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Tuning

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rparker
(@rparker)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5480
Topic starter  

So folks, I might have asked this before and maybe years and years ago. If redundant, I apoligize.

When I use an electronic tuner, tghere seems to be, what might be, a gray area. One one of my tuners, three seems to be a range of sorts. Like littkle arrows on one of them. To me it says that it.s almost in tune. Keeping a dutifully repetetive stting pluck I always get it to be one exact dead center. I do not mind doing this in the least bit. Although not tuning the guitar 100% of the time seems to ellude me abd ny laziness, I still tune almost every time.

So, my question is simply asked: Does the indicator needle need to be hovering top dead center or will betting it with that little tiny range suffice. I do know that the Strat needed as dead on as possible. The rest of them do sound decent, but then again, my low tone hearing ain't squat, Some have heard my Johnny Cash-like vocals. I hear the higher pitched portion of all that. Until I heard my recorded voice, I thought my voice to be Neil Young like (tonewise) or maybe Gilmour.

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


   
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fibaz
(@fibaz)
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Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 38
 

Whichever sounds better to you boss. as long as when i strike the note and for at least 2 seconds of duration is in the middle then I am good. All in all, I rather be a bit flat than a bit sharp. If I tune to where it "sits" dead on the green, when I play chords or a little harder it goes sharp quickly. Mileage may vary friend.


   
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Ricochet
(@ricochet)
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The note is always sharper right after the note's plucked, so unless what you're playing mostly consists of long sustained notes you want to concentrate on having it in tune shortly after the attack.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


   
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TRGuitar
(@trguitar)
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I've found I actually use a combination of my tuner and my ear. Close is only good enough if the ears say it is in tune. I often have the needle right on and it doesn't sound right so I do it again til it does. I was just thinking the other day when it happened, "I'm using this tuner why?" :lol:

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grow big, wear glasses if you need 'em."
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rparker
(@rparker)
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Topic starter  

Speaking of tuners's my trusty Korg bit the dust. It was going along fine until one day it was dead. Changed batteries, worked, made sure was off and it was dead withon two days. Repeated just in case i didn't turn it off like I remembered doing. Even showed my wife it was off. Next afternoon, dead. Same mega pack of batterries lasting forever in other stuff including tuners. Oh well. Glad thay're not 'spensive. Oh, and MF has exactly 94 different tuners for sale. http://accessories.musiciansfriend.com/navigation/tuners-practice-performance?N=100001+330549 :)
If I tune to where it "sits" dead on the green, when I play chords or a little harder it goes sharp quickly.
Man, this is especially true for me if I put a capo on. Guitars are all intonated, but I have to use a screw-type capo to not be 1/4 step sharp. Also does it when I do an open A chord.
The note is always sharper right after the note's plucked,
Hmmmmm, I always see the needle (or cursor) sort of settle on dead center. Perhaps an adjustment to my thinking based on this and what Fibaz said. Worth a try. Might be able to use one of my capos again. I think I'll try tuning to just shy of the spike's peak.
I've found I actually use a combination of my tuner and my ear.....
I wish I could. I need to do some training. Maybe after the current project. Wait, the next project is learning the fret board note for note. Further on down the list. :)

I do have a ritual. When I tune a guitar and then go through my chants and bat sacrifice, I play three open chords. D-C-G. Seems to pick out the one that is slightly off center after all the tuning.

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


   
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Ande
 Ande
(@ande)
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Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 652
 

And how close is close enough depends on a lot of factors.

I don't often use the tuner if playing alone- just get it "to ear" as long as the strings are tuned to each other, the intervals are going to be right, and if the whole thing is a little flat, or sharp...my ear don't care, and nobody else is listening.

Obviously, playing with others, we either use the tuner and get as close as we can (if somebody remembered to bring the tuner) or spend a few minutes ALL tuning up together, so that all the guitars are tuned to each other.

If I'm using backing tracks or recordings, then it matters.

But how close also depends on how sensitive your tuner is- I often use the tuner on my multieffects unit. It's not too great, so if the light isn't ALL green in the middle, it's out of tune to the point you can hear it. But with my Korg chromatic tuner, getting them all right on takes so long I rarely bother. Near is as near as I can hear.

Best,
Ande


   
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Ricochet
(@ricochet)
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Tuners vary widely in their sensitivity and response time.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


   
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boxboy
(@boxboy)
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Joined: 16 years ago
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To Ric's point, I just tried tuning with 2 digital tuners open at the same time: the one built into my DAW Logic Express and the one built into the plug in Guitar Rig. Sensitivity and response to the exact same input are very different.
They both end up settling on a similar value after initial decay, but getting there...the Logic tuner is 'hyper', vacillating up and down, with an immediate, pronounced 'sharp' value at the initial strike of the string, then a steep drop off (yikes! we're flat!) before the rebound. It never does seem to fully make up its mind. :lol:
The GR one is more sedate and I use it more often. Like TR, I get it close and then fine tune it based on what I hear.
:)

Don


   
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Vic Lewis VL
(@vic-lewis-vl)
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A useful tip I got for tuning electric guitars - p/u selector to bridge p/u, volume to max. My tuner's built in to my amp - the Cube 30 - and it's pretty good. Problem I have is tuning the acoustic in....left my Korg Tuner (which I'll recommend to anyone who'll listen, they're fairly cheap and pretty close. Close enough for rock'n'roll, anyway.) at Scrybe's house after the last Merseyside jam. So I've been tuning by ear - tune the electric in first with the Cube tuner, then tune the acoustic to the electric. Usually tune the bottom E string in....then use harmonics.

Get one string in concert pitch, you can tune the rest of them in - it'll take time, and it'll take practise. Then again, doesn't everything about guitar take time and practise? Invest the time, reap the rewards.....

:D :D :D

Vic

"Sometimes the beauty of music can help us all find strength to deal with all the curves life can throw us." (D. Hodge.)


   
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jwmartin
(@jwmartin)
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A useful tip I got for tuning electric guitars - p/u selector to bridge p/u, volume to max.

To add to that tip... turn your tone pot all the way down and pluck the string at the 12th fret. You get less harmonics so it cuts down on the needle jumping back and forth.

Bass player for Undercover


   
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Cat
 Cat
(@cat)
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Ahhh...tuning...my least favourite subject!

Ya ain't gonna get it dead on. Leave the strings where they "swim a little"...or "shimmer" I calls it! I can't it explain it any beddern' that.

Cat

"Feel what you play...play what you feel!"


   
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Ande
 Ande
(@ande)
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Joined: 15 years ago
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I had heard that you should use the neck pickup, not the bridge, because it's closer to the center of the string's travel.

Also had heard that plucking on the twelfth fret gets a truer result.

I don't believe either, though. What does it matter if it is PERFECTLY in tune plucking on the twelfth fret, when I'm not gonna play it there? I tend to tune using the pickup or pickup combination I'm about to use, and to pluck the strings as much like I will when playing as I can, usually around the middle pickup, cause that's where my picking hand really goes.

Best,
Ande


   
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greybeard
(@greybeard)
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The point about plucking at the 12th fret is that it emphasises the 1st harmonic, they say.

As for using the bridge pickup, I'd think that it would emphasise the higher harmonics, if anything, being so far away from the centre of the string, where the first harmonic is.

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jwmartin
(@jwmartin)
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That's what I was talking about w/ turning the tone down and plucking the 12th fret. It's not going to get it "more" in tune, it reduces the harmonics, which makes the needle jump less. It just makes tuning a little easier and smoother without the needle swinging wildly.

Bass player for Undercover


   
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Ricochet
(@ricochet)
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I usually have best success plucking at the 12th fret and using the neck pickup, but YMMV. I recall having a problem getting a tuner to "hear" a bass string till I started using the 12th fret harmonic rather than the open string.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


   
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