  • Editorial: Oxford University Press
  • Fecha de edición: 2016
  • Encuadernación: Rústica
  • Dimensiones: 25x19
  • Idioma: Inglés
  • Nº páginas: 184

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- Discusses the essential physics and acoustics that give the piano its unique sound
- Accessible to non-scientists
- Will appeal to musicians
- Reveals interesting connections of physics to musical tones of which most physicists are not aware

Why does a piano sound like a piano? A similar question can be asked of virtually all musical instruments. A particular note-such as middle C-can be produced by a piano, a violin, a clarinet, and many other instruments, yet it is easy for even a musically untrained listener to distinguish between these different instruments. A central quest in the study of musical instruments is to understand why the sound of the "same" note depends greatly on the instrument, and to elucidate which aspects of an instrument are most critical in producing the musical tones characteristic of the instrument. The primary goal of this book is to investigate these questions for the piano. The explanations in this book use a minimum of mathematics, and are intended for anyone who is interested in music and musical instruments. At the same time, there are many insights relating physics and the piano that will likely be interesting and perhaps surprising for many physicists.


1: Introduction
2: Waves and sound
3: Making a musical scale
4: Why the piano was invented: A little history
5: Vibrating strings
6: Hitting strings with hammers
7: The soundboard
8: Connecting the strings to the soundboard
9: Evolution of the piano
10: Psychoacoustics: How we perceive musical tones
11: The magic of Steinway
12: What physics can and cannot teach us about music and musical instruments

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