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Acoustics saidabouts

”-After Charles Garnier designed the Paris Opera in the 1870's, he called acoustics a ''bizarre science’'.

New world record for longest echo 

”-  the acoustics of the abbey adding to its power and richness” 

”He pronounced the acoustics to be fantastic"

School buildings 'not fit' for learning, say teachers. Acoustics vital.

“...elevated ceiling, high-tech acoustics, huge stage, HD video screens and excellent sightlines”

”Rumbling guitar textures got an extra lift from the venue's unparalleled acoustics"

"I control what I call the visual acoustics," Shulman said

"Simon Rattle talked about losing the will to live after being seated for 30 seconds in the back of the hall”

”Bouncing off the walls”

The best buildings you’ll ever hear

According to the musicians who play here, the opera house may look great but it sounds dreadful

A treat for soloists, chamber orchestras and singers, but too dry and flat acoustics for a big orchestra”

“… a new outdoor stadium with acoustics especially designed for concerts”

“What makes the sound of the vuvuzelas so annoying?

In Hitler’s tunnels: ”The acoustics are incredible”

Latest vineyard offspring: ”The best modern acoustics”

”China's biggest indoor stadium has excellent acoustics”

”Bad acoustics impairing learning”

”The sounds we love to hate”

At Last, Heavenly Acoustics Are Heard in the Hall

”A preview of the new Alice Tully Hall”

”Musicians Hear Heaven in Tully Hall’s New Sound”

”Improved Acoustics Benefit City Opera”

“Dogged by criticism of its acoustics”

“Why Helsinki needs a new concert hall”

Kilden Performing Arts Centre managing director Bentein Baardson:  “In addition, it’s acoustically unique.”

The acoustics of a concert hall

Acoustics, or the search for excellence

Quirky Acoustics: ”The UK's five weirdest sounding places"

Oullette: ”Science and Art Converge in Concert Hall Acoustics”

In Budapest: "The acoustics are unbelievably good and you can listen to Wagner's music like nowhere else"

Aspen Ideas Festival: How the vineyard style trumped the shoebox

Hamburg is building its musical future: The Elbphilharmonie

F Larson: Interview with Leo Beranek 2008, on music and acoustics (part 1)

F Larson: Interview with Leo Beranek 2008, on music and acoustics (part 2)

Christopher Blair: Building Concert Halls_ Part 1: What makes a great concert hall? 

Christopher Blair: Building Concert Halls_ Part 2: Well-worn paths to failure 

Christopher Blair: Building Concert Halls_ Part 3: How to ensure success 

Christopher Blair: Orchestral Acoustics 101__ Hearing Troubles?

Christopher Blair: Orchestral Acoustics 101__Vineyard vs. Shoebox: Are visual intimacy and sonic-envelopment mutually exclusive?

Christopher Blair: Orchestral Acoustics 101__ Beware the Seductive Model

Christopher Blair: Orchestral Acoustics 101__ Avery Fisher Hall

Christopher Blair: Orchestral Acoustics 101__ Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics

Christopher Blair: Orchestral Acoustics 102__  Orchestra vs. Hall

”Itzhak Perlman Says Tinkering With Avery Fisher’s Acoustics May Be Risky”

Lucia Rahilly: The Architecture of Acoustics

”Life for an orchestra on the road is an acoustical adventure”  (it keeps the orchestra listening like a string quartet)

”When a hall is dead, I ask chords to be held longer, the strings to play with longer bow strokes. When it’s reverberant, I ask the opposite.” 

”For all the sophistication of present-day computer modeling, acoustics remains a gamble as much as a science” 

B Markham: Leo Beranek and Concert Hall Acoustics

Eric J. Heller: Modern Architectural Acoustics - Why You Hear What You Hear 

Eric J. Heller: Science, Concert Halls and Egos 

Misc.: About Reverberation - quotes and more 



Reflection of Waves from Boundaries (animation)

Sound fields radiated by simple sources (animation)

Wave motion in time and space (animation)

Longitudinal and transverse wave motion (animation)

Superposition of waves (animation)

Fourier Decomposition (animation)

Waves in a dispersive medium (animation)

Phase-Space Diagrams for an Oscillator (animation)

Sound Radiation from Cylindrical Radiators (animation)

The Doppler Effect and Sonic Booms (animation)

BYU: Wave propagation (animation)

Monopole wave propagation (animation)

Mode conversion (animation)

Auralizations (“not found” reported, URLs may be removed)

Dvorak’s String Quartet No 12 (reverberation time demo): Anechoic; RT=0.46sRT=1.47s; RT=2.1s; RT=7.7s

Brahm’s symphony No 4 in Amsterdam Concertgebouw computer model, LF=0.25. Same in anechoic (dry) condition

Intimacy in different seats of Amsterdam Concertgebouw (auralizations). Different initial time delay gaps ITDG: 6 ms; 20 ms; 34 ms; 47 ms; anechoic reference

Purcell's Trumpet Voluntary 38 in a computer model of Elmia Concert Hall. Different seats, different clarity (C80):
4.7 dB; -1.3 dB; -12 dB. Same in Anechoic (Dry) Recording


J Wolfe: Pipes and harmonics. How do resonances in flutes, clarinets and saxophones depend on bore and length?

Edge tones

What is a decibel?

What is a Sound Spectrum?

Chen, Smith and Wolfe: Experienced saxophonists learn to tune their vocal tracts

Dickens, France, Smith and Wolfe: Clarinet acoustics compendium

Wolfe, Maëva, Garnier and Smith: Voice Acoustics - an introduction

E Björkner: Voice Acoustics - Why so different? Opera singing vs Musical theatre singing. Physical aspects.

Johan Sundberg (1977): The Acoustics of the Singing voice

Derek Stiles: Speech Acoustics (slides show—click the full screen button there for larger image)

J Wolfe: Brass instrument acoustics—An introduction

J Wolfe: Guitar acoustics

Askenfelt (editor): Five lectures: The Acoustics of the Piano

D Russell: What is a Wave? (with animation)

D Russell: Driving Room Modes: Source Location (with animation)

J Wolfe: The acoustics of harmonic singing

J Wolfe: How harmonic are harmonics?

J Wolfe: What is acoustic impedance and why is it important?

J Wolfe: Acoustic impedance, intensity and power (with animation)

Tartini tones and temperament (UNSW)

UNSW: Waves and sound (with animations)

UNSW: The musician’s uncertainty principle and Heisenberg's uncertainty principle

BBC: Most acoustic communication is not language

Hyperphysics: Auditorium acoustics

Sounds from the orchestra—a guide to the symphony orchestra

A Hugill: The orchestra - a users manual

S Bistafa: Acoustics of small rooms

Small room acoustics (with demo)

Introduction to perception of frequencies, harmonics, tones and pitch (12min YouTube)

Audio Acoustics in Small Rooms (ppt)

Room dimensions for small listening rooms

What is acoustics?

Music Room Acoustics 1977 (6.3MB)

J Meyer (YouTube lecture): "The sound of orchestras and soloists as a combination of room acoustics and acoustical properties of the musical instruments"

R. A. Rasch and R. Plomp: "The Listener and the Acoustic Environment"

D Griesinger: Pitch, Timbre and Source Separation (5MB ppt file, click F5 for slide show with www-links to aural examples - stay online)

Building Science: Concepts and Application, Chapter 10 Room Acoustics (8MB)

Ask Wolfram|Alpha about Sound and Acoustics

washington.edu: Sound localization and temporal pattern analysis

Books,  articles and from the archives

Lord Rayleigh: The Theory of sound Vol 1

W.S.Inman: Ventilation, Warming and Transmission of Sound  (1836)  pdf-version (5MB)

W.F.Donkin: Acoustics (1870)

E.H.Kelly: Architectural Acoustics (1898) pdf-version (2MB)

T.R.Smith: Acoustics in relation to architecture and buildings  (1900)  pdf-version (11MB)

F.R.Watson: Acoustics of Auditoriums (1914) pdf-version (6MB)

F.R.Watson: Correction of Echoes and Reverberation in the Autidorium, University of Illinois (1916)  pdf-version (1.7MB)

W.C Sabine:  Collected Papers on Acoustics

P.C.Buck: Acoustics for Musicians (1918)

New York Philharmonic Archives: The files on the acosutics of New York Philharmonic Hall files (1963)

H Kuttruff: Room Acoustics (1973) 6th Edition 2017

M Barron: Auditorium Acoustics and Architectural Design (1993)

D Griesinger: Why do Concert Halls sound different – and how can we design them to sound better?

P Svensson: “The Early History of Ray Tracing in Room Acoustics”

J Meyer: "Acoustical aspects of the conductor's situation in front of the orchestra"  (13MB pdf)

J Meyer: Acoustics and the Performance of Music 

J Sundberg: "Arriving in time. A major concern for conductors & musicians"

A Krokstad: "The hundred years cycle in room acoustic research and design" (19MB pdf)

A Krokstad: "The common-mode rejection of the ear and its influence on the hearing of born and unborn"

A Krokstad: Music and Communication (12MB pdf)

G Fleischer: "Strategies of the hearing system against noise and auditory damage" (25MB pdf)

L Beranek: “Objective and subjective evaluations of 23 opera houses in Europe, Japan and the Americas”

L Beranek: “Subjective rank-orderings and measurements of 58 concert halls”

L Beranek: “Analysis of Sabine and Eyring equations and their application to concert hall audience and chair absorption”

L Beranek: Concert Hall Acoustics 2008

J Blauert: Spatial Hearing: The Psychophysics of Human Sound Localization

J Blauert (Editor): The Technology of Binaural Listening

J Blauert: Binaural Models and their Technological Application 

L Beranek: Concert Halls and Opera Houses: Music, Acoustics, and Architecture 

J Meyer: Concert Acoustics and the Performance of Music

Diana Deutsch, editor: Psychology of Music (2nd edition) (3rd edition)

Howard and Angus: Acoustics and Psychoacoustics

Fastl and Zwicker: Psychoacoustics. Facts and Models

Floyd Toole: Sound Reproduction: The Acoustics and Psychoacoustics of Loudspeakers and Rooms

Gilkey and Anderson: Binaural and Spatial Hearing - in real and virtual environments

R Bader: Nonlinearities and Synchronization in Musical Acoustics and Music Psychology  (external site, use ”back” to return to this site)

Mendel Kleiner: Acoustics and Audio Technology

F.P.Mechel: Formulas of  Acoustics

Krokstad, Svensson and Strøm: The early history of ray tracing in room acoustics 

Xiang and Sessler (editors) Acoustics, Information and Communication - Memorial Volume in Honour of Manfred Schröder 

More papers can be found in AKUTEK Paper Session


The Fresnel-Kirchhoff Diffraction Integral

Acoustic terms and definitions

Acoustics Dictionary

Acoustics FAQs

Introduction to Huygen’s Principle1; Introduction to Huygen’s Principle 2

Acoustic sources


Cross Correlation


Waves, Acoustics and Vibration Theory by Dr James B Calvert


Music from a tree

Reverberation in a Small Room (with demo)

Visualizing Concert Hall Reverberation

Acoustic Visualization

Acoustic Image Overlay:  Real time Image transfer

Mark Whittle:: Sound of Big Bang (wav demo)

Mark Whittle: Big Bang Acoustics

Kiyohara, Furuya, and Kaneda: Sweeping echoes (wav demo)

ON/OFF-bass-absorber lab tested

Visit concert halls world-wide with Google Earth

For discussion: Philharmonie de Paris, is it a new typology? ”The symphonic hall: a new typology”

Deutch and Dooley Absolute Pitch Is Associated with a Large Auditory Digit Span: A Clue to Its Genesis

R Vigo: What Makes Some Musical Patterns More Pleasing Than Others?  Uncovering the Psychological Nature of Musical Appeal

BAUA: Guide to Hearing Conservation in the Music and Entertainment Industry

Aalto University Virtual Acoustics Group, Auralisations, An-echoic recordings

Beranek, Gade, Bassuet, Toyota, Kirkegaard and Marshall: New Ideas in Concert Hall Acoustics_Part 1 (ISRA 2010 panel discussion) 

Beranek, Gade, Bassuet, Toyota, Kirkegaard and Marshall: New Ideas in Concert Hall Acoustics_Part  2 (ISRA 2010 panel discussion) 

Beranek, Gade, Bassuet, Toyota, Kirkegaard and Marshall: New Ideas in Concert Hall Acoustics_Part  3 (ISRA 2010 panel discussion) 

Shock wave from trombone filmed (with video) 

Kim, Okumura and Otani: Auditory Depth Control: Investigating associated physical parameters