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Poll

Which recording sounds best?

01.mp3
1 (9.1%)
02.mp3
1 (9.1%)
03.mp3
0 (0%)
04.mp3
2 (18.2%)
05.mp3
0 (0%)
06.mp3
0 (0%)
07.mp3
2 (18.2%)
08.mp3
2 (18.2%)
09.mp3
3 (27.3%)
10.mp3
0 (0%)
Can't decide
0 (0%)
Can't tell the difference
0 (0%)

Total Members Voted: 6

Voting closed: February 24, 2018, 10:59:06 PM

Temperament Experiment (Read 2495 times)

Offline klavieronin

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Temperament Experiment
« on: February 10, 2018, 10:59:06 PM »
There has been a bit of talk about different tuning systems on this forum lately and so I thought it would be fun to conduct a little experiment. Below are 10 different recordings of the opening of Mozart's sonata in F major k.332. The performance is exactly the same (midi recorded data) but the tuning is different for each one.

If you would like to participate, I suggest listening to each recording in a random order on at least three separate days before voting.

The poll will run for 14 days and I will reveal which recording uses which temperament once it is over. Please vote in the poll rather than posting your choice below. I don't want people's choice to be influence by what others are saying.

Recordings 1-4

Offline klavieronin

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #1 on: February 10, 2018, 11:00:20 PM »
Recordings 5-8

Offline klavieronin

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #2 on: February 10, 2018, 11:01:06 PM »
Recordings 9-10

Offline georgey

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #3 on: February 10, 2018, 11:24:15 PM »
This might be a dumb question:  Would it be possible to also include 10 more samples: A recording of each of these 10 in the key of F# Major?  There are only diatonic notes here except 1 note.

For example:  My recording of the Bach WTC 1 and 2 by Gustav Leonhardt (done in an unknown well tempered tuning, the liner notes do not say the tuning) sounds pretty bad in certain keys such as B Major.  

Example: recording 11 would be same as recording 1 except in key F# major.  

I will participate even if this is not possible.  The additional key of F# major would give further clues to me to pick out the equal temperament or closest to equal temperament tuning.

Offline georgey

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #4 on: February 10, 2018, 11:42:12 PM »
Never mind.  I listened to these 2 times each and voted.  

Offline klavieronin

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #5 on: February 11, 2018, 12:02:25 AM »
This might be a dumb question:  Would it be possible to also include 10 more samples: A recording of each of these 10 in the key of F# Major?  There are only diatonic notes here except 1 note.

For example:  My recording of the Bach WTC 1 and 2 by Gustav Leonhardt (done in an unknown well tempered tuning, the liner notes do not say the tuning) sounds pretty bad in certain keys such as B Major.  

Example: recording 11 would be same as recording 1 except in key F# major.  

I will participate even if this is not possible.  The additional key of F# major would give further clues to me to pick out the equal temperament or closest to equal temperament tuning.

You make a good point but I think that is a slightly different experiment to the one I'm running. What prompted this was a comment in another thread that music from the classical period was bland when in equal temperament but not when in Well temperament. What I'm interested in is not whether people can tell which tuning is which but whether or not there is a consensus around which tuning sounds best when you don't know what the tuning is.

If people are interested I might run the experiment again with a more modern chromatic or atonal piece and see if the results are any different.

Offline georgey

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #6 on: February 11, 2018, 12:11:39 AM »
You make a good point but I think that is a slightly different experiment to the one I'm running. What prompted this was a comment in another thread that music from the classical period was bland when in equal temperament but not when in Well temperament. What I'm interested in is not whether people can tell which tuning is which but whether or not there is a consensus around which tuning sounds best when you don't know what the tuning is.

If people are interested I might run the experiment again with a more modern chromatic or atonal piece and see if the results are any different.

I think it's a good experiment but some may say that you can't appreciate the tuning method unless it is played on an actual acoustic instrument (as opposed to electronic).  They may have a point.

Offline klavieronin

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #7 on: February 11, 2018, 12:17:15 AM »
I think it's a good experiment but some may say that you can't appreciate the tuning method unless it is played on an actual acoustic instrument (as opposed to electronic).  They may have a point.

Yes, but then you have the problem of producing a consistent performance each time. If I played on an acoustic piano each recording is bound to have a different performance and some will no doubt be better than others, which I suspect would affect people's choice more than the tuning.

Also, if you don't mind georgey, can edit your previous post so people don't see what you've picked, and instead select in the poll at the top of the page. I don't want anybody's choice to be influenced by what other people are saying. Thanks.

Offline georgey

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #8 on: February 11, 2018, 12:19:23 AM »
Yes, but then you have the problem of producing a consistent performance each time. If I played on an acoustic piano each recording is bound to have a different performance and some will no doubt be better than others, which I suspect would affect people's choice more than the tuning.

Also, if you don't mind georgey, can edit your previous post so people don't see what you've picked, and instead select in the poll at the top of the page. I don't want anybody's choice to be influenced by what other people are saying. Thanks.

Good point!  (Also I will edit my post now).

Offline alexjr1543

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #9 on: February 18, 2018, 10:17:13 AM »
I definitely think this is an interesting experiment and would certainly like to see the results. I personally think that [CENSORED].

Offline klavieronin

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #10 on: February 24, 2018, 11:03:36 PM »
Well, it looks like there wasn't quite enough interest to get a decent sample size so I don't know what conclusions we can draw from this but for those who voted here are the tunings;

01 Equal
02 Flat
03 Just intonation
04 Kirnberger III
05 Meantone (1_3 comma)
06 Meantone (1_4 comma)
07 Pythagore
08 Well
09 Werckmiester III
10 Zarlino

The official winner was Werkmiester III with 3 votes but it's hardly a conclusive win. I'll admit that the experiment could have been conducted a little more accurately (making sure the most appropriate keys were used for the various temperaments etc.) but I didn't know how much interest there would be so I just sort of threw it all together in a hour or so. Any way, thanks to those of you who voted. I don't think I'll do another one.

Offline ca88313

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«Reply #11 on: February 24, 2018, 11:06:53 PM »
.

Offline georgey

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #12 on: February 25, 2018, 12:14:56 AM »

01 Equal
02 Flat
03 Just intonation
04 Kirnberger III
05 Meantone (1_3 comma)
06 Meantone (1_4 comma)
07 Pythagore
08 Well
09 Werckmiester III
10 Zarlino


I can google an explanation for each of these tuning methods except "02 Flat".  Do you have a further description of this?  Thanks.

Offline ca88313

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«Reply #13 on: February 25, 2018, 12:26:15 AM »
.

Offline klavieronin

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #14 on: February 25, 2018, 12:42:24 AM »
Flat temperament is an equal temperament with harmonic stretching.

Zarlino: Sometimes called the “physicians scale”, based on harmonic thirds (ratio 5/4) and fifths (ratio 3/2)

I'm afraid that's all the info I have.

Offline ca88313

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«Reply #15 on: February 25, 2018, 12:46:24 AM »
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Offline georgey

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #16 on: February 25, 2018, 12:48:20 AM »
Flat temperament is an equal temperament with harmonic stretching.

Zarlino: Sometimes called the “physicians scale”, based on harmonic thirds (ratio 5/4) and fifths (ratio 3/2)

I'm afraid that's all the info I have.

Thanks!  I picked #2 and was trying to pick the equal temperament.  I listened to each twice and graded them from 0 to 10 with 10 being "equal temperament".  I gave "01" a score of 9, "02" a score of 9+ and all the rest ranged from 3 to 8.  


Offline georgey

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #17 on: February 25, 2018, 12:50:22 AM »
Which recording/temperament did you vote for, klavieronin and georgey?

Don't go by me.  I have a "tin ear".   ;)

Offline ca88313

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«Reply #18 on: February 25, 2018, 01:01:17 AM »
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Offline georgey

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #19 on: February 25, 2018, 01:13:59 AM »
I think Bach/Lehman 1722 should have been tested. That is my favourite tuning system.

Everyone's opinion counts due to the highly subjective nature of music. ;)

This I agree with 100%!   :)

Offline klavieronin

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #20 on: February 25, 2018, 01:19:21 AM »
Which recording/temperament did you vote for, klavieronin and georgey?

Werckmiester III

I think Bach/Lehman 1722 should have been tested.

Unfortunately I didn't have a preset for that in the software I used so it would have meant manually tuning it which would have been too much work for me.

Offline ca88313

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«Reply #21 on: February 25, 2018, 01:35:04 AM »
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Offline klavieronin

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #22 on: February 25, 2018, 02:15:42 AM »
What is the name of the software you were using for this experiment, if you do not mind me asking?

Pianoteq; https://www.pianoteq.com/

Offline latrobe

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Re: Temperament Experiment
«Reply #23 on: January 27, 2019, 07:00:32 PM »
This was an interesting experiment and certain proof that Equal Temperament is not the only valid possibility for piano tuning.

"Well temperament" Kellner, comes through as one of the candidates and it's less key dependent than others.

I was surprised that 6 received no votes as it was audibly sweet.

This however is a simple piece of music. The interaction between player and what they hear is capable of creating magic. It's not just about sweetness but also about beats.

Here's some Chopin on a Grotrian in Kellner and the singing thirds are in places magical.


Best wishes

David P
David Pinnegar BSc ARCS
Promoting keyboard heritage http://www.organmatters.co.uk and performers in Unequal Temperament http://www.hammerwood.mistral.co.uk/concerts.htm