Circularity in Judgments of Relative Pitch. Authors: Shepard, Roger N. Publication: The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, vol. 36, issue 12, p. The Shepard illusion, in which the presentation of a cyclically repetitive sequence of complex tones composed of partials separated by octave intervals (Shepard. Circularity in relative pitch judgments for inharmonic complex tones: The Shepard demonstration revisited, again. EDWARD M. BURNS. Department ofAudiology.

Author: Akilmaran Gunos
Country: Niger
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Relationship
Published (Last): 1 May 2010
Pages: 350
PDF File Size: 1.14 Mb
ePub File Size: 7.36 Mb
ISBN: 277-6-19200-538-7
Downloads: 51285
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Fausho

By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. The paradox of pitch circularity. Views Read Edit View history. Then for the tone another semitone lower, the amplitudes of the odd harmonics are reduced further, so raising the perceived height of this tone to a greater extent. Such tones are well defined in terms of pitch class, but poorly defined in terms of height.

Unknown to the authors, Oscar Reutesvald had also created an impossible staircase in the s. The finding that circular scales can be obtained from full harmonic series leads to the intriguing possibility that this algorithm could be used to transform banks of natural instrument tones so that they would also exhibit pitch circularity 6.

Retrieved from ” https: For the tone with the highest fundamental, the odd and even harmonics are equal in amplitude. Here is an eternally descending scale based on this principle, with the amplitudes of the odd-numbered harmonics reduced by 3.

Subjects judged for each pair whether it ascended or descended in pitch. If you take a harmonic complex tone and gradually reduce the amplitudes of the odd-numbered harmonics 1, 3, 5, etc.

Later, I reasoned that it should be possible to create circular scales from sequences of single tones, with each tone comprising a full harmonic series.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. To accommodate both the linear and circular dimensions, music theorists have suggested that pitch should be represented as a helix having one complete turn per judgmengs, so that tones that are separated by octaves are also close on this representation, as shown below.


William Brent, then a graduate student at UCSD, has achieved considerable success using bassoon samples, and also some success with oboe, relattive, and violin samples, and has shown that the effect is not destroyed by vibrato. I further reasoned that we should be able pitdh produce pitch circularities on this principle.

This development has led to the intriguing possibility that, using this new algorithm, one might transform banks of natural instrument samples so as to produce tones that sound like those of natural instruments but still have cirrcularity property of circularity.

Shepard 2 reasoned that by creating banks of tones whose note names pitch classes are clearly defined but whose perceived heights are ambiguous, the helix could be collapsed into a circle, so enabling the creation of scales that ascend or descend endlessly in pitch. A different algorithm that creates ambiguities of pitch height by manipulating the relative amplitudes of the odd and even harmonics, was iin by Diana Deutsch and colleagues. Counterclockwise movement creates the impression of an eternally descending scale.

Researchers have demonstrated that by creating banks of tones whose note names are clearly defined perceptually but whose perceived heights are ambiguous, one can create scales that appear to ascend or descend endlessly in pitch. Risset 3 has created intriguing variants using gliding tones that appear to ascend or descend continuously in pitch. We begin with a bank of twelve harmonic complex pitcu, whose fundamental frequencies range over an octave in semitone steps.

Pitch circularity

When such tones are played traversing the pitch class circle in clockwise direction, one obtains the impression of an eternally ascending scale— C is heard as higher than C; D as higher than C ; D as higher than D.

Here is an excerpt from the experiment, and you will probably find that your judgments of each pair correspond to the closest distance between the tones along the circle.


However pitch also varies in a circular fashion, known as pitch class: He achieved this ambiguity by creating banks of complex tones, with each tone consisting only of components that were separated by octaves, and whose amplitudes were scaled by a fixed bell-shaped spectral envelope. We created a bank of twelve tones, and from this bank we paired each tone sequentially with every other tone e.

Diana Deutsch – Pitch Circularity

As we ascend this scale in semitone steps, we repeatedly traverse the pitch class circle in clockwise direction, so that we play C, CD, and so on all around the circle, until we reach A, AB – and then we proceed to C, CD again, and so on. This development opens up new avenues for music composition and performance.

This page was last edited on 16 Aprilat Together with my colleagues, I carried out an experiment to determine whether such tones are indeed heard as circular, when all intervals are considered 5.

Then for the tone a semitone lower, the amplitudes of the odd harmonics are reduced relative to the even ones, so raising the perceived height of this tone. The possibility of creating circular banks of tones derived from natural instruments expands the scope of musical materials available to composers and performers.

Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. Since each stair that is one step clockwise from its neighbor is also one step downward, the staircase appears to be eternally descending.

At some point, listeners realize that they are hearing the note an octave higher — but this perceptual circylarity had occurred without the sounds traversing the semitone scale, but remaining on note A. The pitch class circle. See the review by Deutsch 4 for details.