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#2002952 - 12/22/12 04:46 AM Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
Bill Bremmer has written,

"Tuning the various Types of Octaves

Now, to achieve the optimum compromise between a 4:2 and 6:3 octave, sharpen the A3 very slightly so that neither check for a 6:3 or a 4:2 octave tests perfectly. In other words, the test for a 4:2 octave should reveal a slightly faster F3-A4 M10 than F3-A3 M3 and the test for a 6:3 octave should reveal a slightly slower C4-A4 M6 than A3-C4 m3. When you have found the spot for A3 which reveals this slight discrepancy between the 4:2 and 6:3 tests, you will hear that the A3-A4 octave has a very slow beat to it, about one beat in every two seconds. This is now considered the optimum width for the initial A3-A4 octave in Equal Temperament and what is used by
most CTE’s to set up the Master Tuning for the Tuning Exam.

It is also the equivalent to within a very small and negligible degree of a 4:2 octave plus one cent. This is the width of octave that Dr. Al Sanderson used to obtain the amount of stretch needed for optimal piano tuning when he created the calculation for his Electronic Tuning Device, the Sanderson Accu-Tuner. In this kind of compromise, note that none of the coincident partials are in tune or match exactly with each other. This may also be an example of the whole octave sound of which Virgil Smith often speaks. This, almost but not quite perfect tuning, is an example of the kind of compromise which is necessary to defeat the problem and challenge of inharmonicity, the way to achieve the finest tuning possible from the modern piano, throughout its entire range."

Now clearly a 4:2+ octave has a slight/slow beat to it. Either the 4:2+ octave has a beat or it does not have a beat, it is either beatless or it is beating, however slowly. In other words, it sounds or does not sound beatless!

I am saying that the 4:2+ octave does not sound beatless and that one definitely hear a slight swell/beat in it. Basically, it sounds like a slightly narrowed/tempered P5.

So that is why I am saying that it is the 4:2 octave which actually is the beatless octave in the middle of the piano. Please take note that I am not speaking about the so-called "optimal place of the octave", though surely this too is a moot point amongst tuners.





Edited by Mark Davis (12/22/12 08:17 AM)
Edit Reason: removed unnecessary content
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#2002967 - 12/22/12 06:06 AM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
Mark you wrote,

"It needs to be repeated that, if one was to tune an octave to sound as clean and clear as possible, concentrating on eliminating the higher partial noise, and then analyse its size, one would find the octave to be a wide 4:2 and a narrow 6:3. Try it. It "sounds" beatless but we know that there are beats at all the partials. Why and how does it "sound" beatless? Cancelling is the only explanation I can come up with. But an explanation is not really needed, only the experience of hearing it and analysing it and coming to that conclusion, re:size and quality."

M3=M10, 4;2 octave is a just octave,therefore beatless and clean. The M3<M10, 4:2+ is wide, meaning not just/is beating/and is unnatural stretch?

Surely, an interval is just or tempered, and from what I understand, just is just and tempered is tempered/beating. If the F3-F4 octave is just, a 4:2, then it is not beating. But if it is tempered to a 4:2+, it is now beating and sounds like it too.

An explanation is necessary and the hearing of it,otherwise the proof would not be in the eating of the pudding?
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Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2003005 - 12/22/12 08:47 AM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Cerisano, RPT Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/24/10
Posts: 1065
Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
I'll send a video. Wish me luck. But even with a video, if you are focusing your hearing on the partials, you will hear a slow beat. You should be listening to the "whole octave sound" as Virgil Smith encouraged, listening more like a musician, less like a piano technician. Maybe it is an aural illusion, but one that I definitely hear and use to tune octaves, without the need to use checks.

Cheers,
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Mark Cerisano, RPT
www.howtotunepianos.com

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#2003021 - 12/22/12 10:02 AM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
Mark, I tune whole tone. I have Virgils book too. I also do have a DVD by Jim Coleman tuning the Baldassin/Sanderson Temprament, not only does he speak about a slight swell in the A3-A4 octave and A2-A4 double octave, one actually hears it, when playing and listening in whole tone.

A 4:2+ octave was tuned for the A3-A4 octave and a 6:3+ (if i remember correctly) octave for the A3-A2 octave, thereby producing a 4:1+ (a wide not just) double octave.

So I have actually heard it, apart from reading about and I have tuned it too.

For a 4:2+ octave the 5th needs to beat slightly slower than the 4th, thus producing a slightly wide and beating octave.

For a 4:2 just octave, the 5th and 4th will be beating the same, thus producing a clean sounding octave.

It's simple, that is just how it is, nothing fancy.

Another thing, since you brought it up, to tune octaves without using checks is not advisable. I would think that it would not produce as good a tuning as is possible.

A technique which Virgil wrote about is, " The amount of expansion and contraction of each interval necessaery to achieve a quality equal tempered tuning (I would go so far as to say all tuning, whether E.T or H.T), can only be determined by use of tuning checks. Checks are used before the note is tuned to determine if the note is sharp or flat and by how much,during the tuning, and after it is tuned to check the accuracy of the tuning."

Thanks,


Edited by Mark Davis (12/22/12 02:35 PM)
Edit Reason: minor correction
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Mark Davis
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#2003037 - 12/22/12 10:32 AM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
Bill Bremmer says the following, "When you have found the spot for A3 which reveals this slight discrepancy between the 4:2 and 6:3 tests, you will hear that the A3-A4 octave has a very slow beat to it, about one beat in every two seconds."

Bill is speaking about a 4:2+ octave.
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Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2003069 - 12/22/12 12:04 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7175
Loc: France
The 4:2 6:3 test is deceptive, and it does not help the ear to perceive a nice octave plus differences in iH nd spectra make it just an approximate rule for beginners, not something we can refer constantly.

To me the whole partial match method gave the problem of being disrupted by the unison tuning, where the second or 3d partials are more or less emphases, and then I will would not bet on the similarity of their justness with the one measured on a single string.
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#2003078 - 12/22/12 12:29 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Olek]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
Originally Posted By: Kamin
The 4:2 6:3 test is deceptive, and it does not help the ear to perceive a nice octave plus differences in iH nd spectra make it just an approximate rule for beginners, not something we can refer constantly.


Ok, Isaac, please explain, how one perceives a nice octave?

The problem I find with some tuners is that they like to couch everything in the Esoteric and subjective, and leave behind the objective. Usually you will find such folks making claims of superior tuning. Yes, there is room for movement in an octave or any other interval, but at the end of the day, one has to have something that you measure by for accurate tuning.

Please also do explain how you go about tuning. It surely would be useful and helpful to many!

Thank you
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Mark Davis
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#2003085 - 12/22/12 01:09 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7175
Loc: France
Hi ,it depends of the acoustics of the room and the voicing, I was confident with that "measuring" method till Inoticed that the 6:3 can be used as an extreme limit eventually, but I stopped totally to test min third and min tenth, even M3 and M10, those comparaisons between diffenet intervals are not precise, the beatings are uneven, due to fluctuations of the beat volume they look as if they accelereate then slow.enventually the 10th 17th gives some information, I talk of tuning by ear indeed.

I was also stated that the iH is too impredicteable, may vary from string to string, may depend of the force of the stroke, so basing the tuning only on iH is at last dangerous.

I dont pretend to any superior result I just dont need those tests now.

In the end of course a concert tuner that need to tune so much pianos a day can also use and ETD and provide accepteable "secure" results, and have a good wallet at the end of the day.

All situations arise, from the technician who spend a full week on a grand Bechstein to voice and regulate the piano to the customer desire, (new hammers installed and keys balanced at the shop prior to that), to the one that spend 1 or 2 day on a previously "restored" grand only to have a more pleasing piano, or the "usual" "tuner's day" where the customer have only a moderate fee to pay for a finally relatively fast done job. (sometime as fast as less than an hour)

Tuning is very important if the tuner is not experimented yet, but once you are mastering tuning and pin setting, the next level(s) of quality are obtained with very differnt things than absolutely perfect progression of intervals, high consanance and nice open unisons, in fact to make that nice tuning many things are in order that will make it easy and more fast.

you take the piano possibilities (that are often hidden below a basic regulation) , and allow the piano to have them expressed.

Not trying to hide voicing problems with regulation or the opposite is just the trap of that job.






Ev


Edited by Kamin (12/22/12 01:11 PM)
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#2003093 - 12/22/12 01:29 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
Well Isaac, Virgil used checks and I would say that Rick Baldassin used checks, and many other top notch tuners, simply from observing all the information about checks.

Ok, one can check one's work with SBI's or RBI's and there may be other ways to gauge one's work but nevertheless, checking is essential.

But still you have not been clear in how to tune octaves, double octaves, 12ths, 19ths etc... without checking. How does one know when each interval is where it should be?

Let's leave the regulation and voicing out. It is not necessary for what we are talking about.

Thanks,
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Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2003095 - 12/22/12 01:34 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7175
Loc: France
sorry but I dont know, I want a progression of FBI, nice sounding SBI, I never check for octaves doubles and triples again, I hear if they need to be enlarged, at some point in the tuning, sometime I rewind and go back to octave 5 or the break, but I hear the tone in my mind, sorry. I can even tune a piano while listening to music (up to some point) this is incrusted in my ear, due to a lot of tuning, with differnt methods.
comparing diffent intervals is tiring, I try to stay quiet while tuning.
If I where doing much more concert tunings, the stress of the situation certainly would push me to use more checks.


PS One thing I check when in the 5th and 6th octave is the speed of 17ths and 24 ths.., generally speaking I refer to the middle of the piano and temperament zone .., for the rest , I play many usual intervals inside the octave for each new note


Edited by Kamin (12/22/12 02:50 PM)
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#2003115 - 12/22/12 02:16 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
Thanks Isaac for chiming in. Atleast you admit to the necessity
of checks in concert work.

Regards,
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Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2003130 - 12/22/12 02:57 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
rysowers Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/16/07
Posts: 2401
Loc: Olympia, WA
What people need to keep in mind is that a beatless octave is almost always something theoretical and is not something that is practiced in reality. There are limits to what tuners can hear - can you hear the difference between an octave beating .2 or .3 per second? What about .02 or .03 times a second? On the PTG tuning exam I can tell you that "pure sounding unisons" when measured are often .2 or .3 cents apart.

Slightly false tones in strings, and slight difference between strings give pianos a complex tone when all unisons are open that defies any attempts at pure beatlessness.

I do not use temperament strips when I tune. I tune unisons as I go. So I think more in terms of "sweet spots" than absolute beat rates. To me, smoothly progressing 6th, 10th, and 17ths that are lively but not too edgy (I know, that's subjective - but that's the art of tuning!) I find the fast beating intervals are the fine sandpaper of a good tuning, and have the largest impact on the musical quality of the piano.

With open strings, octaves are often too nebulous/complex to be a very accurate gauge, because most octaves will be made up of 6 strings. With a temperament strip you can be deceived into thinking you are being more accurate than you really are.

I have found that the perfect tuning continues to be elusive. As my skills have progressed, my ears just get pickier and pickier, so I am still not completely satisfied, and I doubt I ever will be.

Listening to the "whole tone" I believe is a gimmicky way of saying you're not paying as close attention. When you step away from an oil painting you don't see the brush strokes, does that mean the painting itself is more prefect?
_________________________
Ryan Sowers,
Pianova Piano Service
Olympia, WA
www.pianova.net

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#2003141 - 12/22/12 03:27 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
pppat Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/09/08
Posts: 1195
Loc: Jakobstad, Finland
Hi all,

there's also another thing to consider. If you tune a full length, high-quality instrument like a Fazioli 278 or a Steinway D, in some octaves there is only a negligible difference between the 2:1/4:2/6:3 octave. At least as I hear it, and as far as the checks tell. On the other hand, on a short instrument with less than ideal scaling, not only will there be a huge difference between these octave sizes - sometimes they won´t even line up like they should.

Just something I think is worth remembering. Bill's suggestion requires a piano with "good enough" length and scaling.
_________________________
Patrick Wingren, RPT

Senior Lecturer (jazz piano, composition, music theory, conducting) @ Novia University of Applied Sciences, Jakobstad, Finland
- - - -
Dedicated to learning the craft of tuning. Getting better.

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#2003147 - 12/22/12 03:42 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7175
Loc: France
What a tuner can hear is the progressiveness of fast beating intervals, , and that without being too much attentive.

The problem with tuning with unisons as you go is that every new tuned note lower the precedent, so the tuner is working in a sort of light pitch raising mode, he also use the unison to correct the pitch if necessary.

That last point is similar to when strip muting, at the difference that when strip mutiing, the lowering is more predictible, in my opinion, and the sensation of security is better.

Hopefully unisons allow to push the pitch high or to lower it, that is how I understand that anyway.
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Isaac OLEG - http://picasaweb.google.fr/PianoOleg pro

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#2003258 - 12/22/12 10:05 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Dave B Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/01/11
Posts: 1891
Loc: Philadelphia area
I's my understanding that Bill Bremmer uses this description of the A3-A4 octave to allow for the different beat rates that the octaves will divide into. I believe he's warning against narrowing or overly widening the octave to accommodate specific beat rates as the octave is divided.

But I've been wrong before. It might be best to ask Bill himself.

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#2003402 - 12/23/12 08:06 AM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: pppat]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7175
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: pppat
Hi all,

there's also another thing to consider. If you tune a full length, high-quality instrument like a Fazioli 278 or a Steinway D, in some octaves there is only a negligible difference between the 2:1/4:2/6:3 octave. At least as I hear it, and as far as the checks tell. On the other hand, on a short instrument with less than ideal scaling, not only will there be a huge difference between these octave sizes - sometimes they won´t even line up like they should.

Just something I think is worth remembering. Bill's suggestion requires a piano with "good enough" length and scaling.


Hence a high iH instrument will be voiced with little power at FFF so to have the benefit of that enlarging of the spectra at moderate and light play.
Fazioli are in the low iH range, hence the straightening of the tone, sound a bit "clinical" to me by the absence of defects in iH.
And then, no way to enlarge / push the spectra, it sound unnatural very soon and FBI are really too fast then.

My guess generally speaking is that IH helps for tone projection, then a Fazioli would be more adapted to recordings or smaller spaces...
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Isaac OLEG - http://picasaweb.google.fr/PianoOleg pro

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#2003429 - 12/23/12 09:23 AM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
RonTuner Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 1618
Loc: Chicagoland
I yanked this graph off the web:



If we consider the red line as the apparent beat(s)speed between two notes an octave apart as one is moved from flat to sharp, there's that little range in the middle where the octave is "best". That, I believe, is what Virgil talked about when tuning via a "whole sound" approach. No checks, just movement across the zone to determine the best placement.

Some octaves have a much steeper graph, some wider - which respond to those octaves that are easy to tune, while some sit on a knife edge for finding just the right place. And then there are some octaves which never seem to get "still", no matter where you move the string! But by tuning with movement across the center line, it is easier to find the center "zone" than by nudging bit by bit closer and then trying to test if you ended up in the "right place".

Be careful of applying methods developed on larger, or better scaled instruments for general use. (for example, realize that by the time Virgil was writing his book, he had mostly limited his tuning to Steinway grands...)

Ron Koval
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Piano/instrument technician
www.ronkoval.com
@ronkoval

my piano videos:
http://www.youtube.com/profile_videos?user=drwoodwind


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#2003555 - 12/23/12 03:39 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7175
Loc: France
Steinways have a moderate but normal iH, similar to Yamaha.

This allow for some variations in octave size, some can be covered by the enlarging of the temperament or some can be reserved to the extreme of the keyboard.

Fazioli can only be tuned "straight" and "pure" no enlarging of octave is really allowed because of low iH the spectra is concentrated, there is no space to allow pushing toware 6:3 for instance.

Some pianos have a huge iH, and the tuner have a tendency to enlarge the octave a lot, while it is not always necessary, but too small octaves sound nasal on those pianos.

With high iH, "tempered" intervals are beating slowly, Fast beating intervals are slower, the tone grasp the ear easily, but dynamics is reduced noticeably.

Older pianos with old wire have a raise in iH, hence their need for soft hammers. Then as the soundboard also does not provide a large dynamic plage the success of refelted and soft pressed hammers on old pianos is explaned.

New hammers will then be voiced so to have mostly fundamental and a little second partial, the top of the spectra stay limited and is out of focus.

Some musicians or pianists notice that the pitch is changing between the attack and the sustain. I dont really know how the tuner use that effect while tuning but it is certainly a part of the mix.
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#2003560 - 12/23/12 04:04 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7175
Loc: France
There is something that limits the precision of the perception for beats.

As the tone diseappear following a slow curve it sort of make the beginning of a slow beat, it can be as one beat every 3 or 5 seconds. So any beat caused by frequency shifts can hide in that without being noticed.

Then coupling can be obtained at a partial level, while making a frequency shift for the fundamental, that is why I believe it is important to tune the beginning of the tone and the rest. The energy level immediately after the attack is probably telling me that I am in phase at the fundamental level, then coupling the partials is worked later, during the sustain, as a differnt part of tone, that is how I perceive the tone anyway.
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Isaac OLEG - http://picasaweb.google.fr/PianoOleg pro

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#2003745 - 12/24/12 02:06 AM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: rysowers]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
[/quote]
Originally Posted By: rysowers
What people need to keep in mind is that a beatless octave is almost always something theoretical and is not something that is practiced in reality. There are limits to what tuners can hear - can you hear the difference between an octave beating .2 or .3 per second? What about .02 or .03 times a second? On the PTG tuning exam I can tell you that "pure sounding unisons" when measured are often .2 or .3 cents apart.


Ryan, yes, as you say there is this imperceptible measurement. This is reality, as is the reality of pure/just sounding intervals too. As you ask, can one hear the difference between an octave beating .2 or .3 bps? In other words, tuning an octave beating at .2bps, sounds pure/just/clean?

Originally Posted By: rysowers
To me, smoothly progressing 6th, 10th, and 17ths that are lively but not too edgy (I know, that's subjective - but that's the art of tuning!) I find the fast beating intervals are the fine sandpaper of a good tuning, and have the largest impact on the musical quality of the piano.


Agreed, to a certain degree. As someone once said (I think it may have been Newton Hunt), the SBI's are the stretch indicators, and the RBI's are the incremental smoothers.

The other thing is this, as one checks one's work/tuning as it develops and progesses, with all the available checks, SBI's and RBI's, then one is tuning objectively and one is in a position to make the subjective and subtle changes (the art of tuning)that are necessary.

Originally Posted By: rysowers
. Listening to the "whole tone" I believe is a gimmicky way of saying you're not paying as close attention. When you step away from an oil painting you don't see the brush strokes, does that mean the painting itself is more prefect


Ryan, if Virgil Smith's whole tone tuning was gimmicky, how did he become to be known as a renowned piano tuner? Was not his tuning accurate and high end? Was it just gimmicky?

Secondly, when listening to 3rds, 6ths, 10ths, 17ths, 8ves, D8ves, 12ths, 19ths etc...is one not listening to whole tone intervals?

The important thing is to check your work as you progress through the tuning, so that one has the wood and the trees in view, not missing anything, as much as is possible to the fallible human mind.

So, as I have been saying, one need's to listen to the whole tone SBI's and listen to the whole tone RBI's to make sure one's work is as accurate as possible, whether it be for E.T or H.T.

Apart from speaking about clean/pure/just octaves and double octaves etc... one must not forget that this is only one way of tuning the piano. Another thing, for concert work in bigger halls one will need to stretch more and accordingly.


Edited by Mark Davis (12/24/12 02:37 AM)
Edit Reason: minor correction
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Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2003758 - 12/24/12 02:34 AM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: RonTuner]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
Originally Posted By: RonTuner
Be careful of applying methods developed on larger, or better scaled instruments for general use. (for example, realize that by the time Virgil was writing his book, he had mostly limited his tuning to Steinway grands...)


Ron, which some folks don't seem to be getting is this,

I am just saying that one needs to check one's work, whether it be spinet, studio or grand. Check your workk as it develops and progresses through the tuning. Now, one needs to realise that in what I am saying, one may not tune a piano as quickly as other folks but in the end it is solid, stable, musical and accurate.

Now, in saying that it may take longer to tune, this needs to be qualified by saying different pianos tune differently and there are different circumstances and situations involved which will make the tuning progress faster or more slowly.

All depending, it takes me anything from +- 45 minutes to 2 hours to tune a piano, from spinet to a large concert grand, which may involve some pitch adjusting too.
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Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2003775 - 12/24/12 04:42 AM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
When we check our tuning, for instance, tuning a just/clean/pure double octave, what should it be sounding like (whole tone) and what should the M3/M17 be sounding like (whole tone)?

The whole tone just/beatless double octave should sound clean/beatless when checked and listened to as an SBI and the M3/M17 should sound similar/beating, M3=M17, when checked/listened to as an RBI.

To substantiate how just/wide/narrow the double octave is, one can use the P19, D8ve, 12th, 8ve, M3, M10 and M17 (these are just a few tests/checks). Listening to and adjusting/tweaking each interval involved accordingly, to validate and execute any particular interval you are tuning.

The beat speeds/ratios of the intervals and texture of the intervals are all guides and clues as to how your work is progressing and to what needs to be changed or left alone.

Then again, not to take away from all that I have said, Tunelab really does a fantastic job too!

Thanks,







Edited by Mark Davis (12/24/12 06:39 AM)
Edit Reason: minor correction
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Mark Davis
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#2003817 - 12/24/12 08:33 AM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Bojan Babic Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/15/09
Posts: 325
Loc: Vojvodina, Serbia
When you determine the type of an octave, do you do that by ear, or only by the ETD?
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Sid, Vojvodina, Serbia
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#2003845 - 12/24/12 09:35 AM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
Bojan, from what I understand about ETD tuning, is that one has an option to adjust the tuning calculation by various means to what one desires.

However, as much as I understand, the principles of SBI and RBI tuning should and do remain the same in order to gauge what is taking place before,during and after the tuning.

In other words, for instance a just 4:2 octave is just that, whether it is tuned and checked aurally or by ETD. Checking an ETD octave, for example, a 6:3/4:2 octave in the middle of the piano would and should give one an RBI check so that the lower M3 is slower than the M10 and then one can listen to the octave itself to confirm whether one likes or dislikes/agrees or disagrees with the outcome and then make the necessary adjustment. Does the M3=M10 or M3>M10 or M3<M10 and then make, hopefully, the minor adjusments accordingly.

In tuning the octave in the middle of the piano, say for instance the F3-F4, to whatever type of octave, one also has the option of checking the P4/P5 and m3/M6 within to check what is going on.

Until there is further light on this, this is my experience, understanding and practice.

So, in brief, I think it is just as Rick Baldassin has written, which basically explains what I am saying, so much better and clearer, the bridging of aural and ETD tuning. Atleast this has been my experience.

Thanks


Edited by Mark Davis (12/24/12 09:42 AM)
Edit Reason: minor correction
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#2003950 - 12/24/12 12:58 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7175
Loc: France
To be clear I just almost totally stopped checking octave sizes, it is not my priority.

sometime in case of doubt I will try a M3 M10 check in the temperament octave, but I more get an ear "grip" to the fullness of my octave, not tryg to force one direction or another, expecting mostly the feedback from instrument and the room to tell me my octave is OK.

Way more quieter to tune that way.

There is a quiet spot, certainly influenced by other intervals, once the octave is prooved to be good, it is easy to reproduce it.


The ETD is interesting as a limiter, aural tuning will tend to be more open. But that does not mean I will agree with the octave types proposed, nor I will take the trouble to regulate the ETD and then be confident in it.



Edited by Kamin (12/24/12 01:00 PM)
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#2003965 - 12/24/12 01:33 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Olek]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
Originally Posted By: Kamin
To be clear I just almost totally stopped checking octave sizes, it is not my priority.

sometime in case of doubt I will try a M3 M10 check in the temperament octave, but I more get an ear "grip" to the fullness of my octave, not tryg to force one direction or another, expecting mostly the feedback from instrument and the room to tell me my octave is OK.


I agree, to a certain degree Isaac and just to be clear, I am not saying I am the be all and end all to tuning. I am trying to write about my experience in tuning and I think it lines up with other peoples work that have written far better about it than I have.

I just find that for a better, more sure and accurate tuning I check my work. Once again, I re-iterate what Virgil Smith has said,

"The amount of expansion and contraction of each interval necessaery to achieve a quality equal tempered tuning (I would go so far as to say all tuning, whether E.T or H.T), can only be determined by use of tuning checks. Checks are used before the note is tuned to determine if the note is sharp or flat and by how much,during the tuning, and after it is tuned to check the accuracy of the tuning."

This is my understanding and practice.

Originally Posted By: Kamin
The ETD is interesting as a limiter, aural tuning will tend to be more open. But that does not mean I will agree with the octave types proposed, nor I will take the trouble to regulate the ETD and then be confident in it.


My ascertion is that a well executed hybrid ETD/Aural tuning allows one much more opportunity to experiment wth and adjust stretch and far easier and more controllable than purely aural tuning.

YMMV
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Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2003969 - 12/24/12 01:39 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7175
Loc: France
EDT is indeed excellent to experiment, but tend to push me away from tuning, I feel as ruled by a machine which I dont like, because at some point I have lost my judgement.

That is the impression it gives me, even if the results may sound excellent, they are a surprise in the end, not something done consienciously.

My opinion, but I dont wish to argue, I respect any other, in the end I like some tunings more than others, and it is so difficult to say why, it can be due to consonance, eveness, unison quality, adequation with the instrument...
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Isaac OLEG - http://picasaweb.google.fr/PianoOleg pro

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#2003981 - 12/24/12 01:56 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
Isaac, I began learnng to tune aurally in 2002 and began tuning aurally for clients in 2005.

I began experimenting with ETD tuning in 2010 and began tuning almost exclusively with and ETD in 2011. In 2012, I began returning to tuning aurally.

It all depends on how I am feeling on any given day. I may tune with an ETD or aurally and or anything in between.

A change is as good as a holiday.

Thanks,
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Mark Davis
Piano Tuner & Technician

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#2003992 - 12/24/12 02:14 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Mark Davis]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7175
Loc: France
Mark I tuned with all kind of ETD, and in concert environment, so I will not say it did not provide something useful to me, as having a security, being able to make a decent work for the last piano of the day or changing the pitch 1 hour before a rehearsal..

But I finally was tired of the machines, the kind of perfection they provide plus some other drawbacks, as the overpull mod ethat should be used almost always if one want the end result to correspond with the display. Also the ETD does not react to temperature change, i was obliged to have a thermometer at hand, after finishing a tuning at a differnt pitch than the begin.

In the end the main drawback is that you have to wait for the display to judge your pitch. In the meantime no way to make checks (it disrupt the display) and no way to work the appreciation of pitch immediately at the attack.

Then, too much for me, but I know a few concert tuners that dont care much for the piano's own resonance and use the result computed by the ETD.

For some reason, I always have find them a little not natural, too smooth or too "perfect".
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#2003998 - 12/24/12 02:34 PM Re: Clean Sounding/Beatless Octaves [Re: Olek]
Mark Davis Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/10/08
Posts: 658
I like gadgets and living in this technological age, I think it is necessary to get to grips with and stay in touch with the ETD's and tunng software of today.

However, I do think that it is also necessary for people to get to understand the aural tuning theory and aural application of it too.
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