Wild Blue Pixel
TIP OF THE DAY
Friday, November 2, 2007
The Kalimba is a physical system encompassing the vibrating metal tines, the wooden box, and the air inside the box. All of these vibrate in a certain way, and some of the most interesting sounds result from the air inside the box resonating strongly at certain frequencies.
The pickups mainly pick up the vibrations of the wooden box, as they are mounted on the wood, but on the inside of the box. So the pickup doesn't pick up the "wah wah" sound that's created when you wave your hand over the sound hole.
Is the sound of the solid body kalimba through a pickup different from the sound of a box kalimba through a pickup? YES. That would be a good thing to measure and analyze so I could give you a more in-depth answer. But I can say the solid body kalimbas through a pickup are a bit more metalic sounding, which can be a cool effect. And the solid body kalimbas don't feed back as much as the box ones, and I believe they have a more uniform spectral response than the box kalimbas.