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New chemical clues into Strad's "Magic" varnish


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1 hour ago, Michael Szyper said:

Nevertheless, a lot of the tone awards had this „smashed in your face“ sound which i didn‘t hear in old italian violins so far. An it is also not what i prefer. Nevertheless, Pielaszeks violin had a lot of texture, complexity and sweetness to it. 

Agreed.  In my opinion Andrew Ryan’s violin was by far the best in the room, and it didn’t get anything for tone.  Who the judges are makes a difference, as well as trying to evaluate 200 instruments in a couple days.  If you’re picking them up for 30 seconds at a time the loudest ones stand out..

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16 hours ago, Advocatus Diaboli said:

In my opinion Andrew Ryan’s violin was by far the best in the room, and it didn’t get anything for tone.  Who the judges are makes a difference, as well as trying to evaluate 200 instruments in a couple days.  If you’re picking them up for 30 seconds at a time the loudest ones stand out..

With most instruments, an experienced player can determine a "yes-no-maybe" very quickly, probably in well under 30 seconds. Later, more time can be spent assessing the finer points of the "yes or maybe" instruments.

Isn't loudness one of the properties many-or-most violinists are looking for? Should it not be a consideration?

 

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Thanks, David R. Very interesting interview.

The Fritz et al team has taken tons of data, including measured loudness both near and far, and player and audience impressions of loudness and carrying power. Last time I spoke with a member of that team about this, they had not yet run across an instrument with the fabled property of "soft under the ear, huge in a hall".

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1 hour ago, David Burgess said:

... they had not yet run across an instrument with the fabled property of "soft under the ear, huge in a hall".

For "huge in the hall", which implies power across the entire frequency range, I'd agree.  However, I recall the "Benny" Strad  sounded dead when I played it, but clear and well-defined when I listened to someone else play it.  My speculation is that weakness in the midrange and strength in the highs (the "Cremonese sound") is the source of the fable, which not only results from the frequency bands but also where the frequencies are generated on the instrument.

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10 hours ago, David Burgess said:

Thanks, David R. Very interesting interview.

The Fritz et al team has taken tons of data, including measured loudness both near and far, and player and audience impressions of loudness and carrying power. Last time I spoke with a member of that team about this, they had not yet run across an instrument with the fabled property of "soft under the ear, huge in a hall".

This throws everything back to the question what the human ear perceived as ‘loud’. Apparently there are frequency bands which contribute more to ‘loudness’ than others and that seems to be the simple reason why overtones are so important.

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2 hours ago, Andreas Preuss said:

This throws everything back to the question what the human ear perceived as ‘loud’.

Sides of sentience: Reasons for different sound frequency sensitivities

So after measuring a violin's sound intensity vs frequency (disregarding distance for the present), translating to relative loudness at frequency may be more directly informative for comparison purposes...?

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12 hours ago, Andreas Preuss said:

Whatever they find. I’d say it’s by far more interesting to think about techniques of varnish application. This also answers partly what was made in which order and why. 

Yes! The essential materials do not change over the centuries....resin is resin, oil is still oil.  The few unaltered surfaces are an amazing lesson in application.

on we go,

Joe

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On 11/24/2022 at 3:14 AM, Dr. Mark said:

Sides of sentience: Reasons for different sound frequency sensitivities

So after measuring a violin's sound intensity vs frequency (disregarding distance for the present), translating to relative loudness at frequency may be more directly informative for comparison purposes...?

This just confirms IMO quite visually what is important for a loud sound. High frequencies or overtones make the blend. My acoustic experiments on the new concept violin made a big leap to a functional violin sound when I managed to get more sound intensity between 2kHz and 4kHz. 

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I was browsing the public literature - at first glance I didn't see anything in the way of reference level or microphone broadband response reported.  I guess at acoustic frequencies we take it for granted that mic response is flat to 20k, and everyone uses the same reference level?  I think in general we'd want to subtract out the specific transfer functions prior to making comparisons...I guess there's this: https://josephcurtinstudios.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/8-Vieuxtemps.pdf.  I'm havw a concern relating the reported amplitude to the above chart's intensity, which should be square amplitude - it's been too long since I've done this stuff so I may mess something up - I guess 'amplitude' in the article is 20*log(A/Aref) and 'Intensity' in the above chart is 10*log(P/Pref) - if that's the case and the reference values are the same and the mikes are flat, we can get an idea of what may be generally audible at frequency.  Interesting stuff...

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2 hours ago, Dr. Mark said:

I was browsing the public literature - at first glance I didn't see anything in the way of reference level or microphone broadband response reported.  I guess at acoustic frequencies we take it for granted that mic response is flat to 20k, and everyone uses the same reference level?  I think in general we'd want to subtract out the specific transfer functions prior to making comparisons...I guess there's this: https://josephcurtinstudios.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/8-Vieuxtemps.pdf.  I'm havw a concern relating the reported amplitude to the above chart's intensity, which should be square amplitude - it's been too long since I've done this stuff so I may mess something up - I guess 'amplitude' in the article is 20*log(A/Aref) and 'Intensity' in the above chart is 10*log(P/Pref) - if that's the case and the reference values are the same and the mikes are flat, we can get an idea of what may be generally audible at frequency.  Interesting stuff...

I'll bet that Curtin has all that supplemental information, including any microphone compensation curves used .

"The Strad" magazine has guidelines for the length of articles that they will publish.

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On 11/22/2022 at 1:38 PM, Don Noon said:

My best guess is that if Strad was alive today and making new violins, they would sound like new violins.  300 years can do things.

Exactly what Vuillaume said about his own work, except since the times were closer together he was predicting he'd be equal to Stradivari in 100 years.

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38 minutes ago, Michael Darnton said:

Exactly what Vuillaume said about his own work, except since the times were closer together he was predicting he'd be equal to Stradivari in 100 years.

And perhaps he was right... one of his violins in 1950 might have been equal to what a Strad sounded like in 1850.  Hard to say for sure.

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