The Yaybahar

Off Topic: The Yaybahar is an acoustic instrument that has such a unique design that the resulting sounds almost seem like they must be electronic.

The Yaybahar is made from natural materials – wood, membrane, strings and coiled spring. The materials aren’t that unusual, but the shape and the way long springs are used to connect resonating bodies results in a wide variety of sound possibilities.

More details here.

Check out the video and let us know what you think of it!

via Surachai

38 thoughts on “The Yaybahar

          1. “What you hear in this performance is captured in realtime without any additional effects and with no post audio processing.”

    1. That ‘digital delay’ you think you are hearing is the giant springs. Springs used to be used a lot for reverb/delay effects, but these are a lot bigger than the ones normally used.

      1. As someone who has worked extensively both with large springs and devices very much like that, they don’t create distinct repeats of all sounds with a steady feedback & decay. Oh and we’ve all worked with delays.

        There’s a delay on there. No question. And Chris, it may say that, but they are lying.

        1. Spring Reverb tanks are tiny compared to this. If you’ve ever slowed down playback of natural room reverb, you’ll hear distinct slapback echoes and not a smooth reverberation.

          With a much longer spring, those reverberation periods become distinct repeats. With a really long spring, the echo could take a few seconds to bounce back, and it would have a natural filtered decay.

        2. Here’s what the creator says about this:

          “The vibrations from the strings are transmitted via the coiled springs to the frame drums. These vibrations are turned into sound by the membranes which echo back and forth on the coiled springs.”

          So what you are hearing is the sound traveling across the spring, vibrating the membranes (which act like speakers), then reflecting, traveling back and forth on the spring and vibrating the membrane again. It will be softer each time, because the impulse has lost energy.

            1. Stub – I understand your skepticism completely. I felt the same way the first time I heard a glass harmonica and bowed cymbals. I couldn’t believe that an acoustic instrument to make sounds like that!

    1. LOL!

      No, but it can obviously do the opposit, total relaxation :))
      I love the idea! Hope it leads to a new type of smaller acoustic instrument being invented, so everyone can enjoy it in their homes with just as amazing sound and flexibility 🙂

  1. This is like a pro model Zube Tube [Google it]. I had a Zube Tube in my studio for decades. Amazing sounds, basically a non-electric spring reverb. That may be why you think you head a delay in there.

  2. Everything after 02:00 is just amazing! If this made its way onto an album, I would listen to that album—nay, I would blast that album until my neighbours are convinced I’m a wizard. I will be hated, yet feared.

  3. Beautiful! Both view and sound.
    Also like the little stand for the mic. Somebody likes to do his woodwork properly!

    There’s more of his work at

  4. Worth noting that sound effects such as the laser blasts in Star Wars were created by recording hammer pings on high tension wires, and playing them back at various tape speeds. Metal springs, sheets, and bowls can produce weird sounds.

    If you’ve ever been near a lightning rod when there was a strike, you’ll be looking around for the ARP-2600 hidden in the bushes.

  5. The gate to the bin store at my work acts like a ‘spring’ reverb… makes me smile every time I empty the bins… makes me want to empty the bins even 😀

    1. I think he used some kind of found objects.
      Any sheet metal strip will do the basic job, but different metals will give different nuances. (copper vs steel would be interesting)
      Also in his other video, he has built using lots of springs.
      Just guessing, springs give more complex sound since soundwaves travel 3 paths:
      – around the loops (longer distance, more delay)
      – through the hollow pseudo-rod macro shape,
      – with added echoes inside the rod.

  6. I imagine this is what Nikola Tesla did to unwind from a hard day of teleporting magicians and bending lightning to his will.

Leave a Reply