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Duration of Attack Transients of Nonpercussive Orchestral Instruments

The durations of the attack transients of various nonpercussive orchestral instruments have been measured statistically. The durations varied from one instrument to another, with the note played on the instrument, and with the particular player. The durations were not significantly dependent upon the dynamic marking of the note played or the duration of the tone sounded, or upon whether the instrument was played with vibrato or not. Least-squares parabolas were fitted to the values of the durations as a function of note number. The ratio of the root-mean-square deviation from the parabola to the average duration changes rather little from one instrument to another. The durations range from 0.014 sec to 0.085 sec and increase in the order: double reeds, clarinet, brass, strings, flute.

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JAES Volume 13 Issue 3 pp. 194-199; July 1965
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