The system of pitches used by an instrument or in a piece of music, or the practice of adjusting the pitches that instruments or voices produce to be in accordance with the chosen system.

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35
votes
14answers
13k views

Why Is Just Intonation Impractical?

I've read about the debate of "just intonation" vs 12-tone equal temperament. And nowhere it was clearly stated why just intonation is impractical. Here are my assumptions. Please let me know if I am ...
1
vote
2answers
13 views

One string on banjo not tuning properly

My Banjo is fair to good quality and strings 1, 2, 3, and 5 all go up 1/2 step per fret as they are supposed to. The 4th string is tuned to D and I tune it quite flat and it doesn't go up 1/2 step, it ...
13
votes
5answers
6k views

My guitar goes out of tune at a higher pitch rather than lower, is that normal?

It is my understanding that strings, over time, stretch and are unable to maintain their tension, so they go out of tune at a lower pitch. When I pick up my guitar and I tune it with my electronic ...
5
votes
1answer
325 views

My guitar gets out of tune after 1 minute

My new guitar strings sound nice, but they get out of tune after 1 minute !! Specifically, the 1st and 2nd (thinnest) strings get out of tune more than the other strings. And there was no problem of ...
9
votes
8answers
4k views

Piano tuning just under the absolute pitch

The other day, the piano tuner came to the semi-annual tuning of my piano (a Blüthner baby grand). I was not at the house when he did the tuning. When I got home, the piano was tuned in respect to ...
2
votes
4answers
1k views

Second hand piano is out of tune by a whole tone

I just recently bought an acoustic piano. Sounded really good when we tested it out at seller's place. Now after playing a bit the keys sound off by one note (middle c would sound like d, d sounds ...
6
votes
2answers
4k views

Is it normal for new bought ukeleles to be out of tune every few minutes?

I've bought a new ukelele and it's been quite a while since I've last held a musical instrument (a year, maybe), so it might be possible that I'm just quite rusty with toning a guitar/ukelele. I ...
2
votes
0answers
51 views

How to determine the tuning of a song? [closed]

I am trying to transcribe a part of the Tears in Heaven duet by Tommy Emmanuel and Igor Presnyakov that's found here. Specifically, I am trying to figure out the notes played by Tommy starting at 1:03 ...
-2
votes
0answers
29 views

How often are label recordings off-note: sped up or slowed down? [migrated]

How rare is it that recordings are sped up or slowed down after recording, by a few percent, during the mastering process?
1
vote
0answers
42 views

Trying alternative tuning outside 440Hz [closed]

Lately I have used some time and research on the standard pitch at 440Hz.. The tuning of A4=440Hz has been used a couple of times in late 1800 but it was not until 1939 at an international ...
2
votes
2answers
255 views

Is it possible to tune guitar down an octave?(or to f#?)

As the time goes, I see new bands using lower and lower tuning. For example if my memory serves me right, Torsof*ck uses octave down, band called Batushka uses f# tuning. How are they doing this? ...
23
votes
3answers
4k views

Why is A4 the standard pitch reference for tuning?

Why do musicians use concert A, the A above middle C, as the standard pitch reference for tuning? Various national and international standards define the frequency of this note. For example, ISO 16 ...
3
votes
3answers
176 views

Tuning of Accidentals & Scales

In his Book Basics, Simon Fischer wrote in a footnote that: The exact tuning of a sharp or a flat depends on the key, style and character of the music. For example, Bb as the tonic of Bb Major ...
6
votes
4answers
249 views

Why is the last string on a guitar called the first string and the first string called the sixth string?

I learned early in my guitar playing journey that what I would naturally assume would be the first string (the fattest string) is actually known in proper guitar anatomy parlance as the sixth string. ...
0
votes
2answers
81 views

Best guitar alternate tuning to start with when playing one's own music

Let's say (or at least pretend) I am learning guitar for the first time and only want to play my own music, the music I have in my head. What kind of tuning should I use to start with? Is there a ...
2
votes
1answer
52 views

Slide guitar tuning

What open tuning for slide guitar would cause the least tension on my old guitar? I got a really cool parlour guitar from the 1930's. I realize it is old and bridge is fragile. I am reinforcing some ...
15
votes
3answers
559 views

What is the practical reason for reentrant tuning on ukulele and similar instruments?

I'm intruiged by the fact that some stringed instruments, like the ukulele, are traditionally tuned in the way of reentrant tuning where the strings are not ordered from the lowest to the highest ...
3
votes
2answers
53 views

English Horn correcting flat G-Flat

I just began playing the English Horn after playing oboe for the past 6 years. I have found that most of the notes are in tune, or close enough that I can correct with embouchure. The main exception ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Guitar string not in tune with itself

I have a knock-off telecaster made by Stadium. The strings on it refuse to be in tune with themselves (the G and B strings especially). I hooked it up to a tuner and tested the intonation. The G ...
17
votes
3answers
562 views

Is there a sound theoretical reason why a capella choirs “drift off” of the starting pitches in a piece?

Is the "comma pump" an empirical problem, or merely theoretical? It's a standard music theory exercise to show that certain chord progressions don't actually quite work. For example, in the ...
32
votes
7answers
6k views

Why is the double bass the only instrument in the violin family tuned in fourths?

Out of the 4 instruments of the Violin Family (Violin, Viola, Cello, Double Bass), the bass is the only instrument tuned in fourths. Wikipedia states The double bass is generally tuned in ...
14
votes
2answers
535 views

Should the dominant-seventh chord in just intonation use 9:5 for its seventh, or rather 16:9?

It may be just out of habit, what with the 12-edo temperament all around us, but anyway: I find the dominant-seventh rendition 20:25:30:36 sounds extremely harsh. In particular, the tritone from the ...
0
votes
4answers
2k views

Ibanez Edge III Tremolo has 2 'Zero' points

You may have heard about my earlier Ibanez Edge-III tremolo woes (I'm finding out that the thing is as bad as it's made out to be by experienced players). Now I've got a new one. I've found that the ...
-1
votes
1answer
73 views

Why do Open Tunings work? [closed]

Anyone have any idea why open tunings with the A and E low strings in unison and changing the rest of the strings based on tonality works for playing (where you are only fretting with one finger or ...
5
votes
4answers
775 views

Can a tuner help to tune my violin in perfect fifths?

I have always used a tuner to tune my violin, but have noticed that the strings are not in perfect fifths (I'm a complete beginner, and I understand perfect fifths to mean that if I play E using my ...
2
votes
2answers
333 views

Tuning the violin E string

I'm beginner in the violin and while tuning the E string using a chromatic tuner I've noticed it has two different tuned spots. One is kind loosely producing an squeaky sound and another one is ...
95
votes
11answers
14k views

Why is the guitar tuned like it is?

Why is there that funny tuning kink between the G and B string on a guitar in standard tuning? I.E. the gap (interval) between the rest of the adjoining strings is 5 frets (or a perfect fourth), but ...
0
votes
2answers
59 views

Young string student

I received a violin not too long ago that has metal screws in the pegs. I am unable to tune with the pegs due to this and I am unable to change the strings. When i try the pegs slip and won't hold ...
9
votes
2answers
320 views

Do capable harmony singers sing in just intonation or tempered tuning?

I understand that the mathematical frequency ratios between certain intervals will correlate with the overtones that are present when a note sounds in a fundamental frequency. Certain predictable ...
3
votes
2answers
58 views

Ukulele friction pegs are slipping

I have a soprano Favilla uke. About a month ago I replaced the original pegs, which were slipping, with Waverly's, recommended by a luthier. (To be clear, these are not "violin pegs"; rather, they are ...
4
votes
4answers
3k views

Pop-like creak while tuning strings

I have a Behringer iAxe 393 strat clone. I recently adjusted the truss rod to fix some frett buzzing. Ever since, when tightening or loosening the strings while tuning, I sometimes get a creaking pop ...
2
votes
1answer
68 views

Tension for nylon strings on Lyre

I'm currently in the process of restoring my [alto] Lyre, and I was wondering if there would be implications from using nylon strings instead of steel. There would be two reasons to use nylon over ...
6
votes
6answers
3k views

Alternate tunings on a 12 string guitar

I'm wondering if you can tune the second string of a double stringed guitar to something else than the regular octave. You would have to keep the open strings to C Major I guess, so that your barre ...
13
votes
2answers
8k views

What is an “open tuning”?

I know that Keith Richards has been known to use open tunings on some songs, but what is an open tuning exactly and when/why would you use it?
2
votes
4answers
465 views

What are the reasons for tuning instruments based on a frequency other than A440

I read that a harmonica could be tuned in A441 plus, but I don't know what that means. How is this different than A440 tuning? If you play guitar, when you tune your instrument, is it always A440? ...
0
votes
3answers
496 views

Guitar tuning: Facing problems with High E string

This may seem like a stupid beginner question but I can't begin to understand what's the problem exactly. Usually when I tune my guitar i start from the top string (the thickest) and work down to the ...
1
vote
2answers
97 views

How do you flatten a pure fifth by a fraction of the syntonic comma?

According to Wikipedia, the size of the perfect fifth in 1/4 comma meantone is "flattened by one quarter of a syntonic comma, with respect to its just intonation used in Pythagorean tuning (frequency ...
3
votes
1answer
526 views

Tuning the nyatiti

What is the standard tuning for an 8-string Nyatiti? I've tried searching in Google but haven't found anything. I wonder if there are different tunings in different regions.
1
vote
1answer
142 views

My guitar is tuned half step down how can I play along a standard tuned song?

I would like to play along some Deep Purple songs from time to time but my guitar is tuned to E flat and I find it unhandy to tune it to standard E tuning and then back to E flat tuning. Given I have ...
2
votes
5answers
140 views

Tune to a recording

I made a recording of some playing with friends. I now want to overdub some guitar. At the time we tuned to each other, but not concert pitch. The music is quite choppy and staccato, and I really cant ...
7
votes
4answers
8k views

Should guitar be de-tuned when not in use…?

I bought a GB&A guitar almost an year ago. I play guitar mostly on the weekends. Recently I noted that my guitar bridge has got lifted off the body a bit. So I took it to the Guitar Shop. The ...
4
votes
2answers
108 views

Adjusting a string saddle back, making the string longer, reduce sharpness or increase it?

When adjusting a string saddle and moving it back, making the string effectively longer, does that decrease the sharpness or increase it??
2
votes
2answers
158 views

Why is A=442 the common tuning for percussion instruments?

When looking at percussion instruments, I noticed that the default tuning for most companies is A=442 for tuned percussion (vibes, marimba, tubular bells, etc…). I wonder if there is a reason for ...
2
votes
2answers
82 views

What Tuning Should The Guitar Strings Be Tuned To? (For beginners)

I am super new to the guitar world and I just bought an electric guitar for myself, but I am having a problem in tuning the guitar. Like should all strings be tuned to E for beginners? It is a simple ...
5
votes
5answers
151 views

Are the inharmonic frequencies of an instrument in addition to or instead of the theoretical overtone frequencies?

I'm working on some computer code to detect musical notes and have just found out about in-harmonics (up until now I was under the impression that the overtones were always integer multiples of the ...
2
votes
2answers
133 views

Why are there 18 notes listed for chromatic scale tuning

The Wikipedia page for the Chromatic scale opens by saying (emphasis added): The chromatic scale is a musical scale with twelve pitches, each a semitone above or below another. However if you ...
3
votes
1answer
79 views

Guitar setup for which tuning?

I play songs by breaking benjamin and other rock and metal bands which are in low tunings like drop C but i also play in standard when i play for church. I want to get a new acoustic but im unsure ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Violin Tuning- shouldn't the the A-string be tuned to A5? Why A4?

G3 up by a perfect fifth is D4, D4 up by P5 is A5!! A5 up by P5 is E5. It's all good except that the A string is tuned to A4, which is 440Hz. Why should not be tuned to A5?! Why is the tuning G3, D4, ...
13
votes
10answers
3k views

What are the various methods of tuning the guitar?

This is not a question as much as it is a discussion. I am curious to know what are the different techniques to tune the guitar (using standard tuning) given you know that one string is in tune. I ...
2
votes
3answers
421 views

My guitar plays out of tune on the high e on fretted notes up the neck

I have a 1980 Washburn prairie song custom. I seem to remember it playing perfectly when I first started taking lessons, but about 2 years ago my guitar teacher gave me some strings, and after I ...