Wikisinger, how sounds change according to the environment

Here is the viral video of Wikisinger, an acoustic experiment that shows the effects of voice reverberation in 15 different places.

Different places shape the sound in different ways. But, unless you are professional musicians, probably you wouldn’t often think about acoustics. Every environment where you are in, both open or close, has unique sound features that leave their marks on your voice. Wikisinger, a video directed by Vincent Rouffiac and produced by Touché Videoproduktion in collaboration with IRCAM, shows simply but effectively the acoustic differences of 15 contexts, without using special effects, through an a cappella performance of the same song.


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Joachim Müllner, guitarist and singer of the Parisian band In The Canopy was the one who made this experiment first. The artist clapped his hands and sang the same melody in two different places, demonstrating how the natural reverberations of sound and voice change according to the environment in which they are produced. In a cathedral, for example, there is a strong echo, while in a wide outdoor area the voice dissolves. The contrary happens in an attic, gym or garage.




Wikisinger, that was created a year after Wikidrummer – produced by the same company but dealing with the sound of the drums – monitored only the video, without modifying the sound, that doesn’t have artificial reverberations, guaranteeing the authenticity of the project. Only one scene was registered in an anechoic chamber, a room designed to completely absorb echoes in order to simulate a condition of unlimited space.

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