Abstract

How important is synchronous timing in a performance? In the world of science, engineering and the arts, we cannot avoid it. In the arts, it is a living and vital concept between composer, performer and audience. During the Pandemic, with an increase in virtual meetings and performances, made us more aware of timing issues and introduced us to a path with many questions about latency and affect between audience and performer. The hand waving, head nodding and eye gestures of Renaissance musicians led eventually to the classic conductor’s baton. These all helped ensembles of dissimilar instruments and/or voices, conquer problems of ‘sounding’ simultaneously, in order to create accurate harmony. Music performers, of all styles and types, consistently alter their attack times to create a synchronous performance for not all instruments/voices immediately sound out a fully developed tone at the same time. Recording techniques (one solution) can ‘doctor’ this problem, as sound engineer realigns tracks, and starting points, when necessary. But are there other new latency solutions available to us today and discovered during the pandemic year and a half?

Keywords—timing, latency, delay in sound

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COinS
 
Nov 19th, 12:00 AM

Timing, Latency, and Live Performance

How important is synchronous timing in a performance? In the world of science, engineering and the arts, we cannot avoid it. In the arts, it is a living and vital concept between composer, performer and audience. During the Pandemic, with an increase in virtual meetings and performances, made us more aware of timing issues and introduced us to a path with many questions about latency and affect between audience and performer. The hand waving, head nodding and eye gestures of Renaissance musicians led eventually to the classic conductor’s baton. These all helped ensembles of dissimilar instruments and/or voices, conquer problems of ‘sounding’ simultaneously, in order to create accurate harmony. Music performers, of all styles and types, consistently alter their attack times to create a synchronous performance for not all instruments/voices immediately sound out a fully developed tone at the same time. Recording techniques (one solution) can ‘doctor’ this problem, as sound engineer realigns tracks, and starting points, when necessary. But are there other new latency solutions available to us today and discovered during the pandemic year and a half?

Keywords—timing, latency, delay in sound