7 Tuning Tips
Easy ways to make your tuning quick and accurate.
By Nick Stoubis
Being in tune is one of the quickest ways to making you sound better and is the first thing that should be addressed when using a guitar. Fender Tune is an app that will tell you whether or not your guitar is in tune, but here are some additional tips that will help you get in tune better:
Tune the Sixth String First
The sixth string, or low E, has the most tension. It can affect the pitch of the other strings when changed because of the added or decreased tension it creates on the neck and other parts of your guitar.
Always Tune Up
Tune each string by tuning down slightly, then tuning back up to reach the note you need to hit. Adding tension rather than removing tension helps keep the string more secure and in tune as you play.
Wait Until the String Settles
When you first pluck a string, the pitch goes high at first, then it settles into the real note you are playing. The tuner will react to the very first thing it hears. Pluck the string, hold for a beat, then read what the tuner says after that.
Make sure you listen to the pitch of the note as you tighten and loosen the string. This will help train your ear and also aid you in making the small adjustments you need.
Keep It Quiet
Limit outside noise and interference, because the tuner cannot distinguish the notes of your guitar from other sounds it hears.
ELECTRIC TIP: Adjust Your Pickup Switch
When tuning an electric guitar, be sure to set the pickup selector switch to the far left. This helps to minimize any frequencies that could interfere with the process.
ACOUSTIC TIP: Keep It Close
Keep the tuner as close to the guitar’s sound hole as possible. If using your phone, keep the microphone pointed toward your guitar so it can hear the sound of the strings being plucked.
Being in tune is crucial to sounding good, and by following these tips, you immediately help out your cause.