Tuning a 2nd Gen Hang

Today I had the pleasure of tuning a second generation Hang made by PanART.  Dan Price (check out his website, art, and music) acquired this treasure knowing that it would need to be tuned, and I’m glad he asked me!

Because of my work in studying the specific tuning methods of PanART over the last couple of years, I was confident that I could get this special sound sculpture sounding the way it did when it was originally made.

It had been quite some time since I’ve had the opportunity to sit down and really analyze a second generation Hang.  Most Hang tuning work is for the classic “first gens”, since there were over four thousand of them made.  For reference, less than nine-hundred second generation Hangs were made. 

When comparing the tonefields of the first gen and second gen Hanghang (plural for Hang), the evolution of the note shaping is very evident.  First gens still have some more defined boarders at times, and the true anticlastic structure isn’t always there.  Perhaps this is due to people improperly tuning them, or maybe PanART themselves were still practicing their own tuning technique and the consistency simply wasn’t there yet.  After all, they were REALLY pumping the first gens out, so I wouldn’t blame them.

The 2nd Gen Hang Vs. The Iskra

It was fun to compare this second gen with my most recent Iskra handpans.  The smoothness of the borders, the springy feel to the tonefields, and the overall shape of the tonefields was nearly identical.  Over the years I’ve wondered if I was ‘getting it right’ in regards to practicing these new and unique tuning methods, and I’m more confident now in saying that I’ve been on the right track.

Most of the work involved bringing dynamic stability back into the tonefields, along with the general adjustments of the tonefield frequencies.  I’m happy with the result so far, so it’s time to let it sit around for a day or two to see how it takes the tuning.  After that, it will be sent back to Dan!

I also ended up making a video of this tuning process which may be released in the near future, so keep an eye out!

For now, here is a before and after tuning video of this second generation Hang.

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