Younha’s Vocal Analysis


Vocal Range

C#3 ~ C6 (2 Octaves, 5 notes and 1 semitone)

Supported Range

A3/Bb3 ~ E5/F5

Voice Type

Light Lyric Soprano


  • Resonance has always been consistent
  • Resonance is clean and very amplified in size
  • Improvement has been consistent and very noticeable from debut until now
  • Support has improved considerably, as well as her mixed voice
  • Able to mix with a balanced mix up to A5
  • Mixed voice is consistent up until E5/F5
  • Supports her lower range down to Bb3/A3
  • Falsetto can be relaxed up to F#5 and has shown improvement in projection
  • Pitch has shown improvement over the years
  • Good usage of dynamics and breath control in general
  • Good control of mixing
  • Able to produce a connected head voice below F5
  • Produces a steady healthy vibrato consistently


  • Minor pitch issues are still frequent in almost all her performances
  • Voice isn’t very agile, incapable of doing mid-speed runs
  • Falsetto is still disconnected and becomes tense with glottal tension above F#5
  • Notes above E5/F5 lack consistency, become unevenly mixed and strained
  • Notes below Bb3/A3 are generally very airy
  • Support in the lower range is almost inexistent and has not been improved
  • Nasality can happen on and off
  • Stamina issues can be noticeable
  • Head voice is inconsistent and only happens below F5


  • Lower register: Very underdeveloped register. Her lower chest voice notes are almost always very quiet, very airy and lack any sort of true support. Tone is kept below Bb3/A3 down to above G3. Below that, the vocal cords barely come together and the support is gone.
  • Mixed register: Huge improvement over the years, mixed voice has become more balanced, stronger in tone, resonance is often present in the voice within the G4 ~ F5 range and the mixed voice is much more balance.
  • Upper register: Head voice has improved and is now a usable register up until about E5, above that the voice turns into a nasal falsetto and eventually tension creeps in starting on G5 and above, mostly coming from a closed throat and glottal tension.


As a light lyric Soprano, Younha has more of an ease with her voice being able to not only jump around notes without as much weight carrying through and slowing down her voice, but also due to her bright and balanced voice, she has even more ease with a better coordination of the vocal cords. Although ease is present, the actual accuracy of runs and the overall stability of pitch isn’t as consistent as it could be. When it comes to vocal runs, Younha has shown that she has the necessary separation of notes when doing them at a slow speed, such as in “As Time Goes By“, but as she increases the speed or does more vocally challenging runs, the overall pitch can be easily lost such as in “If I Ain’t Got You” or “Love On Top“, showing that Younha has the basic knowledge and muscle memory necessary to create vocal runs but hasn’t worked to further develop the agility of her voice and actually use the natural lightness she has to her advantage.

Overall analysis

One of Korea’s gems, Younha debuted years ago first starting her career in Japan as she was more interested in the Japanese market at first. Coming back to Korea, she was able to make a name for herself because not only was she a solo female act who had a rock image, she was also young and could carry herself professionally through her ability to sing, play piano and compose. Throughout the years, Younha showed her competence as a vocalist by steadily improving her instrument and allowing for its potential to be achieved. Her voice was always naturally developed in certain areas that allowed her to stay in an upper mixed voice tessitura, around E5 and F5, which hinted at her being a Soprano, which due to the size of her instrument and the overall timbre, would more likely fall under the Light Lyric Soprano fach.

The lower part of her range, as a Soprano, is quite extensive and extends down to C#3 in “거위의 꿈“. However so, even though the extension is quite low, the overall support in her lower range is almost inexistent. Even early on in her career, her tone was always quite bright and well placed in her voice within the fourth octave, but a clear drop in projection would happen as she’d descend below Bb3 into the rest of the third octave. Notes as low as A3 may at times show support, as heard in “Falling Slowly” and the support becomes more forward from Bb3 and above, as heard in “인생을” and “Viva La Vida“. As she descends below A3, however, the overall tone of her voice starts to become muffled and airy, losing support around G#3 and G3, such as in “우리 달라졌을까” and “오늘 헤어졌어요“. The tone of her voice is ultimately gone and replaced with an airy undertone and a weak sense of pitch below G3. The overall stability of her lower range also is lacking due to the lack of support and connection of the vocal cords, causing the excessive air to make her voice shake.

The highlight of Younha’s voice is where a Soprano’s tessitura naturally lies, above C4 up to F5, where her mixed voice had always been clean and easily accessed. Her support was not always present in the fifth octave, however, although good placement and resonance have always been a part of Younha’s singing. Even early on in her career, she was capable of supporting her voice and lifting her soft palate to produce a full and clean overall resonant sound in the fourth octave, such as the B4’s in “Audition (Time To Rock)” and  “비밀번호 486“, although the C#5’s, E5’s and F5’s in these songs would show throat tension and tightness. The support and resonance in the fifth octave, however, only started happening as she aged and seemed to take better care of her overall vocal technique. In 2009, in performances of “오늘 헤어졌어요“, improvement could be heard in Younha’s support and placement in the fifth octave, although tension was still present.

It wasn’t until the 2011 and 2012 that her voice started to really settle in the fifth octave and the overall tone of her voice became cleaner and more present, with an amplified resonance and support. Comparing her 2009 performance to a 2012 performance of “오늘 헤어졌어요“, where her D5 in the bridge would sound slightly stuck in the back of her throat, a clear difference in projection and ease can be heard through the years. Not only that, but comparing the upper part of Younha’s range, where her mixing improved considerably allowing for her to not only mix G5’s in “너뿐인 나를” much better than she used to when she performed “Since U Been Gone“, but also now she can stay in a much higher tessitura with better consistency than many of her Soprano peers. In 2012, consistency was still an issue for her and staying with an open throat throughout performances still would seem like a challenge for her, such as in “Summer Time” and “날 울리지마“. The final stage of Younha’s improvement came around 2013 and 2014, where her voice settled around E5/F5 with consistent resonance and a relaxed evened out bright mix, where her voice shows an ability to stay in a high tessitura without losing power, such as in “볽은 노을“, compared to the 2012 performance of the same song, although due to lack of stamina pitch and precision can often be lost in the upper range, such as in “One Fine Day“, as well as strain happening above F5.

Another register where some improvement, even if little, has been noticeable in Younha’s voice is the head voice register. Early on in her career, Younha would show less of this register and not venture into the higher part of her voice unless it would serve a dynamic purpose, although the projection of her voice would inevitably be lost as she did. With the years, Younha’s voice was able to create a much more connected head voice due to her skill in mixing, where she’s able to transition well from her mixed voice into a lightly mixed voice that eventually becomes a head voice, such as in “소나기” and “RUN“. Although a connected head voice is produced within her supported range, above the range where she controls her mixed voice, not only does her mixed voice become headier but also her head voice turns into a nasally placed falsetto. This falsetto voice can still retain a relaxed sound up to F#5, but as heard in “Seasons of Love” and”Love On Top“, the voice becomes tighter with some glottal tension as she approaches the rest of her falsetto range above F#5, peaking at C6 with a slightly pushed and tense tight sound in her falsetto, placed more heavily in her nose than truly in her head.

Younha is musically a very sensitive vocalist, who can carry through a song with the right amount of control of dynamics, styling and resonance when necessary. She can go from a very light and soft tone, to a full and resonant vibrant sound within one sound, as well control her mixing to deliver the right amount of emotional content within a song. Not only is her singing technique steadily better, her overall sound is controlled and always comes accompanied of a healthy even vibrato. The first of the two biggest issues with Younha’s voice is that even after all the improvement she’s had, intonation and stamina still seem to be a problem for her. Oftentimes Younha will become pitchy and lose the key center of a song when singing in a high tessitura, such as in “바다아이“, or when singing below her supported lower range, such as in “기다려줘“. The other issue with her voice is that apart from a naturally sensitive ear for music with attention to musical delivery, her only strength lies in her mixed voice and how developed and controlled it is. Although an important part of the voice, the overall connection of all registers within Younha’s voice is almost non-existent due to her neglecting every single register development and only focusing on her mixed range.

As a vocalist and musician, Younha is truly worthy of respect. Not only has she shown work ethic with her singing ability and technique, but she has consistently been able to musically adapt to the current music industry, produce and write her repertoire accordingly to her vocal skill, as well as being able to stay relevant and true to herself as an artist. One can only expect that Younha will keep improving her vocal technique as the years go by considering her huge improvement since her debut. For the future, her main focus should be on developing the rest of her thyroarytenoid muscles and her cricothyroid muscles to isolate the head and chest voice registers separately and even out the development of her voice as a whole, so that she will be able to better control her pitch, stamina, as well as create a balanced instrument.


As a composer and musician, Younha has a natural ear for musical changes, as well as showing that she knows her voice and respects her vocal condition. She not only is able to add subtle melodic changes, such as in”거위의 꿈“, and change the style of her singing depending on what she sings, such as her passion for rock songs, but also her ear is sensitive enough to guide her and let her stay in key even if pitch may become wobbly with certain musical changes. One example of this would be the two different performances of “Seasons of Love“, where in one she does not attempt the C6 originally present in the song, but instead sings A5 and accepts the limitations within her voice at that particular day, but in another performance she allows her voice to take the risk and tackle the original C6 of the song, as well as a simplified version of the runs within the song.


Competent to Good Vocalist

Vocal Range Video(s)

Video by: gangertae (Pedro_0508)

Analyzed by Ahmin (Kitsunemale)

About ahmin3

kitsunemale from YouTube, AhMin33 from Twitter and Ahmin from OneHallyu!

0 thoughts on “Younha’s Vocal Analysis

  1. oh luna is better than her. Younhwa, Eunji ,who is the best.
    Sorry if i bother you, but want to know Leona lewis and kelly clarkson.
    Hope you soon ahmin cute


    1. She’s not better, Younha is the strongest of the 3. Leona Lewis? She’s barely even Above Average, Kelly Clarkson I believe should be good.


      1. Hello Ahmin, I have to tell you I’ve been reppin’ your blog everyday. I’m in a study program and people ask me what is the one thing I do everyday? I say ”Eat food and read articles about singing” ”What articles?” ”My teacher Ahmin writes a super blog full of info about the voice and the genre whose singers he’s analyzing: Kpop. ” They go like: ”What?…..(Random Babble)” And If they like to sing and / or like Kpop and don’t seem demonic, I show them the blog. So far so good. Three people I met love your work. Bgbang, Cassie, and JYJ fangirls. They go like: damn, it’s true. Great work Ahmin, I’ll keep reppin’. Sending support…. Be brave against the loony fans, I blame the hormones.


      2. “Don’t seem demonic” dead. LOLOL You’re amazing, thank you so much for this. You’re doing me a favor without me even asking you, you’re truly a sweetheart thank you so so much! We from the blog thank you.


      3. No, on the contrary, thanks to you and the crew. I was a weak vocalist before this blog. A few months of fixing bad habits, and bam, i’m a competent vocalist.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m not sure yet but I’m thinking Solar would be an Above Average to Competent vocalist as well as Wendy. Or she would just be Above Average.


  2. Good analysis as usual! By the way, do you guys familiar with jessie j? What is her ranking based on this blog’s criteria? Thanks!


      1. Thank you, I liked the second and third video, because I heard many resonant C5’s and supported C#5’s on the second one, but also live resonance on the third one. Jessie J’s supported range is maybe G3 or A3 ~ C5/C#5, with agility. She’d at least be an Above Average vocalist I would say.


  3. Sorry for asking this because it doesn’t related to Kpop Industry. I just want to know what the highest note on this video ? I try to guess the note but I not sure.


      1. What do you mean by too heady ?? Do you think she have a great voice ? Thanks for the notes. I thought 2:25/3:42 it’s already C6 and above. Hahaha, lol. Btw, do you believe the note in Adobe Audition ?


    1. Adira Suhaimi (B2-G#5 – maybe), one of best female singer in Malaysia. Can you ranking her based on this blog’s criteria? And can you write the Low – Chest/Belted – Head/Falsetto each of the video? Thanks.. I will appreciate your works


  4. I know this question has nothing to do with Younha, but I am VERY curious about 9muses’ Hyuna’s vocal strenghts. Can you listen to these clips, analyse them a bit and tell a bit about it😦 PLEASE; I WOULD BE FOREVER GRATEFUL.

    [Hyuna’s the girl in purple shorts]


    1. Could you tell me who’s who? The first video none of them stand out to me as being specially good but some of them have pretty bad vocal habits that make them sound slightly nasty, for lack of a better word. It’s almost stylistic but like watching News, the one with the white dress often sounds really closed and whiny, 1:47 the one with pink dress really strained that E5, 1:58 she does lots of stylistic cracks, places her voice in her nose a lot.. 2:14 the one with the flower in her head, she has some support but her throat isn’t nearly opened enough and it’s just a B4. Hyuna isn’t standing out to me much at all either. I really like the overall atmosphere of this live performance. The one with the flower in her head is pretty nasal too, I’m watching the last performance. The white dress girl is very nasal and she can’t project her low notes well, they’re unstable and a bit too airy. 1:24 really tight C5, but the vowel was closed. The pink ..oh wait 1:42 she called her Hyemi? Okay then Hyemi sounds really nasal too, her low notes aren’t supported and are even less projected than the white dress one. Hyuna has the most forward voice, she lowered her larynx and had some muscle constriction on her lower notes, she was doing that around 2:00 and 2:08, Hyemi starts singing the chorus and she sounds pretty nasal again. 2:27 that transition into falsetto was a bit sloppy for Hyuna, she was also pretty nasal and lacked stability on her 2:30 on her C5’s and other upper fourth octave notes. 2:55 lots of strain on that D5 for Hyemi. 3:16 really heady and tight sound with a high larynx for Hyuna… yeah I hear barely any strengths, I mean apart from general support at most these girls would be rated as average but I’m not even sure I’d rate them all as average.


      1. Sure! The girl with the flower is Sera (Former main vocalist) – The one in the pink dress is Hyemi (Main vocalist) – Hyuna, well; you know who she is haha (Lead vocalist) – The one in the white dress is Kyungri (Lead vocalist). Judging by these performances, who do you think is the best and worst vocalist out of the four?

        Hyemi is known for straining a lot, and weirdly she’s always the one hitting high notes and belted notes. She is actually considered to be the second best singer in the group (after Sera), but I strongly disagree.


      2. I disagree as well because to be honest, Hyemi might be their best vocalist. Serra was quite weak overall, Hyuna isn’t too bad either, to be honest they’re all kind of the same, Kyungri stands out as the worst to me, Serra isn’t too far ahead of her, Hyemi isn’t bad but she isn’t good. They’re average at most honestly.


      3. Wow, I thought Hyemi would be one of the weakest, because, you know, MR Removed audios show how she runs out of breathe when singing quite often and how unstable her voice can be sometimes. But I’m gonna trust you since you’re the one who knows about this heh, and one more thing, would you rank Hyuna as average or lower?

        They released their newest MV a few hours ago! Hope you listen to it and support them ♡ They’re finally gaining recognition. Once again, thank you for the quick analysis – you’re great! ♡♡♡♡♡.


      4. Well I’m not that familiar with them, there’s honestly barely a difference and I’m just judged based on performances from one specific day. Hyuna is at best average or weak to average from what I’ve seen. I like their song News a lot haha no problem!


  5. Hello! I was wondering if you wouldn’t mind taking a quick look at BTOB? They’ve been getting good comments about their singing lately and I kinda want to know if the hype is justified.

    The first one who sings is Eunkwang (Main Vocalist) followed by Changsub (Lead) at 1:08. Sungjae (Sub Vocal) takes the lead at 1:30, and then the last singer is Hyunsik (Lead) at 2:19.

    I know that you guys are super busy so I understand if you can’t, but I’m just super curious so I had to try🙂 Thank you for reading!


    1. I have heard more than a few performances from BtoB so far but I have not seen this first video that you showed me. I can already tell you I have no intentions of analyzing Changsub but I believe I’ll analyze the other three. Changsub isn’t bad, he just is a natural tenor so he has a naturally high range but for some reason I see Hyunshik and Sungjae, the baritones, taking many more higher lines and parts than him. Eunkwang is by far the strongest vocalist of them all, Changsub is often tiny in sound, nasal and a bit nasal. His support is weak, so is Hyunshik’s and Sungjae’s to an extent in comparison to Eunkwang but in general they have nice support and Sungjae has good placement sometimes, I’m curious to analyze the baritones since I’ve yet to analyze any. ^ ^


      1. Thank you for the quick reply~ I personally really like Sungjae’s tone a lot, so I do hope you’ll continue with a full analysis some other time🙂

        Last question: at a cursory glance, where would you say they rank as vocalists?


      2. Eunkwang is Above Average, Sungjae could be Above Average as a baritone or lower, I’m not sure. Changsub is average. Hyunshik is average or higher.


  6. Admin, i want to ask you. RV Wendy, G-friend Yuju or Lovelyz Jin? And i’m confused of Lovelyz main vocal, is Jin or Kei? Thank you~


    1. I don’t know who the main vocal of Lovelyz is because like they’re I’m not their company lol Kei and Jin.. I believe Kei is a stronger vocalist by a little bit but Wendy is CONSIDERABLY better and Yuju is also quite a bit better than Wendy. Lovelyz’ vocalists are pretty average.


      1. “I believe Kei is a stronger vocalist by a little bit but Wendy is CONSIDERABLY better and Yuju is also quite a bit better than Wendy.” Oh.. acho que as coisas inverteram, atualmente Yuju se encontra abaixo de Wendy, né? Eu vi em uma análise onde você fala que Wendy é melhor do que Taeyeon, então.. se Yuju é melhor que Wendy, isso a torna melhor que Taeyeon? Achei que Yuju fosse Average ou Above average, mas ela me parece competent, ou Competent to Good? Obrigado.


      2. A Yuju teve melhores monentos acima de D5, mas ela é inconsistente por isso que não se deve levar em consideração comentários porque eles não são análises, só especulações.


    1. She really sounds pretty throaty when she sings, most of her sound is heavily based on a more shout-like push through her throat than a nice relaxed and supported sound. The sound of her voice can be sort of placed in her nose but the overall quality of tone just sounds slightly pushed throughout even though the range isn’t exactly that challenging nor high/low. Her pitch is pretty good and her breathing isn’t bad, like her actual connection of notes isn’t bad either.


      1. So she isn’t that bad after all. Also, can you watch this performance? How is the overall performance? Oh, and can I ask why Bom sounds like she’s “struggling” in the chorus while Minzy and CL sound way more relaxed when singing the second part of the chorus.


      2. CL is not bad as a vocalist and/or singer, she’s just not anything out of the ordinary either. She can sing a song in tune within a comfortable octave, she can’t handle vocally chalenging songs. I’ve seen this video before, but let me see. If you have read the analyses for both Minzy and Bom, you’d remember that it was mentioned Bom has issues with breathing and keeping a comfortable legato line. Due to that, her singing can often sound chopped up, which happens in this song a lot, because of that she also has lots of throat tension when she sings high so she sounds tight when she gets higher in range like 1:55, that note and 2:03. Minzy on the other hand has much more stability and support, so even though she might have tension on those notes, she can connect her singing better with a more steady breath support and control. As for CL, she’s still very throaty and nasal when she sings, she pushes her voice out a lot when singing but her breathing/pitch and legato are more steady.


  7. Hello~ Admin, do you know Jo Hyuna of Urban Zakapa? Do you think she’s good vocalist? And how about BTS Jimin and Jungkook? How do you rating them? Um, thank you before hehe😀


      1. Yes in other words Jungkook has better vocal technique than Jimin from what I’ve seen without a doubt.


  8. Hi! I really liked this analysis, since it was sort of interesting seeing how someone who only has one well-developed register can be a competent to good vocalist! I always love reading these, the analysis’ are so well detailed and thorough. As someone who’s trying to become a better vocalist myself, I was wondering why my voice gets really strained and breaks easily in my upper mix. (I know it’s pretty common among vocalists to have strain in the upper mix). What are some tips on fixing the strain and making my mix more balanced/healthy. Thank you very much!


    1. Have you watched the video I made for developing the mixed voice? There are a couple of tips there. If it’s not enough, you can ask for me. As for Younha, she just has SUCH a developed register that it gives her a really big boost, but it’s only as far as it could take her.


    1. That low note is an A3, which is within her supported range. ^ ^ That was a very nice vocal performance btw, within her supported range! ^ ^ Sounded really strong, controlled and pretty.


  9. thank youuuu… i love younha so much and yeah, her lack of stamina is really noticeable… sometimes it can be basked as “lost in emotion” though xD what i really like about younha’s singing is she always carry the song’s lyric perfectly. her upper register has improved significantly indeed. here another example of one of my fav song “in my dreams”:
    1. 2010:
    2. 2012:

    once again, thank you for your analysis on my fav singer❤❤❤


  10. Hi, I really hv limited knowledge about vocals before finding out your site through Younha, it is fascinating how much effort you pay to build up this collection of vocal analysis.
    Also, younha ‘s ‘just the way you are’ has eventually introduced me to another singer called Jung joon young, he mainly sing rock- ballad or grunge rock and debuts through tv audition. I really love his music style and husk voice in baseline, but always think that his vocal range is kind of limited , though his high notes seems to get better (?)over the years. I am curious about how you think about him as a vocalist, here are some of the clips two from his predebute performances, and some recently published songs.
    Becoming dust (oh roy kim is great too , this is their battle on the audition show)

    Immortal songs performances over the years

    His new song on sketchbook


    1. Yknow what’s funny? I was just listening to Password 486. lol Jung Joon young is a baritone, there’s nothing necessarily limited about his vocal range. He tend to somewhat lower his larynx when singing lower even in the third octave, he becomes throaty above E4. But he can support his voice even though he sacrifices a lot of technique for his style. He’s a baritone btw.


      1. Thx for replying me :)so he is a baritone haha as I hv said I really don’t know much about vocals, you said he sacrifice a lot of technique for the style, I don’t really understand that, but I do notice that he LOVES shouting in his performance (rocker style?)


    1. Let’s not overreact, there’s nothing here that indicates a regression in skill at all. She might be tired yes. She sounds fine for the most part.


  11. I have to give this blog a lot of thanks for introducing me to Younha. She’s all over my homework playlist now lol.
    Kind of a pointless question, but how close is she to Good? I know she’s still very highly rated, but for some reason I thought she was Good this whole time. Oops lol.


    1. Well her problem is all she has is a mix and some other aspects of her singing are inconsistent, like her head voice, her lower range, and her pitch. She just needs to explore her voice a bit more.


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