Is there a way to define dissonance such that it can be quantifiable?



Asked by: Spencer Hauff

How do you quantify dissonance?





To compute a measure of dissonance one should take into account harmonics, i.e. compute all the pairwise contributions to the measureand sum them up (not too hard to do). For chords of more than two pitches you just sum up all the pairwise contributions to the measure, fundamentals and harmonics.

How do you describe dissonance?

Dissonance is harsh, inharmonious noise—cacophony. It can also refer to stark disagreement or lack of consistency. In both cases, a close synonym is discord.

What factors influence the magnitude of this dissonance?

Several factors influence the magnitude of dissonance we feel: The ratio of dissonant to consonant cognitions. The more inconsistent cognitions there are in relation to consistent ones, the greater the level of dissonance will be.



Cognitive Dissonance Theory

  • Free Choice.
  • Induced Compliance.
  • Effort Justification.


Is dissonance a scale?





There is no such thing as a dissonant scale. Dissonance is the result of two or more simultaneously sounding notes. And almost any scale can provide two notes that are dissonant.

What intervals are dissonant?

The intervals that are considered to be dissonant are the minor second, the major second, the minor seventh, the major seventh, and particularly the tritone, which is the interval in between the perfect fourth and perfect fifth. These intervals are all considered to be somewhat unpleasant or tension-producing.

What is consonance and dissonance?

consonance and dissonance, in music, the impression of stability and repose (consonance) in relation to the impression of tension or clash (dissonance) experienced by a listener when certain combinations of tones or notes are sounded together.

What is an example of dissonance?

For instance, the sound of a crying baby and a screaming person are dissonant sounds. These sounds are annoying and alarming to the listeners. In music, dissonance might make listeners feel uncomfortable; however, it helps to create a sense of tension in musical compositions.

How do you identify dissonance in poetry?

What Is Dissonance?



  1. Layout of sounds. Using vowel sounds that clash together.
  2. Irregular rhythm. Disrupting the flow of a poem by changing the rhyme scheme.
  3. Using harsh-sounding words. Incorporating unusual or harsh-sounding words.


How is dissonance made?

dissonance, in music, the impression of stability and repose (consonance) in relation to the impression of tension or clash (dissonance) experienced by a listener when certain combinations of tones or notes are sounded together.

Is dissonance a harmony?

Consonance and Dissonance



The stable harmonies are called consonant, while the unstable harmonies are called dissonant. Consonant harmonies give a sense of serenity and rest to a piece, while dissonant harmonies create tension and anxiety.



How do you use dissonance?

It's that tritone of after being in a g7 chord that wants to expand outward. To resolve to the tonic chord of C major.

Is consonance and dissonance subjective?

Aside from a purely physical level of definition, the perception of consonance and dissonance is entirely subjective — both on an individual level as well as cultural one. However, it is often taught under the ideas of good and bad, pleasing and irritating.

Can melodies be dissonant?

Well, yes, “only intervals” can be dissonant, but intervals can be used horizontally in constructing melodies, and thus melodies can be dissonant, too.

What is harmonic dissonance?

Dissonance is more generally defined by the amount of beating between partials (called harmonics or overtones when occurring in harmonic timbres),( Terhardt calls this “sensory dissonance”.



Are augmented intervals dissonant?

The augmented interval is dissonant with a tension of resolving into a nearest note step, defined by the melodic and harmonic context ( sharps leading up, flats leading down).

Are seconds dissonant?

Dissonant intervals



Major and minor seconds, sevenths, and ninths are dissonant.

Is a perfect fourth consonant or dissonant?

A perfect fourth is considered dissonant when it appears as an interval above the root, for example in a suspended chord or a 64 chord. It is the reason why a V64-V53-I cadence must resolve; the tonic chord in 64 position is actually considered an embellishment of V with a dissonant fourth.