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Tuning Your Guitar

Updated on June 2, 2013

Importance of Keeping Your Instrument In Tune

The intonation(pitch) of the strings on your guitar are crucial. If one string on your instrument is off by just a half step will make many of the chords you play out of tune.

Science Of Stringed Instruments

As you probably know sound is created through the vibrations of the string. The frequency of the vibration is measured in hertz or vibrations per second. The more vibrations per second the higher the pitch will be. This is what tuning is. The pitch of a string is based on how tight or loose the string is. If the string is too loose it'll be flat and if it's too tight it'll be sharp. This is why we tune.

Korg Guitar and Bass Tuner


Guitar Tuners

There are many tools you can use to tune your brand new guitar. There are electronic chromatic tuners, online tuners, and even tuner apps for your smart phone. I recommend getting an electric tuner like the one by Korg. Tuner apps can't pick up pitch as well as an electronic tuner and online tuners aren't nearly as convenient as a Korg Tuner. Also Korg tuners can usually pick up your instrument even with noise in the background. In addition to having a chromatic tuner you may want to get a tuner app such as "ins-tuner" for convenience reasons.

Ins-Tuner App


Tuner Apps For Smartphones

  • Pro Tuner-Chromatic Tuner($0.99)(Lite version available)
  • Tuner+(Free)
  • Ins-Tuner($3.99)(Lite Version Available)(My personal favorite)

Guitar Strings


How To Tuner Your Instrument

Now that you have the appropriate tools to tune your guitar you can now begin.

1. You have to know the names of the strings. The strings from lowest to highest are E, A, D, G, B, and E.

2. Start with the lowest string, the E string. Hold your tuner near the guitar and pluck the string. Your tuner will tell you whether your string is flat or sharp. Follow the string up to the appropriate peg and turn it so the note is neither flat nor sharp.

3. Do this with all six strings and check all of them, for some may go back out of tune especially with newer guitars.



Now that your guitar is tuned you can start playing your favorite songs in tune!

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    • Jhoang profile image

      Jhoang 4 years ago

      Thank you!

    • faustferdinand profile image

      Faust Ferdinand Eusebio 4 years ago from Los Banos, Laguna, Philippines

      This is great! Through this article, many guitar players at the beginning level will make sure that their instrument is always in perfect tuning before they start playing.