Science of sound



Sound is a type of physical wave.

Acoustics is the scientific study of waves. Musical acoustics is the scientific study of sound waves in music.

Musical acoustics treats sound as a physical object, a wave, whose properties can be identified and looked at objectively.

A sound wave has three properties:

  1. Frequency.
  2. Amplitude.
  3. Phase.

These three properties combine to shape a sound into a waveform. The perceived frequency of a sound is its pitch and the guide groups sound into unpitched sound, noise and rhythm, and pitched sound, melody and harmony. Notation provides visual information about sound and timbre enables one sound to be distinguished from another.