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In partial fulfillment of the requirements

for the Degree of Bachelor of Engineering



Submitted by:

Teo Han Hong Esther


In this vibration study of violins, two violins- an old Italian Guarneri violin and a

modern Cristofori violin- have been used for comparison.

3D models of the violins were reconstructed, and by using a fixed set of material

properties, modal frequencies of the violins were extracted using finite element

simulation software Abaqus. The results were compared and the differences in

mode shapes and frequencies were attributed to geometry, which is the only

variable in this study. The Guarneri generally has lower frequencies for matched

mode shapes, which is linked to lower volume or mass. Resonant frequencies of

the strings were also obtained from drawn string models. String frequencies for

the two models matched well but with small differences, which resulted from

differences in angle of inclination and length.

Following that, simple geometric comparison was also carried out. It is found that

the Guarneri violin has a smaller body material volume (without air) but larger air

cavity than the Cristofori violin.


The author wishes to express gratitude and sincere appreciation of the guidance

and assistance given by the supervisors of this project- Associate Professor Lee

Heow Pueh and Associate Professor Lim Siak Piang.

Also extending gratitude to the individuals Dr Tan Long Bin, Mr Tse Kwong

Ming, Ms Kyrin Leong- for their assistance and knowledge in the software used

in this study.

Finally, expressing appreciation to the staff and technicians of the Dynamics

Laboratory (E1-02-03).









1.1 The Violin Structure 1

1.2 Vibration and Tone Quality 3


2.1 Paper 1 4

2.2 Paper 2 6

2.3 Paper 3 7

2.4 Material and Vibrations 7

2.5 Air and Vibrations 8


3.1 Mimics - 3D-Reconstruction 8

3.2 Altair HyperMesh - 3D-Meshing 11

3.3 Abaqus FEA Modal Analysis 12

3.3.1 Material Properties 12

3.3.2 Violin Strings Properties 14

3.3.3 Simulations 16

3.4 Geometric Comparison 16


4.1 Part 1 - Modal Analysis 17

4.1.1 Case 1 vs Case 2 17

4.1.2 Case 3 vs Case 4 21

4.2 Part 2 - Geometric Differences 24

4.2.1 Volumetric Differences 24

4.2.2 String Inclination Differences 25

4.2.3 Dimensional Differences 26






Figure 1: Exploded View of Violin

Figure 2: Mode Shapes of Top and Back Plates - Paper 1

Figure 3: Mode Shapes of Top Plate using Samcef Paper 1

Figure 4: Mimics - Cristofori Violin with Noise

Figure 5: Mimics - Cristofori Violin Cleaned Up and Segmented

Figure 6: Mimics - Guarneri Violin with Noise

Figure 7: Mimics - Guaneri Violin Cleaned Up and Segmented

Figure 8: HyperMesh - Cristofori Violin meshed

Figure 9: HyperMesh - Guarneri Violin meshed

Figure 10: Quarter-Cut Wood

Figure 11: Material Orientation

Figure 12: Abaqus - Cristofori Violin with Strings Drawn

Figure 13: Guarneri G String - 3rd Harmonics

Figure 14: String Inclination Angles for Guarneri (Top) and Cristofori (Bottom)

Figure 15: Body Comparison of Guarneri (Pink) and Cristofori (Yellow)

Figure 16: Comparison of Spruce Top Plates (Dark Blue- Cristofori; Light Green-



Table 1: Material Properties

Table 2: String Properties

Table 3: Comparison of Violin Models (no string) Resonant Frequencies

Table 4: Comparison of Violin Strings Resonant Frequencies (Hz)

Table 5: Volumetric (mm3) Differences

Table 6: Frequencies (Hz) of Violin Musical Notes


E Youngs Modulus (GPa)

G Shear Modulus (GPa)

v Poissons Ratio

Density (kg/m3)


Useful vibrations occur in everyday life and one exceptional aspect comes in

terms of sound or music. Violin is a classical string instrument whose tone quality

has been of great interest and importance to professionals and enthusiasts alike.

1.1 The Violin Structure

Figure 1: Exploded View of Violin (Johannsson, n.d.)

Violin is a dynamic and complex vibrating system on the whole. It may be viewed

as consisting of two main parts, the strings and the body, which are then further

divided into various components as seen in Figure 1.

Violin is played by the action of bowing, which sets the strings into small-

amplitude vibrations. The low-energy vibrations from the strings are transmitted

through the bridge (on which the strings subject a force due to the tuning tension)

onto the top plate. The vibrations are further transmitted to the rest of the body via

the ribs and soundpost which connects the top plate to the back plate (Jansson,

2002). The violin tone is thus produced.

Hence the violin body, also regarded as an acoustic amplifier, is the main point of

concern when studying violin vibrations. However, it should not be neglected that

the strings also play a part in holding and constraining the violin parts together by

its tension, and it is also the essential component in providing the excitation

frequency in note producing.

1.2 Vibration and Tone Quality

As illustrated above, due to the vibrational transmission path, the quality of violin

tones is intricately associated with the violin shell, but especially the top plate

(Bissinger et al., 2007). However, tonal quality itself is a very subjective property.

Apart from the effects of the vibrational and acoustic properties of the violin

body, quality of tones can also be greatly affected by the violinist and definitely

dependent on how the audience perceives it. This is the reason for the long lasting

scientific investigations which have been conducted on the violin, since two

centuries ago.

Old Italian violins created by masters such as Antonio Stradivari and Giuseppe

Guarneri del Gesu are often subjects of interest, as they are deemed to be capable

of producing sounds of incomparable projection and expression despite modern

violins built on better technology of today (Stoel et al., 2008). However, as

mentioned earlier, quality being a holistic and subjective property, there are some

who do believe that modern violins have in fact been able to excel and be

comparable to their Italian counterparts. Nonetheless, many still attempt to

quantify the secret behind the quality of old Italian violins and for the past two

decades, there have been especially much interest due to modern technology

allowing comprehensive investigation of various parameters contributing to the

violins acoustical and mechanical properties.

This study will, by putting aside the dynamic and subjective contributive factors

to quality, present an objective comparison of geometry and modal analysis

between an Italian violin and a modern violin. The Italian violin under study is a

Guarneri violin which could be dated back to 17th to 18th century and the modern

violin is a Cristofori Model C2: Conservatoire violin.


2.1 Paper 1 (Pascual et al., 2002)

It is mentioned in this paper that the geometric parameters of the body that affect

its vibrational characteristics include arching, thickness, size and shape. By using

hologram interferometrytes, vibrational modes of the top and back plates of a

violin have been found and it was verified that these nodal patterns corresponded

well with those of famous violins.

Figure 2: Mode Shapes of Top and Back Plates - Paper 1

The authors also employed the Tap-tone method whereby a microphone is

utilized to capture the vibration generated by the plate upon tapping at a certain

spot and the signal is transmitted to a frequency analyzer. The frequencies

obtained through this method were also similar to those obtained from the


Further, using a finite element (FE) software Samcef, the modes for a top plate

modeled after a Stradivarius violin were found.

Figure 3: Mode Shapes of Top Plate using Samcef Paper 1

2.2 Paper 2 (Chargin et al., 1989)

The violin plates were modeled with the FE graphics pre/postprocessor language

Patran and then the natural frequencies extracted using FE analysis program

MSC/Nastran. By varying dimensions and material properties, they concluded

that natural frequencies increased upon thicker plates. An FE model of the whole

violin was also built, with triangular and quadrilateral elements based on

geometry. Strings were modeled as beam elements. While most parts of the violin

were built to a Stradivari violins geometry, some components like the neck, tail-

piece were modeled after the authors personal violin. The whole-violin FE model

used in this paper is thus not a whole-Stradivari violin.

It has been shown that most violins, with the exception of very poorly crafted

ones, share similar ordering and shape of vibration patterns, especially in the

lower frequencies. Any discrepancies were attributed to the discrepancies in

actual geometry and material properties between the model and the real violin. In

addition, the absence of air elements which may couple with the violin structure

was another possible source of discrepancies. The fluid-structural coupling effects

were neglected in the FE model, but in most experimental setting to verify

numerical results, the air is present.

2.3 Paper 3 (Frohlich et al., 2009)

The researchers from Smithsonian Institution and Boston University had come

together for a pilot study into the investigation of the engineering features of

seven Stradivari violins. Making use of the technology in the Mimics Innovation

Suite, a software developed by The Materialise Group from Leuven, Belgium.

Using the Mimics and 3-matic features from the suite, the team obtained very

accurate geometric dimensions as well as thickness distribution of the violin.

Mimics made it possible for 3D models of violins to be reconstructed based on

computed tomography (CT) scan images in a non-destructive manner.

2.4 Material and Vibrations

The material properties of wood are important as parameters like density, stiffness

and internal damping affect vibrational characteristics (Pascual et al., 2002). In

addition, the anisotropy of wood results in stiffness along grain being much

greater than across. Hence the type of cut used for violin plate woods also affects

vibrational and acoustical properties.

Furthermore, a piece of wood can have varying densities: early growth wood

which is responsible for transportation of water is less dense than late growth

wood which is more dense in order to provide structural support. While it is found

that the median density of old violins showed no significant difference when

compared to new violins, classical violins were showed to have much lower

density differentials than modern violins (Stoel et al., 2008). This difference could

be a crucial factor to the quality of sound production.

2.5 Air and Vibrations

The surrounding air as well as the air cavity in the instrument body plays an

important role in the complex vibrating systems of string instruments. The string,

on its own, produces only a small amount of energy, which is transmitted

throughout the entire violin body not just by the effect of the various wooden

parts but also influenced by the air cavity (Ezcurra et al., 2004). The fluid-

structural interaction cannot be neglected as resonant frequencies are affected,

although modal shapes remain similar (Isaksson et al., 1994).


3D models of the Guarneri and Cristofori violins were reconstructed and

subjected to modal analysis, of which the results are to be compared.

3.1 Mimics - 3D-Reconstruction

CT scanned images of the two violins are firstly imported into Mimics, a 3D-

modeling and imaging software that allows 3D models to be reconstructed from

the CT images. As concluded in the third research paper mentioned above, Mimics

allows very accurate model of the violins to be constructed, nearly replicas. This

is unlike many past studies which made use of geometric data to build the violin

models from scratch in modeling softwares.

Figure 4: Mimics - Cristofori Violin with Noise

Figure 5: Mimics - Cristofori Violin Cleaned Up and Segmented

Figure 6: Mimics - Guarneri Violin with Noise

Figure 7: Mimics - Guaneri Violin Cleaned Up and Segmented

After importing the CT images into Mimics, metallic reflections which show up as

noise are erased and cleaned up. Following this, a process called segmentation is

carried out. The whole-body violin model created from the CT images is

segmented into the various violin components. This process of segmentation is a

slow and intricate one, as manual editing is made on each of the numerous CT

image. The different coloured components as shown in Figure 5 indicate that the

model has been segmented.

3.2 Altair HyperMesh - 3D-Meshing

The 3D models completed in Mimics are exported (as 2D triangular shell

elements) into HyperMesh for further processing. HyperMesh is an FE pre-

processor software developed by Altair Engineering, part of their Hyperworks

series. In HyperMesh, the models are edited and refined to obtain better quality

elements in order to obtain the best results in our modal analysis later. Upon

editing, the shell elements are then re-meshed and exported as 3D models with

tetrahedral elements.

Figure 8: HyperMesh - Cristofori Violin meshed

Figure 9: HyperMesh - Guarneri Violin meshed

3.3 Abaqus FEA Modal Analysis

Abaqus by Simulia, Dassault Systemes, is the FE analysis software used to run the

various simulations in this study. 3D models with tetrahedral elements (Appendix-

A) from HyperMesh are imported into Abaqus, where various conditions and

properties are input and assigned to the models before simulations are run.

3.3.1 Material Properties

As mentioned before, the material properties of violin wood affects

vibrations. However wood properties vary from violin to violin, dependant

on the wood they are cut from and also the type of cut performed to obtain

the wood. Taking the Guarneri violin apart to examine its properties is

impossible as limited by the extreme value old Italian violins hold.

Therefore, it is decided that a fixed set of material properties in input for

the two violins models for the geometric comparison sake of this study.

The maple and spruce properties were referenced from a paper while the

ebony and steel properties were taken from material properties lists.

Figure 10: Quarter-Cut Wood

Table 1: Material Properties

E1 E2 G12 v12 v23 Component

=E3 =G13 =v13


Back plate,

Bridge, Ribs,

Maple 11.1 0.892 1.12 0.02 0.00001 397 Neck,



Spruce 12.05 0.551 0.587 0.03 0.00001 561 Top plate

Chin rest,

Ebony 10.78 - - 0.03 - 850 Tail piece,


Steel 200 - - 0.28 - 7900
Metal fittings

*Orientation of wood: 1-Along Grain; 2-Across Grain; 3-Tangential

(Isaksson et al., 1994)(Johannsson, n.d.)(Sherman, n.d.)(Seely, n.d.)(eFunda)

Figure 11: Material Orientation

As violin plates are typically quarter-cut (Pascual et al., 2002), the bridge

and the plates are oriented as shown in Figure 11.

3.3.2 Violin Strings Properties

The violin models from HyperMesh do not have the strings component.

The strings are drawn and modeled in Abaqus as beam elements.

Figure 12: Abaqus - Cristofori Violin with Strings Drawn

The type of strings used may range from simple steel strings to gut strings

which present varying properties. Dependent on the type of strings used,

the static tension in the string may reach up to 250N on modern violins

(Lowenberger, 2008). A slight change in diameter or the angle over which

the string is strung (from the winding peg over the bridge to the tuning

pegs) can also vary the force greatly. To remove this complexity from the

model, the strings are fixed as steel strings with the following properties:

Table 2: String Properties

G String D String A String E String

Diameter (mm) 0.84 0.56 0.38 0.25

Tension (N) 126.3 284.2 617.2 1426

(Jansson, 2002)

3.3.3 Simulations

A total of four modal analysis (Frequency extraction under Linear

Perturbation procedure in Abaqus) simulations were conducted:

Case 1: Guarneri violin - without strings

Case 2: Cristofori violin - without strings

Case 3: Guarneri violin strings

Case 4: Cristofori violin strings

In each of the cases, eigenfrequencies and modes were extracted from a

frequency range of 10-4500Hz, but modes with frequencies below 600Hz

have been the focus of much modal analysis work done to date, as these

low-frequency primary modes with less complex patterns present more

similarity between violins (Borman, 2011).

3.4 Geometric Comparison

Finally, simple steps have been undertaken to compare some geometric

differences between the Guarneri and Cristofori violins. Volumes of various

violin components were calculated using the Mass Calculation tool in

HyperMesh. Using the Query function in Abaqus, some dimensions of the violin

components could also be found.


4.1 Part 1 - Modal Analysis

4.1.1 Case 1 vs Case 2

Table 3: Comparison of Violin Models (no string) Resonant Frequencies

Modes Guarneri Resonant Component Cristofori Modes

1 174.07 Fingerboard 183.60 2

2 210.10 Tailpiece 133.58 1

3 239.77 Head 249.19 3

309.24 5
4 285.38 Tailpiece
539.01 7

5 318.69 Fingerboard 290.17 4

6 535.13 Whole

7 567.96 Winding Pegs 456.67 6

8 597.93 Fingerboard 582.82 9

9 655.67 Whole

10 785.79 Whole 844.61 18

11 803.63 Whole 865.23 19

12 834.71 Whole 875.31 20

13 902.16 Bridge, Plates

14 931.00 Bridge

15 936.36 Bridge

The first 15 modes of the Guarneri violin have been listed. The modes of

the Cristofori are then matched according to mode shapes, as best as

possible, to the Guarneri.

The first mode of the Cristofori violin is at 133Hz with the tailpiece being

the main component of resonant while for the Guarneri violin, the first

mode is 174Hz at the fingerboard. The fingerboard and the tailpiece are

made of the same material Ebony, and for both violin models, the same

material properties have been input. Attributing to these reasoning, the

difference in first mode frequencies and shapes would be the geometric

differences in these two violins.

Doing further comparisons, we can see that while the mode shapes are

matched, the mode numbers do not match, indicating that the sequence of

frequencies for the mode shapes are different for the two violins.

In the frequency range shown in the table, the Guarneri violin has two

mode shapes where the tailpiece is the major resonant component but the

Cristofori violin has three. This could be due to the Cristofori violin

having four steel tuning pegs attached to its tailpiece compared to the

Guarneri which has only one G-string tuning peg. This difference in steel

mass attached to the tailpiece would contribute to difference in resonance.

For the first and third modes of the Guarneri violin and the respective

matching modes of the Cristofori violin, the resonant frequencies matched

pretty well with differences of about ten. However, in the later modes at

larger frequencies, the difference increased. This increase does not seem to

follow a trend.

As mentioned by Borman (2011), modes below 600Hz have been the

focus of comparison to date, due to the simpler shapes. From the results

obtained, it can also be seen that below 600Hz, the modes shapes of both

violins could be matched and compared, up till the Guarneri eighth mode.

Beyond that, the mode shapes become more complex and some seem to be

exclusive to each violin.

In the 900 - 1000Hz range, the Guarneri had several modes whereby the

bridge had maximum magnitude and there were little displacement in the

rest of the body. Such bridge-focused modes are not found in the Cristofori


On the other hand, the Cristofori has several modes in the 500 700Hz

range resonating mainly at the winding pegs which are not found in the

Guarneri within this 15-mode range: 566.37Hz (mode8), 602.82Hz (mode

10), 608.69Hz (mode 11), 634.91Hz (mode 12), 651.54Hz (mode 13),

668.93Hz (mode 14), 692.88Hz (mode 15), 711.17Hz (mode 16), and

717.32Hz (mode 17).

As the bridge, tailpiece and winding pegs are directly in contact with the

strings, they would crucially affect sound production and quality.

Especially the winding pegs which play a part in keeping the strings in

tune, large resonant displacement could result in frequency fluctuations of

sound during play, indirectly affected quality and tone. These differences

in modes could be indicative of tone and quality differences.

Results of modes shapes and displacement magnitudes are attached in the

appendix (Appendix-B).

4.1.2 Case 3 vs Case 4

Table 4: Comparison of Violin Strings Resonant Frequencies (Hz)

String Harmonics Modes Guarneri Cristofori Modes

1 124.39 112.26 1
21 756.77 758.61 30

2 5 276.45 278.14 5

G (198) 3 11 508.53 496.79 12

4 20 677.99 677.70 26

5 30 931.52 916.27 37

6 39 1124.9 1120.2 41

7 288.17 286.69 6
12 522.24 519.67 13

15 576.37 573.76 17
D (297) 2
36 1044.3 1036.5 40

3 26 867.09 862.59 33

4 41 1157.8 1152.5 43

9 418.25 416.56 9
10 456.70 453.54 10
A (440)
24 834.18 831.80 31
28 913.57 907.18 36

17 618.27 609.93 21
E (660) 18 628.58 626.91 22

2 43 1235.9 1219.0 46

The strings have been drawn onto each of the two violins, however, the

simulations run on case 3 and 4 are not simulations of actual strung

violins. Due to the complexity of simulating the interactions between the

strings and the violin body, which include conditions like contact and

tension, the modeled strings are related to the violin model only by

geometry and not virtually attached to the violin body at the winding

and tuning pegs. Boundary conditions, however, have been set to restrain

the direction of movement of the strings such that it is similar to that of

real violins. The main focus of these two cases is to extract the modal

frequencies of the strings.

Figure 13: Guarneri G String - 3rd Harmonics

The number of red segments on the string, which reflects the maximum

displacement, is indicative of the number of harmonics. The strings order

on the Guarneri violin is G-D-A-E from right to left while on the Cristofori

violin, left to right.

As we can see from the results, the first harmonics of all the strings do not

coincide very closely to the frequencies they are supposedly tuned to,

except for the D string. This is probably because an arbitrary fixed set of

string properties have been input for both cases, when in actual fact, these

two violins would not have the same tensions in the respective strings.

Their difference in neck length and angle of inclination, which would give

difference in length of strings, would result in difference in tension for the

same diameter and frequency of the string.

For both violins, the strings followed the equation of harmonics (fn=nf)

closely as to be expected but with the exception of the G string. Also, the

frequencies on the Guarneri strings were on the whole slightly larger than

the Cristofori frequencies, indicating that for the same tension, diameter

and material, the Guarneri strings were shorter.

4.2 Part 2 - Geometric Differences

4.2.1 Volumetric Differences

Table 5: Volumetric (mm3) Differences

Guarneri Cristofori

Maple Body 423465 470303

Maple 425917 473878
Bridge 2452 3575

Spruce Spruce Top Plate 169780 - 212313 -

Fingerboard 67071 61348

Ebony Chinrest 44446 127285 38804 107341

Tailpiece 15768 7189

Steel Steel Fittings 6994 - 5419 -

Air Air Cavity 2.15E06 - 2.02E06 -

Total material volume

729976 798951
(without air cavity)

Overall, the Guarneri violin has a smaller material volume than the

Cristofori. The maple and spruce contents were lower but Guarneri had

larger volumes in the ebony components and air cavity.

It is interesting to note that the tailpiece volume of Guarneri is nearly twice

that of the Cristofori. It may be inferred then, that this volume difference

was one of the main factors that contributed to the difference in modes of

the tailpiece resonance.

4.2.2 String Inclination Differences

Figure 14: String Inclination Angles for Guarneri (Top) and Cristofori (Bottom)

Using the Query>Angle function in Abaqus, the angle of inclination of the

strings were found to be different. This is consistent with the observation

that the frequencies of the strings would differ due to geometric

differences, as discussed earlier. The Guarneri violin had a larger angle at

the string area between the windings pegs and the fingerboard contact

area, but had a smaller angle at the bridge.

Differences in angles also implied the possibility of differences in length,

which is inversely proportionate to frequency.

4.2.3 Dimensional Differences

Figure 15: Body Comparison of Guarneri (Pink) and Cristofori (Yellow)

A simple visual comparison of the shape and size of the two violin models

was done. The models are placed back to back in Mimics, and a slight

difference is noticeable by the yellow Cristofori outline the Guarneri in

the frontal view. The Cristofori is slightly larger, this is also concluded

from the larger volume shown previously. This difference is more obvious

in the back to back comparison of the spruce top plates.

Figure 16: Comparison of Spruce Top Plates

(Dark Blue- Cristofori; Light Green- Guarneri)


In the modal analysis comparison, it has been found that most modes shapes were

similar and match-able between the two violins below 600Hz, which is within the

range of the highest open-string frequency (E string, 660Hz). However, while the

shapes were comparable, the sequence of appearance of these modes was different

for the two violins. For higher frequencies, there exist modes for which the

frequencies between the two violins differ too large. String frequencies of the two

violins have also been found to be close with slight differences.

In geometric comparisons, it is found that the Guarneri was smaller than the

Cristofori in dimensions and volumes but had a larger air cavity. The differences

in material volumes and dimensions contribute to differences in mode

frequencies. The air cavity also plays a part in the frequencies however it cannot

be verified the relationship. It is interesting to note that while the Guarneri had

smaller body volume it has a larger air cavity. This could be compensated by

thinner shells, but this also cannot be verified as thickness distribution analysis

could not be done.

A comparative study has been made between an old Italian Guarneri violin and a

modern Cristofori violin, and it is found that by keeping material properties

constant, the geometry plays a part in differentiated modal frequencies, which

could provide a link to tone and quality.


FE is a numerical technique that cannot stand alone due to the complexity of such

vibrating systems of structure. Future work could include conducting an

experimental modal analysis procedure to verify the validity of the findings on the

Cristofori violin. Experimental analysis cannot be carried out on the Guarneri

violin due to its pricey nature.

Various different sets of material properties may be input to find out the effects of

such changes. Experimental procedures may be carried on cheaper violins to find

out their material properties and the models may be simulated such that it is as

close to the real violin as possible.

3D models of other violins may also be constructed and put to simulation In this

study, the strings also have not been simulated to the real violin. Attempts can

also be made to simulate the complexity of the action of bowing with frictional

and normal force on the string and its effects on frequencies. This is because,

different players with their different style of playing are capable of producing

different tones on a same violin. Experimental verification for this area can be

carried out by inviting two subject violinists to aid in the study.

Table 6: Frequencies (Hz) of Violin Musical Notes


3 198 220 247.5

4 264 297 330 352 396 440 495

5 528 594 660 704 792 880 990

6 1056 1188 1320 1408 1584 1760 1980

7 2112 2376 2640 2816 3168 3520 3960

8 4224

An investigation can also be carried out into the effects of differences between

violin body modal frequencies and the musical notes frequencies. A study on how

any matching or non-matching of the frequencies may affect tone or quality (due

to effects of wolf tones and beat)(Appendix- X) may be conducted.

By building and including the air cavity model, fluid-structural interaction

analysis may be carried out to find out a more informative relation between air

cavity and the modes.


Bissinger, G. and Oliver, D. (2007). Sound and Vibration.

3-D Laser Vibrometry on Legendary Old Italian Violin.

Borman, T. and Stoel, B. (2011).

CT and Modal Analysis of the Vieuxtemps Guarneri del Gesu.

Chargin, M., Knott, G.A. and Shin, Y.S. (1989). A Modal Analysis of the Violin.

Ezcurra, A., Elejabarrieta, M.J. and Santamaria, C. (2004).

Fluid-Structure Coupling in the Guitar Box: Numerical and Experimental

Comparative Study.

Frohlich, B., Frohlich, E., Hinton, J. and Sturm, G. (2009).

The Secrets of The Stradivari String Instruments: A Non-Destructive


Isaksson, A., Molin, N.E. and Saldner, H.O. (1994).

Influence of Enclosed Air on Vibration Modes of A Shell Structure.

Jansson, E. (2002). Acoustics For Violin and Guitar Makers.

Chapter IV: Properties of the Violin and the Guitar String

Jansson, E. (2002). Acoustics For Violin and Guitar Makers.

Chapter VII: The Function of the Violin

Lowenberger, F., Ravina, E. and Silvestri, P. (2008). Performance Comparison of

Violins Through Experimental Force Analysis.

Pascual, R., Razeto, M.M. and Staforelli, C.C. (2002).

Numerical and Experimental Analysis on the Dynamic Behaviour of the

Violin Plates.

Stoel, B.C. and Borman, T.M. (2008). A Comparison of Wood Density between

Classical Cremonese and Modern Violins.

eFunda. General Properties of Steel. Retrieved from

Johannsson, H. (n.d.). Violin Making: Construction.

Retrieved from

Seely, O. (n.d.). Physical Properties of Common Woods.

Retrieved from

Sherman, A.M. (n.d.). How Products Are Made: Violin.

Retrieved from


Number of Tetrahedral Elements in 3D Models

Guarneri Violin Cristofori

Maple Body 114603 172460

Bridge 3483 6670

Spruce Top Plate 57963 27552

Fingerboard 13650 25957

Tailpiece 12160 18101

Chinrest 10302 17408

Steel Components 11731 26896

Case 1 Guarneri without Strings Results

Case 2 Cristofori without Strings Results

Case 3 Guarneri Strings Results

Case 4 Cristofori Strings Results

Beat Frequency

In acoustics, a beat is an interference between two sounds of slightly different

frequencies, perceived as periodic variations in volume whose rate is the difference

between the two frequencies. With tuning instruments that can produce sustained tones,

beats can readily be recognized. Tuning two tones to a unison will present a peculiar

effect: when the two tones are close in pitch but not yet identical, the difference in

frequency generates the beating. The volume varies like in a tremolo as the sounds

alternately interfere constructively and destructively. When the two tones gradually

approach unison, the beating slows down and disappears.

Retrieved from

Wolf Tone

A wolf tone, or simply a "wolf", is produced when a played note matches the natural

resonating frequency of the body of a musical instrument, producing a sustaining

sympathetic artificial overtone that amplifies and expands the frequencies of the original

note, frequently accompanied by an oscillating beating (due to the uneven frequencies

between the natural note and artificial overtone) which may be likened to the howling of

the animal. A similar phenomenon is the wolf interval, usually between E flat and G

sharp, of the various non-circulating temperaments.

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