Hear The Music

Sep. 20, 2016

Reverberation Time and Wallace Sabine, Part 2

Marshall Chasin
After trying to contact Dr. Wallace Clement Sabine’s spirit for several nights, we were able to re-establish communication with him by way of a séance.  Our discussion about reverberation time (RT) continues from part 1 of this blog series… MC:  Hello Dr. Sabine.  May I call you Wallace? WS:  No. MC:  May I call you Wally? WS:  No. MC:  Well, like last time, I
Sep. 13, 2016

Reverberation Time and Wallace Sabine part 1

Marshall Chasin
The Tragically Hip recently gave their last performance (ever) on Saturday August 20, 2016 in their home town of Kingston, Ontario, just a few hours drive east of Toronto.  The  event was broadcasted through the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) and the concert was viewed by a third of all Canadians; many had bed sheets strung up in their backyards with
Sep. 06, 2016

Singing Stars

Marshall Chasin
Sound, noise, and music analysis can be a confusing thing. It is true that there are now Smartphone apps that can provide a wide range of data concerning the sound level expressed in dB, dBA, and even Leq. There are even apps that can provide frequency analysis replete with Fourier or FFT spectral capabilities. One of the elements of all
Aug. 30, 2016

Whale behavior due to shipping noise

Marshall Chasin
Whales, dolphins, and porpoises are really neat mammals. They are evidence that our common ancestor exited the primordial sea; some became land dwelling mammals, but a few returned to the sea and re-adapted to their water-based environment. One can think of this as evolution going backwards, or maybe, evolution doesn’t have a direction and we should just be thinking in
Aug. 23, 2016

Is the human ear canal a cylinder or a cone? Part 2

Marshall Chasin
In part 1 of this blog series, we looked at why a clarinet sounded different than a soprano saxophone. Both are “closed” at the mouth piece end and “open” at the end of the bore. Both are identical lengths, yet one functions as a quarter wavelength resonator and has odd numbered multiples of its resonances (clarinet) and the other functions
Aug. 16, 2016

Why does the clarinet sound different than the soprano saxophone? Part 1

Marshall Chasin
Why does the clarinet sound different than the soprano saxophone?  This is an interesting comparison and has implications for hearing, speech acoustics and, oh yes, musical instruments. It is also one of the most misunderstood comparisons in acoustics. Both the soprano saxophone and the clarinet have identical lengths; both are “closed” at the mouth piece end, and “open” at the
Aug. 09, 2016

Models of how the inner ear works

Marshall Chasin
I must admit that I don’t really know how the inner ear works. And it’s not just me. The ear is a dynamic system with feedback loops that only function well at optimal fluid pressures and biochemistries. We have many theories, but unfortunately (or fortunately for the listener) these are based on dead people, lower mammals, or other species. In
Aug. 02, 2016

The Red Violin

Marshall Chasin
Right off the top, this blog entry has nothing to do with music and hearing loss.  It does however have something to do with what happened last Thursday eve.  I was up in cottage country and my wife had bought two tickets to see the Red Violin.  This was in a small Adirondack town called Indian River.  There is a
Jul. 26, 2016

Vincent Van Gogh and his hearing

Marshall Chasin
Now, I realize that Vincent Van Gogh was not a musician… well, maybe he was, but alas we will never know for sure.  Some recent research has been uncovered in some writings from the physician that treated him after his self-inflicted ear-adectomy.  I am sure that if I had listened better to my undergraduate Latin and classics professors I would
Jul. 19, 2016

To vent or not to vent. That is the question – Part 3

Marshall Chasin
In parts one and two of this blog series, the creation of a vent-associated resonance, called an inertance, was discussed. Venting can reduce the echoey, back pressure sensation with hearing protection for musicians, especially for brass players, some reeded woodwinds, and for vocalists.  However, the mass of air in the vent can oscillate and create a potentially unwanted low frequency