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#1
Hi people.
Basically, I've been told countless times now that I'm out of tune when I play, and I just don't see how.

-My guitar is in tune according to my Boss GT3
-My intonation is good

However when I play and record it, people tell me I'm out of tune (have a look at my youtube account if you want?)... I'm just tired of this, what could it be? My ears? If my guitar is in tune it shouldn't matter if I'm playing covers, I'm told which notes to play... Could it be my pedal?

It's just frustrating and I've no idea what to do.
#2
Either intonation or technique

If you press down too hard or twist/bend the strings when you play, the notes will go out of tune
#3
1) Have them run their guitars through your boss pedal to see if it's the pedal
2) Play notes at the same with them
3) Record yourselves and compare a standard note with the Hz frequency, that'll end this argument once and for all.
#4
My guess is that you are not tuning it right. Playing Megadeth, you should make sure you hit the note about twice a second when you are tuning. You aren't hitting it and letting it ring as you tune, are you? Also. my boss chromatic tuner has been known to go haywire on me.
#5
The above.

Schecter C-1 Hellraiser FR
ESP LTD MH-1000NT
Marshall AVT100
Boss ME-70

Quote by stratdud39
Thank you for your words of wisdom.
#6
Either your guitar is or isn't in tune. A. Couple things

1 - are you positive your guitar is intoned properly? Do you know how to tell?

2- have you checked your guitars intonation against multiple tuners to confirm the notes are sounding properly?

3- how hard are you pressing down on the strings? Pressing too hard can cause a note to go sharp and therefore be out of tune.
#7
Quote by xFilth
Either intonation or technique

If you press down too hard or twist/bend the strings when you play, the notes will go out of tune

I'm quite light on my fingers, so that's out of question...

I've had my guitar intonated recently and when I check the intonation on the tuner it's right... That's why I'm frustrated, cause it makes no sense.
#8
I can't really see what kinda Dean you're playing

Does it have a locking nut??

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#9
Quote by ElitiusMaxim
1) Have them run their guitars through your boss pedal to see if it's the pedal
2) Play notes at the same with them
3) Record yourselves and compare a standard note with the Hz frequency, that'll end this argument once and for all.

That argument relies on me having a good musical ear, which I clearly don't...
Quote by z4twenny
Either your guitar is or isn't in tune. A. Couple things

1 - are you positive your guitar is intoned properly? Do you know how to tell?

2- have you checked your guitars intonation against multiple tuners to confirm the notes are sounding properly?

3- how hard are you pressing down on the strings? Pressing too hard can cause a note to go sharp and therefore be out of tune.

Yep I know how to check the intonation. Play open string, play harmonic at the 12th fret. Plus I just check random notes on the fretboard to see if they're right.
I've checked on two tuners, however when I tune using the Boss GT3, it bypasses all the effects, and the second time I didn't have the pedal... Could it be that? I don't see how the pedal would affect the key?
Quote by shwilly
I can't really see what kinda Dean you're playing

Does it have a locking nut??

It's a Dean Baby Z. No locking nut, no trem.
#10
Quote by piszczel
It's a Dean Baby Z. No locking nut, no trem.
Aha, I see

First of all I'm assuming you:

A) Don't play on really old strings when you're recording yourself
B) Stretch your strings after changing 'em so they don't go out of tune immediately
C) Cut off any excess strings (the longer the string, the longer it'll take to fully stretch out, even if part of that string is wrapped around the tuning peg)
D) "Lock" your string with itself when you restring (there's plenty of tutorials on how to do this on Youtube)

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#11
You also need to check by fretting @ the twelfth fret though if multiple tuners all confirm that its in tune then its probably a technique issue
#12
Quote by shwilly
Aha, I see

First of all I'm assuming you:

A) Don't play on really old strings when you're recording yourself
B) Stretch your strings after changing 'em so they don't go out of tune immediately
C) Cut off any excess strings (the longer the string, the longer it'll take to fully stretch out, even if part of that string is wrapped around the tuning peg)
D) "Lock" your string with itself when you restring (there's plenty of tutorials on how to do this on Youtube)

I usually do all of that. This time I have some excess string hanging cause I don't have any tools to cut it off. However the problem happens despite me doing all that, and it's not just recent.
#13
Quote by z4twenny
You also need to check by fretting @ the twelfth fret though if multiple tuners all confirm that its in tune then its probably a technique issue

I need to get more tuners then...
I am *positive* though that it's not my fretting technique
#14
If you're used to doing all of these things and your guitar still sounds slightly out of tune you have to know 1 thing: when it comes to playing in tune the biggest "obstacle" is your nut, not the tuners like many people assume

What often happens is this -> when you tune your guitar some of the strings can get "stuck" a little in both the nut and the string trees (if you have any, but that's not the case with your guitar). It doesn't even really matter which material they're made out of by the way, even with a nice hand-carved bone nut and flatwound strings the friction between the nut and the strings may cause them to jam a little. Then after you start playing (especially if you do some bending) the string finally gets "free", and all of a sudden it's out of tune...

/] 三方 [\
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#15
Quote by shwilly
If you're used to doing all of these things and your guitar still sounds slightly out of tune you have to know 1 thing: when it comes to playing in tune the biggest "obstacle" is your nut, not the tuners like many people assume

What often happens is this -> when you tune your guitar some of the strings can get "stuck" a little in both the nut and the string trees (if you have any, but that's not the case with your guitar). It doesn't even really matter which material they're made out of by the way, even with a nice hand-carved bone nut and flatwound strings the friction between the nut and the strings may cause them to jam a little. Then after you start playing (especially if you do some bending) the string finally gets "free", and all of a sudden it's out of tune...

That's the thing, it doesn't sound out of tune when played on it's own, but it sounds out of tune when played with a backing track.
Also if what you said happened, wouldn't that only affect the string once?
#16
Quote by piszczel
Also if what you said happened, wouldn't that only affect the string once?
Depends on how "serious" your problem is

There are a couple of ways to solve these types of issues:

-The easiest way is tuning your strings up to pitch, then push 'em downwards a little behind the nut, and after that play the string while doing some bending (nothing extreme, just to "liberate" your string from the nut). Then check with your tuner again. If it's not up to pitch anymore you know what your problem is

-If you've been repeating this procedure but the string just keeps going out of tune EVERY time after you do some bending and retuning then your problem might be a little more serious: perhaps it's the nut slots that aren't wide enough for some of the strings. If this seems to be the case you could use a tiny file to make these slots a liiiittle bit wider (only for the strings that are causing you problems, and DON'T overdo it). Did you by chance switch to a heavier string gauge at any moment? Sometimes the manufacturer didn't make the nut slots wide enough, but they are usually made specifically for .009 and .010 string gauges, so when you go for heavier strings you might encounter some difficulties

-Sometimes it might help to use some nut sauce (don't laugh -> that's what it's called). You can usually get one of those funny little syringes at your local guitar store: apply a little of this wonderful substance to your nut (and/or string tree) when changing strings. Sure works for me (it's a little expensive tho, so after buying like 2 of these things I started making my own string lube: all you need is a jar of vaseline and some graphite, any color will do)

...so basically my theory is this: your guitar starts going out of tune AFTER you tuned it up, so you THINK it's perfectly in tune, but as soon as you start playing... (you can check for yourself: tune the thing, then play some licks, and then after like 2 minutes check again). This is a pretty common issue, believe me: I experience this a LOT with 1 of my guitars

If this is not the case then I don't know, but I certainly don't think it's the backing track (it could be that the backing track is not tuned to the same pitch as your tuner, that's the only other explanation I can think of)

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Last edited by shwilly at Jun 25, 2011,
#17
Quote by shwilly
Depends on how "serious" your problem is

There ara a couple of ways to solve thes types of issues:

-The easiest way is tuning your strings up to pitch, then push 'em downwards a little behind the nut, and after that play the string while doing some bending (nothing extreme, just to "liberate" your string from the nut). Then check with your tuner again. If it's not up to pitch anymore you know what your problem is
)

Just did that. Strings were in pitch before and after bending.
Could the pedal itself change the pitch in any way? I don't think it would, but I guess anything's possible... The tuner function on it bypasses the effects, so I've never actually tuned it after the effects have been applied. Nothing serious, just preamp, compressor, some delay...
#18
is the tuner set to 440?
Quote by kaptkegan
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#21
Quote by piszczel
I need to get more tuners then...
I am *positive* though that it's not my fretting technique

If you don't trust your ears, why do you have so much faith in your fingers? Can you post a video?
Quote by dudetheman
So what? I wasted like 5 minutes watching DaddyTwoFoot's avatar.


Metalheads are the worst thing that ever happened to metal.
#22
Quote by DaddyTwoFoot
If you don't trust your ears, why do you have so much faith in your fingers? Can you post a video?

I have a few vids online, I can post another one, not sure how you'd want me to show how hard I'm pressing on the frets... Basically I went through an Yngwie Malmsteen phase few months ago and came to a conclusion that the only way to play faster is to fret lightly, so I taught myself how to. I am very light with my fingers, plus I've already checked the tuning when I fret - I just fret random frets/power chords how I would normally and then check the pitch of individual notes.
#23
Quote by piszczel
I have a few vids online, I can post another one, not sure how you'd want me to show how hard I'm pressing on the frets... Basically I went through an Yngwie Malmsteen phase few months ago and came to a conclusion that the only way to play faster is to fret lightly, so I taught myself how to. I am very light with my fingers, plus I've already checked the tuning when I fret - I just fret random frets/power chords how I would normally and then check the pitch of individual notes.

There's more to fretting technique than how hard you press. Minute bends and slurs that may not be noticeable to an untrained ear can throw off your notes too.

Edit - Just saw your sig with the YouTube link. I'll check it out shortly.
Quote by dudetheman
So what? I wasted like 5 minutes watching DaddyTwoFoot's avatar.


Metalheads are the worst thing that ever happened to metal.
Last edited by DaddyTwoFoot at Jun 25, 2011,
#24
Quote by DaddyTwoFoot
There's more to fretting technique than how hard you press. Minute bends and slurs that may bot be noticeable to an untrained ear can throw off your notes too.

Quite honestly I'm confident none of this happens.
#25
If you're in tune, your intonation is correct and your fretting technique is impeccable, then I don't see how you would be out of tune. Either the other people are incorrect in hearing you, or you aren't being critical enough of your side of things.
Quote by dudetheman
So what? I wasted like 5 minutes watching DaddyTwoFoot's avatar.


Metalheads are the worst thing that ever happened to metal.
#26
Quote by DaddyTwoFoot
If you're in tune, your intonation is correct and your fretting technique is impeccable, then I don't see how you would be out of tune. Either the other people are incorrect in hearing you, or you aren't being critical enough of your side of things.

If I wasn't critical of myself, I wouldn't post this thread Well it seems like 90% of people who listen to my vids tell me I'm out of tune, so clearly can't be a coincidence.
I'm confident in my technique, I'm not confident in my equipment and my ears... I dunno. I'll try to find another tuner and check my guitar.
#27
Do make sure the covers you're recording were originally in standard tuning. Sometimes I've found that the pitch on the original isn't quite right.

Watching the Holy Wars cover, I think you're starting in tune and the guitar is drifting out as you play...

I think it might even be just the D string is drifting out, it's just that you've got a lot of powerchords on the A and D strings in that song.

It might be worth heading over to the electric guitar part of the forum and reading the string changing guide. It may seem trivial but how you put the strings on makes a huge difference to tuning stability overall.

And if you're doing it right, the guitar's just drifting out of tune, it happens. I like to run through tunes a few times before recording, retuning as I go until it's totally stable.
#28
Quote by Freepower
Do make sure the covers you're recording were originally in standard tuning. Sometimes I've found that the pitch on the original isn't quite right.

Watching the Holy Wars cover, I think you're starting in tune and the guitar is drifting out as you play...

I think it might even be just the D string is drifting out, it's just that you've got a lot of powerchords on the A and D strings in that song.

It might be worth heading over to the electric guitar part of the forum and reading the string changing guide. It may seem trivial but how you put the strings on makes a huge difference to tuning stability overall.

And if you're doing it right, the guitar's just drifting out of tune, it happens. I like to run through tunes a few times before recording, retuning as I go until it's totally stable.

Hmm, thanks.
Interesting. My strings are about 3 weeks old now, and they're in a pretty stable tuning (I can bend them etc. and they don't go out after hours of playing). The way I always change the strings is I alternate them; i.e. I'll do the low E, tune it up to pitch, bend it a bit, tune it again, then do high E and so on. Then I check the tuning when all the strings are in tune.

As I'm speaking now, I checked the tuning about 20 times since I posted this thread - none of the strings have changed despite me playing on them.
#29
Ok, well, the only other thing I spotted is that you seemed to be fretting a little hard with your pinky on those powerchords... aside from that... I'm as confused as you are.
#30
Sometimes certain pedals makes you sound out of tune. like Chorus pedals.
or other people's ears are wrong.
Quote by kaptkegan
Don't think I've ever been sigged.


I pretty much never leave the drug thread anymore.
Last edited by Metallicuh at Jun 25, 2011,
#31
Quote by piszczel
Hi people.
Basically, I've been told countless times now that I'm out of tune when I play, and I just don't see how.

-My guitar is in tune according to my Boss GT3
-My intonation is good

However when I play and record it, people tell me I'm out of tune (have a look at my youtube account if you want?)... I'm just tired of this, what could it be? My ears? If my guitar is in tune it shouldn't matter if I'm playing covers, I'm told which notes to play... Could it be my pedal?

It's just frustrating and I've no idea what to do.


Intonation, lack of listening and/or technique.

If you spend alot of time playing single note stuff, but not much with chords, it's possible that when you do play chords your pulling some notes sharp.

Do you have any specific examples of something you've recorded that other people tell you is out of tune?
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jun 25, 2011,
#32
Quote by GuitarMunky

Do you have any specific examples of something you've recorded that other people tell you is out of tune?

My youtube account, in my sig.
Ive had more videos, but I've deleted a lot of them because a lot of people told me my playing was out of tune (they were mainly improv videos, over a backing track).
The most recent video - cover of Holy Wars - I've been told by people that it's out of tune (there's a thread in the covers section).
#33
Quote by piszczel
My youtube account, in my sig.
Ive had more videos, but I've deleted a lot of them because a lot of people told me my playing was out of tune (they were mainly improv videos, over a backing track).
The most recent video - cover of Holy Wars - I've been told by people that it's out of tune (there's a thread in the covers section).


Oh yeah, I can really hear it at :25 when you sustain that power chord.

Does that chord sound in tune to you?
shred is gaudy music
#34
Quote by GuitarMunky
Oh yeah, I can really hear it at :25 when you sustain that power chord.

Does that chord sound in tune to you?

The one at :25 is a B5, in tune with the backing track or in tune with itself you mean? It does sound fairly in tune I guess...
Btw I'm suprised you didn't say anything about the ones just before it, which have heavy vibrato on them, I was expecting someone to say something about that lol.
#35
Quote by piszczel
The one at :25 is a B5, in tune with the backing track or in tune with itself you mean? It does sound fairly in tune I guess...
Btw I'm suprised you didn't say anything about the ones just before it, which have heavy vibrato on them, I was expecting someone to say something about that lol.


well the sustained chord is the 1st thing I could hear. Before that your guitar covers up the background. (at least on these laptop speakers).

regarding the B5. It sounds out. Can't really tell if the 2 strings are out of tune, or if your guitar is out from the backing tracks. You very well may be putting to much pressure on the strings and making the notes go sharp.

Try playing on your own. Mess with the pressure and listen to the chord go in and out of tune. It's a common issue and some guitars are more forgiving than others. On my SG standard I had to consciously think (press lighter) at certain places to be in tune. On my strat I didn't have to consider it at all. Same with my other SG. I think fret size and possibly neck width had something to do with it in my case.

and 1 more tip. Get away from the "the tuner says it's in tune so it's in tune" frame of mind and start listening. Maybe even tune it by ear on a regular basis to train your ears. Only use the tuner if you totally screw it up, or just need a reference to start.

Quote by Freepower
Do make sure the covers you're recording were originally in standard tuning. Sometimes I've found that the pitch on the original isn't quite right.

^
This could be the issue as well.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jun 25, 2011,
#37
Try this....

Do another version of Holy Wars. Play the guitar part by itself for maybe 10 seconds or so. Then play the song with the backing track and you playing with the backing track. And then stop the backing track, and continue playing the song for another 10 seconds or so.

If your guitar is out of tune with itself, it will be apparent in the first and last 10-20 or so where you are playing on your own.

If your guitar drifts out of tune in that four-ish minutes, then it will be apparent by comparing the first 10-20 seconds to the last 10-20 seconds.

If you are not in tune with the backing track, then the first AND last 10-20 seconds will sound fine on their own, but you will sound out of tune with the recording.

For the moment, I'm placing my bets on option 'C'.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#38
Quote by Sean0913
I agree you sound out of tune. Badly. Check the entire neck. Just because you are in intonation at the 12th fret, doesn't mean you're out of the woods. Check 3rd 5th 7th and 9th frets as well to a tuner.

Sean

I did, the whole guitar is in tune... we as in tune as it can be at the moment, some frets can be out by about 1/8 of note. I had it intonated before, and the issue was a lot bigger (1/4 of a note sometimes). I'll try to get it fixed + try another tuner + be even lighter on the strings but seems like I just need a new guitar probably. And a set of working ears.
#39
Quote by piszczel
... we as in tune as it can be at the moment, some frets can be out by about 1/8 of note. ....


So your intonation IS out then!

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#40
Quote by axemanchris
So your intonation IS out then!

CT

A bit, and only only the high E string is noticeable... The EAD set is perfectly intonated.
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