#1
I have a Takamine GJ72CE-NAT acoustic guitar and it's a lovely guitar, but I have some nit-picky problems with the tuning which is prominent in some chords.

The neck hasn't been touched at all since it's left the factory and shouldn't need to as it's dead flat. On all the digital tuners I have used the intonation is fine both from open to fretted 12th fret and harmonic 12th fret to fretted 12 fret. Before anyone mentions I'm not pressing down too hard on the frets as I'm am owner of an Ibanez S series which requires a light touch and play perfectly fine.

However, as soon as I start playing chords, a majority of them are fine but others such as the open Dmaj chord the B and E strings are slightly out to my ear and it drives me mad, so I end up deviating the tuning off slightly until I'm happy. Another chord that's even more out is the open Fmaj chord shape playing the Cmaj & Dmaj played around the 8th & 10th fret.

Any suggestions anyone?

Many thanks

Will
#3
Quote by willowen100
I have a Takamine GJ72CE-NAT acoustic guitar and it's a lovely guitar, but I have some nit-picky problems with the tuning which is prominent in some chords.

The neck hasn't been touched at all since it's left the factory and shouldn't need to as it's dead flat. On all the digital tuners I have used the intonation is fine both from open to fretted 12th fret and harmonic 12th fret to fretted 12 fret. Before anyone mentions I'm not pressing down too hard on the frets as I'm am owner of an Ibanez S series which requires a light touch and play perfectly fine....[ ]....

I have a suggestion, trust your ears. As for one guitar being easy to playing equating to how you play another, remember, you will compensate automatically if higher fretting pressure is required. So, you might be pushing harder and not be fully aware of it.

What's the action height on the Tak? If it's slightly too high, (or even just higher than your Ibanez), you'll find the strings change pitch a fair amount when fretted.

I find most head stock tuners, particularly the "Snark", to be a bit vague around center. Put differently, I can often hear a slight pitch change, while the meter hasn't moved. Add to that, the e-1 & B-2, (unwound), strings are likely to change pitch more than the others when fretted.

As the poster before me has suggested, (sort off), those high strings could be sticking in their slots also. Lubricate the grooves by scraping some pencil lead into them. You could also open them up a bit with a "torch tip cleaner". (Google that).

Also, the G-3 might be out a bit, and you're tuning against it. IF the G-3 is flat, then the tuner will make the e-1 & B-2 sound sharp. As you go lower in frequency, your ears are less sensitive to absolute pitch.

Go, make sure the G-3 is tuned correctly, then finish off tuning the e-1 & B-2 by ear. (The way you've been doing it). I find "zero beating" the strings against one another helps on certain instruments. (Tune so there's no "warble" when you play those strings together).

Above all though, lighten up. Any acoustic guitar is never going to be perfect. I could spend entire sessions try to get my 12 strings into perfect tune. But, like they say, "how long does it take to tune a 12 string"? And the answer is, "nobody knows, it's never been done".

The C major open chord is my nemesis. I find when you have the E, A, B (2nd fret), G & D sounding pretty close to perfect, the C will be slightly off. This though, is more than likely an aberration caused by modern "equal temperament tuning".

If your frustration persists, I prescribe a guitar with these frets:


Find them here: http://www.truetemperament.com/
#4
Quote by willowen100
I have a Takamine GJ72CE-NAT acoustic guitar and it's a lovely guitar, but I have some nit-picky problems with the tuning which is prominent in some chords.

The neck hasn't been touched at all since it's left the factory and shouldn't need to as it's dead flat. On all the digital tuners I have used the intonation is fine both from open to fretted 12th fret and harmonic 12th fret to fretted 12 fret. Before anyone mentions I'm not pressing down too hard on the frets as I'm am owner of an Ibanez S series which requires a light touch and play perfectly fine.

However, as soon as I start playing chords, a majority of them are fine but others such as the open Dmaj chord the B and E strings are slightly out to my ear and it drives me mad, so I end up deviating the tuning off slightly until I'm happy. Another chord that's even more out is the open Fmaj chord shape playing the Cmaj & Dmaj played around the 8th & 10th fret.

Any suggestions anyone?

Many thanks

Will


-was the guitar always this way or is this a new development?

-fwiw, as stated, some clip on tuners like the snark are kinda floaty. i now use a strobe tuner which is awesome but basically points out to me that none of my guitars are quite right. so i just rough it in close with the tuner and adjust by ear. which is basically what i was doing with a snark. the strobe has flashing lights that move in a circle which looks more interesting and promises more work is being done, but it cost me 5X the price of a snark and in the end it's nearly just as functional. the point is that i suspect no tuner is exactly right no matter what the cost.

-also it's a common misconception that a guitar's neck should be "dead flat" and stay that way. wood moves around all the time in response to weather changes and all guitars need a certain amount of relief to function properly. while relief isn't often a direct culprit in tuning/intonation problems unless it's like 1/8" or something, the expansion and contraction of the guitars geometry in response to weather/humidity/temp changes is. scale length will move around as things change and action will move around as well. it's one reason why serious classical guitar players keep winter and summer saddles in the case to swap out when needed.

-if you are one of those people with "perfect pitch" i can only predict a lifetime of annoyance with western stringed instruments unless you go to exotic measures to combat even temperment and guitar maker's attempts to "do their best" with intonation. i have experience with this as my wife is a great player with perfect pitch and can hear a foul note a mile away in a noisy guitar store. she's learned to compromise with her instruments.

-if you are tech savvy i suggest setting the guitar up or if you're not, take it to a shop. ime guitars should get a complete setup 2x a year. get all the mechanical issues out of the way first. that way if the problem still remains, you potentially have less to troubleshoot.

-i'm not a fan of Tak's split saddle. i have heard of and can see a potential for issues here.
Last edited by ad_works at Oct 16, 2015,
#5
You don't say how old the strings are. When strings are dead intonation goes out the window.

Even if you don't realize it, you could still be fretting too hard.

A dead flat neck is not optimum, it need some neck relief for the strings to vibrate without buzzing, but you're not likely to see it easily, it's much better to check it. Put a capo on the 1st fret then fret the 14th or so. You should have clearance of around .010" to .015" at the 7th fret. More or less is not highly problematic, if it's too little it will be getting fret buzz. If it's not buzzing and not more than about credit card room at most, don't worry about it. Neck relief will not affect intonation, unless it's something like the guy above said, 1/8 inch or so.

If you have fresh strings, not fretting too hard, no outrageous string height or neck relief, welcome to the world of good relative pitch. It drives me crazy...

I don't have perfect pitch, just very good relative pitch. Acoustics drive me nuts and Telecasters with three saddle bridges. I Can hear out of tune strings or notes most people never notice. Many musicians have told me nothing is wrong when I hear a definite sour note in my guitar. Or theirs...After 50 years I've just learned to live with it. The B string is usually the one that gives me fits.
Hmmm...I wonder what this button does...
#6
Quote by jwmcdaniel97
It could be the nut slots are off.


Yes ^^^^^^^

The nut is the first thing I check when I do a set up. It's surprising how many are not cut correctly.