Take the 2-minute tour ×
Music: Practice & Theory Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for musicians, students, and enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I have a Segovia backpacker guitar (Segovia is a Korean company; the guitar was made in China). The problem is that it doesn't play in tune very well--especially if I play up the neck.

The strings seem to be unusually sensitive to pressure; varying finger pressure makes a huge difference in the string's pitch, especially in the bass range. And using a capo makes the guitar sound really bad.

For clarity, if I push just hard enough to avoid string buzz while fingerpicking softly, the guitar sounds OK. But if I push hard enough to avoid buzz while strumming vigorously, the strings I'm fretting go considerably out of tune.

How can I fix this problem?

share|improve this question
    
This may sound obvious, but... is the guitar in tune? The strings may be in tune with each other, but if the guitar itself is below standard tuning (ie. the E-string is playing closer to a D), it screws up the intonation, especially on the bass strings. –  BlueRaja - Danny Pflughoeft Apr 22 '11 at 22:40
    
I always use a tuner. –  Anonymous Apr 23 '11 at 0:32

1 Answer 1

It sounds like you must have either a high action or high frets, or possibly very low tension in the strings, for that amount of detuning to happen just from pressing the string. You should expect a note to go a little sharp as you push harder, but nothing significant.

If you have a very high action, you can try to lower it - I don't know the Segovia so some of the following may be irrelevant - by lowering the nut or the bridge, or by adjusting the truss rod.

But it sounds more like maybe you have overlarge frets - I would avise taking it along to a luthier to check and get first person advice.

share|improve this answer
    
After comparing it with my dreadnought, it appears that I have high frets. I'll have to look around and see if I can find an English-speaking luthier around here. Or is there anything I can do myself? –  Anonymous Apr 17 '11 at 6:40

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.