Acoustic theory

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Classical acoustic theory derives from fluid mechanics, and centers on the mathematical description of sound waves. See acoustics for the engineering approach.

In approaching the description of a sound wave the mathematics never gives the whole story. The subtleties of thermodynamics are difficult enough to recommend a gradual familiarization with some related problems of vibration such as arise in mechanical sound production: motion of a spring vibration of a string equation of motion harmonic.

Besides the the math tools that we will use again, the preceding examples help inform the beginner's physical intuition with analogies to the periodic compression domains transfer function sound pressure acoustic impedance acoustic resistance law of gases

frequency Fourier analysis

See instrumental acoustics, music theory voice production formant speech synthesis