A methodological study is presented to examine the acoustic role of the vocal tract in playing the trumpet. Preliminary results obtained for one professional player are also shown to demonstrate the effectiveness of the method. Images of the vocal tract with a resolution of 0.5 mm (2 mm in thickness) were recorded with magnetic resonance imaging to observe the tongue posture and estimate the vocal-tract area function during actual performance. The input impedance was then calculated for the player's air column including both the supra- and subglottal tracts using an acoustic tube model including the effect of wall losses. Finally, a time-domain blowing simulation by Adachi and Sato [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 99, 1200-1209 (1996)] was performed with a model of the lips. In this simulation, the oscillating frequency of the lips was slightly affected by using different shapes of the vocal tract measured for the player. In particular, when the natural frequency of the lips was gradually increased, the transition to the higher mode occurred at different frequencies for different vocal-tract shapes. Furthermore, simulation results showed that the minimum blowing pressure required to attain the lip oscillation can be reduced by adjusting the vocal-tract shape properly.
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