Questions tagged [tuning]

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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16
votes
3answers
1k 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 ...
15
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3answers
67k views

Guitar fret out of tune? [duplicate]

I'm a newbie with an inexpensive guitar. It tunes up well and holds its tune well, however, on the low E string, the further up the fingerboard I go, the more the frets seem to be out of tune. I have ...
14
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2answers
57k views

What do the terms E2 A2 D3 G3 B3 E4 actually mean?

I am attempting to learn guitar, and I keep coming across this notation in various apps that I've downloaded. I know that E2 A2 D3 G3 B3 E4 are something to do with tuning, but I'm not exactly sure ...
13
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9answers
17k views

Why does my new guitar become untuned every day?

I am learning guitar as a beginner and a few days back I bought an f-hole acoustic guitar (steel strings). And every day when I sit down to play it, the guitar tuner says that it is out of tune, ...
13
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9answers
24k views

Why do people say “you are a little flat” and never “you are are a little sharp”?

Is there a tendency to sing flat when singing out of tune?
13
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7answers
6k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of an all-fourths guitar tuning?

What are the advantages and disadvantages of an all-fourths guitar tuning being E, A, D, G, C, F (the high E and B strings being raised a half-step from standard tuning). One reason to do this is ...
13
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4answers
2k views

How does the harmonic series affect consonance?

NOTE: for the purpose of this question, assume we are talking about 12-TET and assume that references to overtones in the harmonic series are being referred to in relationship to the 12-TET note that ...
13
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5answers
944 views

Does every piano need tuning every year?

Our upright piano has been last tuned about a year ago. (It was a major retuning, two sessions, including bringing it up from something 435-ish to 442 Hz.) I just tried to check whether it is still ...
12
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8answers
4k views

Retuning violin numerous times daily

I am very new to violin, like newborn baby new. My eldest son just bought me my first violin and I am having serious tuning issues. Firstly, the violin is a SV-75 Cremona premiere Novice 4/4. Secondly,...
12
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4answers
33k views

Understanding a digital tuner

I've the exact same tuner from this video only the brand name changes. I am new to guitars, I am trying to tune(standard tuning) an ESP M-50 with it(can I?). I plug the guitar cable to the tuner input ...
12
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16answers
4k views

How to tune a guitar/bass without a tuner?

When I'm trying to tune my guitar/bass without a tuner, if a single string is in tune, I can tune the rest of the strings based on the tuned one, using the harmonics over the 5th and 7th frets. But ...
12
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5answers
2k views

Which chords are recommended for checking guitar tuning?

Notwithstanding innate intonation issues, just versus equal temperament, and a variety of tuning methods, I would like to ask what other guitarists use as their "check chords". That is, what chords do ...
12
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2answers
1k views

Why does the same classical piece sound like it's in a different key in different recordings?

I've noticed that sometimes a different recording of the same piece will sound like it's being played in a different key. For example, I listened to Concerto No. 6 in B-Flat Major, BWV 1051: III. ...
12
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2answers
1k views

Whereabouts is G?

In 12TET, concert G is always at a particular pitch, frequency, etc. However, on instruments such as violin, players will stray slightly to make a note sound more in tune, dependent on key. (As in ...
12
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2answers
784 views

Score for orchestra tuning

I was talking this monring about Cage's 4:33 and I mentioned that I'd love to see a score for an orchestra tuning. It's one of the most recognisable sounds in concerts and has many distinctive musical ...
12
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5answers
4k views

How far “off” can a piano unison be and still be considered “in-tune”?

I'm talking about either beats per second of a resulting beat between two strings in the midrange of the piano. My piano seems to vary during different parts of the day, I think because of the ...
12
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1answer
157 views

How were tuning/temperaments indicated on scores (if they ever were)?

Bradley Lehman claims that the details of the intended tuning for the Well-Tempered Claivier are encoded in the squiggle at the top of the manuscript (related wikipedia link). Are there other (...
11
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2answers
8k views

Why is my D string showing a C♯ on my tuner?

I was playing for a bit and didn't tune any string, but when I wanted to tune it in at the end of my session my tuner kept saying C♯ instead of D. How do I get my D string back to its original ...
11
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4answers
3k views

Does octave not matter when tuning?

Why does it not matter what octave you're tuning to? If you wind a string to two different octaves of the same note, surely it's going to have a big effect on the sound, no?
11
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3answers
5k views

What’s that U shaped metal thing needed for tuning called?

There is this metal thing shaped as a 'U'; you hit it against something and put it against your ear to hear this sound. I'm not sure what it's called but I need it to tune the A string on my violin.
11
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6answers
18k 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 ...
11
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4answers
1k views

Exact pitch of blues scale notes

Wikipedia gives multiple candidate definitions for the blues scale. A musician showed me how to play blues e.g. in C by smudging say Eb and E. The actual note lies somewhere between. But where? ...
11
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4answers
13k 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 ...
11
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5answers
1k views

Scaling an object to change its key

I used a 3D Printer to make a kid's Recorder for my son. It plays surprisingly well. However, it's not tuned to match the common recorder used in schools. Using a phone-app tuner, the base mouth-piece ...
11
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2answers
261 views

Do pegs for stringed instruments require holes?

We bought some new pegs for a cello but they came without holes. As a result, it seems impossible to tighten the strings as they keep slipping. But there must be some use for pegs without holes, ...
11
votes
1answer
1k views

Why does C# sound extremely flat when saxophone is tuned to G?

Note: when I mention the name of a note in this question, I'm referring to the saxophone pitch, not the concert pitch. I play the alto saxophone, and lately I've been practicing mostly with a tuner. ...
11
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7answers
5k 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. ...
10
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11answers
10k views

How do you tune your guitar?

I'd like to hear about the different techniques of tuning a guitar with standard tuning, and why you use them.
10
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2answers
48k views

What notes on the piano do the Ukulele strings equate to?

If you highlighted the 4 strings of the Ukulele (default tuning) to notes on the piano, where would they come in relation to middle C?
10
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3answers
811 views

Intonation of string instruments in chamber music

Recently when playing in a piano trio as a cellist, my teacher told me that a note can have a small range of correct pitches depending on the chord. Shouldn’t everybody try to play exactly in tune ...
10
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6answers
8k views

Does piano tuning software actually work?

I would like to tune a piano that is in a remote place. Usually I would call a tuner but since there are none around it will just be too expensive. I found out recently that there is software that ...
10
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5answers
14k views

If Irish button accordions are typically B/C how and why are they often played in D or G?

On choosing a two-row button accordion... B/C is the usual choice for Irish music (players use both rows in order to play mainly in D or G, but the instrument is almost chromatic). Is this right? ...
10
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4answers
7k views

How did people tune their instruments in the past?

Today we are using electronic tuners and know everything about frequencies but in the past, like before the 16th century, how could people tune their instruments? Did they tune them to specific ...
10
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2answers
1k views

How can I play my new tenor recorder (a'=440) along with someone playing a harpsichord (a'=415)?

From an article I read online, I believe I've understood that it's possible to treat the middle C (fingers covering all holes) on the tenor as if it were a D flat, and all higher notes on the ...
10
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4answers
4k views

Should tabla drum produce any buzzing?

Earlier today I was trying out two tabla drum sets in a music shop and I noticed that both sets they had were producing a buzzing sound while being played. I am no tabla player but I have been playing ...
10
votes
1answer
4k views

Do 1/2 size violins sound at normal pitch?

With wind instruments, young kids with small hands are often advised to start on smaller instruments (e.g. Soprano Sax, Eb Clarinet) before moving to full-size instruments. (Terrible advice IMO, but ...
10
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3answers
17k views

How to prevent snare rattle?

When I play my drum set, the toms make the snare rattle. Also, some pitches played by guitar or bass will make it rattle. I've tried tuning all the drums to certain pitches (somewhat effectively), but ...
10
votes
1answer
786 views

One-to-one techniques for improving ability to sing in tune

There are a number of questions on this site from singers who want to find software so they can work, on their own, on their ability to sing in tune. However, I am hoping to do some one-to-one (and ...
10
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2answers
185 views

Why does this tonal scale from 1737 have both F and E♯?

I've recently encountered Jean Féry-Rebel's "Les Élémens". (Check out that wild opening; it's hard to believe it was written in 1737!) In the fifth measure of the third staff, why does this ...
10
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2answers
322 views

Harp Tuning Tendencies

I am a flutist and I will be playing flute in a harp ensemble. Is there anything I should know concerning tuning issues with harps while playing. Are there certain notes or octaves that are prone to ...
10
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1answer
896 views

What kind of edition and tuning to use to study Bach's fifth cello suite ?

As is well known, this suite was composed for a cello with a scordatura tuning C-G-d-g instead of the classical C-G-d-a. I have seen almost every possible combination: edition for specially-tuned ...
10
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1answer
882 views

Why choirs consistently go flat or sharp in certain keys

As a long-time chorister, I've always wondered what drives choirs to flat or sharp out of certain keys. For instance, the choir I sing with consistently fails to remain in the key of F, whereas ...
9
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10answers
3k views

If equal temperament divides an octave into 12 equal parts, why are the hertz differences not the same but 12ths of two?

Let's take a 440Hz A pitch and the 880Hz A an octave higher. If we divide space between 440Hz and 880Hz into 12 equal parts, we would have: [440Hz, 476.6, 513.2 ... 880Hz.] And this looks ...
9
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6answers
2k views

Why do old russian guitar songs sound out of tune?

I'm not actually 100% sure these are out of tune, but they sound out of tune to me. Here are some examples on YouTube: Example 1 (1943) Example 2 New example 2 (1970) Example 3 It's a bit harder to ...
9
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6answers
2k views

Guitar tuning “perfect” fourths?

Virtually all the sources I can find claim that the intervals between adjacent guitar strings in standard tuning (EADGBE) should be perfect fourths, except for one major third. However, since a ...
9
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8answers
7k 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 ...
9
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8answers
1k views

Using alternative tunings

Guitars are tuned E-A-D-G-B-E by standard, but I prefer tuning it down to C (C-F-Bb-Eb-G-C) since it gives a meatier sound and is easier on my fingers. I know there are plenty of other tunings, but ...
9
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4answers
1k views

Why does tab have CGCGCE instead of normal EADGBE?

I'm pretty new to learning guitar music. I've heard some great songs that I would like to learn on my own, and mostly I've been able to read the tabs. I just came upon a tab that looks like this: I'...
9
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5answers
4k views

Why does my guitar go out of tune after I play it a while?

This might be an obvious question, but it would be good to know what factors cause guitars to go out of tune.
9
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7answers
3k views

What are 'alternative tunings' of a guitar and why would you use them? Doesn't it make it more difficult to play?

In the wikipedia article for the song Iris it says there is an: unusual guitar tuning in which most of the strings are tuned to D, lending the guitar a chorus-like effect. In a follow up article ...

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