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Sound for music technology: An introduction
Sound for music technology: An introduction

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9.3 Summary

The nominal frequency range of human hearing is 20 Hz to 20 kHz, though most people cannot hear to 20 kHz. However, the pitches used in music correspond roughly to frequencies in the range from 20 Hz to 2.5 kHz. Generally, musical tones are not pure sine waves but are mixtures of sine waves with frequencies that can extend well beyond 2.5 kHz. However, although they are mixtures of sine waves, they are usually heard as having a single pitch.

The dynamic range of human hearing refers to the range of amplitudes the ear can cope with. It covers a range of more than 1 000 000:1. Equal increments of amplitude are not heard as equal increments of loudness.