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Author: Subject: Guitar tuning question
steve m

posted on 6/7/20 at 08:01 AM Reply With Quote
Guitar tuning question

Hi all

3 months ago, I decided to try and learn the guitar, so bought a £110 electic one, with amp and bits from argus

I managed to get it all in tune within a couple of attempts, and all was good, for a while

Yet now, two strings despite changing them twice now, will not get the right note,

On the D string, I can get c or e, but not D
on the B string I can get A or c, but not B

the other strings all tune in well, so am I doing something wrong ?

I know its a cheap guitar, but is it worth getting it setup properly, or would I be wasting my money ?

steve





Thats was probably spelt wrong, or had some grammer, that the "grammer police have to have a moan at




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wylliezx9r

posted on 6/7/20 at 08:19 AM Reply With Quote
What are you using to tune the guitar ? I'm guessing as your a newbie that your using some sort of device ?

[Edited on 6/7/20 by wylliezx9r]





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jps

posted on 6/7/20 at 09:30 AM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by steve m
On the D string, I can get c or e, but not D
on the B string I can get A or c, but not B



I've been through a few guitars and never come across one where you can't tune it to certain notes.

Obviously - you're going through D as you tune the C up to E. And likewise on the B string when you're tuning A up to C you pass through B on the way. So the notes are there, it sounds like it's just landing on them that's the problem.

I used to find that if you're tuning by ear it can be more difficult if the strings aren't new, the tone dulls and it's hard to get a clear sound.

If you're using some sort of electronic tuner (i think there are even apps on phones/tablets nowadays which do it) I would say a good approach is to detune so you're clearly below the note you need, then pluck and steadily turn the tuner so the note rises as it rings out. You should be able to watch the dial (or whatever it is) move as you raise the pitch of the string and just stop when you land on the note you need.

I would always tune from low E to top E, depending on the guitar and how much you're changing the pitch of a string it can pull the neck a bit, and detune the other strings. So you might have to tune, then tune again.

I would always tune 'up' to the note as well, not sure if it makes a difference, but they seem to hold tension better that way in my experience.

Finally, you can tune using harmonics (on most strings) - worth a google, you do get a clearer tone from a harmonic.

EDIT - another thought, I used to use graphite (just an ordinary soft pencil) to lubricate the nut and bridge - worth a go if you think the strings are not moving freely as you tune them.

[Edited on 6/7/20 by jps]

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steve m

posted on 6/7/20 at 10:44 AM Reply With Quote
Hi

yes, im a newbie, and had never picked a guitar up in my life, and my wife has suggested, I don't ever again

I know its a cheapy guitar, so that could be the issue

Ive tried the harmonics, but I don't think my old ears are up to the standard required

Ive got one of these tuners,

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Chromatic-Clip-on-Guitar-Tuner-Quality-Guitar-Bass-Violin-Ukulele-Tuner/133446667679?epid=2255909751&_trkparms=ispr%3D1 &hash=item1f120a8d9f:g:e4gAAOSwg5Ve~0Fw&amdata=enc%3DAQAFAAACYBaobrjLl8XobRIiIML1V4Imu%252Fn%252BzU5L90Z278x5ickkBUIiHwYv5YgVss0WaiENz0LBEt7Xw 6T7umJ%252FGYOsAmAOL3YbrCGGFqU5qYZb1lw5f10VX8DMzq8I0G5bkJjZh0BwzaUCpiylK3nNMxbJtDeouD4si1VptlFYRkLxqWs1UZk2m8ejk4xes9GvIM78FlsBn%252BnESPnJe3%252Bozta pEdT556zBTMBKMydGNJOaPGSdWQuILcnMWrzwDnIKLg6ISTRhc0Ipmp8HX5o7OF4uAvZ7i1ROhM1CRXy5VhtT%252B4vFAD8Y5Ioo0Y4u%252B%252FLrDCrNS1g7wJYrLoC4Hyk3JYXUGSjgrGKCm j0ipGO34r45cNpLbCd9n4EeLaKaW2sFXfZyx7X3K6DvzRvL25SukMZl3ojpxhRmQIPyOmxlAvMQVpOW1FFhkGMbUmpMyKqLG%252FgDN4R0LTRe5rufgacI4ni8L5C%252BHat7LfiLjPKOEAL45HZ FQe0tIBS1SSnGs3kXZBFQO7Nz7nlj3IRn0PeNO7nYiwsbT1smDHwUu2zbB9M%252BfwjMy%252FriW7VYJ8AUzC6YVNK1wh3ZPGR%252FuE4zeLAJfwF2xOc85hXK3HzAFZWjlC8%252FUY6j%252F C4DB%252F8OhaLhWRWRsxPp0UF43RTYRGwa606nsYlM8kGwrGixng%252BGUSBDlUSnSA16TE%252BbQS5QV9M0p8pPHn8aAfhfq8XIyjZO1smCcq5w0LzCYy3CKTBqhusEn7keuMh%252Ft92uotq b4uGxDTSA8XdBNwpjLbwCnk%252F92B3XagXsxyEXfUWBHG5DqJV%252Bo6c8vNXR%26cksum%3D1334466676793176518b53d646ffad3acdef1cc5a95f%26ampid%3DPL_CLK%26clp%3D2334 524

I know that I am going through the note I want, but even with tiny tiny adjustments, just on these two strings B and D, nothing comes up on the tuner,

Yet I have now tuned the high E to a B, just to see if I can, and that worked fine, so B is on the tuner, and as said always was

Could there be a problem with the bridge? not that ive touched it, except for new strings (metal)

And as all the other 4 strings work as they should, I cant see it being a funder mental problem with the guitar

Also, as I asked, if I was to hand the guitar to a professional, could that help in getting a better set up ?

steve





Thats was probably spelt wrong, or had some grammer, that the "grammer police have to have a moan at




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jps

posted on 6/7/20 at 11:21 AM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by steve m
Could there be a problem with the bridge? not that ive touched it, except for new strings (metal)


I can't see there'd be a problem with the bridge that stopped you being able to tune it. If the string was genuinely not changing pitch when you turned the tuner then it could be down to it sticking so some graphite on the bridge saddle might help.

quote:
Originally posted by steve m
if I was to hand the guitar to a professional, could that help in getting a better set up ?


You'd likely get a better setup, but that really shouldn't make any difference to being able to tune it. Setup is usually more an issue of playability, and potentially the string staying in tune along it's own length. I.e making sure that 12th fret on the E string is still an E rather than a bit higher or lower.

If it's purely that the notes don't register on the tuner I would say try another tuner - or ditch the electronics and try some pitch pipes. https://www.google.com/search?channel=crow2&client=firefox-b-d&q=pitch+pipes

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theconrodkid

posted on 6/7/20 at 01:00 PM Reply With Quote
i did the same as you , got the same tuner and it tunes up no probs, after a few lessons i gave up and it,s collecting dust, maybe when winter sets in i may pick it up again, plenty usefull tips on tube tube





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steve m

posted on 6/7/20 at 01:32 PM Reply With Quote
Come on conrod, I could play you happy birthday if I knew when it was ?

ive spent the last hour desperately trying to tune this bloody guitar,

I still do not have d or b!!

Ive now got the Fender app on my phone, and if I tune my guitar to harmonize with B I get a C flat on the tuner
and if I harmonize a D I get nothing

Now on to fret 12

Sixth low E on 12 but no note open, but do get E on 13
Fifth low A on 12 and open, to low A on 13

I am thinking this electronic tuner has lost B and D, and just finding the nearest

[Edited on 6/7/20 by steve m]





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mikeb

posted on 6/7/20 at 01:52 PM Reply With Quote
all the apps on mobile phones seem to work well
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jps

posted on 6/7/20 at 02:26 PM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by steve m
Ive now got the Fender app on my phone,
[Edited on 6/7/20 by steve m]


I would use the app, and for each string check the tuning against the next string (i.e. play 5th fret on bottom E string, that gives you the note that the open A string should be tuned to), get it tuned then play an open chord that uses all 6 strings. You'd hear straight away if it's not in tune.

If that works I think it'll confirm that your original tuner is just not working...

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MikeR

posted on 6/7/20 at 03:14 PM Reply With Quote
fender do a nice app on the phone. I used it to tune my kids guitars.
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steve m

posted on 6/7/20 at 04:36 PM Reply With Quote
Thanks guys, I seem to have a guitar in tune now, but I still think

"I am playing the WRONG notes, and not necessarily in the right order"
(one of the funniest quotes ever)

My Smoke on the water, is pretty good though

steve





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Shooter63

posted on 6/7/20 at 06:09 PM Reply With Quote
At the grand old age of 6000000 I decided to learn to play the guitar, it's the most infuriating thing in the world, but when you do happen to play a few chords in the right time and place, it makes it all worth while, i find andy guitar good if you like rock music, his beginners electric course is spot on, especially if you crank the gain up 😁 at the moment I'm killing back in black, got it down pat until the 1st solo which no doubt will be even more agro

Shooter

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overdriver

posted on 6/7/20 at 10:08 PM Reply With Quote
Obviously a duff tuner by all accounts. It's a good idea to practice tuning by ear (5th fret on each string equals next string open except for G to B which is 4th fret) and periodically checking against a tuner. A good way of checking by ear is to play the 3rd, 4th & 5th frets and then immediately play 3rd fret, 4th fret and next string open. Repeat a few times and you'll soon start to hear any difference in the sequence.

I guess you've got the Argos Strat copy kit. Strats are generally quite easy to tune and as time goes on you'll hopefully get into advanced set-up nuances such as string height, intonation, truss rod tension etc. If you do progress to the point of wanting better/more/different sound (and I'd suggest that starts with replacing the basic amp) there are very good deals to be had on used amps (e.g. Marshall, Line6), effects processors (Digitech, Boss et al), pedals etc on fleabay. Reverting to the original point, many of these have built in tuners.

Most importantly - enjoy!

Michael.

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steve m

posted on 7/7/20 at 08:16 AM Reply With Quote
It is the Strat copy, in black, some days I really enjoy playing for 30 mins, as any more my left hand aches
other days I play for 10 mins and give up, as just all fingers and thumbs !

It also depends on my mood, as if I am not ready to practise for what ever reason, that's when its a poor session

Can anyone recommend a good tuner, just to help, as even with my basic knowledge I know that a couple of notes are still out,
and the balance between fret 12 to head- pickups is wrong

Ie on Fifth low A on 12 and open, to low A on 13 its only one fret out, but which way do I adjust the screw, as I did play with it on low E and made a right mess !

All the other strings are way out using fret 12, and does this adjustment need to be done every time a new string is fitted


Thanks for all the response, I appreciate it

steve





Thats was probably spelt wrong, or had some grammer, that the "grammer police have to have a moan at




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liam.mccaffrey

posted on 7/7/20 at 08:48 AM Reply With Quote
I have played for about 20 years now but I'm in no way an expert but here are some things I've found;

Don't get hung up on ear tuning, use the machine until you're confident. Once you get a little more familiar you can sense immdiately if its out.
I've found the phone tuning apps to be absolutely brilliant and sooo much better that cheap dedicated tuners.
Don't put the guitar away in a bag or case. Leave it on a stand or hang it on a wall so you can grab it if you fancy a twiddle. You'll find it isn't a chore to pick up and play for a couple of minutes or even just 30second. When I did this I found I was playing a lot more. Plus theyre quite attractive things to hang on the wall.

Best of Luck





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overdriver

posted on 7/7/20 at 10:20 AM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by steve m
Can anyone recommend a good tuner, just to help, as even with my basic knowledge I know that a couple of notes are still out,
and the balance between fret 12 to head- pickups is wrong

Ie on Fifth low A on 12 and open, to low A on 13 its only one fret out, but which way do I adjust the screw, as I did play with it on low E and made a right mess !

All the other strings are way out using fret 12, and does this adjustment need to be done every time a new string is fitted



For acoustic tuning I use the "gStrings" phone app. When you talk of balance between fret 12 & 'head pick ups', you seem to be referring to 'intonation' which, although relatively easy to adjust on a Strat, I wouldn't worry about too much at this stage. Just get the basic 5-5-5-4-5 fret tuning there or thereabouts right first.

On a correctly strung Strat the strings are sharpened (tightened) by turning the tuning key anti-clockwise as you have the guitar in the normal playing position.

Strictly speaking, you should change whole sets of strings as they do age and stretch losing tone and vibrancy so a new one on its own will sound odd.

Incidentally, I've been playing for 60 years, have a collection of guitars plus amps, effects kit and recording software...... and am still absolute crap! No, really I am - there are 5 year olds on You Tube who put me to shame! I sometimes watch the Knopfler, Satriani, Guthrie Govan, Tommy Emmanuel etc. etc. heroes and just never want to touch a guitar again. But, more often than not, I can gain a lot of pleasure working within my limitations and that's the main thing.

Michael.

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jps

posted on 7/7/20 at 01:00 PM Reply With Quote
RE: a new tuner:
It's been a long time since I bought anything guitar related - but my QwikTune tuner was spot on, and I see they're still going round on eBay - so if it were me i probably fork out £3 for one of those in the first instance.

For a new one - KORG have been in music electronics for a long time - so I expect this thing will last a lifetime for £12: https://www.amazon.co.uk/KORG-Pocket-Digital-Tuner-Guitar/dp/B01NCIYQEV?ref_=fsclp_pl_dp_11

I'm not sure what you're describing intonation-wise, but this gives a straightforward explanation of how to set it. With a reliable electronic tuner it's not hard to do, just takes a bit of time. https://hazeguitars.com/blog/setting-intonation-on-a-strat.

You should not have to reset the intonation when you change strings, in theory you probably should when you change the gauge of strings you are using, but consider most acoustic guitars have fixed bridges which you can't adjust at all - so it's not something that people often adjust...

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pekwah1

posted on 7/7/20 at 08:49 PM Reply With Quote
Hiya Steve,

Just seen this - Iíve been playing guitar for years and donít bother with tuners any more, just get the top E in tune and tune the rest to that....

May be worth checking the bridge/saddle are set correctly if youíre struggling to get it to tune properly....

Always happy to pop round some time and give some pointers if you fancy

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steve m

posted on 7/7/20 at 09:37 PM Reply With Quote
Incredibly Andy, I some how knew you played ??

Ive known you for a good few years, and now it comes out !

I am shielding due lung/asthma problems. but would gladly like to meet up, and get some help when I can

Today, I have exceeded my max practice incredibly, as it must be nearly three hours , as I ive been given a mission by a friend who doesn't play, but their fav track is , Apache, and to all you pros, who can do it in your sleep, to a 60 yr old beginner, its well hard!

any way, I have serious cramp in my left hand now, cant type. and about 80% got the track covered

steve





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