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March 09, 2010

How to use a guitar tuner?

The quickest and most accurate way to tune your guitar is by using a guitar tuner. A guitar tuner is an essential tool for the guitarist; no guitar gig bag should be without one.  A guitar tuner tells the guitarist whether the note he is playing on each open string of his instrument is at the correct frequency; it allows you to tune the guitar with precision. Before you use your guitar tuner, make sure to read the instructions that it came with, it will have helpful information about the tuner that you may need to know.

*Turn the tuner on

*For the acoustic guitar, placed the built-in microphone next to the guitar sound hole and for the electric guitar, plug the guitar into the tuner then pluck the string that you wish to tune.

*Observe the indicator on the tuner it should be in the center position and showing the name of the note when the string is in tune. If the indicator has past the center position, this means that the string is too tight or sharp, release and adjust the tuning key until the indicator the remains in the center position. If the indicator stays below the center position, the string is too flat, tighten tuning key until the indicator remains in the center position. You should repeat this procedure for the remaining strings.
 Alternate methods of tuning the guitar
You may not always have a guitar tuner at your disposal so here are some alternative ways to tuning your guitar.

 Tuning by Ear
*Place a finger on the fifth fret of the sixth string. Now, play the sixth string and the open fifth string. Listen to the two pitches they should sound alike. If the open fifth string sounds lower than the sixth string then tighten the fifth string tuning key until the two notes sound alike. If the open fifth string sounds higher than the first note then loosen the fifth string tuning key. Remember; always adjust the tuning key of the open string, not the fretted string.

*Next, play the fifth fret on the fifth string and the open fourth string. Listen to the two pitches carefully and adjust the open fourth string accordingly just as you did in step one.
*Now repeat for the fourth string at the fifth fret. Listen and tune the open third string to it.
*Tune the second string by playing the third string at the fourth fret and tune the open second string to it. This is the only string that does not use the fifth fret as the reference. It is tuned to a major third rather that a fourth like the others are.

*Lastly, play the second string with your finger back at the fifth fret and tune the open first string to it.

 Tuning Using a Keyboard or Piano

You can tune your guitar to a keyboard or piano by making the E A D G B E notes on a keyboard match the open strings of a guitar. Strike the note on the keyboard or piano then strike the corresponding note on the guitar. Try aiming to make the notes sound as closely as possible. Happy tuning.


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