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Daugrin
Forum Full Member


Registered: 03/24/09
Posts: 1121
Location: , Extraverse
 
Guitar in Tune!
Thursday, March 16 2017 @ 08:01 AM CDT







Trying to solve problems in making finest quality recordings in yer home studio? Intonation comes to the front with string players...

You play in tune? I claim to play out-of-tune in a specific manner, live is one standard, but recording is a different standard.

Punching in, or recording a solo segment, lick by lick, bit by bit is tedious, and the results sound contrived, at least to my ear, so, I don't do that... But when trying to make something with commercial standards I am forced a re-visit the issue, above is some of the material I looked at... might save ya some time if yer dealing with this problem...

Name drops? Jeff Beck and Jerry Garcia made great careers out of idiosyncratic pitch control... No one exhibits that kind of sensibility in today's commercial music? Of course Van Halen and Butch Trucks are commercial and they play with unique pitch control. Katy Perry or Taylor Swift recordings don't approach pitch control issues... some wisdom there?

Daug
VicDiesel
Forum Full Member


Registered: 02/14/06
Posts: 2932
Location: Austin, TX
 
Re:Guitar in Tune!
Friday, March 17 2017 @ 06:11 AM CDT

"No one exhibits that sensibility" .... except of course all those people whose videos you just found.

You didn't list the best video that I found about the the Taylor tuning:



which is a beautiful side-by-side demonstration.

.... and which I must say is rather too subtle for me.

Victor.

PS the first two videos are horrible. Lots of words and almost zero explanation. Lots of gibberish.

-- My CD.
Daugrin
Forum Full Member


Registered: 03/24/09
Posts: 1121
Location: , Extraverse
 
Re:Guitar in Tune!
Friday, March 17 2017 @ 09:26 AM CDT

Quote by: VicDiesel
"No one exhibits that sensibility" .... except of course all those people whose videos you just found.

You didn't list the best video that I found about the the Taylor tuning:



which is a beautiful side-by-side demonstration.
.... and which I must say is rather too subtle for me.

Victor.

PS the first two videos are horrible. Lots of words and almost zero explanation. Lots of gibberish.



Great addition to this thread Vic. Thank you. Maybe yer confused about pitch control and having a guitar in tune... The first two vids approach the use, or miss use, of microtones from a naive perspective. No one plays a string instrument strictly in-tune.
Jerry Garcia developed his ear to the point where he could command at least 17 pitches, and play maybe as many as 19 while improvising over a key center. His guitar might never have been in-tune, but he played in-tune, 'cos his ear would make corrections as he played.
These microtones exists in the playing of modern players Van Halen and Butch Trucks. There are no exploration of microtones on Perry, Spears or Madonna records. No teasing the third, or playing in the cracks, on big corporate music icon's recordings. Ask yourself, "Why."

Daug
Ed Hannifin
Forum Full Member


Registered: 05/24/05
Posts: 3439
Location: , MA USA
 
Re:Guitar in Tune!
Friday, March 17 2017 @ 08:09 PM CDT

Butch Trucks, mentioned twice in this thread, was a drummer. His contributions to the two drummer tradition are important...to pitch, not so much...

Derek Trucks, his nephew, is a slide player of note, usually playing in open E...He makes terrific use of the expressive capabilities of slide guitar, which is less dependent on the precise location of frets...

"We have to remember...when it's surrender that's called for, it's not surrender of your brains. It's surrender of your ego. It's a different thing." --Bruce Cockburn
kingbee
Forum Full Member


Registered: 10/09/07
Posts: 637
Location: N/A
 
Re:Guitar in Tune!
Saturday, March 18 2017 @ 03:13 PM CDT

so, why don't guitar tuner makers adjust their tuners to adapt to this? and if you tune by ear on the 5th fret is that more likely to be closer?
Dadai.2
Forum Full Member


Registered: 09/09/08
Posts: 1732
Location: Frisco, Texas 😎 USA
 
Re:Guitar in Tune!
Saturday, March 18 2017 @ 03:22 PM CDT

Quote by: kingbee
so, why don't guitar tuner makers adjust their tuners to adapt to this? and if you tune by ear on the 5th fret is that more likely to be closer?



I've gotten into the habit of using a guitar tuner (intellitouch P2 tuner) and then going to the traditional tuning at the 5th fret. Seems to put the guitar in better overall tune.

Take a listen >>> Texas Tango
PeterB7858
Forum Full Member


Registered: 10/30/10
Posts: 223
Location: Melbourne, Victoria Australia
 
Re:Guitar in Tune!
Saturday, March 18 2017 @ 06:05 PM CDT

Quote by: kingbee
so, why don't guitar tuner makers adjust their tuners to adapt to this? and if you tune by ear on the 5th fret is that more likely to be closer?



Peterson make a range of standalone and clip-on strobe tuners that have sweetened tunings for many instruments included in the options. They also make a great software strobe tuner that you can buy from the app store for your iOS device. This also includes sweetened tunings. I have this on my iPhone and iPad. Great when you are out and about.

I have watched the JT video before a few times and tried his suggested tuning out on a number of my guitars but I have never really warmed to it. He plays with a capo a lot and the tuning he suggests is partly done to compensate for that.

I use a TC Electronic PolyTune clip to tune my guitars. It is the best clip tuner I have used by far. Works fine on my G&L ASAT electric guitar at loud gigs, too. More expensive than most, but worth it. It doesn't have sweetened tunings built in but I don't use them anyway.

The side by side comparison video that Vic added was very interesting and well done by the presenter. I could hear subtle differences between the two tunings but I didn't prefer one over the other. In the end, I am happy to tune to standard tuning on my guitars and make sure the strings aren't worn and the intonation is set properly.

My Paul Read Smith Angelus acoustic stays in tune all on strings except the low E on all frets all round the the neck as long as you don't fret or strum/fingerpick to hard. I have to tune the low E a tad lower to get it to play a pure G on the 3rd fret, especially when I am playing in the key of G, but this is an issue with all acoustic guitars because of the thickness of the low E string.

The other side of the tuning/staying in tune equation is the strings. I use various model light gauge (.012 - .053) John Pearse strings on all my acoustics and can recommend them. I'm sure everyone has their favourites depending on style, gauge, heaviness of playing, guitar build quality, etc.. I have tried many and settled on these for my finger-picking style. The pure nickel strings I have on the PRS now took just a little while to get used to tone-wise but I now love the sound. I usually buy strings in multi-packs and change them regularly. New strings obviously make a huge difference to a guitar staying in tune (once they have been stretched in).

For my electrics I use D'Addario NYXL 11-49's. These strings stay in tune better than any other electric string I have tried. The marketing claims seem to be justified in my experience. I can recommend them, too. I also check/adjust string height and intonation every time I change my electric strings.

I have never had great satisfaction using the standard 5th string tuning by ear method. It can obviously get you close but these days clip on/software tuners are so exact and portable that there is really no excuse not to be as close to in-tune as you can be given the tuning compromises of a fretted string instrument design.

I really can't stand playing an "out-of-tune" guitar these days :-)

Keep playing!

Peter



 
Daugrin
Forum Full Member


Registered: 03/24/09
Posts: 1121
Location: , Extraverse
 
Re:Guitar in Tune!
Saturday, March 18 2017 @ 07:23 PM CDT

Opps, I said Butch Trucks that's wrong. as noted above, Derek Trucks is the guy I was thinking of-he demonstrates the microtonal control of pitches at issue. He grew up in the Allman Brothers' world, because of his dad, and possibly is the most successful player of all in emulating Duane Allman slide style.
The issue of pitch control in our studio efforts seems to be easily settled by listening to popular records.
Specific audiences appear not to be subjected to the level of pitch variation that other listeners appreciate. Indian music comes to mind. Perhaps my research is not complete enough to support a conclusion?
If you can help out here I would appreciate the effort.
How ya tune things, and, in addition, how much of an effort to play strictly in-tune one should make appears to depend on just who the target audience of your work my be... which I guess is something I never considered before...

Daug