The characteristic sound of the oboe: Can it be played with a single reed and still maintain its tone colour?
Sandra Carral; Cristophe Vergez; Kees Nederveen

In the reed woodwind family instruments differ between them in both their geometry (mainly cylindrical or mainly conical) and their excitation mechanism (single or double reed). How much of the produced sound is due to the single/double reed, and how much to the geometry of the instrument? Measurements done by Almeida ("The physics of double-reed wind instruments and its application to sound synthesis", PhD Thesis, University of Paris 6, 2006) show that the flow vs pressure characteristic curve of a double reed is not that different from that of a single reed, the only difference being probably due to pressure recovery inside the conical staple. Is it possible to make a single reed mouthpiece for an oboe, keeping the conical staple, that would still give the oboe its characteristic sound? To find out, a mouthpiece with the following characteristics is being made: A standard clarinet Bb reed can be attached to it, its volume is approximately that of the internal volume of a standard french oboe double reed (without the staple), and a standard french oboe staple can be inserted to it, so that it can be inserted in the usual way in any french oboe. Examples of the first prototypes, as well as sound samples will be presented.