Guitar- An Imperfect Instrument

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Guitar- An Imperfect Instrument

Postby Scott DeVarenne » Mon Aug 19, 2013 11:02 pm

This came to my attention as I was looking through a decade old magazine, I think it was EQ (the cover was missing).
it led to this ... go=2&sgo=3
No, you are not seeing some weird Jpeg pixilation, them frets are indeed squiggly.
Do these make the guitar less prone to gross intonation issues, yet allow it to still be tuned in the equal tempered scale?
I was recently telling Richard Kidd that major thirds sound dissonant to me. He assured me that they are out of tune on a keyboard- it is not a peculiarity to guitar.
Where the hell did we go wrong?
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Re: Guitar- An Imperfect Instrument

Postby Malcolm Boyce » Wed Aug 21, 2013 12:54 pm

So much general misunderstanding about "tuning". Many things that should be "in pitch" but actually aren't or don't sound like they are. It is a deep, deep subject of which I only know a smidgen about. Further compounded now by people digitally manipulating pitch to the grid without consideration of context taking precedence. Context is everything.

From conversations I've been involved in, it certainly isn't a case of guitar being the only "imperfect" instrument.
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Re: Guitar- An Imperfect Instrument

Postby Mathieu Benoit » Wed Aug 21, 2013 1:35 pm

Malcolm Boyce wrote:From conversations I've been involved in, it certainly isn't a case of guitar being the only "imperfect" instrument.

You are 100% right, the piano was traditionally never in "tune" it was stretch-tuned. This is due to the complexity of inharmonic properties of the metal string. The theoretic frequency and the actual one are slightly higher as you go higher in frequency. So stretch tuning compensates for that and makes it so that piano is in tune with itself. "In tune" pianos are a recently new invention with the coming of digital pianos.

The guitar is exactly the same thing, just a few degrees less complex.
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