Number of reeds and volume



Number of reeds and volume

Postby Ben_H » Thu Aug 15, 2013 5:21 pm

A quick question that may have an obvious answer, but I'm going to ask anyway.

If you have two equal sized boxes, one with two treble voices and the other three, will the three voiced box be louder, all other things being equal? You are, after all, forcing the same volume of air through both but have an additional set of reeds to vibrate.

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Re: Number of reeds and volume

Postby george garside » Thu Aug 15, 2013 6:03 pm

not necessarily louder as some 2 voice boxes are very strident and some 3 voice relatively tame. The 3 voices should give a 'fuller' but not necessarily louder sou;nd. It will also depend to some degree on whether the three reeds are tuned mmm (musette) or MML. It will also depend on the way the individual reeds have been set up and tuned etc etc etc

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Re: Number of reeds and volume

Postby Soulsaver » Thu Aug 15, 2013 9:19 pm

I find that playing more reeds 'on' means I have to work the bellows more...for sure.
Now the wife claims it's me that's immature - says we have to take time to sit down and and have serious discussion on the issue!
Jeez, how could I get the time right in the middle of the conker season?
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Re: Number of reeds and volume

Postby JIM D. » Fri Aug 16, 2013 2:56 am

Hi Ben; Your question is one I'd like to reply on but, it seems George has already replied - and if I may say short,sweet and correct!! JIM D.
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Re: Number of reeds and volume

Postby Ben_H » Fri Aug 16, 2013 7:16 am

Great, thanks for the responses. I had a feeling it may be a little more complex.

The reason I ask is that when I bought my Hohner Student VM it included the offer of a six month trade in for an upgrade. I love it dearly, after only three months, but it can get a bit lost when playing outside with the Morris, so I wondered whether a three voice, (possibly tuned MML,) would give more depth and oomph to the sound. Ideally I would save the money and recruit extra musicians but they seem a bit hard to find.
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Re: Number of reeds and volume

Postby Glenn » Fri Aug 16, 2013 7:58 am

Hi Ben,
Now you know how the Hohner Student sounds, it is now a great opportunity to try out another in the shop by taking up their offer and seeing how you like to play your Morris tunes on another instrument. You could even take your Student along for comparison. Take your time. Enjoy the experience and then decide. That's my advice.
1) Ballone Burini 46C (4+5) cassotto (LMMH) 3/3 PA; 2) Accordiola Piano V (5+5) cassotto (LMMMH) 3/3 PA;
3) Marinucci (4+4) (LMMM) 2/4 PA; - sold 4) Hohner Vox 4k (LMMH) 3/3 CBA
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Re: Number of reeds and volume

Postby BobM » Fri Aug 16, 2013 8:31 am

Ben_H wrote:
The reason I ask is that when I bought my Hohner Student VM it included the offer of a six month trade in for an upgrade. I love it dearly, after only three months, but it can get a bit lost when playing outside with the Morris, so I wondered whether a three voice, (possibly tuned MML,) would give more depth and oomph to the sound. Ideally I would save the money and recruit extra musicians but they seem a bit hard to find.


It doesn’t matter what instrument that you’re playing, there will be times when you’ll be too quiet, or too loud. I was at the Sidmouth festival and at 2 pub sessions the box players where drowned out by acoustic guitars. This seems odd to me, because of the often made remarks about over-loud accordionists.

You don’t say whether you’re in a band or solo. If you’re in a band, then balancing is a “band skill” with requires members to adjust their volume to allow one another to come through. If you’re solo, and still not loud enough, and don’t want to, or can’t use a PA, then you’re choices are more limited.

Before you lose your dearly loved instrument, bear in mind that adding a reed is not going to double the volume, nowhere near it, but you will gain a little more weight.

Tread carefully, there might be much gnashing of teeth if you make a bad decision...

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Re: Number of reeds and volume

Postby Ben_H » Fri Aug 16, 2013 9:11 am

I've got three months to think about it and I may not be able to afford to upgrade anyway. I was thinking about taking the VM down to compare and contrast with three different boxes that would be potential upgrades. You never know, I may not like them once I get my mitts on them, though the original upgrade option was a two voice compact Weltmeister Rubin, which, had I had the cash at the time, would have bought as my starter box.

In terms of the morris band, it's me with the occasional drummer, fiddle player and assorted whistles and on special occasions a melodion. All high end, trebley stuff, hence my consideration of a three reed tuned MML for a bit more lower to mid range on the tunes. As I said, ideally I would be able to recruit a couple more squeezebox players to add oomph, but that is not going to happen quickly.
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Re: Number of reeds and volume

Postby JIM D. » Fri Aug 16, 2013 11:31 am

If I may suggest to you the same thing I tell everyone when they shop for a new box. The accordion you may like really has two different sounds - The 1st is the sound you hear when you hold and play it - and the 2nd is the sound you hear when you stand at least 10 ft. in front of the accordion when you have someone else play it. Try it you will hear a real difference. JIM D.
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Re: Number of reeds and volume

Postby donn » Fri Aug 16, 2013 2:10 pm

BobM wrote:It doesn’t matter what instrument that you’re playing, there will be times when you’ll be too quiet, or too loud. I was at the Sidmouth festival and at 2 pub sessions the box players where drowned out by acoustic guitars.


I bet the tables would be turned, when they went outside. At least that's how the combination sounds to me in the out of doors - out in the the sunlight, the guitar dwindles to an insubstantial phantom. This could have something to do with Jim's point about the accordion's sound 10 feet away, as an the enclosed space somewhat confounds the simple dispersion of sound. So the guitar and accordion might sound evenly matched if you're standing right there - but I wouldn't know as I tend to keep my distance from that combination.

Anyway ... of course, obviously enough that it hardly bears repeating, but it took me a while to catch on, so ... you can actually play louder on an accordion by squeezing harder, within limits.
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