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Thread: Tuner...not Tuners

  1. #26
    man about town Markus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tuner...not Tuners

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Brock View Post
    I can't stand not having the two strings in a course on my mando out of tune. Big difference in tone quality when the pair isn't tuned well.
    I completely agree and have not found any tuner that doesn't require a slight final adjustment to each pair by ear. It absolutely drives me crazy when I see someone tune both strings to their tuner and leave it there - each pair of strings not in perfect tune with each other, each pair in a different manner.

    I really like the Stroboclip and am mostly content when using a Snark - but as I have a piezo in my mandolin I vastly prefer using a pedal tuner. Faster, more accurate, requires less time pair-matching, and in contexts where pair-matching by ear is impossible my strobe pedal tuner [turbo tuner st200] gets me results I am content with, even amplified.

    I wasn't so picky about pair matching until I listened to a recording of my band where I didn't do a good job of it. Now that I'm plugging in more often, it cuts through in a bad way up the neck if they're not matched well. Maybe I'm more picky than most about this, but when they're nicely paired my instrument just sings with such great tone.
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  3. #27

    Default Re: Tuner...not Tuners

    Used a blue snark for years, but got a TC Polytune clip for my birthday, and the Snark hasn’t seen any action since then. The TC is great! Highly visible screen, very accurate, and no “hunting” for the note.

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  5. #28
    Registered User Cobalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tuner...not Tuners

    Have to agree, I'm fussy about each pair being in unison. Even if both are off by a small amount, but are together, it still sounds better to me than even a tiny difference in each pair. It does affect my playing and choice of strings too. I find lighter gauge strings are much easier to generate a difference between the pair when pressing the strings down on the fretboard. With practice that can be resolved (mostly) but it does mean I have to be much more aware and cautious depending on which mandolin I happen to be playing at the time. Heavier strings on the other hand tend to give out the same note without much difficulty.

    I did once borrow (briefly) a friend's mandolin, and each pair was tuned wildly apart. I couldn't decide whether it was carelessness, inability to hear it, or perhaps a deliberate choice. I didn't dare ask. But I did have to tune all of them before I could begin to play.

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  7. #29
    man about town Markus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tuner...not Tuners

    Quote Originally Posted by Cobalt View Post
    I did once borrow (briefly) a friend's mandolin, and each pair was tuned wildly apart. I couldn't decide whether it was carelessness, inability to hear it, or perhaps a deliberate choice. I didn't dare ask. But I did have to tune all of them before I could begin to play.
    Some people like that sound, I think. I've heard this described as wet vs dry tuning - one of them being perfectly synched pairs and the other choosing for intentional variance.

    There's a number of threads about that if you search on wet dry tuning, this one came to mind:

    https://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/a...p/t-77694.html

    This one https://www.mandolincafe.com/forum/a.../t-134589.html discusses people's methods of getting to perfect synched pairs, I seem to follow the same general pattern - tune one to pitch with tuner, tune other to just under pitch with tuner and then tune it up to match by ear.

    When it's impossible to work by ear my strobe pedal tuner can get remarkably close, just a nudge off perfect.
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  9. #30
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    Default Re: Tuner...not Tuners

    I also like my strings in tune. I am usually able to do it with the tuner, but it takes a while of finicky tuning.
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  11. #31
    Mandolin user MontanaMatt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tuner...not Tuners

    I had my band all switch to Peterson stroboclip, our sound got way better. When we play in B, and the guitar capos 4, I tune my mando to capo 4 and it sounds great.
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  13. #32
    Registered User Paul Brett's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tuner...not Tuners

    I have a Peterson strobovlip, a polytune, a blue headstock snark, a planet waves micro tuner and the planet waves sound hole tuner on my guitar. The Stroboclip is by far the best and most accurate. My first stroboclip developed a faulty power button and Peterson replaced it immediately without question, were extremely helpful during the short procedure, excellent customer service.

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  15. #33
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tuner...not Tuners

    Quote Originally Posted by Polecat View Post
    +1

    Electronic tuners have their place (loud environment, in front of an audience when it has to go quick, etc.), but if one abandons the basic skills required to hear whether one is in tune or not, a whole aspect of what it means to play music goes out of the window.

    When necessary, I use a black snark.
    I know I used to feel that way. When I first started using an electronic tuner i wondered if i was substituting eyes for ears. My experience is, first of all, that no tuner is accurate enough to avoid the requirement to touch up the strings by ear afterwards, especially in the old days. So getting the final unisons right has always been an ear task for me. But more to Polecat's point, I wonder if having the digital standard, and everyone tuning more accurately, increases our awareness of being in tune, and we have become perhaps less patient with what in the past might have been small benign strays from perfect. Has social music perhaps improved as a result?

    Bands and orchestras and official music has always had electronic tuners available. My high school band tuned up to this several times a year and before every performance.

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  17. #34
    Registered User Cobalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tuner...not Tuners

    One thing which has been made easier with the advent of readily-available electronic tuners, is the ability to join in a jam at the drop of a hat. These days I just take my seat, pick up my mandolin, and start to play. In years gone by, there was a fair chance that the entire ensemble was tuned to some arbitrary pitch, or indeed several different pitches. Thank goodness for tuners!

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