Author Topic: Did unequal temperament cause shift to A440 when tuning changed from C  (Read 6409 times)

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organforumadmin

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Hi!


http://www.casacota.net/teranyina?num=1129320687 gives cent differences of tunings.


In many tunings C is sharp with respect to A so tuning from C=256 would lead to a lower A. Were an instrument then tuned from A and by another from C, A would end up raised . . .


Were we to tune to C=256, which temperament would bring A to 432 or whatever the magic number is that some people like?


These lists are used for Hauptwerk
http://www.meteopallars.com/2x2/tremp.pl


best wisehs


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Evoluciˇ del tremp des de l'edat mitja fins als nostres dies
 
Llista dels tremps mÚs importants i extesos
 
 Nota: en la fila "Corr" trobes la desviaciˇ en cents respecte de l'escala trempada.
 
Aquests tremps els pots obtenir programant amb els valors corresponents algun instrument que ho permeti, com el Yamaha  PSR-540
 
 Afinaciˇ de l'escola de Notre Dame (edat mitja) ("desigual")
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   
 Ratios:
 
   1/1   2187/2048   9/8   32/27   81/64   4/3   729/512   3/2   128/81   27/16   16/9   243/128   2/1
   Corr:   0   14   4   -6   8   -2   12   2   -8   6   -4   10   0

 
 
 Pitag˛ric segons Henri Arnaut de Zwolle (ca. 1400-1466), Compositio timbriae, quod est initium organorum et clavichordiorum, ca. 1440
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   -9   2   -5   6   -3   -11   1   -6   3   -5   8   0

 
 
 Mesot˛nic de 1/3 de coma, Francisco Salinas, De Musica, Salamanca 1577
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   Db   D   D#   Eb   E   F   F#   Gb   G   G#   Ab   A   A#   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   -37   26   -10   -47   16   -21   5   -32   32   -5   -42   21   -16   -53   10   -26   0

 
 
 Mesot˛nic de 2/7 de coma, Francisco Salinas, De Musica, Salamanca 1577
 
(utilitzat per llaŘts i violes segurament encara en temps posteriors)
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   -31   -8   13   -17   4   -25   -4   -34   -12   9   -21   0

 
 
 Mesot˛nic de 1/4 de comma, Pietro Aaron, Thoscanello de la musica, VenŔcia 1523
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   -24   -7   10   -14   3.5   -20   -3   -21   -10   7   -17   0

 
 
 Andreas Werckmeister (1645-1706) III ("desigual")
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   -10   -8   -6   -10   -2   -12   -4   -8   -12   -4   -8   0

 
 
 Leonhard Euler (1739)  ("desigual amb el setŔ harm˛nic enlloc del siB")
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   -30   4   -26   -14   -2   -10   2   -28   -16   -24   -12   0

 
 
 Johann Philipp Kirnberger (1721-1783)  ("wohltemperiert")
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   -10   -7   -6   -14   -2   -12   2   -8   -16   -4   -12   0

 
 
 Johann Philipp Kirnberger (1721-1783)  ("desigual")
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   -10   4   -6   -14   -2   -10   2   -8   -5   -4   -12   0

 
 
 Mesot˛nic de 1/6 de coma, segle 18 ("rococˇ")
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   -13   -4   5   -7   2   -11   -2   -14   -5   4   -9   0

 
 
 Mesot˛nic de 1/9 de coma, ca. 1780-1970
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   -4   -1   2   -2   1   -4   -1   -5   -2   1   -3   0

 
 
 Valloti-Young 1799 ("desigual")
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   -6   -4   -3   -8   0   -8   -2   -4   -6   0   -8   0

 
 
 
 
 tremp uniforme actual (=mesot˛nic de 1/12 de coma)
 
 
   
 Nota:
 
   C   C#   D   Eb   E   F   F#   G   G#   A   Bb   B   C
   Corr:   0   0   0   0   0   0   0   0   0   0   0   0   0




revtonynewnham

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Hi

I'm not sure that the change of standard note is the whole answer.  Pitch has varied considerably over time - and A=440Hz is even now being challenged by some orchestras tuning sharper for a brighter sound (and not only orchestras - I bought a Roland Synthesizer about 20 years ago, and the default pitch of that was set to, IIRC, A=442Hz (quickly changed!).  Many folding reed organs were tuned significantly sharp to aid a bright tone.  My Alexandre harmonium is sharp to current standards, but I think is at the French standerd of the late 1800's when it was built.  Many UK pipe organs from the Victorian era are somewhat sharp to A=440Hz (I suspect to save the builders money by saving in pipe metal on the longest pipes - no doubt significant over several hundred instruments) - yet Baroque pitch is normally regarded as lower (A=415Hz is often quoted, but I'm not convinced that's a total solution either!).  And back in the Medieval period, organs were about a 4th higher in pitch than today (as per the Goetze & Gwynn reconstructions) - and a piece by Tallis that I played on one when we had it in Bradford sounded far better than my practice sessions at home on modern pitched instruments.

Every Blessing

Tony

Brian Daniels

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As I understand it, the use of 256hz pitch for mid C is a convenient figure for scientific and acoustical use as it is a convenient component of the binary series and therefore the frequencies calculated this way for all octaves above and below it are integers. There may be an historical link as well which escapes me. The same goes for the foot unit for pipe lengths although inversely applied. It is interesting to contemplate at what stage was the foot unit accepted by the organ world in general given that we are told the organ didn't originate here.
Historians will no doubt jump to their feet if they feel the need!

Regards.

Brian Daniels.

David Pinnegar

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I regret to say that the premise of this post was wrong - I have checked tuning from C at 256 and no temperament brings the A near 440.

Tony - my harmonium, strictly an American Organ is sharp as is indeed the Hunter pipe organ of 1893 - probably both by as much as 1/4 tone. In Vienna (from memory) pitch was 460 at times although my friend who restrung a Viennese piano of 1854 settled for 440 for "historical reasons" . . . St Maximin however is around 392 or so.

Whilst the basis of this post is flawed there are concerns in the tuning world about the difference of perspective that moving from C as a reference to A as a reference has brought.

Best wishes

David P

dragonser

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Re: temperament shift and A440
« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2011, 10:11:55 AM »
Hi,
well the Reed Organ I have here isn't at a = 440 hz, and one thing I am pleased about is that I didn't try to retune it to a = 440 when I was younger.
interesting how pitch has changed over the years !
and wasn't there the story that some of the early Pianos were sent out to the wrong location, [ was it Vienna ? ] and this caused problems because the pitch of a in the place they were sent to was different than the Pitch of the place they were intended for ?
a web site below has an interesting introduction to pitch
http://www.piano-tuners.org/history/pitch.html


regards Peter B

I regret to say that the premise of this post was wrong - I have checked tuning from C at 256 and no temperament brings the A near 440.



Tony - my harmonium, strictly an American Organ is sharp as is indeed the Hunter pipe organ of 1893 - probably both by as much as 1/4 tone. In Vienna (from memory) pitch was 460 at times although my friend who restrung a Viennese piano of 1854 settled for 440 for "historical reasons" . . . St Maximin however is around 392 or so.

Best wishes

David P

revtonynewnham

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Hi

One reed organ we had at the church where I grew up was a semi-tone sharp - we moved all the reeds up a note, leaving the low F channels empty - that solved the problem!

For many organs, absolute pitch doesn't matter - it's when you need to use them with other instruments that the fun starts.  Reading Town Hall's Willis is a case in point. 

I'm convinced, though, that pitch level, as well as temperament, affects how we respond to music.  For instance, even in ET, I find D major a more upfront sound that Db - or even Eb.

Every Blessing

Tony

David Pinnegar

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Hi!

In fact I was not at all as wrong as I thought I had been.
C=256 gives A=432 in equal temperament.

But often instruments were flatter - at around 425

It turns out that when one applies an unequal temperament where C is 10 cents sharp such as Prinz based on Young, then A comes down to 428. So based on C at 256, A could be all over the place according to temperament chosen.

Best wishes

David P

 


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