Gayaki (vocal) model: This model is based on melodic continuity and the dominance of the melodic element over the rhythmic element.
Rudra vinaltantakara model: In this model, plucking of the strings serves as the mode of sound activation. The act of r lucking creates an element of melodic discontinuity as well as rhythm. Though within limits, the tantakara model offers a large range of stylistic and idiomatic options in terms of the balance between the melodic and rhythmic elements.
Pakhawaja or tala-vadya model: In this model, sound activation occurs through the striking of the surface of the instrument, and is intended to create rhythmic patterns. The melodic content of its music, if any, is incidental and limited.
The three main models, therefore, are: the music of melodic continuity, the music of melodic discontinuity, and the music of rhythm. Until recently, the wind and bow instruments did not have either a significant solo presence or stature in art-music. Hence, they cannot be said to have an independent music-making model that has evolved as a tradition.
A fourth, and hybrid, model developed as a combination of the second and third models. This model arose from the music of the saroda's ancestor, the rababa. The rababa is a plucked instrument, but has a resonator covered with animal skin, which gives it an acoustic facet akin to a tala-vadya. The Kabuii rababa came to India with pathana soldiers, who played martial tunes on it. These features encouraged a percussive-melodic model of music making in which the rhythmic element dominates the melodic element.