An artificial excitation mechanism for an acoustical comparison of the hammered dulcimer
Alexander Mayer; Herbert Rust

Often musical instrument makers need to compare instruments in terms of sound quality. An objective comparison can help the instrument maker to retrace changes in the building processes, as well as in changes on the instrument itself. But how to excite the instrument reproducible?
In this paper, a method for comparing the acoustics of hammered dulcimers is explained. For a consistent and reproducible excitation, a computer controlled excitation mechanism is used. The sound spectra as well as the decay rates are chosen as comparative parameters.