How To Tune A Guitar For Beginners

How To Tune A Guitar

If you are a beginner and have decided to learn the guitar then basic knowledge about the parts of a guitar neck is very helpful. The parts of the guitar neck are frets,  fretboardtuners, headstock, and truss rod. It will help you tune your guitar. Tuning your guitar is the most important step because if your guitar is not tuned, it will not sound good and you definitely don’t want that.

 

So, let us first learn about the parts of a guitar neck followed by the steps to tune a guitar. So, these parts are explained below:

 

Frets: Frets are the raised wires that run across the width of the fingerboard. These help the strings to be shortened by pressing them down behind them. While playing the guitar, players don’t have to find the perfect spot of a note which happens with other fretless instruments like a violin.

 

Fretboard: fretboard is the neck area located just below the strings. It is marked and shaped so one can identify the strings easily. It helps to press the strings at some points to get some notes. Different types of materials are used for the fingerboards where most common ones are rosewood and maple.

 

Headstock: Just at the end of the neck you will see the headstock placed at the end of the guitar where all the strings end. At headstock, you will see the bits which is used for tuning the guitar and these are known as tuners.

 

Tuners: Tuners are also termed as machine heads and tuning pegs. These bits are twisted to tune your guitar. The key part which is flat is joined where the string is wound. When you tighten or loosen these bits, it helps in changing the tension in strings and as a result, it helps to change the pitch. These bits are also known as guitar tuner buttons and one must replace the old and dirty guitar tuning pegs with new ones.

 

Truss rod: Truss rod is a part of the guitar or other stringed or fretted instruments which helps in stabilizing the relief of the neck. It is like a steel bar or rod which runs inside the neck, located underneath the fingerboard.

 

Tuning your guitar:

So, now you know and understand the parts of the guitar neck and their working. The next thing which you need to learn is the name of strings and how to tune the guitar.

The names of the open strings on the guitar are E – A – D – G – B – E from top to bottom where the top string (E) is the thickest string and the bottom string (E) is the thinnest string.  To learn the name of strings here is an easy way to do so.

 

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There are different ways to tune a guitar. We will discuss a few of these ways to make things easy for beginners.

 

  • Use a digital tuner: Digital tuners are very small devices which run on a battery that have microphones. These can pick the guitar notes.

Step 1: Turn the tuner on and play an open E string. When the string will be tuned to a correct note then you will see a light flashing.

Step 2: Make sure the calibration tuner setting on the tuner is set to A 440 Hz which is a standard setting.

Step 3: Adjust the string until it is in tune and do the same with other strings as well. Once the tuning is done, make sure to go through the strings once again.

 

If you are using an electric guitar then plug the cord directly in the tuner to check the tuning instead of using the microphone of the tuner.

 

  • Use an app tuner: It is the most convenient method to tune your guitar. There are the number of apps available for guitar tuning. Today, because of a smartphone it is easy to get a tuner on your fingertips. When you do not have other tuners, it is an ideal way to tune your guitar. The apps work similar to digital tuners.

 

Step 1: Play an open E string and adjust the string using the guitar tuner buttons that are dedicated to every string.

 

Step 2: Until the app Shows that the pitch of a note is correct, keep tightening and loosening the tuner buttons. Do the same for other strings as well.

 

  • Tuning the guitar by ear: Tuning the guitar by ear may seem a little challenging especially for those who don’t have a musical background. So, here are some tips to do that without a tuner. This method of guitar tuning is also known as 5th fret tuning method.

 

Step 1: The low E string should be in tune already. You can use a piano or another guitar to get the low E string in tune.

 

Step 2: Go to the 5th fret of the low E string which is known as an A note. The fifth string is an open A string and it must sound like the note on the fifth fret of E string.

 

Step 3: Now you have to tune the D string. For this, first, you have to check the fifth fret of the A string which is a D note. Now play the open D string and it must sound like the D note on the A string. The same method will be followed to tune the G string.

 

Step 4: You need to tune the B string now and the method of tuning this string is a little different. Instead of using the fifth fret you need to make use of 4th fret and match the sound of open B string to the 4th fret of the G string.

 

Step 5: You need to tune the high E string by playing it open and then match it with the sound of the fifth fret of the B string.

Now, double check the tuning by going through the strings once again so you can fine-tune your guitar.

 

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