Strange overtones

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Sethoflagos, Aug 27, 2014.

  1. Sethoflagos

    Sethoflagos Utimate User

    Aug 7, 2013
    Lagos, Nigeria
    I've been practising off and on most of the day after a week off, mainly pedals and a bit of multiple tonguing practice.

    Then just now I was working up some aimless tunes around the bottom of the stave when I realised that I was not alone: there was another distinct voice playing what I was playing but transposed about a minor third down.

    Resisting the obvious immediate impulse to fire up ebay and bid for a dozen mouthpieces and a couple of new trumpets, I had a bit of a think about it. Then an idea dawned. We had a new generator installed while I was away and this one has some soundproofing so its a quietish, relatively clean hum. Grid power went down a couple of hours ago, so this was the first time I'd heard trumpet and new gen together. Checking the numbers, 50 Hz off the low stave notes would be around a minor third, so I guess that's probably it. A resultant tone with the new gen.

    What was that Robin said about not being the best judge of your own sound?

    Anybody experienced something similar?
  2. VetPsychWars

    VetPsychWars Fortissimo User

    Nov 8, 2006
    Greenfield WI
    Those are called sub-tones. When I play duets with someone who has good tuning, we lock the intervals together so tightly that the sub-tones are LOUD provided the room is large enough. They don't always match the chord so it drives me nuts that I can''t tune them too. :-)

    You''ll get a similar effect playing with a drone. I've used a "signal generator" app on my computer. Triangle wave seems to match the timbre of a trumpet lots better than a sine or square wave.

  3. Dupac

    Dupac Fortissimo User

    Aug 19, 2008
    Bordeaux, France.
    Sub-tones may appear when you play the organ, by interaction between two keyboards (often keyboard and pedalboard).
  4. Dean_0

    Dean_0 Piano User

    Jan 21, 2013
    Not experienced those thing yet , but have been practicing with the small group under a ceiling fan :shock: boy is that annoying!!

  5. BigDub

    BigDub Fortissimo User

    Dec 19, 2009
    Hillsborough, NJ
    Play into a small table top fan while it's blowing. Just saying that will create some interesting feedback.
    I was once playing with two other guys that I've played with for over 25 years, and just one time we played a unison note and the wave of the note so almost perfectly in tune created such a sound. I can't really describe it, but we knew it was something special.
    Sometimes I get a strange double tone when my chops get tired and it is a distinct two note sound. Almost sounds like growling while playing can sound.
  6. Peter McNeill

    Peter McNeill Utimate User

    Jan 30, 2009
    Melbourne Australia
    +1 - agree with Wayne
    If playing by yourself and no fan present (exceptions to wife in vicinity), then likely tired chops can cause a sub-tonal sound to come into play, have a 10 min rest.
  7. barliman2001

    barliman2001 Fortissimo User

    Jul 5, 2010
    Vienna, Austria, Europe
    I always have a second tone when practising... out of my dog... he's also accompanying my wife (opera singer) when she's practising... By this time, he's pretty much in tune... a seventh above the note played or sung!
  8. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
    A mouthpiece will not change subtones. That is a factor or the horn.
  9. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

    Dec 22, 2008
    Euphonium player asked me to play longtones into the bell of his euphonium. Oookaaayy, why? He insisted, so I did. WOW! He depressed his valves while I played. Fastest "tonguing" I've ever heard.
  10. Dviglis

    Dviglis Mezzo Piano User

    Mar 29, 2014
    Sounds like something one of those crazy euphonium players would do...

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