Amazing Grace: How Sweet the Sound of Synthesised Bagpipes

Alberta Academic Review

View Publication Info
Field Value
Title Amazing Grace: How Sweet the Sound of Synthesised Bagpipes
Creator Pfeil, Hannah
Hindle, Abram
Campbell, Hazel
Subject bagpipes, sound, synthesized, synthesised, supercollider, composed, synthesised bagpipes
synthesised bagpipes
Description A bagpipe is a type of wind instrument that contains a melody pipe, which has an enclosed reed called the chanter and other drone pipes. The chanter is the part of the bagpipe that supplies the note, and the air that the pipes are fed is provided by the bag, which is inflated by a blowpipe and driven by the player’s arm. The goal of this project was to create a bagpipe using a program called Supercollider. Supercollider is used for audio synthesis. While creating this artificial bagpipe (here on referred to as a ‘synth’), it was broken down into four components: the chanter, the base drone, the first tenor drone and the second tenor drone. The chanter has the frequency of the note, the base drone’s frequency will be half that of the chanter and the frequency of the tenor drone will be half that of the base drone. This is because of the length of the pipes in relation to each other. In order to create the synth, a sine oscillator was used, and then put through a resonance filter, and then a reverb filter. This was done in order to mimic the echo that sound has when it is forced through a tube, or enclosed space. All four pipes were added together to create the synth. In order to play a song, the synth was put into a pattern so Supercollider could receive an array of notes, which serve as the frequency of the chanter, and then play the song automatically. The notes for Amazing Grace were transcribed into midi-notes and beat durations and these arrays were fed into the pattern to create the song. The synthetic version of Amazing Grace, in terms of frequency and loudness, was then graphed and compared to the graph of a recording of Amazing Grace played on a real bagpipe. There are differences between the two sound files, the most significant being that the real bagpipe has much more variation in terms of loudness. The synthesized bagpipe had a more gradual and subdued noise level, where the natural bagpipe was much more randomized. Taking the comparisons into consideration, Supercollider can be used to create an approximation of a bagpipe, but under scrutiny, the artificial version currently falls short.
Publisher Alberta Academic Review Ltd
Date 2019-09-18
Type info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Special Conference Issue (Non-peer review)
Format application/pdf
Source Alberta Academic Review; Vol 2 No 2 (2019): WISEST special edition; 59-60
Language eng
Rights Copyright (c) 2019 Hannah Pfeil, Abram Hindle, Hazel Campbell

Contact Us

The PKP Index is an initiative of the Public Knowledge Project.

For PKP Publishing Services please use the PKP|PS contact form.

For support with PKP software we encourage users to consult our wiki for documentation and search our support forums.

For any other correspondence feel free to contact us using the PKP contact form.

Find Us


Copyright © 2015-2018 Simon Fraser University Library