- Frequency in singing bowls is measured in vibrations per second. This measure is Commonly known as Hertz (Hz).
- The lower the frequency the slower the vibrations. The musical scale, do re me or A B C can also be expressed in Hz.
A person with excellent hearing can perceive 20 Hz – or 20 vibrations per second. Think of the deepest sound you can imagine. 20 vibrations a second is slow enough you can see it, like in the surface of a bass drum.
In music a first octave C, a note you never really hear, is about 32 Hz while a first octave A the lowest key on a piano is 27.5 Hz. Singing bowls are never that deep, below 70 Hz is extremely rare.
Theoretically people can hear 20,000 Hz (20 KHz). Most audiologists are happy if you can hear 12 KHz but they will test you higher if it looks like you have something left up there.
It is common in the singing bowl world to assign a frequency to a bowl.
Unfortunately it is not as simple as even that for the sound can vary based on the strike. Tapping high or low on the side wall, thicker or thinner spots can produce subtle differences that both the software and your ear can pick up.
If your strike is on the side away from the microphone you will get a slightly different reading then hitting it on the same side.
A warm room can get a bit different reading than a cold environment. W label Hz as “approximate”, not because of equipment limitations – we run the best software available – but because we do not have sufficient confidence in the absolute stability of this metric for any singing bowl.