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Does a tuner tune all notes?

Eminent Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 20
Topic starter  

When I was in band in high school, we had a little handheld tuner for tuning everyone quickly before a concert. For some reason, I think I remember there being several notes listed on the tuner. So does the tuner only tune certain notes? Like if I bought one for my acoustic, and had to tune everything down a half step, could I use the tuner?

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Reputable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 261

I'm pretty sure it depends on what type of tuner you buy, I've got one (I think it's a basic $15 Korg) it tune's sharp or flat, E-E

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Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5899

There are two types of tuner that are relevant to guitarists - the guitar tuner and the chromatic tuner.
The guitar tuner is designed to tune a guitar to standard tuning (EADGBE), but most allow you to nudge the pitches a couple of semitones up or down. This makes it very restrictive, particularly if you want to use alternate tunings.
The chromatic tuner will tune to any note, so there are no problems, either with standard tuning or any of even the most exotic tunings (assumint they're based on the Western system of music, of course).
However, neither of these types of tuner understand the concept of octaves - an "A" is an "A" to the tuner, no matter what the octave, so an "A" at 110Hz is treated the same as the "A" at 3520Hz. This can cause some confusion, when tuning, but don't worry, there is a standard tone (440Hz) which you can use to roughly tune the high E string at the 5th fret and get all the others close to tune, from there. Fine tuning is done with the tuner.

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Estimable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 178

I'd recommend a chromatic tuner. Many guitar tuners do both, tune to standard guitar tuning but also have a chromatic tuner. I think it can be useful considering that you can alter a guitar's standard tuning to suit different types of musical pieces; such as flat tuning, open tuning and drop D tuning.

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Noble Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 1136

go with a chromatic tuner

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Active Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 12

So you bought one of those junky YT-120 yamaha tuners huh

Well it is total junk, and it can only tune those 6 notes, so if you drap half a step, it will not work anymore, the flat and sharp indicators are to show whether the notes are too high or low, and it is very unprecise. Get a Korg Chromatic tuner.

Famed Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 2976

I have Boss TU-80 tuner / metronome

It has both Chromatic , Guitar and bass

Also can tune to different ( bb-bbb) < --- I don't touch that bit

Different pitch

It only cost me about $50 Australian


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