Shapes of the Signature Modes

George Stoppani with Sam Zygmuntowicz

March 9, 2009

Violin with multiple overlaid Modal lines

Violin with multiple
overlaid Modal lines

While innumerable factors effect the vibration patterns of any violin, including arching, thickness and varnish, it is the behaviour of the resulting vibration patterns, known as MODES, which radiate the sound that we finally hear. To change the modes is to change the sound.

In real playing, any note has a large number of harmonic frequencies, and the violin will vibrate in a complex combination of modes, almost impossible to untangle.

Titian Stradivari G string, Bowed; showing the fundamental tone and many harmonics

Modal analysis can separate out single modes for clear study.

The mode animations shown in this presentation are from the Jackson Strad, 1714, except as noted.