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Author Topic: Octive Range  (Read 2300 times)
FredDooolie
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« on: April 22, 2010, 07:39:13 pm »

Why is it that a penny whistle can be played up into three octaves (20+ notes) and a MO can not?
IE: How is a globe flute different?

Thank you.



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... There is too much sax and violins on TV these days. Whatever happened to ukuleles and ocarinas?
ubizmo
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Posts: 1922


I couldn't fail to disagree with you less.


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« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2010, 11:44:34 pm »

It's all about the physics.

According to Wikipedia, "The technique of overblowing to get a range of higher pitched notes is not possible with the ocarina because of its vessel shape", but that doesn't really explain much.  As I understand it, in "tubular" woodwinds, you have the fundamental note, and you have overtones in the first harmonic, second harmonic, and so on.  These give each woodwind its particular sound.  When you overblow, or use an octave key, you cause the fundamental note to "break" to the next overtone, usually an octave higher (except on a clarinet, which jumps up a 12th).  But the ocarina has few or no audible overtones.  That's why it has such a simple "sine-wave-ish" sound.  That's because of its vessel shape, but I don't really understand that.  But the bottom line is that if you try to overblow to "break" to the first harmonic, you'll get pretty much nothing, because that harmonic isn't produced.  Or you might get a tiny high-pitched squeak, several harmonics up.

That's not a good explanation, but it's more or less right, I think.

Ubizmo


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FredDooolie
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« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2010, 02:24:14 am »

Ah..good answer. Thanks. That would also explain why the PW squeaks and is so touchy to stay in octave and get a good clean note. You are fighting harmonics. More flexible though. Oh well, you can't have everything; where would you keep it? Smiley


   


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... There is too much sax and violins on TV these days. Whatever happened to ukuleles and ocarinas?
Ben
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« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2010, 04:03:30 am »

On the penny whistle, you have a vibrating column of air which can vibrate as a whole or with nodes which will give you overtones. With a vessel flute (ocarina), you have a vibrating mass of air with no place for nodes so no overtones.


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