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An Acoustical Investigation into the Effect of the Crook Profile on the Sound Produced by the Bassoon

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The effect of the crook on the sound produced by the bassoon has long been considered particularly significant. Bassoonists often claim that older Heckel crooks have superior playing characteristics and produce a more desirable tone than more modern crooks. In this paper, acoustic pulse reflectometry is used to investigate possible differences in internal bore profile between crooks manufactured in the first half of the 20th century and those manufactured in the second half. It is shown that, although all the measured crooks have approximately the same initial and final radii, earlier crooks (manufactured by Heckel) typically have a wider bore in the midsection than crooks made more recently (both by Heckel and other manufacturers). In an attempt to understand how these differences in crook profile affect the bassoon's acoustical properties, impedance measurements for four bassoon/crook combinations are presented and discussed.

To determine whether listeners can distinguish between sounds produced using different crooks, psychoacoustical tests have been performed. In the tests, listeners were asked to make judgments on the timbres of notes produced on a reference bassoon using a variety of crooks. Results from the tests are discussed with reference to the crook profile measurements.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2003

More about this publication?
  • Acta Acustica united with Acustica, published together with the European Acoustics Association (EAA), is an international, peer-reviewed journal on acoustics. It publishes original articles on all subjects in the field of acoustics, such as general linear acoustics, nonlinear acoustics, macrosonics, flow acoustics, atmospheric sound, underwater sound, ultrasonics, physical acoustics, structural acoustics, noise control, active control, environmental noise, building acoustics, room acoustics, acoustic materials, acoustic signal processing, computational and numerical acoustics, hearing, audiology and psychoacoustics, speech, musical acoustics, electroacoustics, auditory quality of systems. It reports on original scientific research in acoustics and on engineering applications. The journal considers scientific papers, technical and applied papers, book reviews, short communications, doctoral thesis abstracts, etc. In irregular intervals also special issues and review articles are published.
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