Guitars are most often constructed from wood. Whether it’s an acoustic guitar with a large open cavity or a solid body electric, there’s usually a lot of wood used in construction. However, [Mattias Krantz] shows us that alternative construction methods are entirely possible, by building your own balloon guitar.
The balloon guitar still has a neck, bridge and strings like the others. However, instead of the resonant cavity of an acoustic guitar, it is planned to install a large balloon instead. It’s actually quite interesting to watch – with the balloon installed, the guitar delivers a lot more volume than when played with no resonant cavity at all.
The guitar was actually designed to test whether replacing the air in the balloon with helium would change the pitch of the sound. Of course, a guitar’s pitch comes from the tension on the vibrating strings, so changing the gas in the resonant cavity doesn’t affect it directly. Instead, much like inhaling helium to affect the human voice, the change is in the timbre of the sound, not the fundamental pitch itself. Sounds like the guitar has been given a subtle treble boost.
It’s a fun build and shows us that it’s possible to build musical instruments in many ways, not just using traditional techniques. If you want to continue playing with the sound of your guitar, consider turning to the world of machine learning.