Coupled vibro-acoustic model of the Titian stradivari violin

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



© The Society for Experimental Mechanics, Inc. 2014. The instruments of Antonio Stradivari (1644–1737) are still considered the finest in the world and have set the standard for violin quality that has yet to be exceeded by a modern luthier. To determine the relationship between the sound of the instrument and its structure and material properties a vibro-acoustic finite element model was developed for the 1715 Titian Stradivari violin. The structural model was created by measuring the structural geometry and density from CT scans of the actual instrument. The predicted structural modes were correlated with experimental modal data on the 1715 violin and updated accordingly. The correlated structural modes were then projected onto the acoustic envelope. The vibroacoustic transfer function between force input at the violin bridge and acoustic pressure response 1.2 m away was predicted. These results were compared to experimental radiativity measurements made on the actual instrument. It was shown that including structural and acoustic damping characteristics are important to accurately predict the vibro-acoustic behavior of the Titian Stradivari violin. Predicted structural modal frequencies were all within 5 % of the experimental data, while the main acoustic mode was within 7 %. The predicted radiativity magnitude was within 1.5 dB for all mode peaks. This is the first comprehensive analytical vibro-acoustic model of a Stradivari instrument and can be used to determine how structural modifications effect violin sound quality.

Publication Title

Conference Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Mechanics Series