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What in the world does "supported range" mean?

Hello! Especially in the world of Kpop, the term "supported range" is used a lot when describing a singer's vocal abilities. In the video linked at the bottom, the uploader lists singers' "supported ranges" and claims how any note outside a singer's "supported range" is strain. However, I've seen many singers who supposedly have a "supported range" that tops out at A4 sing C5s with good support and technique. This begs the question: What in the world is "supported range"? If a singer can sing a note outside their supposed "supported range" with good support and technique, wouldn't that count as part of their "supported range"? Any help will be greatly appreciated!



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    DannyOc3anDannyOc3an 2.0 PRO, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 668
    edited June 2021
    Hi there,

    Actually I do find this video quite interesting and accurate with the concept of a strained note vs a supported note. The explanation at the beginning sounds mostly true in concept, although there's more into support than what it's explained there. Anyway the idea is close, for comparing it to strain purposes. As for the uploader's notes on the top of the video, and the notes the singer sings "outside his/her suported range" in every case, I do find them accurate as well. You can hear the difference in tone when they hit a note straining and when they hit them supporting. Although it takes some training to tell the difference.
    dThomas said:

    However, I've seen many singers who supposedly have a "supported range" that tops out at A4 sing C5s with good support and technique.

    To be honest I don't know if this appreciation on those singers "doing a C5 with good support and technique, while their supported range tops out at A4" is something you saw in another video from the same person who created this one, or is it something you are guessing based on your hearing. Judging from this video only, I do find accurate the description with the sound quality of each note in every single case, they all match. So I guess the person who did this one has a good ear. Maybe you could find another videos done by other people who are wrong.. Or, it may be that what you hear as a well supported note, in fact is a strained one.... It takes quite a while to be able to tell, since both sound similar, both hit the pitch, but are not the same at all..

    The supported notes are placed effortlessly in the back of a completely relaxed throat. They sound very ROUND and soaking with REVERB. They are so relaxed that the singer may relax into a vibrato easily and let it grow with resonance; all that power coming from their abdomen / diaphgram area instead of the throat or chest. While a strained note sounds pinchy, you could feel the tension in the neck in the sound, there's no way a relaxed vibrato could happen there (with resonance taking over) and the sound is shallower. The difference is subtle, but it's there. Most of them have a small percentage of a good support but a higher percentage of straining, which may complicate the judgment of the listener, since mostly this isn't an on/off thing, but a percentage depending on how much tension they have and how strong their support is. Also it depends on the singer's training for ALL the vowels, since they may sing a supported AH vowel in C5, but a strained EEH vowel in the same C5, because they haven't trained all the vowel placements to be well supported in every range.. there are a few factors in place.

    As a side note, at KTVA, this is trained from day 1, by learning an open throat and a strong support. And the range, or the "supported range", to use those terms, is not something static, but can be trained to grow higher with the proper workouts and quite some time...

    I'm pushing this to the top a bit so our fellow students could hear this difference and take it into consideration when singing or working out. I find this useful.
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