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YT demos of guitars sounds out of tune almost always - is it just me?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by MatsEriksson, Oct 1, 2020.

  1. Allan Allan

    Allan Allan Tele-Holic

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    I should read the manual for these tuners. I guess those red lines next to the green letter mean more than "not in tune"
     
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  2. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Holic

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    https://www.thomann.de/se/boss_tu3.htm


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    One cent accuracy, cent mode, strobe mode etc etc etc. Avoid the cheapest ones out there. There may even be freeware PC or Mac programs, software out there that works better. But then you need a PC soundcard of repute. Strobosoft cannot be downloaded for demo even, otherwise you could do that. Intonation is almost a once and set and forget thing.
     
  3. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    Not to get too political, but I'm pretty sure I would a better job than some individuals currently running....:(
    A light touch is the only real solution. BTW Schubb capos do a far better job than the other kinds for not pulling out of tune. I was super skeptical and they are kind of a PITA but now I'm a complete convert.
     
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  4. loopfinding

    loopfinding Tele-Holic

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    people tune to tuners. no tuner is going to compensate for your grip or whatever best compromise intonation you could get. you have to use the tuner and then adjust accordingly afterwards. I usually use the A string as a reference for the other strings. I don't play cowboy chords that much so I always adjust for best intonation between the 3rd and 9th frets. I always have to detune the G and B slightly by ear to compensate for my grip. i know some players who whack the low E so hard they purposefully tune it a bit flat so it won't go sharp. it's just the way it is. maybe tuning to a tuner quickly in a loud live setting is fine for that environment's volume level, but it's absolutely not a substitute for your ears. i don't know why so many people struggle with this. it's a guitar, not a synthesizer...
     
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  5. Buzzgrowl

    Buzzgrowl Tele-Meister

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    If you want to play "in tune", get yourself a digital synth and learn to play keyboards.

    Other possible workarounds include using a lot of chorus, sticking to power chords with lots of OD or playing strictly single note lines on a clean setting using only the neck pickup with the tone control turned down.
     
  6. Hey_you

    Hey_you Tele-Holic

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  7. richiek65

    richiek65 Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    The open strings may be in tune, but as soon as you push the string down to the fret, you are sharpening it.

    Then there intonation, which may be correct at the 12th fret, but out everywhere else (equal vs even temperament)

    As mentioned above, the guitar is a very flawed instrument, everything on it is a compromise.

    As also mentioned above, the grip pressure on the fretting hand will also throw everything out of tune if you're not careful.

    But yes, some people just don't even make any major effort to get their guitars playing somewhere in tune, or they think they have, but they can't hear how far off the mark they are
     
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  8. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Holic

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    Yes, I know, touchy subject, but I usually reply with this anyway, when someone comes up with an idea, that wows me, regardless of current POTUS. Tounge in check remark, like: "[insert any name here] for president!" :D
     
  9. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Holic

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    I use shubb, kyser (on bass!), and Third Hand Capo. Yes, but people should learn to have a light touch, and taller, thicker, frets will force you to use lighter touch. However, as fast as you do vibrato (up and down, not along the string) together with bends you are sort of forced to do a firmer grip and press harder.

    Third Hand Capo = I can even use the whammy bar with this one. The individual rubber pads, moves back and forth and back to their original position again. Without the guitar ever going out of tune.

    Also, some situations, especially if you play with dynamics, the string doesn't buzz (fret buzz) when using a very light touch, but as fast as you whack it loud with your pick, you discover that you aren't pressing with enough force, because it's going to buzz and "relocate" from the fret point so to speak. The phenomenon can be heard too, on slide excursions, or pedal steel. Play soft and it's ok, but whack it (very few pedal steel players whack the strings with their fingerpicks) and you hear the buzzy rattle from the steel rod that isn't pressed down properly.
     
  10. Stanford Guitar

    Stanford Guitar Tele-Holic

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    Here's why.....

     
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  11. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Holic

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    Yes, but so it is. The thing with this thread, is that there very well are videos on YT that people actually DO play in tune, all the way through, while bending, and whacking the *** out of the strings. within the limits which allows the guitars to be, and especially stays in tune. It's the ones that people doesn't hear it when the actual OPEN strings goes south, but carries on playing.

    The only thing that would work, scientifically, is a totally fretless guitar. Then it's only, solely, up to your own fingers and ears where you put them. Just like violins. But as we are stuck with fretted, and set intervals between tones, we are stuck with the current equal temperament scale for guitar and piano. I know of the low E-string, me too, if I whack it it goes up in pitch initially and then it settles. But it never goes out of tune, relatively to its open string pitch. To me, this idiosyncrasy is part of the "twang" IMHO. On a fanned frets guitars, with longer scale for the low E it's somewhat mitigated, but that's a whole another thread. Let's skip that for now.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    While I think it's part and parcel of the guitar as such as an "concession" or heavily "compromised" instrument, I think the latest decades of using thinner strings exacerbates intonation problems. Not necessarily tuning. It's so easy to whack it severely out of tune while pressing, and picking. But on these videos, it's not intonation as such, it's downright that the guitar goes out of tune while playing - open string - but the player does not detect it. Me myself used to play with chorus a lot in the 80s. After I heard a tape of my playing, I cringed big time, because when I bent strings I couldn't hear pitch properly, the chorus made me steer beyond pitch and I couldn't hear what pitch I was reaching when bending. So when soloing, I turned off the chorus effect, and then my pitch stayed right on. Since then I thought chorus pedals/effects are crutch for people who can't detect pitch and wants to camouflage and mask their poor intonation....;) a tad too cynic, sarcastic perhaps, but so it is.
     
  12. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Holic

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    I think the main thing is that even if it's ok when they start playing, they don't hear it going south during their playing, that's what is my main gripe. And as such, when they don't hear this, how can they make any authorized claims/judgement on the guitars other qualities, like "honky pickups" and mid range this or that, the typical "mahogny wood" sound, or "bloom" or sustain or everything else within a guitar. You know, all the other things... or do any verdict that, by and large, "by this guitar!" . Or even the opposite, like "don't buy this guitar".

    But I agree, they seem to rely way too much on the tuner, and not their fingers, for intonation.
     
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  13. Matthias

    Matthias Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    It's likely these people are doing multiple takes and not tuning between takes. For a 5 minute video they could be playing for an hour, and as most are playing solo they don't notice themselves drifiting out as much as they would with backing. Playing solo could breed a habit of tuning being 'good enough' and encourage a lazy ear, I guess. I probably do that.

    To me it's more noticeable when they edit an out of tune clip against a clip where they were closer to pitch, as we have some reference.
     
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  14. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Holic

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    Yes, I have, but not exactly these. Very good food for thought.
    Oh yes, so true, and I can go to lengths too, to explain why. Let's differ between "perfectly tuned" to "perfectly intonated". Because I think there is a certain distinction between these, and there can be things made to mitigate this (not totally cure because it isn't possible). But instead, people resorts to buy snakeoil things, cureforall intonation problems, like TrueTemperament frets, Earvana nuts, BFTS (Bluff Feiten systems) and fanned frets and yada yada.

    The distinction between perfectly tuned and intonated. Yes, a violin can be perfectly tuned. Period. Before even anyone touches it. As fast as anyone touches it, he/she has to "play" intonation. Open strings to 0,00002 cents. It's in tune. A guitar too. Any one soloed string on a piano. Too. It's when them notes plays together - and plays together with other instruments - things are starting to happen. Pandoras box opens.

    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

    And here lies the main problems:

    Now, all fretted instruments, like guitars, have a fret calculation system that is based on the RULE OF 18. Google up on that. That rule of 18, calculate the frets distance, and between them, but it works ONLY and is made for whenever a fretboard has absolute no RADIUS at all, and is totally flat. Yet manufacturers includes a radiused fretboard - on especially steel string acoustics, and electrics - for "comfort of playing". Well maybe so, but not comfort for intonation. ;)

    The only guitars that has a flat fretboard (no radius) and works perfectly for the rule of 18 is the nylon stringed classical guitar, and no one ever complained about discomfort of playing on those, and wanted radiused fretboard. Now, nylon strings itself induces a lot of other idiosyncrasies but leave that out for now.

    Now with a cylinder fretboard, the rule of 18 would only work if the string spacing was the same from the bridge towards up and the same at the nut. Now, no guitars I know of has this. Little wonder it throws any intonation out the window (if one should follow the rule of 18, which they do).

    However, if they used a flat fretboard (no radius) the strings can narrow down as much as they like, in string spacing towards the nut, and you still have the same distance, 90 degree angle, all the way, and you can very well follow the guides of rule of 18. If you have any radius, cylindrical, the strings will not keep the same distance/angle down towards the fretwire, as they taper along towards the nut. Only at some select sweet spot along the neck it will be close. No matter how much individual bridge saddle adjustment you have at your disposal.

    - - - - - - - - - - - -

    And here comes my main gripe with the "industry" in guitar fretboard construction:

    Music played on electric guitars, these days, consists of very much soloing, and bending of strings. On a radius fretboard, this means the string will choke out on the frets while bending. You have to raise the action on certain strings. Too much some times. But yet, a classical nylon string guitar, which is the only one with a flat fretboard, where string bends would be a breeze, they play music which doesn't contain any string bends at all! Save for that the nylon strings are hard to bend anyway, regardless of radius or not.

    If the steel string acoustic makers, and electric guitar makers would make the fretboard as flat as possible, intonation problems would be mitigated even more than it is today, and on top of that, a zero fret too would I like to include, no matter peoples objection that it looks ugly and is associated with cheaper guitars. Well then, Fender strats and teles was originally made as a cheaper alternative to Gibsons, anyway... :twisted:

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    If one followed all the above, it would at least come somewhat closer, and in the ballpark, parking lot, of better intonation. Not perfect because that doesn't exist and shouldn't. And mind you, that this will work for all gauges of strings provided you have individual adjustable saddles at the bridge.

    However, this will NOT ever compensate for players uneccessary finger pressure, and inadvertently bending strings. In the end, regardless of above, is up to the player. But since I have seen some YT videos where real pros doesn't do this at all and keeps on playing in tune all the way through, we have to take this one out of the equation.
     
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