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Julius Smith, Stanford University, USA: "Sound synthesis based on physical models"

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  • Distinguished Lecture
When Sep 16, 2010
from 04:30 PM to 06:00 PM
Where Clara Lichtenstein Recital Hall (C-209), Schulich School of Music, McGill University, 555 Sherbrooke St. West, Montreal QC
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 Sound synthesis based on computational physical models promises the most complete and compact rendering of performance expression.  This talk will review various modeling paradigms in more or less historical order.  After a recap of foundational ideas from Bernoulli and d'Alembert, block diagrams, summaries, and sound examples will be presented for various synthesis models, including the Kelly-Lochbaum-Mathews singing voice, and digital waveguide models of plucked/struck strings, woodwinds, bowed strings, distortion-feedback electric guitar, and piano/harpsichord. Finally, recent related research and software development at CCRMA will be summarized.



Julius O. Smith teaches a music signal-processing course sequence and supervises related research at the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA).  He is formally a professor of music and associate professor (by courtesy) of electrical engineering at Stanford University. In 1975, he received his BS/EE degree from Rice University, where he got a good start in the field of digital signal processing and modeling for control.  In 1983, he received the PhD/EE degree from Stanford University, specializing in techniques for digital filter design and system identification, with application to violin modeling.  His work history includes the Signal Processing Department at Electromagnetic Systems Laboratories, Inc., working on systems for digital communications, the Adaptive Systems Department at Systems Control Technology, Inc., working on research problems in adaptive filtering and spectral estimation, and NeXT Computer, Inc., where he was responsible for sound, music, and signal processing software for the NeXT computer workstation.  Prof. Smith is a Fellow of the Audio Engineering Society and the Acoustical Society of America.  He is the author of four online books and numerous research publications in his field. For further information, see


Slides of this lecture here.  Please note that the material in these slides are the property of Julius Smith.



APA video citation:
Smith, J. (2012, November 5). Sound synthesis based on physical models -
CIRMMT Distinguished Lectures in the Science and Technology of Music. [Video file].
Retrieved from

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