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A chord problems

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Telecasterless, Nov 9, 2017.

  1. william tele

    william tele Doctor of Teleocity

    Nov 7, 2009
    Kansas City, MO
    Put a tuner to it. Tune it perfect. Now check the fretted notes. At least you can now see with your own eyes that those fretted notes are probably sharp.

    Bigger strings, compensated nut, lighter touch or just do what others do and tweak the tuning to work.
     
    Telecasterless likes this.

  2. Chicago Matt

    Chicago Matt Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    68
    Aug 23, 2014
    Woodstock
    My first thought is that you have big frets and/or a nut that's a bit high, and maybe you are putting too much pressure on one or more of the fretted notes. You have to use a light touch down there anyway, and the higher frets and/or nut just makes that trickier. All these things will make the fretted notes go sharp.
     
    skantzos likes this.

  3. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Age:
    56
    Mar 17, 2003
    Spring City, Pa
    I do this...except when they're sharp already ;)
    I have to retune on some songs, especially if there's a D cowboy chord.
    My favorite way to tune for cowboy chords is to tune every string from the low E.
    I get an average, and every chord is a little out, instead of 1 or 2 being very out.
     
    william tele likes this.

  4. jhundt

    jhundt Poster Extraordinaire

    Age:
    63
    Mar 23, 2003
    Netherlands
    when I was a young guy, I just loved bashing out the music. As I got older and spent more time in a studio, I became more aware of these tuning problems. Maybe you are going through that same progression.
     

  5. jhundt

    jhundt Poster Extraordinaire

    Age:
    63
    Mar 23, 2003
    Netherlands
    what kind do you have Mister Charlie? And can you tell me anything about the installation procedure?
     

  6. Telecasterless

    Telecasterless Tele-Holic

    839
    Jan 29, 2011
    los angeles
    I don't think I am really a hard grabber. It seems like a subtle thing I have been noticing only lately.
     

  7. Mistercharlie

    Mistercharlie Tele-Holic

    554
    Apr 28, 2015
    Germany
    It's a Music Man guitar. They come with a compensated nut as standard. I believe Earvana may have copied the idea, so that would be a good place to start. All I know is that chords sound great all over the neck.
     

  8. RLee77

    RLee77 Friend of Leo's

    May 15, 2016
    Silicon Valley
    Steve Ouimette and Felino like this.

  9. Nickadermis

    Nickadermis Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

    Age:
    51
    490
    Dec 18, 2016
    Camden Point, MO

    Old banjo player ?
     
    RLee77 likes this.

  10. RLee77

    RLee77 Friend of Leo's

    May 15, 2016
    Silicon Valley
    He said "they sound in tune", so that rules out a banjo… :p
     

  11. Mid Life Crisis

    Mid Life Crisis Friend of Leo's

    Jan 12, 2007
    Cambridge, England
    What happens when you just play a power chord on the A, D and G strings? Does it still sound out? I ask that because it could be a dissonance caused by the C# on the B string but heard as the E being out. A major third on the B string always sounds out when an A shape chord is played, which is why when using a slide you need to slant it so the B string is "flat".
     
    AAT65 likes this.

  12. scrapyardblue

    scrapyardblue Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Feb 6, 2007
    central illinois
    I've always liked the A chord better with two fingers, leaving the B open. On every song I've written or recorded, with maybe one exception, two fingers. The full A sounds harmonic, I just don't like it much.
     

  13. ricardo1912

    ricardo1912 Tele-Afflicted

    Jul 26, 2011
    Kent, UK
    I have noticed the same thing on occasions. I mainly play barre chords and further up the fretboard, which sound fine. When I play a C or D cowboy style they sometimes seem slightly off to me, even though the guitar is tuned and intonated correctly.
     
    Telecasterless likes this.

  14. unixfish

    unixfish Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free + Supporter

    Apr 20, 2013
    Northeast Ohio, USA
    The more you play, the more you notice.

    A few months after I got my Tele, I pulled out a tuner and set the intonation to the strings set I switched to. I got it fairly close with my non-compensated saddles.

    Funny thing - my guitar felt easier to play after setting intonation. It's funny how your ears trick your mind.

    My guess is you are just becoming more sensitive to intonation, and noticing the subtleties of fretted instruments. I have a few chords that never sound right - strings are in tune, then play some chord and it just does not sound right. Others are better. Nature of the beast.
     

  15. PonyExpress

    PonyExpress Tele-Meister

    Age:
    56
    107
    Sep 28, 2017
    Texas
    So I had always noticed on my ibanez that the D chord always sounded off. Really started checking the tuning and intonation but still sounded off. Drove me crazy. Now I see that its not just me. Thanks.
     
    Telecasterless likes this.

  16. scrapyardblue

    scrapyardblue Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Feb 6, 2007
    central illinois
    Now, wait a minute. My D chords are golden. Maybe you should see your doctor.
     
    RLee77 likes this.

  17. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

    Jun 21, 2011
    Bakersfield
    A few things, you didn't indicated whether it was an acoustic or an electric. I'm assuming electric. If it's a 3 saddle tele, intonation can very well be the problem. Not to start an argument, but it is impossible to get a 3 saddle tele in tune (for me) suitably with MOST stock saddles. The small 1/4" steel saddles come closer than the 5/16 brass. (why? I dunno) My answer to the problem was to take a set of "intonated" saddles, then work with them by filing and shaping each saddle and using a strobe tuner to get the intonation as good as I could possibly get it. This helped but did not solve the problem of the occasional chord not sounding right to me. Something else you didn't mention is what sort of tuner you're using. Most of the clips on tuners are just not all the accurate. A way to overcome their deficiencies that works for me, is to tune the guitar in open tuning, and then to fret each string at the third fret and correct the tuning again. This seems to work at least for my Tele which has vintage frets and 7.25 radius.

    Another potential answer is to do as our esteemed colleague Obsessed has suggested is to tune the "B" string slightly flat. Which is not a bad suggestion. You might try it. I've dinkyed around with standard tuning on electric guitars of all kinds, I find them in general not to sound as good when played in open chords as acoustic guitars, but that's probably just because I played acoustic only for years before becoming enamored of the LOUD guitar. Another theory I have concerning the difference in the "perception" of tuning between electric and acoustic guitars is that I in general always use 13-56 strings on an acoustic. While I in general use 10-46 on my Tele. One day I'm going to drill out the tuner on the E string of my AV 72 and install some 11s. I expect the tuning issues to become less noticeable.
     

  18. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

    Jun 21, 2011
    Bakersfield
    Another suggestion if the guitar happens to be a Tele is though in theory adjusting the string height to what ever spec you decide 4/64ths, 5/65ths etcetera should result in the string radius being correct to the fret and or neck radius. In practical application not so much. after I set the string height to where I want it, I then take a radius gauge and adjust the strings to a radius of 7.25 degrees of radius which is correct for my guitar. Even this tiny bit of difference affects fretted notes.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2017
    Zepfan likes this.

  19. sonicsmitty

    sonicsmitty Tele-Meister

    201
    Jan 2, 2012
    Clarksville, TN
    After I use my tuner I still have to "tweak" it just a bit to make chords sound in tune. I have wondered for some time if it was my ears.
     

  20. Jelly Roll Horton

    Jelly Roll Horton TDPRI Member

    Age:
    72
    72
    Feb 17, 2017
    Portland, OR

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