PedagogyTradeoffs

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In answer to the question "When is learning a microtonal system of pitches harder than learning the 12-equal system? When is it easier?" in Pedagogy

This is a first draft. If you think I'm wrong, edit the page to say why.

Learning a microtonal system is harder than 12-equal where it's more complex and the harmonic context is not intuitively apparent. Which is most of the time (and sometimes so by definiton).

However, systems that are microtonal relative to 12-equal may be easier to learn in several ways:

  • The have fewer notes. For example, slendro, pelog, various other diatonics.
  • They are closer to natural harmonies: just intonation, microtemperament, and equivalents in alternative timbres.
  • They resonate more with the subject's culture than the western chromatic; depends on context, and becoming less likely.