432Hz: Crazy Theory Or Crazy Fact

This article stems from a 3 month "experiment" of a sort and a conclusion to a few drunken nights research into the subject: 432hz as a standard tuning reference, and is it actually better or worse than the standard 440hz. If I had some glasses, I'd called them the Speculation Spectacles and then start reading this.

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Now to introduce you to this idea is relatively simple. Most tuners or tunings are tuned to the standard 440hz = A reference point, and this is apparent around the western world: practically any and all types of recorded music tune to this standard.

The History

Pythagoras, the ancient Greek all-round smart person, was attributed a tuning with a reference of 432hz for an A now simply called Pythagorean Tuning. It is/was based on a tuning ratio of 3:2, whereas most Western musical tuning is based on a ratio of 1:1 (not really sure what means, but its an easily researchable topic). Complicated tuning ratios and mathematics aside, the traditional 440hz scale looks like this (with the 432hz scale mentioned further down).

The sound of the scale reportedly makes the sound of perfect 5ths sound harmonically rich and "smooth" while 3rds (particularly major and minor), which have relatively complex tuning ratios of 81:64 and 32:27 respectively, sound dissonant. To counter-act this problem with certain intervals, the Pythagorean Scale idea came along. A Pythagorean Scale is simply put, any scale that is comprised entirely of perfect 5ths and octaves. An example would be that old chestnut, C Major. The dissonant intervals that arose from the Pythagorean tuning are known as "wolf intervals" due to their sound (presumably, it sounds like a wolf).

This tuning and scale were thought to have been wide-spread in the ancient world, but now are both rarely heard about (bad pun) in modern music, mostly due to that wolf interval and modern music generally being more harmonically exploratory (in Pythagorean tuning, this approach would've caused the wolf interval to show up more).

The "Experiment"

A few months ago, I tested out the 432hz reference on my guitar, tuned to D standard and occasionally Drop C. I've been using this tuning up until right just now where I decided to try 440 again to see if there'd be any discernible difference. To test it out during recording, I did a cover of "Jane Doe" by Converge a month or so after I started to use the tuning. (Shameless self-promoting linkage).

But turning back towards the point, overall I noticed a difference in the way things sounded: Individual notes played in a scale sounded relatively indifferent to each other, while the higher up the fretboard I played, the more noticeable a slight discrepancy in notation became, until the point where I was confused over if my intonation was out of whack or if it was just the tuning. I also noticed that an open A# perfect 5th power chord (as if there's any other type of power chord) sounded "clean", fully tuned and warmer than an open A#maj7 barre chord, which sounded slightly out of tune but with a lot of "colour" to it, if that makes sense (people with synesthesia will know more about that). In comparison, another guitar tuned to 440 in E standard playing the same chords sounded flatter and duller overall, but with much less underlying dissonance, having more consonance. Even when tuning the strings to as close as 432 as possible, the dissonance was still there, and it changed the way I started writing riffs, where death metallish dissonance actually sounded nicer than playing melodies that used diatonic chord patterns.

Another thing I sort of stumbled on, was that the guy who initially told me about this, had recently "converted" the entire "Periphery II" album from (what was apparently) 440hz to 432hz. All it needed was some editing in Audacity to change it. I heard the song "Racecar" (actually from the first album) in 440 then 432. The overall sound difference was noticeable, the 432 version sounding warmer, clearer and instantly sounded more listenable (given my opinion on Periphery, that's something, right?) but the 440 version felt tighter, with more aggressive energy.

You can actually try this experiment yourself (very thankfully, for free as free can be): Download Audacity, which is freeware, follow these steps in this video and discern whether or not there's any difference.

The Crazy Parts

Okay, so 432hz doesn't seem to be a big deal up until you understand why its suddenly been cropping up in places: Crazy conspiracy theories.

According to the weird side of the internet, a torrent of reliable and factual information (haha, yeah right), during World War 2, a certain Mr Goebbels (crazy Nazi propaganda minister) was thinking of more and more ideas that allowed for complete superiority over the general populace (as if murdering people wasn't enough) when he stumbled upon the idea of changing standardized musical tuning to something that would cause stress or anxiety in casual listeners, hence the change to 440. He pushed this idea heavily but it was ultimately rejected once the war actually started. Then (internet reliability still in effect), the NWO (yes, really) implemented the change seemingly overnight because they felt like it, and now the supposed reason that the modern lifestyle is full of stress and conformity is because of a slight uptuning in instrumentation across popular music. It's now safe to take off the tin foil hat.

Crazy Nazi theories aside (without a mention of Hitler, until just now), there might be some weight to the "tunings make you feel different" idea. According to another internet page (which I lost the link to), 432hz is tied with the Music of the Spheres, where planets and celestial bodies (another name for planets, I think) generate their own frequency. Its not entirely ignorable: Science previously discovered that the static on your TV is actually the sound and energy of dying stars, and that anything producing energy actually produces some kind of sound, whether loud or quiet (that includes atoms vibrating). This possibly means that, given our knack for living on earth, we're "tuned" to the cosmic hum of the planets rotation (kind of a cool idea actually). And for some reason, this is believed to be in the tuning of 432hz.

Maybe we've found why 3 is the magic number. Here are some comparative frequencies of other notes tuned with a reference of 432hz (these are the few notes I found the frequencies of):

A = 432hz
D = 288hz
E = 324hz
G = 384hz

The main thing to take note is, they're (almost) whole numbers, and are wholly divisible by 3. Apparently that means something, not entirely sure what myself, but according to some scientist (John Stuart Reid), after developing a "Cymascope" (after cymatics) which is essentially a really colourful oscilloscope or a more interesting variation of cornstarch-in-a-subwoofer, made a note that any notes tuned to 432hz: "432 Hertz pops out as a triangle, every time we image it. We thought there was something wrong with the CymaScope - but after trying for more than an hour we concluded that the number 3 was somehow universally connected to 432 Hertz." Pretty interesting stuff. However, the same site startes delving into "chakra" and "third eyes" and blurring supposedly real science with stoner's dreams and all that, maybe with some grain of truth to it, but I couldn't test it myself.

So Overall...

I don't know, really. What a rubbish conclusion, I hear you pre-emptively cry, but I guess the overall point is to try and clear up the lack of solid info there seems to be (and there still is, if this article is anything to go by) but if it has helped, then it's at least opened a mind or two to the concept of different tuning reference points OR... Shown you why it's all complete rubbish, and that whatever works for you, works for you. Have a good one.

This story was written by a UG user. Have anything interesting to share with the community? Submit your own story!

137 comments sorted by best / new / date

    GUITAR TWUNT
    The interval ratio is how you understand the difference between the different tuning systems. Pythagorean tuning is more than just tuning down slightly. Equal temperament tuning (standard Western tuning method) has all of the notes (A - G#) set an equal distance apart (ratio 1:1). Pythagorean tuning has the intervals set at a ratio of 3:2. This makes the perfect fifth sound more in tune than equal temperament. However the other notes sound more and more dissonant as you move away from the fifth. The thirds particularly sound like crap. To summarise, you literally can't use pythagorean tuning on a guitar because the frets are fitted to play notes in equal temperament. Of course you can tune down to A=432Hz, but that's just tuning down in equal temperament. Pythagorean tuning is an entirely different thing. Somebody might end up scoring a lower mark on a theory paper if they used this article for learning purposes.
    ciano16
    if i had seen this, i wouldnt have typed up my paragraph saying the same thing. there needs to be a way that people can disprove/dispute articles that are full of crap. if someone sees this and goes around talking about tuning to 432, itl be like a plague of ignorance.
    HigherThanAMile
    For all the trouble the writer went to for this article, I find it quite amazing that they didn't come upon the scale of the neck and this very important part of temperament. Speaking of which, perhaps the writer will pen a new article about the True Temperament series of guitar necks that is out there. Google the words, I'm not trying to plug anyone's product. Finally, if anyone would like to look into a topic that is relative to this, the world of microtones, google "Neil Haverstick microtones" and check out a song called Birdwalk.
    Uni Verse
    He may or may not, but I will. Thanks for bringing that up, and the info!
    morbidguitar
    i really wonder how Pythagoras measured 432hz in the year 5000BC, he must have had an app for his iStone.
    fydylstyks
    Pythagoras didn't measure 432 Hz or any other frequency- he didn't have the tools to do so. Nor did he say anything about absolute pitches, as far as I know. Thus, this connection of 432 with Pythagoras is bogus. Same goes for all the other claims of 432 having been a standard before the 19th century, when it found a couple of supporters (Giuseppe Verdi, for instance) among many other competing standards. Tune as you please, but there's nothing magic about 432 or any other frequency.
    kayko
    Pythagoras lived in V age BC. And frequency measure was know for many ages before him. Electronic tuners are a new method, but they work on rights that was known for many ages.
    killerkev321
    Yeah GUITAR TWUNT is right you would have change the frets or us a fretless to use the actual Pythagorean tuning. You should also take on Indian music if you like messing around in different tuning systems. Tuning to 432 hz is essentially a downtuning. Their are actually quite a few records that are not in 440 I know some old metallica songs arent its just because they probably just tuned to each other and didn't bother checking on a electronic tuner
    J-Dawg158
    Good work guys. Every flaw in this article I wanted to point out has been addressed. My faith in humanity has been restored!
    Creative-Noise
    It's been said before but I thought I'd reiterate: Pythagorean Tuning is TOTALLY different than just tuning your guitar with A=432 as a reference. You are still tuning with the equal-tempered tuning system if you do this.
    the_bi99man
    So I know this article is old, but I just found it because I've been doing a bunch of reading today about the A=432hz idea. I'm not going to get into the technical details, because that shit is way over my head. I will say this, though. I have an electronic tuner that lets me change the reference frequency from the default 440hz. I changed it to 432, and tuned my acoustic guitar based on that, then strummed out a few songs. My guitar has never sounded better. I'll be tuning all my instruments to A=432 from now on.
    Hells.Mascot
    I was about to say just what GUITAR TWUNT explained, but in a far more expository (and probably convoluted) manner. Thank you for saving me the trouble of thwarting misinformation. I like to think of it as altruism, but it's probably just being a gratuitous know-it-all.
    korn_dawg
    You were correct in thinking the intonation was off on your guitar when you were tuning the strings less tightly relative to what the guitar was set up to play, let alone how the placement of the frets assumes a 440Hz A.
    Scum_PunkRocker
    Pythagorean/Stradivari/Verdi Tuning (A = 432 hz, C = 256 hz) Calculated using the Pythagorean method of 3:2 ratio for dominants, 11:8 for sub-dominants, 2:1 for octaves. Note Frequency (hz) - Mid Low (1 octave below middle C) C 128 D 144 E 162 F 176 G 192 A 216 B 243 - Mid (middle C) C 256 D 288 E 324 F 352 G 384 A 432 B 486 - Mid High (1 octave above middle C) C 512 D 576 E 648 F 704 G 768 A 864 B 972 Modern Standard Tuning (A = 440 hz, C = 261.63 hz) Sources: http://www.phy.mtu.edu/~suits/notefreqs.... and http://www.phy.mtu.edu/~suits/notefreqs.... NoteFrequency (hz) - Mid Low (1 octave below middle C) C130.81 D146.83 E164.81 F174.61 G196 A220 B246.94 - Mid (middle C) C261.63 D293.66 E329.63 F349.23 G392 A440 B493.88 - Mid High (1 octave above middle C) C523.25 D587.33 E659.26 F698.46 G783.99 A880.00 B987.77 - - - - - - - As you can see, Every note in the Pythagorean tuning is a round number, and every note is divisable by 3. In the standard 440 model, only A and (some) G notes ever have round numbered frequencies. After tuning my guitars and bass to 432 I think I'm going to keep them that way. Sound is fuller, more toal colors which allows for greater tension and resolve contrasts and overall possibilities for harmonic dissonance!
    piszczel
    Interesting read, but where's your references? A website which you "lost the link to" is hardly a trusted source. But you're probably still in high school so I guess that's ok.
    jef.gat.1
    Wow. "You're probably still in high school???" This sounds like the comment of, well, someone still in high school.
    sandsofftime
    I am not a musician but one thing i can't stand is when someone brings up an idea or relays others ideas, people get on the defensive(suppressing voice) because it wasn't written in some bogus university writing or some reference of some book. When are people going to wake up that just because it is written and approved(by who? Are they some god who approves things?)doesn't mean it is an absolute or even right. It may very well be a mind control tactic, since everything we do is controlled by someone else who thinks they own us. This type of badgering is really passed on from those control freaks and is emulated through people who have not the guts to step outside the circle of garbage. It reminds me of how the FDA does not approve some things that somebody swears can cure cancer, and the ones that are approved have the same if not worse side affects. If i was terminal, i know what i would do and that would be try anything, whether written in some book or not because i was going to die anyway and they are not my mother or god. Or how about the mechanic with a certificate against the back yard worker. The backyard worker who does a far better job because they thrive on that type of work, whether they have approval or not. Certificates and paper are just utter garbage to control and suppress. The article is trying to give an idea that he has tried himself and has also heard of. Does he say it is an absolute? Of course he doesn't but there are people who do and maybe it is time we started to listen to them because listening to corrupt governments and the like has gotten us nowhere but in the hellhole of earth. We all live here and we all have a natural right not to be controlled, it is that simple. Why don't you go and try it for yourself to prove it and if you do agree with it, i bet you get the same flack but at least in your own heart you know. Another thing it isn't 3 that is the absolute it is 9 the divine. 3 and 6 however are right up there with 9. One thing that is for sure is that we are all getting angrier and i bet some of this music and control has everything to do with it. People telling other people what they should do, how they should live, parent their children, why the hell should we even bother being here? It has become a hellhole. Gee, we have to even pay to live on this planet and we pay some other human being as if they own it. They claim we are free but then say we need licences to do things and if we don't pay for a licence we are fined for doing our natural birthright. Who are these people? I had a thought about using a song in 440hz and then another in 432hz, on a boxer before a fight-to see if by using 440hz, he would be aggressive and lose the fight and if using 432 would be calmer and more focused. One thing is for sure-We all have the right to search for truths and answers. If it wasn't for conspiracy theorists, we wouldn't be looking through a computer monitor and be able to communicate to people from around the world. Without ideas, we are just dead! There is no need for suppression, it is criminal. One day we will fly! Yeah Right! As If!
    sandsofftime
    What if someone has a pitch detector that is set to detect 440 hertz but tells the user that it detected 432 hertz. Nothing would surprise me anymore about any untruth.
    PapaD
    I've been tuning my guitars and drums to A432 for about a month now. Based on my experience, there is something very different about it. I couldn't tell right away in an A/B test like that one on YouTube (
    (except noticing the flatness compared to A440). But the difference showed up after my first hour of playing acoustic guitar at 432Hz. Here's what I noticed. 1) I've been playing for a couple of hours on my own! (That, in itself, was odd. I haven't lasted that long since I was a teenager playing along to my old record player. For as long as I can remember, I only ever noodle for about half an hour before I get bored with the repetition of cliches that tumble from my muscle memory.) 2) I'm really enjoying the sound of the guitar - each note. Chords are even better (man...) 3) I can actually feel the vibration of the guitar body going right into my rib cage. It seems easier to improvise - almost as if my brain were processing each moment in a more efficient way. 4) I've been bending strings like Hendrix and haven't had to retune yet - not even the G and B strings. 5) It's funny, but I could swear that the string attack sounds less "spiky" and more smooth... 6) Singing and playing strummy anthems like "Hey Jude" or Primal Scream's "Movin' On Up" attained a new level of awesomeness and it was very hard not to dance! Very, very much more "into it". (Commercial possibilities anyone?!) After two or three days of playing in 432 a lot, I noticed that I was generally in a really buoyant, untroubled mood, more "in the moment" and felt more like being cheerful around people than usual. I think that 432 may actually be more efficient at synchronizing hemispheric brainwave activity than 440, based on my background in psychology, and the time taken for these effects to show up. This was not an instant "zap" difference that I could have spotted in an A/B listening test with my thinking, comparing, analyzing left hemisphere. It was more like a change that I could only see by looking back over time. ("My, haven't you grown? You were only this big last time I saw you...") It's not that the music sounds that different, so much as it gradually coaxes you into a more perceptive listening state somehow. All of the effects I had felt were as real to me as the feeling of being cold, hot or hungry. However, when I mentioned this to friends, one of them essentially told me that I must be imagining this because I wanted to believe it, that he couldn't hear a difference after 5 minutes - and in any case, he was fundamentally opposed to anything endorsed by people that may wear a tinfoil helmet or feel inclined to change their name to "Lancelot White-Eagle Camelot" and wear multicoloured hemp waistcoats. Upshot? I think 432Hz is a real improvement over 440 for its potency and enjoyability, but it has one hell of a new age PR problem!
    Claudia
    Hello - for the sake of mother earth and the health of her childrens, please pass on this Petition - save 432 hz pitch frequency - thanks a lot! Namste Claudia Hauri in english http://www.avaaz.org/en/petition/Save_43... in italian http://www.avaaz.org/en/petition/Save_43... in french http://www.avaaz.org/en/petition/Save_43... in german http://www.avaaz.org/en/petition/Save_43...
    Uni Verse
    I wish I could believe this will happen. It's easier for me to be selective about what A440 or higher pitched music I listen to, which is very little. When I do, it's not anything that will cause negative messages to be imbedded by use of pulsing dissonance. And it wasn't the Nazi's in the 1930's who first suggested it, either. It was the Royal Academy of Arts, in 1860. http://www.mcgee-flutes.com/Society%20of... But I do appreciate your message and efforts. Love & Light to you and yours.
    Uni Verse
    I wish I could believe this will happen. It's easier for me to be selective about what A440 or higher pitched music I listen to, which is very little. When I do, it's not anything that will cause negative messages to be imbedded by use of pulsing dissonance. And it wasn't the Nazi's in the 1930's who first suggested it, either. It was the Royal Academy of Arts, in 1860. http://www.mcgee-flutes.com/Society%20of... But I do appreciate your message and efforts. Love & Light to you and yours.
    flyneye
    Further study by the author will disclose that we have moved from Just Intonation as he describes, which would involve a different instrument for each key we choose to play in, to Equal Temperament, which straightened out problems like that by moving the notes around to be evenly spaced mathematically. Cracking the cover on Helmholtzs "On the Sensations of Tone" will yield a much deeper insight to this and similar concepts. Reading and comprehending a treatise on Harmony( western music theory) will fill in the spaces for you. Researching the history, methods and madness of the now defunct "Creem" magazine, should give you enough journalistic clout to make this an interesting addictive music blog, instead...
    2jpe2
    Actually, most bands and orchestra's still follow Just Intonation because it creates a clearer sound, for example, using any software or device you have capable of doing so generate a major chord, then raise the fifth by 2 cents and lower the third by 14 cents, in a minor chord the third is 16 cents sharp. Compare the two chords your self and you will notice that the just intonated chords has less dissonance (even in the major chord) because it is the theoretical "perfect tuning" for a major or minor chord. The reason this can't be applied to guitar is because you would have to resize the frets, it can't work on piano or any other keyboard because you would have to retune the instrument for every chord. However, as someone else mentioned, a violin, trombone, trumpet, clarinet, etc is capable of retuning each note it plays using lips for the winds or the players finger for the violin.
    charlie.macneil
    I'm going to answer my own question: The second (symbol: s) is the base unit of time in the International System of Units (SI)[1] and is also a unit of time in other systems of measurement (abbreviated s or sec;[2]) it is the second division of the hour by sixty, the first division by 60 being the minute.[3] Between 1000 (when al-Biruni used seconds) and 1960 the second was defined as 1/86,400 of a mean solar day (that definition still applies in some astronomical and legal contexts).[4][5] Between 1960 and 1967, it was defined in terms of the period of the Earth's orbit around the Sun in 1900,[6] but it is now defined more precisely in atomic terms. Seconds may be measured using mechanical, electric or atomic clocks. Astronomical observations of the 19th and 20th centuries revealed that the mean solar day is slowly but measurably lengthening and the length of a tropical year is not entirely predictable either; thus the sunearth motion is no longer considered a suitable basis for definition. With the advent of atomic clocks, it became feasible to define the second based on fundamental properties of nature. Since 1967, the second has been defined to be: the duration of 9,192,631,770 periods of the radiation corresponding to the transition between the two hyperfine levels of the ground state of the caesium 133 atom.[1]
    NickD89
    I'd like to add some information to this: Many ancient sites reflect the number 432 in their alignment to stars and planets and the earths path through space. Avebury and Stonehenge for example, yield the numbers 432. "The connection of Stonehenge to the 25,920 year orbital procession of the equinox and the number 432 is obvious. If you take the first 30 stones in the outer ring of 360 degrees, divide that by 30 which gives you 12, and then divide 25,920 by 12 you get 2,160. which is the approximate diameter of the moon. When you divide the 60 stones in the second circle of 360 degrees by 60 you get 6. 25,920 divided by 6 equals 4,320. By dividing the 20 stones in the center circle of 360 degrees by 20 you get 18. 25,920 divided by 18 is 1,440. If the second circle of 60 stones equals 25,920 years then each stone equals 432 years around the 12 sectors of the 25,920 year procession. The center circle stones would be 20 x 432 which equals 8,640 years The center stone in the center circle would be divided in half at the time of the equinox making two stones for a total of 20. 1,440 is one sixth of 8,640. Again in the numbers of scientific concert pitch we see the numbers 144, 216, 432, 864. The earths wobble or spiral action gives us our time count of 86,400 seconds in a day and 43,200 seconds in 12 hours. 12 x 60 equals 720, and 2 x 360 equals 720. I must also mention that it takes 72 years for the earth to travel one degree around the 25,920 year procession of the equinox. Many stone circles have shown that these precise numbers also foretell of the changing of the poles and their past positions according to balanced alignment. Many stone circles were laid down to warn future generations of the passing of certain orbital astral bodies that from time to time may cause cataclysmic events. Those accurate calenders of astrological time keeping were altered by the formation of the first corporation sole known as the Roman Church. Stones worldwide were destroyed or moved, many vandalized and inscribed with the cross to convert them to the Roman Church. Natural time keeping by the Roman Church was forbidden and the stone Norse weoh calenders of Europe and most of the standing stone circles in greater Britain and Brittany were either cracked, pulled down or altered."
    Creative-Noise
    The only way to do a pythagorean tuning on a guitar is to break each fret into six pieces (one under each string) and move them individually. And you'd have to re-adjust for every different key you play in. In other words, normal guitars CANNOT EVERY IN ANY WAY play in Pythagorean tuning.
    katalyzt13
    Are you talking about in order for the guitar to be intoned correctly for 432 hz or are you saying the fret scale just doesn't work for this? Unless the Pythagoran tunings are so insane that they're based on micro-tonal tunings? I don't understand why you would have to move the fretwire for individual strings - I understand that straight frets isn't perfectly intonated in any tuning, but outside of that reason, what other reason would there be for moving the fretwire individually for every string?
    Creative-Noise
    It's sort of hard to explain but I'll give it a shot. For and example take the fifth fret of a guitar and think of the notes on the 1st and 2nd strings. Those notes would be "A" and "E". In equal temperament tuning (the way guitars and pianos are normally tuned) those notes have the frequencies of 440Hz (for A) and 329.63Hz (for E). And that's all good, that's how they are with a straight fret. Now assume we are playing in the key of C major. To go to Pythagorean tuning you'd need to move the "A" to 436.05Hz and the "E" to 327.03Hz. You'll notice those are different by different amounts, so to make those notes in tune you'd need a broken-up fret so that one piece could be just slightly higher up than the other. Hopefully that makes sense?
    Creative-Noise
    and I should have said in Pythagorean tuning those notes would be different by different amounts for each different key. But that's even harder to explain But that's why I specified C Major.
    katalyzt13
    Okay, so the concept of semitones and tones is slightly different, like the relationship of intervals?
    Creative-Noise
    Yup. The "equal" part of equal temperament tuning comes from the idea that all of the semitones are equally spaces. In other tuning systems they aren't. Like the distance from C to C# would be different than the distance from F to F#.
    bbedford48
    I hope you meant that the relationship of frequencies between consecutive semitones in the even tempered scale is a ratio. I.e. a#/a = f#/f = twelfth root of 2
    dennymcf
    so strange stumbled upon 'lateralus' by tool on youtube converted to 432hz and the did some research on 432hz and now about an hour later i happen to come across the article on UG about the same topic that i had never heard about over an hour ago
    hegner123
    the whole converting is crap. Your just turning everything down 8hz. Its not about the tuning of instruments in the song aka your drums are 8 hz lower
    morbidguitar
    Just as important, how did morbidguitar waste half his coffee break reading about this BS in the year 2012.
    rockingamer2
    What did I just read? Nazis, Pythagorean, NWO...? Sounds like a load of rubbish to me. Tuning to 432Hz is just down tuning down by 8Hz. Big whoop.
    jef.gat.1
    So you read something, and dismissed it because some of the words challenged your willingness to go further? Are you really a musician, with this kind of attitude? Have you tried it? Did it feel the same? Different? Or you just don't have the time/energy/curiousity to find out for yourself?
    bbedford48
    no. Each notes frequency is tuned down by a factor of 0.94446. That just happens to be 8hz for A4.
    3pipeproblem
    Curious how Pythagoras tuned to 432 Hertz, given that no clocks capable of measuring to the second existed in 300BC? Also, the 'second', on which Hertz depends had nothing like the modern definition in 300BC. Also, the concept of Hertz wasn't popularized until around 1930. Perhaps you should stop making things up?
    3pipeproblem
    Hm, what happened to the comment I posted here yesterday? Did someone delete it because it was effective in contracting the baloney about Pythagoras liking 432 Hz?
    katalyzt13
    Epi, right on - this is one of the most interesting articles I've read on here for a while. I've gotta experiment with my tunings now.
    NutBallCop
    static on your TV is actually .. the Big Bang or more specifically, its echo in the microwave spectrum. (not the sound/noise of dying stars)
    JimDawson
    I hope you guys realize that this is the same thing as downtuning your guitar. The pitch relations are the same because the guitar uses an equal tempermant system; equal tempermant works in fractions and is different than Pythagorean tuning. That said, I find it interesting how A=432 Hz makes other notes directly related to powers of 2; although Hertz (being based on seconds) seems kind of arbitrary to me. That last part might make no sense to someone reading this, but honestly what do exact seconds have to do with how the brain operates on a fundamental level? Again, this is like downtuning your guitar so A=8 Hz less than standard tuning; every note relation remains the same if you think of it fractionally.
    louistrings
    light isnt a constant, we know that and sound is part of the electomagnetic spectrum.... puting sound into equal temperment, or chronomatic scale... is the same as swapping little bits of papper for gold... time, space and energy, do disolve into one... it feels very much like tuned down, but more harmonic with everything, and i find its easyer to sing too...
    darkblackpoison
    Not true, the frequencies in 432Hz tuning are not 8Hz less than in 440Hz tuning for all the notes. In fact, this is onlz true for the A4 note. Check out this link: http://www.phy.mtu.edu/~suits/notefreq43...
    brodyj707
    That's his point; true Pythagorean tuning has a 3:2 ratio but most instruments (and all fretted ones) have a 1:1 ratio, or equal temperament. So when you try to play in 432Hz tuning you can't because you'll only be playing 440hz tuning a little flat.
    Erich.Walther
    I have been wondering if all these 432hz conversions are even real 432hz. I have heard music performed with instruments in 432hz tuning, and it's amazing.. but these converted songs don't give the same feel. I almost have a feeling that you can't capture the vibrations properly with a recording device, period, and that live performance is the only way you can actually properly enjoy the full impact of 432hz music.. Can anyone else confirm this or is it just me? I swear all this converting 440 to 432 hz nonsense is the wrong approach. Or am I wrong?...
    tomwparker
    I'm brand new to this 432hz thing. I just heard of it tonight at a worship service and I've been doing some research on it. (This thread took some side roads for sure, ha!) In regard to your question, here is what I do know. There will be a big difference between recorded vs. live as far as the vibrations. Our ears can hear approximately 20hz-20khz. A CD cuts frequencies off at 22khz. Our bodies feel frequencies much higher. I think that's why LPs can sound so much warmer than CD's (I just found this to help explain that statement:
    ) I play guitar, and tonight I tried the 432 tuning. It didn't just jump right out at me as being something spectacular, but after a few minutes, I could tell differences in the vibrations, how notes resonated together, fuller? warmer? more complete even? I've been in music/electronics/computers since the 80's. As I said I'm new to the 432hz thing, but I would think that converting would bring some benefit, but it's not going to come close to a live performance.
    the_bi99man
    I would assume that any kind of "conversion" isn't going to do it justice. If something was recorded using 440 in the first place, applying some kind of post-process technique to artificially change it to 432 isn't going to be the same as if the piece was actually re-recorded from scratch, with the instruments themselves tuned differently.
    tomwparker
    I'm brand new to this 432hz thing. I just heard of it tonight at a worship service and I've been doing some research on it. (This thread took some side roads for sure, ha!) In regard to your question, here is what I do know. There will be a big difference between recorded vs. live as far as the vibrations. Our ears can hear approximately 20hz-20khz. A CD cuts frequencies off at 22khz. Our bodies feel frequencies much higher. I think that's why LPs can sound so much warmer than CD's (I just found this to help explain that statement:
    ) I play guitar, and tonight I tried the 432 tuning. It didn't just jump right out at me as being something spectacular, but after a few minutes, I could tell differences in the vibrations, how notes resonated together, fuller? warmer? more complete even? I've been in music/electronics/computers since the 80's. As I said I'm new to the 432hz thing, but I would think that converting would bring some benefit, but it's not going to come close to a live performance.
    henrihell
    Actually 440Hz is an A. So if you tune it down to 432Hz, it's an A slightly out of tune. So actually you've changed the reference point to be slightly out of tune, which means everything is slightly out of tune, but every string is out of tune as much as the others. But my point is that you can't technically call 432Hz an A, because it isn't.
    Hydra150
    It can be, if you want it to. 'A' is a letter, one that we attach to certain noises as a way to organise and explain music with ease. 'A' is not a frequency.
    Erich.Walther
    If you know music theory, it's A4.
    tonello
    Even with music theory, it still isn't an "A". Sound waves aren't naturally labelled with a letter. So if we hadn't made the standardized reference point at 440 Hz and it was instead 432 Hz, then that note could be labelled "A".
    dgmrrtt
    Actually the only pitch that can truly be A is 432. 440 can never be true A. Only in a false reality matrix can 440 be A and even then it is disharmonious and damaging to DNA. 440 is nothing short of mass mind control.
    Darkness in Zero
    henrihell....missing the entire point of what tuning to 432 is....
    ciano16
    Id have to agree with him. The point of this "pythagorean tuning" is not as simple as taking everything in a song and detuning it by 8 cents. pythagorean tuning is actually a different kind of temperament, meaning the notes are not the same distance apart from each other as they would be in in equal temperament. Basically, in equal temperament, every note(half step) is 100 cents apart. thats why its called "equal" temperament. in pythagorean temperament, the notes are not all the same distance from each other. this basically means that its impossible for a fretted instrument, which is built only for equal temperament, to truly play in pythagorean tuning. if you want to hear real pythagorean tuning, listen to a professional violinist, or trombone player do it. they have the ability to tune individual notes as they please. The Guidonian Hand trombone ensemble came to my college and played a song in pythagorean temperament. Honestly, this article is mostly BS. if you really want to know what makes pythagorean tuning special, check out this link. http://www.pyxidium.u-net.com/Acoustics/... sicMaths.html
    Darkness in Zero
    No. This article confuses two different ideas for being the same thing, which they are not. However, the article being incorrect doesn't make henrihell correct. Concept one is Pythagorean tuning vs. Equal Temperament, which you already touched on. The second is what henrihell missed, which is what the article is kind of trying to talk about, which is instead of concert A being at 440 Hz, being at 432Hz. In other words, the same distance between notes, but the actual notes all being moved by a few Hz. henrihell didn't understand the concept of an A being a different pitch in Hz, and that's what myself and Hydra were calling him out on.
    Theophillis
    Agreed. The article confuses concert pitch with equal temperament. To truly play in Pythagorean, you need a different fretboard intonated to pythagorean for each key. I have heard that John Etheridge experimented with this at a gig a few years back, using interchangeable fretboards. Tommy Emmanuel uses non-concert pitch tuning, but I can't remember the interview. He said it sounded sweeter, if I recall. It's also interesting to note that both the equal temperament system and concert pitch (A=440Hz) have only been around for a couple of hundred years, relatively recently being agreed upon.
    Theophillis
    Also..... small point, but henrihell is kind of right, and kind of wrong, depending on the assumptions he's making. 440Hz is an A, assuming concert pitch. 432Hz isn't. However, if a band or orchestra agrees to use some other frequency (432Hz, for example), then 432Hz becomes the A. It's just not a mutually agreed standard. My point is, that A is defined by the agreed standard, but these things are incredibly flexible. We only have to be in tune with each other!!!!
    dgmrrtt
    "We only have to be in tune with each other" That is setting a very low standard. There is an absolute frequency for "A" and it is 432. It doesn't matter how many government agencies want to tell you that 2+2 = 5 it doesn't make it so and it never will. 432 is concrete absolute A. If under peer pressure you decide to tune to an out of tune frequency then it's your DNA that is subject to damage and your brain waves that are subject alteration, regardless of how many people agree that you should tune to a damaging frequency. We are talking about the most powerful force in the universe not just how you tune your guitar to play in some crap pub.
    themayor10
    Wow, just wow. So at what frequency do we think the article went buzzing straight over henrihell's head?
    louistrings
    hahah, just so i dont go crazy all on my own.... I was playing around with this the other day... i found the A on my tuner ad guestemated the rest... so all my open strings were a quarter tone or so low.... while i was playing in 432 the birds song with me, then i swiched back to 440, and literally a bird flow into my window... scard me half to death... Now, was it pythagorus or plato who hide the dodecerhedron from the wider public, to hide the orationallity of the solid(plato-platonic solids.... conclusion, pythagorus is alright...and so is geometry, if its tru that 432 runs with fibronacci numbers, then it stans to reason that the notes connot be exactly the same distence apart... i like it... in addition, i believe nicola tesla disigned his wordencliff to pump electricity into, what we call the sueman cavity... a place in the upper atmospher that resonates at 8hz, this sound i believe to be the sound of the earth.... 8hz is also how meny flickers the tv has... and the tv is designed that way to hipnotise, thats why children sit with there tongues hanging out
    eatfresh1736
    That's incorrect. There is no absolute freq. for an A. In modern music, someone (maybe a Nazi) decided that 440=A, but that's just an arbitrary decision. You kinda missed the whole point of the article
    arnolddrummer
    how many times did you have to say "out of tune" in that comment? and the whole point in people writing articles is for you to READ them and gain some knowledge from them.
    jeffharris1701
    You'd be right, if you weren't wrong. A 440Hz "A" is only called that because someone a long time ago said that "A" was 440Hz. Before that, instruments were tuned to a 432Hz "A".
    jeffharris1701
    You'd be right, if you weren't wrong. A 440Hz "A" is only called that because someone a long time ago said that "A" was 440Hz. Before that, instruments were tuned to a 432Hz "A".
    dudebud
    You need to understand the difference between relative tuning and perfect pitch.
    ccov
    Man! That's exactly what some dude said when it was changed FROM A 432 Hz to begin with! You see, familiarity has become your reality. So, YOUR reality is that the whole universe is wrong because it doesn't match your version of it? You would have fit right in, in the 1480's when EVERYONE knew the Earth was flat and in a few years! Columbus would "Drop off of it"!
    louistrings
    hahahah well said, but the world could have done with columbus going over the edge
    damian.lewd
    i don't disagree w/ u but you know that story about the flat earth & Columbus is a myth right. Pythagorean Theorem triangles ring a bell anyone?
    gartrellp
    When a professional piano tuner does his job, the key he tunes the entire piano to is the A4. The frequency of that note what the 432 and 440 is referring to. If u want to think of it that way, given that the global tuning standard was 432 up until the 1950s, then technically we've been playing our reference point 37 cents sharp for over 60 years.
    jef.gat.1
    Well, OK, "'Actually' 440hz is an A." More precisely, 440hz is what's been agreed by consensus to be an A. Before "the change" to 440, A was assigned to 432hz. You can call 432hz whatever you want to. It's a SUBJECTIVE reference.
    dgmrrtt
    Actually A 440 is disharmonious with natural intelligence of the universe and damaging to DNA. 440 and all the tones that surround it is essentially sonic free radical used as mass mind control. Only 432, 256, 288, 192 and the other frequencies in the 432 matrix are resonant with the cosmos and the universe. It doesn't matter how many people agree that 2+2 = 5. It doesn't make it so. I have simple mathematical proof that contemporary society is under the influence of mass mind control of A=440.
    captainsnazz
    I don't think you quite understand the concept. You can't just "use your guitar in pythagorean tuning" by changing the reference frequency you tune to. I'd explain further but I just realised who wrote this article and I'm pretty sure you wouldn't bother listening to an explanation. This is much less *****y than your other stuff but equally poorly researched. if you're seriously not a troll then you should consider actually thinking about things before you post them, or in cases like this, researching them until you actually understand them. You're spreading your ignorance.
    Mc1100high
    Well, I don't know about the truth of any mystical nature behond the 432 hz tuning. But I tell you what. I just tried it and I swear my open D chords sound way sweeter. It's also made acoustic strings 'looser'. I definitely think it sounds better. I might run into some problems later on when playing with synths and other instruments (I hope not) but I'm going to keep it like this for a while Hey, if Jimi used it.....just sayin.
    oort.kupier
    This is actually very interesting. And this has everything to do with the number 9. 9 seems to govern everything in our life. Check this out ->
    for starters. So A=432hz=4+3+2=9 D=288hz=2+8+8=1+8=9 E=324hz=3+2+4=9. Then there's G=384hz=3+8+4=1+5=6 which could be wrong (speculating). According to this it should be reducible to 9. Maybe they should all be reducible to 9. B/H as well. So maybe G (speculating) should be 387hz=3+8+7=1+8=9. Then we're left with six freq. (guitar) reduced to nine -> 9+9+9+9+9+9=5+4=9. But this all sounds silly. And maybe it is. It's a theory, but I like it. So check out the amazing properties of the number 9. It's absolutely everywhere. Pi is 3.141=3+1+4+1=9. The Fibonacci spiral looks like a 9 and the whole sequence is reducible to 9. Our timing system (all 'calendars' are arbitrary), sec, min, hr is reducible to 9. ex: sec in a hr -> 60x60=3+6+0+0=9 sec in a day -> 60x60x24=8+6+4+0+0=1+8=9 sec in a week -> 60×60×24×7=6+0+4+8+0+0=1+8=9 sec in a month -> 60×60×24×7×30=1+8+1+4+4+0+0+0=1+8=9 sec in a year -> 60×60×24×7×30×365=6+6+2+2+5+6+0+0+0+0=2+7=9 This has, in my opinion, nothing to do with 3 (which is an interesting, yet, a limited number (compared to nine)) and everything to do with 9. The human body is a good example for Fibonacci. Is the root of everything pleasing the number 9? Nonsensical? Maybe, but very interesting.
    peaceful.wars
    would it not make sense that for the bulk of history it was the other way around, 440 is days old in comparison.
    Jaremyrocks
    Hahahahehe... rotf, you folks are absolutely hilarious;and quite brainy, as well. These comments and rebuttals are a tremendous delight and truly interesting, to say the least. Fabulous minds, fellers'.
    jyrkiii
    Hi! I am producing a video/audio to compare different tuning pitches; regarding this subject at least with A=440Hz and A=432Hz. The video should offer reliable samples for the chosen pitches. Could you help me on this forum with your comments to advise in and suggest for the parameters of the test? The instrument will be the guitar. It's easy to tune and the test should be easy to reproduce if necessary. It's also a stringed instrument (resonance). - what kind of special advise would you give to this test? - which scales, compositions, songs, riffs, melodies etc. should be played? - which tunings should be tested in addition to A440 and A432? - else? Please bear i mind that the video/audio will be only about 6 minutes long. Thank you for your Help! Cheers!
    kirsty.attridge
    What are some people 'on' here??? Why dis-miss what you don't understand even to abasic level? Where does that lead you in life? Someone may have a 'crazy' idea about something but isn't that what everything was at first? A crazy idea? I mean if you only accept info based on what others tell you and take that as fact then where did the those people get there info from? Where and when did this info become 'valid' and something that you then would believe....well i think you will find everything we base things on today stem from - IDEAS/Creative thought. Science wouldn't know where to start 'investigating'/analyising if it didn't ask itself questions first,didn't think of an idea to test...Religion wouldn't exist without the idea of religion. We don't know everything or possibly anything at all to be honest, we all have IDEAS of 'this and that' and this makes up our world.....I think. The newly re-surfaced awareness of frequency vibrations, tuning to a certain frequency and how this affects (interacts) with well prity much everything, the correlation between sound and existence itself etc etc is probably the most interesting aspect of this whole subject - why NOW are people thinking about things from their own aspect of wonderment/curiosity and re-discovering things that seem to have been buried under endless books/views/'education' and laws made by people past and present who, lets face it - only made them based on their own IDEAS on life etc??!! "Gooood...goooood...good...the good vibrations!!!..." If you didn't just mentally sing along with that then your a batty hole =) If 'you are not on my 'WAVELENGTH' at this moment in time then I'm afraid you won't really 'get' what I'm on about here..that's because (my idea/theory only) everything is made up of sound vibrations including us. We also have 'magnetic' fields around us and probably every 'spark of energy' in existence too 'for that MATTER'. Our magnetic field is entwined with our energy/soul/spirit/sense of 'self' and is affected by our own integrity in life and our perceptions of things also. I would guess it is nearly impossible to put into words the exact 'break down' of how everything in life is connected/linked but i have found this to be what i am consistently shown in my own life (As a kid i used to play 'connect-the-dots' to see the picture and unlike some people i never stopped! Now I AM just connecting different dots in different contexts - BTW if you 'get' what i did there then we could be 'singing from the same hymn sheet' and 'dancing 'in-time' to the same beat' ey!) Anyhooo...How it all works together....the connecting dots,the seemingly endless links to one thing and another - in short - EXISTENCE (or 'LIFE' as we tend to refer to it) is not always easily describable but here's my effort.....
    moucon
    I have to jump in because there are now snake-oil salesmen claiming that 432 and other "biblic" tunings can cure cancer (seriously). They also admit that they have no real way to know if John the Baptist was splashing about at 432 or 444 or whatever. The FACT about reference tuning is that the pitch of "A" has changed over time, and even today it's slightly different between the USA, whose orchestras tune to 440 - and Europe, where some orchestras still tune to A4=444. And it has also changed over time - there is good evidence that renaissance instruments were tuned to A=466 which is half a step sharp by today's standards. What is NOT true is that "concert pitch" always has to be 440hz. Absolutely, positively NOT. Any student of music history knows this, and knows why. BUt to that knowledge, there is also NO/NONE/NADA evidence that 432hz is anything other than A a little flatter. Do not send your money to charlatans, and for God's sake do NOT stop your chemotherapy or other medical treatment in lieu of listening to stuff recorded at A4=432. Off my soapbox.
    kirsty.attridge
    Existence - "It's the most sweetest sounding harmony of colours and textures you have ever smelt or felt.Created by the greatest, most awe inspiring Orchestra of thought using the tools of 'feeling' and forged through intent."
    kirsty.attridge
    "Yi before Qi" or 'I' before Chi which basically means intent before energy/action is a basic idea that thought and our intent behind our thoughts wills these thoughts 'into being' through energetic-inter-action
    morphmusics
    Are there any luthers out there that can build a fretboard that accommodates 432hz reference frequency? So that intonation stays in tune? Trying to do something amazing with my first album, and quite possibly start a revolution.
    moucon
    There is no need to change anything about a fretboard to accomodate A=432... all you need to do is use a tuning fork tuned to 432 or alter your electronic tuner a little, etc. What you're talking about is tuning your guitar *slightly* flat overall. No difference here than using A=444 (Europe) - and I doubt your first album referenced to 432 will start a revolution - but if you can get airplay, it WILL make your music stand out from everything else on the air - including music in commercials, trailers, bumpers, etc. since those are all pretty much tuned to A=440. Listen to some of the Beatles' music where Geo. Martin manipulated pitch - I think "I am The Walrus" is referenced at roughly A=432, and it's noticeably flatter than other pieces on the LP. Play around with it and good luck!
    louistrings
    if you think your just playing a tune, watch out, the entire universe is listerning
    charlie.macneil
    OK, will someone explain how this means anything when a second in time is an arbitrary measurement - meaning 432 cycles per second could have been another number if a different length second had been settled on. I'm not a skeptic - I'm just curious to understand if there is any deeper reason for a second being the length it is.