How to tune a guitar manually

So you have a guitar that’s out of tune but don’t feel like buying a tuner? You have a tuner but it’s not working? It’s not with you? Or simply bored? You can put it to the right tune manually, even without the piano! All you need is a sharp hearing and this simple tutorial. 😉 Of course tuning it with a tuner is more accurate. But learning to tune manually will come in handy, isn’t it?

Let me share to you this tutorial on how to tune a guitar manually.


The Guitar Strings

Refer to the image above. Let’s call the thinnest string #1 and the thickest string #6. The letters over the right are the corresponding notes of each string, but just ignore them for now. We’ll use the numbers instead to make it easier. 🙂 Read the following directions carefully.

directions

  1. Press #6 on the 5th fret and pluck it. Listen to its pitch. Pluck the open #5 string. Adjust it until it gains the same pitch as that of #6.
  2. Press #5 on the 5th fret and pluck it. Listen to its pitch. Pluck the open #4 string. Adjust it until it gains the same pitch as that of #5
  3. Press #4 on the 5th fret and pluck it. Listen to its pitch. Pluck the open #3 string. Adjust it until it gains the same pitch as that of #4.
  4. Press #3 on the 4th fret (yes, 4th fret!) and pluck it. Listen to its pitch. Pluck the open #2 string. Adjust it until it gains the same pitch as that of #3.
  5. Press #2 on the 5th fret (yes, 5th fret again!) and pluck it. Listen to its pitch. Pluck the open #1 string. Adjust it until it gains the same pitch as that of #2.

tips and notes

  • You need to listen very well when you pluck each string. Try plucking it as hard as you can to produce a louder sound. You must know how to distinguish the difference of the pitches/notes that you hear.
  • After adjusting all the strings, strum them. If you’re not satisfied with the outcome, you might want to do the tuning all over again. Be patient. It will be easy when you get used to it anyway. If the outcome pitch is too high, adjust string #6 to a lower pitch and do the tuning over again; If the outcome pitch is too low, adjust string #6 to a higher pitch and do the tuning all over again.

Comments on this tutorial will be appreciated. Please note I’m just an amateur guitarist that I might not be able to answer questions that might be asked about guitars. 😆

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Catzie

A Filipino who is a mobile & web developer on weekdays, and a baker on weekends. When I have time to spare, I blog, play video games, watch series (usually anime), cook dishes, draw, or spend a little time with pets. When I have the rare luxury of time, I get to travel and record song covers too! Follow on Twitter: @catzie

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