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Tone What Does A Good Tone Look Like?


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Beautiful Springville, Utah USA
A Comparison of Saxophone Sounds

Listen to each of the saxophone tones and pick those that sound the best and worst. Then compare the sound waveform and spectrum of each. You may be surprised as I was that it is difficult to predict the quality of the tone by merely looking at its "harmonic footprint".
They all sounded much of a muchness to me apart from D which was quite distinctive. It appears to have a more complicated waveform.
Very interesting link, thanks.

I preferred samples G & I myself as I felt they sounded somewhat sweeter and more pure (less tinny harmonics perhaps), but then maybe that's not the essence of sax! They were also a bit quieter as it happened which I think helped as some of the samples seemed a bit raucous to my ears. But then maybe I should have just turned the sound down! How any of that relates to the waveforms I'm not sure although G & I were vaguely similar.
Most interesting. I would pick B and J as being the best overall sounds with J having a slight edge over B even though they are very close. I hear these as the best "raw material" for a beautiful robust saxophone sound once vibrato and the nuances of a musical phrase are added.

The least desirable sounds to me would be I and K. Tones E and F are acceptable, but do not have the resonance or intensity of my favorites B and J. It is entirely coincidental that my favorites happen to be the first 2 initials of my name. Had the examples gone all the way to "T", I may have picked that one as well. Who knows?
Even listening on headphones, I had difficulty telling the difference in tone, apart from D. Some of the others were a touch unstable, but not that different.
Jazzaferi gave the best answer yet.


Seriously, if you open the webpage in two different windows side by side and compare one tone against another picking the better one in each trial to compare with the next on the list, it is easier to come up with the one you prefer. The same system can be used to find the one you like the least by eliminating the better sounding one each time.
Tis funny, I don't really like her playing, but I love watching her play. Anyone understand me? If not perhaps JBT's photo will explain it.

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