Heinz Bohlen

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Heinz Bohlen (born 1935 at Krefeld in the Lower Rhine region of Germany)[1][2] is a microwave electronics and communications engineer.[3]

He designed and described numerous non-octave musical scales (alternative musical tunings and temperaments), many based on combination tones, including the Bohlen–Pierce scale in 1972 (independently discovered by John R. Pierce in 1984, also a microwave electronics and communications engineer, six years later and Kees van Prooijen in 1978),[4] the A12 scale, and the 833 cents scale.

Bohlen began to question and investigate tunings in the early 1970s when a friend and graduate student at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater asked him to begin recording concerts at the school. Bohlen asked students why all their music used twelve-tone equal temperament, including the octave, and, dissatisfied with the answers, began to investigate alternate tunings.[1]


  1. ^ a b "Heinz Bohlen", Bohlen-Pierce-Conference.org.
  2. ^ BP2010 Heinz Bohlen Lecture (1of3) on YouTube
  3. ^ Hyoung-Gook Kim, Nicolas Moreau, Thomas Sikora (2006). MPEG-7 Audio and Beyond: Audio Content Indexing and Retrieval (Google eBook), p.180. ISBN 9780470093351.
  4. ^ "the two [sic] inventors of the bohlen-pierce scale", ZiaSpace.com.