Meinl Sonic Energy's Planetary Tuned Gongs are handcrafted in Germany in the European gong-making tradition. Each gong is tuned to create the corresponding frequency using Hans Cousto's (The Cosmic Octave) calculations to match the frequencies of the sun, moon, and planets. The gong craftsmen manufacture these gongs to respond with exceptional sensitivity in all playing situations. The long hours spent handcrafting the metal gives them their intriguing tone. It's relaxing and atmospheric.
Made in Germany
Exact fine-tuning through hand-hammering
Printed logo and tuning info
Please note: This is a handcrafted instrument forged by heating the metal alloy to great temperatures, then hand hammering the surface to achieve a desired pitch and tone. Our handmade process makes each gong unique, with no two gongs having identical-looking surfaces. Variations in hand hammer patterns and coloration from the heating process will occur, and it's a testament to our highly intricate work that results in exquisite sound.
Gong mallets make a big difference in the sounds that you produce on your gong. Here is a quick lesson for you.
There are two different two different types of mallets. Mallets for striking or tapping your gong and friction mallets or flumies for rubbing across the surface of your gong.
There are two main variables to consider with gong mallets;SIZE and HARDNESS.
GONG MALLET SIZE: Small mallets played along the rim of your gong bring out the high notes, while large mallets played in centre of your gong showcase the lower notes. Here's why this happens. High sounds have tiny fast sound waves. Low sounds have big slow sound waves. If you tap your gong with a big mallet, you are muting the smaller sound waves so that you hear mostly the lowest tones. If you tap with a small mallet, you are allowing the high sounds to sing to their fullest so you hear those nice high sounds along with some of the lower tones.
GONG MALLET HARDNESS: If you have a hard mallet, the time spent on the surface of the gong is shorter. The mallet will give a sharp bright attack, like a call to attention. If you have a soft mallet, more time will be spent on the gong and a more gentle muted sound will occur.
Friction mallets are also known as flumies. Imagine your gong is silent. You slowly and gently rub a Bear Love friction mallet from the top of your gong to the bottom. As the friction mallet moves slowly downward, the friction of the ball being rubbed across the surface of your gong causes tiny vibrations to travel from the ball to the outer rim of your gong and back. At first, you don't hear any sound. There are too few vibrations in the gong to create a sound. As you progress slowly down the gong, you begin to feel tiny vibrations in the gong. Still there is no sound, only the feeling of the gong vibrating. When the gong has been awakened, beautiful sounds begin to blossom. Smooth rich overtones start washing over each other.
Using friction mallets of the front of a nice silver gong by Meinl or Paiste will leave marks, so if you want your gong to keep it's reflective finish, we suggest you use friction mallets on the back of your gong.
There are two variables that determine the pitch and quality of the sounds created by your flumies; MATERIAL and SIZE.
MATERIAL OF THE FLUMIE / FRICTION GONG MALLET
Flumies are basically a rubber ball on a stick. When we got our first gong, we scoured the dollar stores and toy stores looking for the perfect rubber ball. We played with a variety of textures and sizes of balls as well as different stick sizes and had some fun making squeaky sounds and whale sounds on our gongs. The sounds were fun, but not smooth and balanced. Then as we became more experienced gong players we invested in friction mallets from different companies. Each company has their own secret recipe for the type of rubber or silicone that they use.
Our favourite brand of friction mallets are Bear Love Flumies. We feel these are the most luxurious friction mallets. I describe them as the most expensive chocolate you can buy, with smooth rich flavours that melt away. Expensive, but worth every penny. Staying with my chocolate analogy, there are less expensive flumies on the market just as there are less expensive chocolates. Less expensive chocolate, like the Easter Chocolate you get at the dollar store is great. It works when you need a quick fix, but it just doesn't compare to a smooth rich luxury chocolate. The less expensive flumies have their place. They are fun but they just don't have that smooth rich sound like Bear Love flumies.
SIZE OF THE FLUMIE / FRICTION GONG MALLET
The smaller the mallet, the higher your tones will be, similar to whale sounds. The bigger the flumie, the lower the tones, like a low deep rumbling of outer space. Tiny mallets work on all sizes of gongs, while larger mallets are used for larger gongs that support the deeper tones. The numbers of the Bear Love flumies represent the size of the ball in cm. For instance, #4 has a 4 cm ball.