the overtone system

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by maxaroo32, Oct 6, 2004.

  1. maxaroo32

    maxaroo32 Guest

    Would anyone do me the favor of explaining the overtone system as it pertains to music recording? I'm supposed to explain the system for a homework assignment and the professor has not even mentioned it. Any help is appreciated! -Max
  2. soundfreely

    soundfreely Guest

    I posted an answer to this question you asked over in the recording studio forum. :)

  3. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    what is an overtone system?
  4. soundfreely

    soundfreely Guest

    I think the implication is "overtone series." Oops, I didn't catch that one.

    This was my answer in the the recording forum (I hope I am not doing something wrong by copying it over here):

  5. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    As did I, but here's my posting from the other forum:

    Hope this helps...

    J... :cool:
  6. Sonarerec

    Sonarerec Guest

    Let's not forget the reason it is critical for an engineer to understand overtones...

    If you need to add a bit of bass, you might very well want to boost a few dB in the frequency area of the 1st and 2nd overtones rather than the fundamental frequencies. Knowing how that translates to bandwidth is very important. Otherwise you might add EQ down where there is mostly garbage and the only thing you'll accomplish is causing the clipping in the playback system.

    Also, understanding how the overtone series varies between instruments explains why a trumpet sounds different from a horn when playing the same pitch.

    A easy thing that instantly demonstrates overtones is to hold a telephone receiver earpiece about an inch from your mouth and change the shape of your mouth by slowly mouthing (not saying) the word "WOW". You should clearly hear about 6 overtones "appear"and "disappear". Now try to consciously note the overtone structure of other instruments and think about how you'd change their sound by EQ or mic choice.

  7. radioliver

    radioliver Guest

    stop being technical and make good music
  8. Sonarerec

    Sonarerec Guest

    If you were being facetious, please ignore the following.

    If you were serious, however, then you are in the wrong forum. By the time the goods get to MASTERING it's way too late to do anything but make a mental note to use a different producer next time. Or perhaps decide that it would be wise to spend the money on one rather than buy some more goodies for the "project studio."

  9. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

  10. Thomaster

    Thomaster Guest

    the fact you see so-called 'technical stuff' and music as two different things tells me enough.

    its like saying to a pilot; "stop repairing that wing and take off.."
  11. radioliver

    radioliver Guest

    First of all, it was just a comment to remind us that you can know all you want about the overtone system, a good song is a good song and a bad song is a bad song. It wasn't the right place to post this and I realize a lot of people took this comment personnaly. It wasn't the point. I just want people to know that I realize the importance of "the technical part" of music, otherwise I wouldn't be reading this forum. I just feel that we often go a bit too far in the details and forget about the music. Anyways, I understand it wasn't the right place for this post.
  12. radioliver

    radioliver Guest

    and by the way, Thomaster, your pilot reference is way off. I'm not saying a guitarist with no hands can play a good song, I'm saying a guitarist with no theory knowledge CAN play a good song. I for one did learn all the theory I could in the little spare time I have, but it doesn't mean someone who never took these courses can't be good. Makes sense?
    Your poor analogy tells me enough about you.
  13. Sonarerec

    Sonarerec Guest

    If you guys are through throwing spitballs, consider the the original point-- the overtone system.

    And while the music IS the point, the likelihood of a performance that is at the group's real potential in an efficient and successful manner is usually the producer's job, so don't forget to hire one!

  14. radioliver

    radioliver Guest

    While I would love to go back to the original topic, I just have to say that I love the snobbish remarks of the mastering forum. I always thought that assuming stuff was the way to go in life.
  15. Sonarerec

    Sonarerec Guest

    If you go to my website and read my background, you'll conclude that I have learned to live with it! <G>

    I must assume from your juvenile responses that you DON'T understand why knowing about overtones is critical to both music-making AND music mastering.

    And contrary to your snotty assertion, I certainly do not know it all-- no one does.

  16. radioliver

    radioliver Guest

    while i feel I must continue to argue, i will stop here because i must admit that i am not of the classical type and that your background was almost fun to read. I just don't like your overly accomplished attitude and your assumptions that someone younger than you is a poor recording engineer. I do not agree to "knowing about overtones is critical to [...] music-making". Music is about feel. It's also about no limitations or rules. Anyways, I'm tired of arguing with you because you feel you know too much. This is a common attitude in the classical domaine. (I thought you'd like a little generalization)
  17. FifthCircle

    FifthCircle Well-Known Member

    wow... getting a little warm in here. I think it best not to make assumptions about all of the classical folks...

    As for the overtone series it was well defined in terms of musical intervals.. Be aware that it also corresponds to 1, 2, 3, 4, etc.. times the fundamental frequency.

    Look at the series based on 100 Hz because it is easy to calculate.

    100 Hz fundamental. 200 Hz 2nd overtone (a doubling is an octave). 300 Hz 3rd overtone (octave plus a 5th roughly), 400 Hz 4th overtone (2 octaves or 1 octave plus a 5th plus a 4th), etc...

  18. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    this is fun....

    This Forum is about making music both in the creative and the technical. In mastering, you can't have one without the other. So, let's keep away from the personal remarks since we don't really know each other and stick to positive posts.
  19. radioliver

    radioliver Guest

    Thanks Michael for that post...

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