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Questions tagged [alternative-tunings]

Methods of tuning the open strings on a guitar or other chordophone that differ from what is considered to be standard.

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4
votes
3answers
659 views

Tune high B and E strings one octave apart like the other strings?

Traditionally high B and E strings are tuned in unison. Why are they tuned like this? Unlike the rest of strings. If this can be done anyways. Could this be achieved with the standard set of ...
4
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4answers
291 views

The implications of tuning a 12-string guitar in fifths [closed]

I would like to take the chance to discuss the theoretical implications of my alternate tuning for a 12-string guitar. You can find the original question here. So for reference I was talking about the ...
3
votes
1answer
965 views

Can a piccolo guitar (Ibanez ewp32) be tuned to standard?

Is there a way to string or tune a piccolo guitar (the Ibanez ewp32 in particular), which comes tuned in A naturally, be tuned to standard? And would that increase or decrease the string tension? I ...
1
vote
2answers
91 views

How to Choose the Best Alternate Tuning

This is essentially a generalized version of this question for fingerstyle guitar, and I'm surprised I can't find it on this website: how do I find the most optimal alternate tuning for a guitar/bass(/...
1
vote
3answers
377 views

Strat tuned to C standard with 13-56 strings - intonation problems

I play a hardtail stratocaster with the following set of strings: 13, 17, W26, W36, W44, W56 (W means wound) and tuned to C standard: C F Bb Eb G C. Since all the time now I have intonation issues. ...
6
votes
3answers
38k views

Is there any alternative to using capo?

I don't have/want to use capo for my guitar. Can a specific tuning be applied as an alternative to capo?
6
votes
2answers
740 views

Can I use one string gauge for standard D and drop B tuning?

I've been using 10 - 48 gauge strings for standard E tuning for 3 years, but I want to change to standard D tuning. I read somewhere that I should use 11 - 58 or 10 - 58 gauge strings for this tuning; ...
11
votes
1answer
132 views

How accurate are 12TET approximations of Japanese scales?

Is it possible on normal European instruments to play Japanese scales like the Hirajōshi, Insen, In, Ryo, etc, without retuning? If I do have to retune, where can I find out which exact intervals are ...
11
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4answers
12k views

What frequencies should the violin and viola be tuned to?

I'm using this app to tune my violin, it supports many temperament options. What I want to do is tune the A string to 440Hz first, then comparing the other strings sympathetically to the adjacent ...
5
votes
3answers
281 views

Need help understanding the difference between diatonic and chromatic semitones

I am writing an essay on musical temperaments for which I was doing some research on the history of tuning and how it evolved over time. I understand the Pythagorean tuning system quite well now but I ...
1
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2answers
404 views

Should I increase the number of wraps around tuning peg if tuning down

I used this method for stringing my guitar: https://www.taylorguitars.com/support/strings/changing-steel-strings Which states: "Two to three wraps is perfect for the bass strings." If I were to ...
1
vote
2answers
92 views

How to stop a 5-string capo blocking my fretting of the bottom E string?

I want to play a fingerstyle guitar based on open-voiced chords in the key of D, capoed to be in D, Eb or E for performance. I'd love to have the low D from a drop-D tuning but this messes up some ...
30
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7answers
8k views

Why do E♯ and F♮ not sound the same (according to Wikipedia)?

I was just reading the Wikipedia page on the note F (as I do every evening) and was confused by this part where it says that even though F♮ and E♯ are enharmonic they “do not sound the same”: E♯ is ...
8
votes
7answers
54k views

Tuning for small-size guitar?

I have a toy store, where we try to get decent kids instruments among other things. One of the guitars we stock is the Janod "Confetti" series guitar. It's 25" long, open string length is 16". I sold ...
2
votes
3answers
5k views

Is it more difficult to learn to play mandolin after learning guitar than if starting from scratch since the tuning is opposite?

My main instrument is guitar. I have played electric guitar, acoustic guitar, classical guitar and 12 string guitar and the patterns and fingering is pretty much the same. I have tried playing a 4 ...
12
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5answers
8k views

What guitar tunings allow many chords without fretting between “live” strings

When playing the guitar, I find it difficult to fret a string without touching the string on either side and ruining the sound. Open tunings make it very easy to play one type of chord by barring ...
12
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9answers
16k views

What is the true definition of Drop C tuning?

Since I play bass I will tackle this question from a bass guitar perspective. I've had some musicians state that the following tuning is Drop C tuning (E is dropped to D, and then all strings are ...
1
vote
1answer
72 views

String Off Tune

I just got an Arabic Oud, I recently notice that my 5th string is off tune when I tune the string. That would be in the 3rd course. I decided to put some small piece of paper under by where it touches ...
3
votes
3answers
246 views

G-D-A naming convention

I've tuned my guitar to CGCGGe in order to learn 'Head Down' from Soundgarden, and are now experimenting a bit with that tuning. While in that specific tuning, and you hold a normal power chord rooted ...
7
votes
1answer
233 views

How far to de-tune an orchestra to match the BBC World Service pips (beeps)?

The BBC World Service Radio pips (or beeps) are an iconic aspect of the radio program broadcast around the planet by shortwave radio as well as the internet now. The 2 minute podcast A brand new ...
1
vote
2answers
58 views

Stringing an acoustic for down-tuning

Any acoustic guitar experts willing to help me out with some info? I would like to have an acoustic guitar tuned down a step and a half (C#F#BEG#C#, and at times open Bsus2 BF#BEbF#C#) for a big warm ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Can I tune an Ukulele in DGBD without damaging it?

I got an Ukulele as a gift. I am not a ukulele music fan, and I dislike its tuning scheme, but I like the fact that it is lightweight, small and soft enough for my kid to tinker with it, and I would ...
3
votes
1answer
859 views

Is there a tuning that gives open Maj7 chords?

A song I'm playing with (Ordinary People by John Legend) basically has a 3-chord pattern BbMaj7, EbMaj7, FMaj7. I can strum these as barre chords OK but not reliably finger-pick, and as I'd like a ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

How to change bass guitar tuning in Sibelius 8?

How can I change my bass guitar tuning? In this case I want to have a whole step down standard tuning (DGCFAD) (for 4 string bass it should be DGCF). How can I do it?
5
votes
3answers
4k views

Problems with 8 string guitar tuning?

I just recently bought an 8 string. I have tried every tuning I have read or watched videos on. For some reason my f# sounds to loose and there is a lot of rattle on the guitar?all the other strings ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

String gauge for playing on Drop G# on a 25.5 scale 7 string guitar

I recently bought an Ibanez RG7421, which is a 7 string guitar with a 25.5 scale. It came tuned in standard tuning (from 1st to 7th: E B G D A E B). I want to tune it to drop G# (D# C F# C# G# D# G#) ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Choosing the right harmonica to fit with guitar part transposed using an alternative tuning

I play a song in standard tuning on the guitar. The song requires a 'G' harmonica. I tune the guitar down to D-G-C-F-A-D. What key of harmonica would I need for the same song in this tuning?
2
votes
1answer
207 views

Why is a banjo on a lesson book's tracks tuned to 438hz?

I have a Hal Leonard banjo lesson book that includes a series of tracks for downloading, including 5 tracks with tuning notes. I tuned a banjo using an electronic tuner set to 440hz, and noticed the ...
4
votes
6answers
2k views

Why do I want different guitars for different tunings?

A lot of books and blog posts I've read, including Guitars for Dummies, The Rough Guide to Guitar, and this Stack Exchange question, encourage or expect me to have different guitars with different ...
1
vote
1answer
674 views

Tuning six-string in open D, just intonation?

I am playing a six-string guitar tuned to open D (DADF#AD). I have “heard tell” of players who use the principles of “just intonation” to... improve/make more pleasing to the ear... the intonation of ...
1
vote
1answer
119 views

What Increments Are The Tuning Settings On My Keyboard

I have a keyboard, a Roland RS-50, and I have been playing around in D Double Harmonic major a lot recently. That Wikipedia article says that you can play the scale with quarter tones, and I'd like ...
2
votes
1answer
595 views

Can I tune a banjolel to DGBE?

I play baritone uke tuned DGBE. Can I set up my banjolele to be DGBE also? Banjolele now is standard uke GCEA tuning.
31
votes
11answers
111k views

Why do some artists tune their guitars half a step or whole step down?

Is there a reason some guitarists tune down half or whole steps, other than preference or style? It bugs me sometimes when I would like to play along with a song only to find that it's played down ...
1
vote
3answers
409 views

Guitar: Fretless fretboard (why ebgdaE?)

There are many fretless percussion/stringed instruments from/relating-to many different cultures each tuned to a predetermined set of notes/note relationships. In our (Western?) culture it seems to ...
32
votes
15answers
67k views

Why is dropped D tuning used so often?

Many metal/rock songs use dropped D tuning. What reasons are there for it?
3
votes
1answer
131 views

What alternate tuning improves ease of playing in a specific family of keys?

I play the hurdy-gurdy, and a guitarist friend has joined me over the past months to play acoustic music together. My instrument is in the key of C, and we transpose whatever we want to learn into C (...
0
votes
3answers
677 views

Is even-interval tuning a sensible idea for lead guitar?

I'm primarily a rhythm guitarist who has recently taken up bass. I've been struck how easy the equal 4th intervals between strings is for scale patterns, which surely have as much relevance for lead ...
9
votes
5answers
22k views

How low can a normal 6 string guitar be tuned?

Let's say I have a normal 6 string guitar that is standard tuned. How low can I tune it? I'm especially interested in the tuning of the low E string of the guitar. I have seen bands that tune it ...
2
votes
4answers
2k views

How to learn a new guitar tuning

What techniques and practices are best to learn a new guitar tuning? I am familiar enough with standard tuning to play rhythm parts in several places and also improvise with different scales. I want ...
6
votes
2answers
446 views

Octaves doubling on double bass in “Sometimes I'm happy” by Lester Young?

I am intrigued by the sound of what I assume to be a Double Bass played with a bow in "Sometimes I'm happy" by Lester Young, between minute 1 and minute 2. If I am ...
11
votes
6answers
15k views

Do I risk ruining my guitar by switching the tuning often?

I'm currently learning a song which needs drop-d tuning. Since I found myself switching back and forth from drop-d to standard tuning a couple of times a day, I wonder if I'm risking damage to the ...
1
vote
2answers
694 views

Do alternative tunings exist for 12-string guitars? [duplicate]

I often use alternative tunings for 6-string guitars. Now I'm facing a 12-string guitar. Do alternative tunings exist for 12-string guitars?
6
votes
3answers
2k views

What are some of the alternate tunings of a modern piano?

Modern Pianos are tuned to equal temperament at A440. Are there other prominent alternate tunings used in art music or popular music? I'm accepting that historical reproductions will tune the A to 430 ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

What do you think of attempting to tune an Acoustic 12-string one full step up?

Many like to tune a 12 string 1/2 to 1 full step down. I understand it reduces tension, reduces breaking the high G string and/or allows you to run thicker gauges for a fuller sound. However I ...
-1
votes
3answers
5k views

Do Scale Shapes change with different tunings?

All the scale diagrams I've seen are shown in E standard tuning. Would the scale shape change in another tuning, like Drop D for example? Alternatively, do I just keep the same scale shape regardless ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

open tunings for bass?

Long time bass [hack] player, also play a little bit of guitar, working on learning some music theory to expand my understanding of the mechanics of creating music. I'm curious about open tunings on ...
2
votes
1answer
307 views

Create chords for alternate tuning?

In my specific case, I have a baritone ukulele which I tuned to all-fourths (personal preference), making its strings match the lower 4 strings of the standard guitar tuning (G4-D4-A3-E3). It also ...
0
votes
2answers
122 views

How is this electric guitar tuned?

The song in question is "Pet Carrot" by Palehound. You can hear the guitar right at the beginning of this video: I thought it was a bass at first. Anyone know the ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it possible to tune a short scale (22.4") acoustic guitar up to ADGCEa with 10-47 strings?

I'm considering getting this guitar: http://www.thomann.de/gb/harley_benton_ds_10_mini.htm?ref=search_rslt_benton+mini_321012_0 According to the description, the scale is 568mm (~22.36") and it comes ...
16
votes
2answers
20k 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?