Characteristics of Performance Spaces

  • John Eargle


While popular and rock music is usually recorded (some would say created) in studios, most classical recording takes place in actual performance spaces, be they concert halls, ballrooms, or houses of worship. To the extent that a classical recording attempts to convey a sense of space or ambience appropriate for the music, it will be useful to analyze performance spaces in terms of direct, early, and reverberant fields. The direct field is of course the sound reaching the listener along a straight line from the source on stage. The early field generally describes the ensemble of early reflections from the front and sides of the space to the listener. The time interval usually discussed here is the first 100 msec after the initial onset of sound. The reverberant field has been discussed earlier, and it is the statistical ensemble of many reflections that arrive uniformly at the listener from all directions. The trade-offs inherent in concert hall design will be discussed, as will some numerical methods for rating concert hall performance.


Performance Space Acoustical Power Reverberation Time Apply Science Publisher Direct Sound 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Y. Ando, Concert Hall Acoustics, Springer-Verlag, New York (1985).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    M. Barron, “The Subjective Effects of First Reflections in Concert Halls—The Need for Lateral Reflections.” J. Sound and Vibration, vol. 15, pp. 475–494 (1971).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    L. Beranek, Music, Acoustics & Architecture, Wiley, New York (1962).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    L. Cremer, Principles and Applications of Room Acoustics, Applied Science Publishers, New York (1978).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    J. Eargle, Music, Sound, & Technology, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York (1990).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    M. Forsyth, Buildings for Music, MIT Press, Cambridge, Mass. (1985).Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    H. Kuttruff, Room Acoustics, Applied Science Publishers, London (1979).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    W. Reichardt, A. Alim and W. Schmidt, Applied Acoustics, vol. 7 (1974).Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    T. Schultz, “Acoustics of Concert Halls”, IEEE Spectrum, vol. 2, no. 6 (1965).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Eargle

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations