Using a Piano to Create a Reverberation Effect

Serge Ossorguine


The technique described here provides the Sound Designer with an alternative means of creating a reverberation effect. This technique utilizes the phenomenon of sympathetic vibrations induced by sound waves traveling across the strings of a piano. This phenomenon can be demonstrated by depressing the sustain pedal of a piano and speaking loudly (or making any loud noise) into the strings of the piano. The strings will respond by vibrating at the frequencies of the source sound. The effect is an apparent reverberation of the source sound in a large concert hall. The reverberation time, depending on the amplitude of the source sound, can be up to four seconds.

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