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Intonation poll

Which of the following sustained alto notes sounds best to you?

  • The first one

  • The second one


Results are only viewable after voting.

Pete Thomas

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Following on from another thread, I thought I'd do an actual poll.

Here's a little test. On these these sound clips thae alto solo starts with a held note (G concert)

Which of these takes sounds like the best intonation? (Not a trick question, yes, they are different and it's more down to subjective taste rather than an ear test)





(NB this is a very slight remix compared to the examples on the other thread and they may or may not be in the same order)

I'll reveal the actual technical differences in a couple of days time.
 
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nigeld

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To my ears, the second one sounds a bit uncomfortable.
 

turf3

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To my ears the first one sounds like it comes in just a leetle low and gradually rises. The second one comes in either dead on pitch or every so slightly high and basically stays there.

I prefer the first approach in this context as it's stylistically correct.

I'll be interested to see what a tuner says.
 

Jimmymack

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The first one sounds as if it's struggling to get the pitch whereas the second is a bit cleaner but thinner, though not necessarily any more in tune. I prefer the first because it has more body and colour.
 

Wade Cornell

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Neither sounds completely right but the first (although seeming flat) didn't jar as much as the second.
 

Ivan

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1st for me

The sharper 2nd track sounds just a tad overcooked
 

Stephen Howard

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First one for me, because it's in context. It would still have worked if the note had been held a bit longer and then brought up to pitch just before the step-off.
The second one seems more correct in terms of tuning, but sounds a bit autotuney. It sort of reminds me of those cover versions that the Radio 2 big band often did - for late night listeners who don't want their sensibilities disturbed.
Classic example of that would be their version of Spyrogyra's 'Morning Dance'. Nice original track - and while the R2 big band version wasn't unpleasant, it was just too 'cosy'.
 

turf3

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That's not all that flat, for that kind of music in that kind of place. I might well have been 60 or 80 cents flat before I pulled it up. That's how you play that kind of music.
 

Jimmymack

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No, that’s pretty flat. Even on my worst days I’m not sure I can achieve that.
 

Pete Effamy

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That's not all that flat, for that kind of music in that kind of place. I might well have been 60 or 80 cents flat before I pulled it up. That's how you play that kind of music.
That sort of stylistic thing is what you do on things like the section play just before the solo entry. The solo entry is a long note coloured at the end with vibrato - not a bent note.
 

Pete Thomas

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Yes you can see looking at the tuner it actually gets flatter. This is not intentional, it would have been my subconscious adjusting the note to the pitch I felt it should be. I was kind of shocked to find it was 30 cents flat but sounded to me best that way. In spite of, as someone said in the other thread, just intonation would have expected the fifth to be sharp.
 

Guenne

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Hello!
First one is in tune, although it's flat.
Second one just sounds wrong (sharp).
I guess that's a style thing and depends on the function of the note in the chord.

Cheers, Guenne
 

jbtsax

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I "heard" the second one as sharp as well. As I wrote in another thread, I think "context" is important.
 

Neffmusic

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So are there any lessons to be learned from this experiment? Could the flat note sound more in tune because of that flat guitar effect mentioned in the other thread?
 

Pete Thomas

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So are there any lessons to be learned from this experiment? Could the flat note sound more in tune because of that flat guitar effect mentioned in the other thread?
I don't hear any flat guitar. When I analysed the guitar the wah wah guitar, it really has very little actual pich because it's basically damped strings and amp hum. Plus it's very quiet in the mix.

The guitar track soloed:


The versions of two tracks but with no guitar



 

JayeNM

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So the tease is over. Yes most people got it the the first take was a bit flat but sounded better.

But did anyone realise exactly how flat?

View attachment 18640
Which was the point I was making in the previous thread....a debate occurring in there over 8-10 cents off.

The only 'reason' we ascertained #1 being flat was because we had #2 to compare it to....and/or were being asked...

Had there been no #2...most respondents (and most musicians, and most definitely most-most listeners who are non-musicians) would have thought #1 was fine...and quite Hep. A bit of note bending but almost nobody would have though 30+ cents off the pitch....

Yes, context matters, but in most forms of contemporary music...rock, jazz, klezmer, blues, latin genres, etc....something 12 cents and under just isn't gonna be discernible....except to a very, very select few (5% perhaps).

Classical, I am not sure, as I don't listen to it much...but I would again posit that in MOST cases....8-9 cents off would not be discernible except to a very select few. If I were listening to a chamber music group or even a sax quartet playing a classical piece and one member was tuned to be 8-10 cents off....I would not hear anything 'wrong' going on there, for example. And I seriously doubt a large majority %age of listeners would, either...
 
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