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  Tempered Tuning Armageddon. (Page 1)

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Author Topic:   Tempered Tuning Armageddon.
Eric West
Member

From: Portland, Oregon, USA

posted 22 May 2004 01:23 PM     profile     
OK/

I've had several good live gigs to try different things on. One with an electronic
straight up keyboard.

My conclusion is that unless you tune straight up, or the Steel is the only instrument on the bandstand, you're not only going to be out of tune, you're going to sound that way too.

To loosely qoute somebody: Five cents flat is flat no matter how you look a it.

Here's the questions that jump right out at me.

Taking a flatted third, say E in the C scale as a starting point:

When playing a harmonized scale built on that E note, is the whole scale or Em7 chord five cents flat?. Is the flattened third of that chord flattened further?.

Is the E note, when played as a passing note or part of another chord in the song or passage still five cents flat?.

How about when a new I chord is started from the Five, or Four, is that E always flattened? How about the new third?

Is the third flattened in VI or V7 chords?

Since I know the "Straight up" tuning is indeed tempered as previously stated, I might opine, in the end, that the reason it is is a "lessening of evils", and that tempering it more than the "Standard Piano Tuner's Chart" is asking for things that start out as harmless enough "esthetics" but result in even short term harmonic train wrecks.

I've tried my best in this last month to tune things up or down, and as always, find that the best I can ask of myself is perfect sounding octaves, and straight up on all changes, and open strings.

I'm told I have pretty good intonation.

I suppose that could always change though...

It might seem that I'm being facetious here, but I'd like a couple of answers from those whose attention span hasn't been violated.

Carl?

Larry Bell?

EJL

[This message was edited by Eric West on 22 May 2004 at 01:25 PM.]

chas smith
Member

From: Encino, CA, USA

posted 22 May 2004 02:45 PM     profile     
quote:
Five cents flat is flat no matter how you look a it.
And 5 cents sharp is always sharp, the point being that flat and sharp are relative terms. The tempered 3rd is sharp to the just 3rd, and visa versa.

quote:
When playing a harmonized scale built on that E note, is the whole scale or Em7 chord five cents flat?. Is the flattened third of that chord flattened further?.
You're going to make yourself crazy worrying about this stuff. It's a good topic for conversation, after the 12th beer or so, but the reality is, and as you stated, you have good intonation, that when you're playing what ever you're playing, you'll play it in tune as best you can. It's a steel guitar, aka, the pitch approximator, it's supposed to sound like a steel guitar.
William Peters
Member

From: Effort, Pennsylvania, USA

posted 22 May 2004 03:00 PM     profile     
Eric,

quote:
"Wean singers early from the piano. When the piano plays ... proper vertical intonation cannot be achieved." Harvard choral director Jameson Marvin.

And you guys thought only steel players worried about this stuff.

Bill www.wgpeters.com

Franklin
Member

From:

posted 22 May 2004 03:04 PM     profile     
Eric,
What Chas said is absolutely right

Playing in tune has everything to do with hearing pitch and capturing your ears destination, NOT the way the guitar is tuned.
Also, the more defined your center of pitch becomes the more you'll fight the fact that everything on stage is not perfectly in tune, no matter what the tuners say. Its a balancing act, at best.....Paul

[This message was edited by Franklin on 22 May 2004 at 03:11 PM.]

C Dixon
Member

From: Duluth, GA USA

posted 22 May 2004 03:28 PM     profile     
E..F..G..A..B..C..D. Oops, how come that D cannot be made beatless IF all the others are beatless?

Also, how come the following popular lap tuning cannot be made beatless between any two notes?:

E
C#
B
G#
F#
D
B
E

Beyond that, I plead the fifth.

carl

Eric West
Member

From: Portland, Oregon, USA

posted 22 May 2004 04:02 PM     profile     
Thanks all. Especially Chas, Mr F, and Mr D.

I AM crazy.

I have come to the realization that like rythym, it often is a battle of wills, and I believe best fought with an electronic piano on the stage. Best fought with Octaves, and Melody.

I find that I do the best when all my changes and strings are tuned to zero on a good korg type tuner. I'm of the mind that on a bandstand, that pitches within 10 cents to the audience are pretty hard to tell.

I've found that it varies often a lot between individual guitar players, as I've played live with probably a hundred of them, and found but a half dozen that even cared whether their intonation was good, let alone hard to tell from perfect, and of those, only two that made me wonder if my tone center was right on.

I had a couple recent good insights when the band leaders I've worked with looked at the guitar players and told them that they needed to check their tuning. Without looking at me, they both did, and it got better..

Playing next to electronic pianos in the last year with this "JI" thing in the back of my mind has been a good reflection.

I think the moniker of "Pitch Approximator" will stick for me, and I'll continue to tune straight up, and pray for a continued reasonably good brain/hand connection, and a strong will without excessive vibrato.

I believe that tuning straight up allows my "JI" brain/ear to play as automatically as I always have before I came aware of all these complex tuning charts and obvious unattainable mobius type connections. The most any of my changes puts me away from "it" is 4 or five cents on an open chord, and that's more liveable than coming up 15 cents short when I've "forgotten" which string, or change I've dicked with..

My Ignorance has indeed been my pathway to finding Bliss. Such as it is...(well, sort of..).

I'd love to have a dozen beers and eat a couple crosstops and hash it over till dawn, but alas, I'm twenty years away from either. Boy, those were the days..

Nap, gig, work, nap, gig, work, eat, etc. Ad Inf....

Thanks.

EJL

Scott Appleton
Member

From: Half Moon Bay, California, USA

posted 22 May 2004 04:39 PM     profile     
This is a topic HuuH...and its been around the table a few times. on the forum.. my best reasoning changes with every SG i play. right now i take the newman tuning chart start from that point of referance and slightly tune some of the knees and floors to what seems to sound good. I use a tu 12 or a vsam and
when i have everything running well i check again
for the most part its as Jeff would have it but there are exceptions large exceptions. tuning flat on all changes sounds really bad to my ear.

------------------
Mullen S12
Acoustic 165 100W tube
71 Tele, Regal 45, Gretch
Lap, Columbia Lap, Line 6

Robert Thomas
Member

From: Mehama, Oregon, USA

posted 22 May 2004 05:49 PM     profile     
Hi Eric, I have always tuned stright up and left all the rest to my ear, intonation, and my bar hand. In all my years I have never had a complaint from anyone, maybe they are just being polite? I'll say it just in case someone else wants too!
Bob Hoffnar
Member

From: Brooklyn, NY

posted 22 May 2004 06:36 PM     profile     
Eric,
I am interested in what keyboard you found that was tuned straight up. I have never run into a keyboard that was not tempered in some way.
Did you check the keyboard with a tuner ?

Bob

Stuart Basore
Member

From: Madison, TN. USA

posted 22 May 2004 06:43 PM     profile     
As a good friend once told me, the secret to being in tune is, everyone is out of tune together. I tune the fifths with no beats and tune the thirds as sharp as my ear will let me. I am more in tune with the guitars and piano that way. It sounds terrible, until you warm the notes with a little vibrato, and what a joy to have the "F" really close to the "F" on the piano. Good luck. Stu
Eric West
Member

From: Portland, Oregon, USA

posted 23 May 2004 03:38 AM     profile     
Well Bob. I noted the NO keyboard that I know of is tuned "straight up". Nice try though.

I know full well that they all do.

They are simply tuned to a less drastic curve than those that "tune the beats out" of their PSGs.

If you tuned the beats out from C to E, from E to G#, G# to C, at 5 cents each, you'd be 15 cents out within the octave. 7 octaves and you'd be a tone off.

I know that a PSG isn't laid out that way and you can "move" the tempered set of changes, but questions nag.

Also, I'd like to know, if there are changes that don't sound good on a PSG, then why have them?

No lack of pertinent questions here. Some slightly obtuse I guess, and believe me they're all academic, as I will play and tune the way I have for 25 years of steady gigging.

I have more for those not valiantly trying to save my sanity.

It's gone for all practical purposes.

I didn't miss it a bit.

EJL


Ernie Pollock
Member

From: Mt Savage, Md USA

posted 23 May 2004 05:45 AM     profile     
I guess if everyone else in the world has there notes tuned to 440, I guess that pretty well says it all for being 'in tune'.

Ernie http://www.hereintown.net/~shobud75/stock.htm

------------------

Bob Hoffnar
Member

From: Brooklyn, NY

posted 23 May 2004 07:49 AM     profile     
The weird thing about sample/electronic based keyboards is that they all are tuned differently. Most use some sort of stretch tuning. I'm not quite sure why but keyboards that use an acousticly based sound (real piano, Rhodes, real B3, whirlies) are much more forgiving than the digital stuff. Sometimes I adjust my tuning to a keyboard but mostly I adjust my playing.

For you guys that think that keyboards are tuned 440 go ahead and check them sometime. Its wild how different they all are. A big difference in keyboards comes from how the overtones ring beyond the basic pitch. Thats where I think some of the intonation issues are.

Bob

Brian Herder
Member

From: Philadelphia, Pa. USA

posted 23 May 2004 08:07 AM     profile     
Just about every instrument in an orchestra is a pitch approximator. A high school orchestra plays approximately the same instruments and arrangements that a big city orchestra plays...actual results may vary.
William Peters
Member

From: Effort, Pennsylvania, USA

posted 23 May 2004 08:42 AM     profile     
Brian,

quote:
Just about every instrument in an orchestra is a pitch approximator.

How right you are. The worst instrument I think for intonation is the oboe. It has no pitch adjustments at all, and many of the fingering combinations aren't even close to being in tune. Piccolo is a close runner up, at least when I try to play it.

At any rate, MAKING your instrument play in tune with the other players is one of the most important parts of musicianship.

Bill

C Dixon
Member

From: Duluth, GA USA

posted 23 May 2004 09:04 AM     profile     
A piano's tuning IS straight up (ET) for the octave around middle C. For octaves above middle C, the strings are sharped ever so slightly per octave. Below middle C the octaves are flattened slightly per octave.

This results in human hearing perception as though it was tuned straight up. In other words, UNLIKE most other stringed instruments, the piano has a unique problem. The strings are not all the same length. Because of this, their vibrations tend to shift hearing perception in either direction from the middle C octave. To compensate for this, pianos are "stretch tuned".

For a very good detailed and theoretical explanation of this; along with pictoral drawings, click on the link below: (NOTE: click on "apps", then on "The Equal Tempered Scale and Some Peculiarities of Piano Tuning" when you get to the website. For those of you who do not care for deep detail, scroll on down to "piano tuning" if you wish)
http://www.precisionstrobe.com/

One cannot in anyway compare this "stretch tuning" to the way most of us steel guitar players tune. IE, trying to get the "beats" out has NO semblance to the way a piano is tuned (IF it is tuned properly). A piano has beats between any two notes.

Those of us who tune the beats out (JI) are flatting (and sharping) given notes far away from the way a piano is tuned. Even within an octave.

Because of the physics unique to the piano, the "stretch tuning" physically, makes it sound perceptually as though it was tuned straight up across all octaves.

A harp has similar charateristics.

carl

Bobby Lee
Sysop

From: Cloverdale, North California, USA

posted 23 May 2004 09:29 AM     profile     
I sort of split the difference between JI and ET, and I'm tuned no worse than the other instruments in the band. The only problem I've had was with a 12 string acoustic that was all over the map intonation-wise. Not my problem.

Electronic keyboards always sound out of tune to me. You'll never get me to tune to an out-of-tune instrument. Forget about it!

I tuned the marimba patch in my Handsonic to JI. Nobody knows but you folks. No complaints on the bandstand.

As for audiences not hearing better than 10 cents, you're probably right when it comes to instruments. Audiences will hear bad harmonies on vocals, though. Singers instinctively use JI. If they sing an ET third, many people will hear it as out of tune.

------------------
Bobby Lee - email: quasar@b0b.com - gigs - CDs, Open Hearts
Sierra Session 12 (E9), Williams†400X†(Emaj9,†D6), Sierra†Olympic†12†(C6add9),
Sierra†Laptop†8†(E6add9), Fender†Stringmaster†(E13,†A6),
Roland†Handsonic, Line 6 Variax

Donny Hinson
Member

From: Balto., Md. U.S.A.

posted 23 May 2004 09:59 AM     profile     
As I see it, there's only two rules.

1.) How you tune is immaterial.

2.) How you sound when you're actually playing isn't.

Ricky Davis
Moderator

From: Spring, Texas USA

posted 23 May 2004 10:42 AM     profile     
I LOVE this statement by Paul Franklin>
quote:
Playing in tune has everything to do with hearing pitch and capturing your ears destination, NOT the way the guitar is tuned.


That is IT man...To me the most important thing to playing in tune is hearing pitch.
I am the poster child for this as my earlier years; I had intonation problems(as we all do); but the best advice was given to me by my Mentor Gary Carpenter.
He told me I need to learn to hear PITCH eventhough my hearing intonation was fair and OK; but he suggested I work on singleing out perfection in pitch. Of course I told him I work on it all the time with CD's and whatnot and he said NO that's the worst thing you can do to single out a pitch. He suggested to play along with a Fixed Tone like a "A" note that sounds out of a Metronome or a Keyboard that would stick on one note and continue it's pitch and to play along with it. You can play in A and in D and in G and in C and in F and in E and every one of those keys have an "A" note as a triad or color tone one way or the other.
My intonation; and hearing pitch has excelled far beyond what I could ever imagine. Before in the studio; it was "Ricky that sounds good but check your intonation on that part or this part"....Now it's "Hey that's great and you cut 4 songs in one hour; so here's your check and we'll call you again".
Ricky
Eric West
Member

From: Portland, Oregon, USA

posted 23 May 2004 12:15 PM     profile     
Carl. I knew you'd come through.

quote:
Those of us who tune the beats out (JI) are flatting (and sharping) given notes far away from the way a piano is tuned. Even within an octave.

If one is "out" within an octave when tuning out beats, then the nearly three octaves of the spread of the standard double neck is a little problematic, isn't it?

I'm indeed going to study harp tuning as I have time, and see how they deal with beats. I hadn't thought of that, as they are the only other stringed instrument that has FIXED pedal changes.

The one thing I might note is that with Elect Piani, there are no strings.

I do agree with everything I've read about the playing being the MOST important ingredient, and as I say I can only preffer that I indeed do PRAY ( sorry to shout) for my continued left hand/tone center connection.

Straight up to a Korg DT3, and a lot of left hand compensation as the lord sees fit to allow me.

Lots of octaves and Root/Fifths.

Thanks.

EJL

Olli Haavisto
Member

From: Jarvenpaa,Finland

posted 23 May 2004 10:53 PM     profile     
Bob,
I think the reason keyboards with acoustic tone producing devices such as a string on an acoustic piano or a bar on a Rhodes are overtone series. On an acoustic piano,Rhodes, Wurly etc. each note has a slightly different series of overtones which "evens out" the end result as opposed to the more mathematical nature of the (especially cheaper)electronic keys. Just an IMO conclusion I`ve arrived at over the years .
BTW I think the Rhodes and PSG are a perfect match....

------------------
Olli Haavisto
Polar steeler
Finland


[This message was edited by Olli Haavisto on 23 May 2004 at 11:19 PM.]

Reggie Duncan
Member

From: Mississippi

posted 24 May 2004 06:03 AM     profile     
As my ear develops, I like my Kurzweil keys less and less. They cause me problems in the studio. My bar hand tempers my intonation on pedal steel, to my ear anyway.
David Doggett
Member

From: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

posted 24 May 2004 08:29 AM     profile     
Eric, let's look at the way symphonies and big bands handle the questions you raise. They have been dealing with this for centuries. In general, the JI flatted 3rd is only used for harmony, not for key roots. It moves with the chord, even different chords in the same key. This can be done because the flatted 3rds are played by ear on fretless stringed instruments or horns with variable pitch (except the oboe). The ET scale is always there for taking any ET root note. The open strings of violins are tuned straight up to fifths, for which JI and ET are essentially the same. Horns are built to play ET scales, the lip flats the thirds to the ear when needed. Therefore:

quote:
Taking a flatted third, say E in the C scale as a starting point:

When playing a harmonized scale built on that E note, is the whole scale or Em7 chord five cents flat?. Is the flattened third of that chord flattened further?.


No, the E root for the key of E would be the straight up ET E, not the flatted 3rd of the key of C. Yes, the 3rd of the E chord (or any other chord) would be flatted by ear.


quote:
Is the E note, when played as a passing note or part of another chord in the song or passage still five cents flat?.

Not necessarily, the note might be flatted only when it is the third of some chord, not necessarily in passing.

quote:
How about when a new I chord is started from the Five, or Four, is that E always flattened? How about the new third?

No, E is only flatted as the third of a C chord. If you take the IV or V to modulate to that key, the root will be ET, and the third of the new root chord will be flatted, but only when it is the third of the root chord. If you take any key, and start playing major chords right up the scale (I, II, III, IV, etc.), the third of each chord will be flatted, but only when it is the third of a chord. This is why if you triy to tune a piano or fixed pitch instrument JI, it can't really play JI for every chord, even in the key for which it is tuned JI. The steel guitar is unique in that it has perfectly movable chords. Once you tune your third flat, it will stay properly flat for any chord, no matter what note the bar sets as the root.

This is why most pro steelers tune their octave Es (or As with the pedals down) straight up, and tune the internal notes of the chord by ear. Now they can move that sweet JI chord anywhere on the neck. Yes, you have tuned your open string G# (the third of your open E chord) flat. But when you need a G# chord, you will go to the 4th fret, play the root by ear (if needed, straight up with the bass, lead guitar, piano, singer, whatever). Thus, the root can be straight up if needed, and the third can still be JI sweet. Where's the problem?

Ernie you said:

quote:
I guess if everyone else in the world has there notes tuned to 440, I guess that pretty well says it all for being 'in tune'.

But everyone does not play straight up 440 for every note. The orchestra will tune all of their A notes to 440. But they will not play all notes straight up after that. They will flat thirds by ear to harmonize in any major chord. In fact, if they play an F chord, the third of that chord is A, and it will be played flat, not straight up, in that chord, even though the whole orchestra tuned straight up A=440. As a passing note, the strings might use the straight up open A string. But as a sustained note, they would finger it and play it by ear JI with vibrato. Go to a symphony and see if the strings ever sustain a note without vibrato (i.e. just a plain open string).

quote:
Is the third flattened in VI or V7 chords?

Yes, the third is flatted in pretty much any major chord.

Someone mentioned the pedal harp. The harpist I know tunes everything (strings and pedals) straight up ET. But harps don't have as many octaves as pianos, so I don't know that they worry much about stretch tuning. Maybe the big harps in symphony orchestras do, I'll ask her about that.

Carl, in another thread on this, someone pointed out that when they check singers with a tuner, the singers are unconsciously singing to a stretch tuning. It is something about our perception of pitch, not just something unique to pianos, although this problem may be more accentuated with pianos.

Acoustic pianos and harps sound okay playing out of tune thirds partly because, their notes are not sustained. After they hit the note it is fading. Being out of tune while a note is fading is less noticeable than being out of tune on a sustained note. Strings and horns sustain, and they play JI. Steel guitars need JI for the same reason, and that's probably why most top pro steelers tune by ear more or less to JI, even when playing with pianos. Electronic keyboards and organs sustain and use ET. Church organs usually play alone and use some tremolo. They sound very warbly.

Everything is a compromise. For finding the right compromise, your ears will be more useful than a meter. We are not meters. We play for human ears - we should tune to human ears.

[This message was edited by David Doggett on 24 May 2004 at 09:35 AM.]

Bobby Lee
Sysop

From: Cloverdale, North California, USA

posted 24 May 2004 09:49 AM     profile     
The doppler effect of the Leslie speaker system covers the fact that a Hammond organ is inherently out of tune.
Buddy Emmons
Member

From: Hermitage, TN USA

posted 24 May 2004 10:16 AM     profile     
So, which ears do we tune to? The ears that canít distinguish a flat third in a track or those that can?
John Macy
Member

From: Denver, CO USA

posted 24 May 2004 10:18 AM     profile     
Great post, David. Yours, Paul's and Chas' are right with what I feel. I have spent the last 30+ years in the studio on both sides of the glass, and have never been able to make the ET remotely work for me. I am currently mixing a record that both Paul and Sonny played on--both guys who tune by ear with JI, and their performances are awesomely in tune. JI works just fine for me, both in the studio or on the bandstand...
Brian Davis
Member

From: San Francisco, USA

posted 24 May 2004 10:25 AM     profile     
Why is a Hammond inherently out of tune?

C Dixon
Member

From: Duluth, GA USA

posted 24 May 2004 10:42 AM     profile     

Buddy, you tear me up...

David Doggett
Member

From: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

posted 24 May 2004 11:14 AM     profile     
Unh, Buddy, I'd go with your ears any day. Other than that, I think we have to go with whoever's ears get paid the most, or something like that.

Brian, b0b means that a Hammond is inherently out of tune to just intonation (JI), the tuning that the human ear wants to hear (mainly characterized by what we are calling flatted thirds). The equal tempered scale (ET) is something piano tuners came up with centuries ago. Fretless stringed instruments and horns (which set the pitch with the lips) had not had to deal with the problem the flatted third causes when changing keys. They simply flat the third by ear whenever the need arises, in any chord or any key. Piano tuners found their fixed-pitch instrument could only play in-tune chords in one key. By adjusting all the notes in an octave to evenly spaced intervals, they could play all keys acceptably, although they were all slightly out of tune, especially for the third of any chord.

The pedal steel is fretless, and so is like orchestral strings and horns. But it also has many strings with fixed intervals, like a harp or piano. So we have to mix our tuning method up a bit. We can tune some of the intervals we use the most to JI. But this will cause problems with some other string and pedal/knee combinations. The F lever and A pedal combination is one of these problems. So some combination of JI and ET, but not straight ET everywhere, is what most steelers seem to use. Tunable compensators can help. These are slight pulls or lowers on some of the non-pedaled strings of a particular chord.

The fact that we can use sweet JI (or very close to it) for many of our most used chords is a great advantage for pedal steel, and I think one reason lots of people love the sound of it. To me, it would seem a shame to give that up by blindly tuning everything straight up.

Bobby Lee
Sysop

From: Cloverdale, North California, USA

posted 24 May 2004 11:43 AM     profile     
I think it's a mistake to say that we are tuning our thirds flat. The true major third defined by the laws of physics is created by multiplying the root frequency by 5/4. The major thirds on tempered instruments like the Hammond organ are tuned sharp of the true major third.

So, which ears do we tune to? The ears that canít distinguish a sharp third in a track or those that can?

------------------
Bobby Lee - email: quasar@b0b.com - gigs - CDs, Open Hearts
Sierra Session 12 (E9), Williams†400X†(Emaj9,†D6), Sierra†Olympic†12†(C6add9),
Sierra†Laptop†8†(E6add9), Fender†Stringmaster†(E13,†A6),
Roland†Handsonic, Line 6 Variax

John Macy
Member

From: Denver, CO USA

posted 24 May 2004 11:56 AM     profile     
The ears you gotta tune to are your own--how you get to that point is whatever works for you. If you keep getting called back for work, it must be right ...

One interesting thing that Paul touched on earlier is the ever narrowing pitch center in modern records, especially in vocals. I tune a lotta vocals these days, but I do it in the graphic/manual method using my ears. I notice a lot of engineer/producers that just call up AutoTune and let it go, which I believe is ET. Makes for some rubs in my book. There are JI scales built into AutoTune that seem to work better for me, but like I said, I tune with my ears unless under major budget/time constraints. The more narrow pitch center separates the men from the boys in the fretless instrument chairs, IMo...

Buddy Emmons
Member

From: Hermitage, TN USA

posted 24 May 2004 12:06 PM     profile     
Bill,
Iím with you on the money ears. There are enough Webb Pierce records around to attest to that.
Iíve tuned both ways an equal amount of years and the albums Iíve recorded over twenty years ago speak for the difference. My primary reason for tuning ET is to get everything out of the guitar that itís capable of delivering. To me thatís what you should expect out of any musical instrument. Tuning ET has allowed me to use pedals and pedal combinations never before possible when I had to compromise. Besides, I figure if somebody can get away with tuning 9 cents flat to every other instrument, then Iím home free.
David Doggett
Member

From: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

posted 24 May 2004 12:32 PM     profile     
Right, Buddy, the more complicated you make your pedal steel, with more possible combinations of strings, pedals and knees, the more like a piano it becomes, with the same problems and solutions. For complete versatility with every conceivable change, you may have to go almost completely with ET, unless you are going to have 10 compensators on every pedal or knee. Pure JI can only work for simpler tunings and simpler songs, and then only for E9 maybe. The C6 neck has more strings and changes outside of straight major chords, and so has more need to move closer to ET. I tune my uni first to JI in the E9 mode. Then I go to the B6 mode and make some adjustments that move me a little closer to ET for some intervals. But I don't feel the need to go clompletely ET, because the B6 stuff can take a little dissonance better than the E9 stuff. I'm somewhere in between, but I'm closer to JI for E9, and closer to ET for B6.

b0b is right that "flatted thirds" is just a figure of speech that can be misleading. There is not really anything flat to the ear about JI, but ET really is sharp to the ear.

Buddy Emmons
Member

From: Hermitage, TN USA

posted 24 May 2004 01:05 PM     profile     
My apologies for not explaining up front Bill, but I do tune everything ET. Compensation is what I had to deal with tuning the old way but now itís a thing of the past. I may go a cent or so flat in some cases but strictly to handle temp changes under certain conditions.
Also when I hear a JI steel third in a ET track, flat is the only word I can come up with.
C Dixon
Member

From: Duluth, GA USA

posted 24 May 2004 01:46 PM     profile     
Lest there be any doubt

David Doggett
Member

From: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

posted 24 May 2004 02:10 PM     profile     
Yes, compared to ET, a JI third sounds flat. Compared to JI, an ET third sounds sharp. We're all right.

Let's look at it this way. For complete versatility, if you go ET all the way, you can't sound worse than an electric keyboard, which everyone accepts just fine. On the other hand, where you can get away with something closer to JI, you will sound more like strings, horns and vocalists, also which everyone accepts just fine. So with pedal steel, you're not really stuck with either one all the time, the way some other instruments are. You're more free to split the difference and find your own way. Or maybe that's a curse. Keyboard players don't seem to worry about this stuff. It's all ET for them and that's the end of it. Strings and horns also don't worry about it. They play it all to the ear, and that's the end of it. We have options, so we have to think about it.

[This message was edited by b0b on 29 March 2008 at 03:49 PM.]

Buddy Emmons
Member

From: Hermitage, TN USA

posted 24 May 2004 02:14 PM     profile     
I certainly find that easy enough to swallow. I guess I'll have to find me a good keyboard player and settle down.
Henry Matthews
Member

From: Texarkana, Texas, USA

posted 24 May 2004 02:16 PM     profile     
Hey guys, I'm lost. What does JI and ET stand for.--Henry
Cory Jensen
Member

From: Chicago, Illinois, USA

posted 24 May 2004 02:26 PM     profile     
JI = Just Intonation
ET = Equal Temperament

I know that much, the rest is over my head.

C Dixon
Member

From: Duluth, GA USA

posted 24 May 2004 02:59 PM     profile     
JI=Just Intonation. Or tuning the beats out between any two notes. Or "harmonically pure". Or based on a ratio of numbers referencing any two frequencies when they are a harmonic multiple of one another such as, 440/880, 440/550 or 440/220 or 440/660 etc..

ET=Equal temperament. Or tuning all notes in 12 equal steps in a fixed logarythmic separation based when a number (frequency) doubles (or halves) in 12 steps. Or any note's frequency or distance on a fret board muliplied (or divided by) the 12th root of the digit 2.

An example is the 12th fret on any steel guitar. It took 12 steps to get there but it is exactly half way to the bridge. Or put another way, If your scale is exactly 24 and 1/4", the 12th fret will be exactly 12 and 1/8" from either end.

Two divergent schools of thoughts on how to tune a musical instrument with crossovers schools (views) between the two the world over. Those that are most divergent in viewpoint rarely if ever budge. Those that use some of each often divulge and given enough time, actually tend to often subtly voice their opponent's viewpoint as witnessed in this and other threads on the subject.

But then that is life isn't it?

carl


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