How to tune your guitar using Harmonics

Author: Ian-Bush  
Date Posted:11 November 2011 

So we have all been there, you’re at a friend’s house and they have a guitar and it’s terribly out of tune - but they don’t have a tuner.

So what is the best way to tune a guitar using harmonics and how does it all work?

I learnt this great little trick about 20 years ago, one of the guys I was working with showed it to me and I have never tuned a guitar the "old way" since.

So a lot of you will have learnt how to play using harmonics

The basic way you do it is as follows

First your low E (6th string) has to be reasonably close to tune. If not your whole guitar will be tuned to a different note (which as long as its relatively in tune will sound OK)

Low E, 6th String, 5th fret harmonic = A, 5th string, 7th fret harmonic
A, 5th String, 5th fret harmonic = D, 4th string, 7th fret harmonic
D, 4th String, 5th fret harmonic = G, 3rd string, 7th fret harmonic

So that’s pretty standard, everyone has done that. Here is the secret trick -

Low E, 6th String , 7th fret harmonic = B, 2nd string, open
A, 5th String , 7th fret harmonic = High E,4th string, open

When you tune using harmonics, there are 2 frequencies to listen to. As an example if you tune an A at 440 Hz. and your matching it with an A that is slight out of tune at 442hz, when you play these together you will hear a beat note of 2hz. The closer in tune you get the slower that beat note will be till hopefully you get no beat at all (if it sounds a little chorusy that means you have a very close match but you could get the chorus effect to be as slow as possible)

I will be making up a short video for our YouTube channel tomorrow so you can see how it’s done


Comments (0)

Value for money

By: on 23 September 2016
I brought the violin from Artist Guitars around 3 years back. We got a rosin too, but when it was finished we ended up going to a music shop nearby and they said these are low quality one, and suggested to buy the premium one from the shop. Be frank, it might be premium and might be good for professionals, but kids of 7 years, its better to go with this rosin. It was value for money and last an year or so without any issue.

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