Low buzzing noise in high intervals

March 25, 2018, 7:44 AM · When playing third or sixths in high shifts on the strings (A and E mostly), there seems to be a low buzzing undertone sometimes that comes with it and is very bothering. Is this phonmenon common?

Replies (5)

March 25, 2018, 9:38 AM · That buzz is real. It is a difference tone, aka Tartini-tone. It means that those high pitch thirds are in tune. But it is annoying, and composers and arrangers should avoid the high-pitched thirds for the violins. It is not noticed on the piano because the wave-form is percussive, and the piano thirds are not in tune. I don't hear difference tones on the sixths, maybe because my hearing is damaged.
Edited: March 25, 2018, 12:05 PM · Yes,the Tartini-tone. Congratulations, you are playing in tune! I want a lot of it because it's affirming when I play double stops.
March 25, 2018, 1:55 PM · when you hear it and it's bothering you, try tweaking your tuning very slightly. You have to be close to perfectly in tune to hear it at all, but if you absolutely nail the double stop, the tartini tone will usually be harmonious with the pitches you're playing, not clashing or buzzing.
March 25, 2018, 2:26 PM · I'm learning a lot on v.com lately. I think I may have produced a Tartini-tone or two. I play more sixths than thirds, and not a lot on higher positions. I think this may be even more noticeable on electric/acoustic violins.

would it happen more with a maj6 or min6 interval? I think when my hand heals I'll go looking for some Tartini-tones.

Edited: March 26, 2018, 11:20 AM · Thet are produced through a form of intermodulation distortion in the ear itself, in a microphone, a preamp or power amp, loudspaeker etc, but not in the air of the room you are in.

It is as if the two played notes were pretending to be overtones of the low note. In fact this how we seem to hear low notes in a 3 or 4 inch speaker that is physically incapable of radiating them into the room.

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