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Distinguished SOTW Member
selmer 26 nino, 22 curved sop, super alto, King Super 20 and Martin tenors, Stowasser tartogatos
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No it makes no sense at all. There are quite clear differences in the amount of air needed to play a given instrument at a given volume, and generally it varies most due to bore size. Oboe uses notoriously little air, and oboe players sometimes have to actually expel breath and then breathe again to keep playing when the carbon dioxide content builds up too much in their lungs. Bassoon uses much less air than sax for the same note.

Toby
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
selmer 26 nino, 22 curved sop, super alto, King Super 20 and Martin tenors, Stowasser tartogatos
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3,412 Posts
I don't find that sop and bari use the same amount of air, either.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
selmer 26 nino, 22 curved sop, super alto, King Super 20 and Martin tenors, Stowasser tartogatos
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3,412 Posts
I believe the formula for this is speed=Pressure/resistance

The smaller the 'pipe' the greater the resistance, thus you must increase the pressure to get the same airspeed.

It's actually more complicated, but this is the basic model.
Ohm's law. It gets more complicated because losses are different in different pipes and the output in watts (actually milliwatts) is different for different instruments.

Toby
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member
selmer 26 nino, 22 curved sop, super alto, King Super 20 and Martin tenors, Stowasser tartogatos
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3,412 Posts
According to Fletcher and Rossing, for a reed woodwind the blowing pressure typically ranges from 3 to 5 kPa, and the player is able to sustain the note at moderate loudness for about 30 seconds, corresponding to a volume flow of about 100 ml/s. This implies a power input of 0.3 to 0.5 W and an acoustic efficiency of less than 1%....

Things are not quite so simple, however, as blowing pressures (and hence volume flow) are not static, but vary both by dynamic and frequency. For instance, piano playing of both clarinet and alto sax across the range are just about 2 kPa, whereas for forte playing the clarinet ranges from 4-5 kPa whereas the alto sax ranges from 3-8 kPa. Forte for the oboe reaches 12 kPa in the upper octave. Even at that high pressure IIRC from my oboe playing days, flow rate of the oboe is much less than the larger bored instruments.
 
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