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Old 07-31-2021, 11:09 AM   #1
Lynx_TWO
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Default Looking for real data on fundamental frequencies of instruments

Hello fellow Reapereze!

OK, so I'm bored today and am looking for a new project to work my thinking meat. I have an idea for an Excel tool that would let the user choose what instruments are in a mix, and it would calculate and suggest a starting point for an upper and lower shelf EQ for each instrument being used, to avoid potential frequency masking BUT based only on the other instruments instead of just being blunt settings. If I can get that done then I'd further build something into the tool that would account for less frequency masking depending on where instruments are panned in the stereo field.

The problem I'm running into is that most charts out there I'm finding are really useless in that they describe an instrument in different ranges such as "honk" "sizzle" "woody" etc which is utterly useless, probably in general, and certainly for what I'm working on. Does anyone out there have some solid data on the fundamental frequency ranges of various instruments sans harmonics?

Thanks in advance!

EDIT: I did find this info: http://www.orchestralibrary.com/reftables/rang.html

Since I already built an excel chart that calculates frequencies based on notes, that might help

-Dan

Last edited by Lynx_TWO; 07-31-2021 at 11:16 AM.
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Old 07-31-2021, 11:37 AM   #2
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Quote:
The problem I'm running into is that most charts out there I'm finding are really useless in that they describe an instrument in different ranges such as "honk" "sizzle" "woody" etc which is utterly useless, probably in general, and certainly for what I'm working on. Does anyone out there have some solid data on the fundamental frequency ranges of various instruments sans harmonics?
Hi Dan,

I suppose if you were acquainted with the exact relationship those words have to the instruments they would be useful, but I'm not sure I would make much meaningful sense of those words either.

Here is a bunch of charts, I'm not sure how much use they are, I didn't examine them up close.

https://www.google.com/search?q=freq...Q2byTRKio2AB6M

I like your idea with the spreadsheet, it would be interesting to see how it turns out. Unfortunately I don't have Excel.
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Old 07-31-2021, 03:17 PM   #3
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Sounds really interesting!

I guess for drums and vocals, it's probably too difficult to tell exact ranges, but for guitars and keyboard-based instruments (and orchestral instruments) it shoudn't be too difficult, the only potential problem being taking things like different tunings and 5 string basses into account.

You should just be able to look up the lowest/highest notes of instrments and convert them to frequencies. For instance, I know the A string of a guitar is 440Hz, so the lowest note (the open E) should be a bit above the A an octave below that, so a bit more than 220Hz. And at least for the guitar I'm holding at the moment, the highest note is an Ab, one note below 3 octaves above 440Hz, so just below 3520Hz.
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Old 07-31-2021, 03:54 PM   #4
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These are the instruments I've been able to find so far:

https://1drv.ms/x/s!Aoz5nDzevbl1l7VV...gngcg?e=kVdsq6

EDIT: If you'll notice, for tunings I already have that built into the calculator so you can choose your tuning and everything dynamically changes

Hell, I've even got it so you can put in the temperature, on the "Note to Frequency Chart" sheet, and the speed of sound and tuning changes based on that!

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Old 07-31-2021, 09:49 PM   #5
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Very interesting Dan, certainly a lot of work. At this point I'm not sure how it all works, but I'm going to keep tabs on this if I can.
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Old 08-01-2021, 04:15 PM   #6
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Here's an EQ cheat sheet that I have found useful...

https://abletunes.com/blog/eq-cheat-sheet/
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Old 08-03-2021, 09:44 PM   #7
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So far I've got it set up so the user can select the Group and then Instrument in that group, in addition, they can override the lowest and highest notes played by that instrument in the song.



Currently, there's also a rudimentary visual showing you the overlapping sections. You can choose the Sample Rate and FFT Blocksize to determine the resolution of the visual. And it will update as instruments are selected, notes changed, etc.



The workbook will allow up to 100 instruments picked so far more than anyone should ever need.

The next step will be to figure out how to calculate the middle frequency and suggested Q of each non-overlapping area, in addition to the suggested Shelf EQ. I'm kind of a visual guy so I had to map out what the problem looked like before moving forward, but just this alone could help people visually see the potential issues... And then of course visual as the last step.
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Old 08-06-2021, 10:24 AM   #8
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Default made some progress

OK, so I've made some progress, I am able to generate a list of where instruments Overlap and Generate identifiers to show which ones they are, and where the overlaps start and end. I also show the middle frequency where the overlaps happen which could potentially be useful to calculate Q at a 1.5dB and 3dB boost, but that's not the shelf filter points of course...





Any ideas of how to manipulate this data further to possibly find potentially useful shelf filter points? Imma take a couple of days and think about it since it's admittedly difficult for me to keep all this stuff in my head lol

Link above post should still work if anyone wants to take a look. It's kind of a mess right now since I had to visualize everything and borrowed a bit from a project I'd done earlier.
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Old 08-06-2021, 10:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynx_TWO View Post
OK, so I've made some progress, I am able to generate a list of where instruments Overlap and Generate identifiers to show which ones they are, and where the overlaps start and end. I also show the middle frequency where the overlaps happen which could potentially be useful to calculate Q at a 1.5dB and 3dB boost, but that's not the shelf filter points of course...





Any ideas of how to manipulate this data further to possibly find potentially useful shelf filter points? Imma take a couple of days and think about it since it's admittedly difficult for me to keep all this stuff in my head lol

Link above post should still work if anyone wants to take a look. It's kind of a mess right now since I had to visualize everything and borrowed a bit from a project I'd done earlier.
You know what? This would make an awesome script to help with mixing!
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Old 08-07-2021, 04:04 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pink Wool View Post
You know what? This would make an awesome script to help with mixing!
It could be helpful for sure, regardless this is a fun (even if frustrating at times haha) exercise. The next step I suspect is to calculate, (until I figure out how to visualize and calculate for shelf filters) how to calculate Q for, say, a 96dB/octave bell for the overlapping areas, and then make sure the frequencies round to the nearest note as I can imagine that setting a frequency of an EQ in the center of the frequencies which make up fundamental note could sound really weird!

Unfortunately, I don't know enough to turn this eventually into a script, but might be able to learn. Of course, if anyone else takes a stab at it I'm perfectly happy with collaboration

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Old 08-07-2021, 09:41 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynx_TWO View Post
It could be helpful for sure, regardless this is a fun (even if frustrating at times haha) exercise. The next step I suspect is to calculate, (until I figure out how to visualize and calculate for shelf filters) how to calculate Q for, say, a 96dB/octave bell for the overlapping areas, and then make sure the frequencies round to the nearest note as I can imagine that setting a frequency of an EQ in the center of the frequencies which make up fundamental note could sound really weird!
Hi Dan, I know you've put a lot of thought into this, but at this point I'm totally lost in all this. At first I thought you were going to show the ranges of the instruments and how they cam interact, but I can see it's much more then that. I'm not sure how you can calculate real world EQs and/or the Q of these frequencies in a meaningful way. But then it's easy to lose me.
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Old 08-11-2021, 01:24 PM   #12
Lynx_TWO
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Originally Posted by Tod View Post
Hi Dan, I know you've put a lot of thought into this, but at this point I'm totally lost in all this. At first I thought you were going to show the ranges of the instruments and how they cam interact, but I can see it's much more then that. I'm not sure how you can calculate real world EQs and/or the Q of these frequencies in a meaningful way. But then it's easy to lose me.
Well, the meaningful part is the hardest part for sure... I was able to figure out how to calculate Q based on the start/end of the overlapping frequencies, and also how to calculate octaves if we assume the start and end frequency of each overlapping ear is the -3dB point of where we want to diminish, and then Q based off those octaves.

Personally, I think that might be a flawed approach as testing it results in too many frequencies being impacted, so the calculated Q based on start and end overlap is more accurate.

But yea, now I have to figure out how to take all of this and make it spit out something meaningful to the end user!

I probably but off more than I can chew this time.

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Last edited by Lynx_TWO; 08-15-2021 at 09:56 AM.
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