Guitar Fretting and Compromises ?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by Rock Fella, Mar 17, 2006.


  1. Rock Fella

    Rock Fella Member

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    I read in an article that as you move up the neck on a non-feitened gtr , that you will find that some frets are not dead centre on your tuner.

    I took my trusty Boss TU12H tuner and checked out my 2001 R9.

    It was set up by a pro so when I check open string , 12th fret harmonic and fretted 12 th fret notes, on all strings my guitar reads dead centre on the tuner.

    when I move up the neck to 1st string 22nd fret, the fretted note reads just under 2 cents from zero on the needle on the sharp side. If I fret the 2nd string 12th fret , I get a dead centre reading , but if I fret 15th fret on same string I get a reading of about 1 cent sharp ............interesting.

    If I then fret a C diad lower on the neck , 8th fret on High E and B string , these both register as dead centre for accuracy and are perfectly resolved. If I do it 13th fret on Bstr and 12th fret on G string its not as totally tightly resolved as it was at 8th position, if it duplicate same at 17th fret on G and D string.......again its not as watertightly resolved as it is at the 8th position.

    I found all this out since I read that article on fretting compromises , I d appreciate folks knowledge on this subject and am interested to read your thoughts.

    jimmy
     
  2. burchyk

    burchyk Member

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    I don't have an answer but I know what are you talking about, and that behaviour is always driving me nuts :(
    I see a lot of guitars that have that same problem all along the neck, +/- 1 or 2 cents delta. sometimes I wish I was a keyboard player :'(

    hope someone would shed some light
     
  3. Rock Fella

    Rock Fella Member

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    with every guitar ive ever owned from the cheapest (hondoII Les Paul) thru to midrange (Fender USA Strat) thru to the high dollar (2001 R9) and all other guitars in between Aria ProII Ironman ,Yamaha SG2000 , Les Paul Custom etc........ ive ALWAYS found that the Gstring was the awkward one .

    with my guitar what i do is set all strings to center on the TU12H tuner with the exception of the G string which I set to 1 cent flat........this balances things out nicely and the R9 holds tune like crazy so retuning isnt something I need to do often.

    Its a compromise for the inaccuracies in diferent fret positions inherent in guitars. Anybody else do anything like this ?
     
  4. The_Whale

    The_Whale Member

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    Guitars can only be perfectly intonated at two frets (and/or the nut), every other fret (and/or nut) will be off. Even the two frets that are 'perfect' won't really be that perfect.

    That's just the way guitars are.

    "Feitened" guitars aren't exceptions to this rule.
     
  5. Rock Fella

    Rock Fella Member

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    how do others deal with these inaccuracies in gtrs then ?

    do you avoid certain areas where certain notes wont be perfectly in tune or something like this. I tune mine to certainly compensate for this kind of eventuality.
     
  6. Rock Fella

    Rock Fella Member

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    come on guys, chip in here
     
  7. Luke

    Luke Senior Member

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    For perfect intonation you would need individual frets for each note on the guitar. A fret is positioned in a straight line, which gaurantees each string is under some sort of compromise. For every note on the 8th fret to be perfectly in tune, the fret would have to be a zig zag to accomidate each individual string. [​IMG]
     
  8. Rock Fella

    Rock Fella Member

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    crikey !!

    is this for real ?
     
  9. landru64

    landru64 Member

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    one thing to consider anyway is how much one's technique while actually playing causes deviations from the desired pitch. i would venture to say that most players play somewhat out of tune, at least in the range of a one to several cents on certain notes. and it's that much easier to do that in a real playing situation way high on the fretboard....

    has anyone checked out the gtr setting on the peterson VS tuners?
     
  10. The_Whale

    The_Whale Member

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    I pick the best frets to make the guitar sound the best to tune and intonate to.

    As long as the guitar doesn't have any major issues, the usual compromises seen to work pretty well.
     
  11. The_Whale

    The_Whale Member

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    And each string/fret combo would need to be adjustable to accomodate different string gauges and action......
     
  12. OscarDaGrouch

    OscarDaGrouch Member

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    Since we are getting scientific and minute discrepancies, wouldn't the depression of the string cause differences if, let's say, the action were higher towards the bridge than the neck? It's very minute, but depressing a string does increase tension on the neck....the more the string is depressed, the more the neck bends creating discrepancies. I would have never thought someone would worry that much about having it perfectly intonated, but I always like an interesting question. I guess I never cared THAT much about intonation...if you're bending to get there in the first place, doesn't matter so much. But then again, if I spent that much on a R9, it BETTER be in tune ;-)
     
  13. Chuckracer

    Chuckracer Supporting Member

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    There is no such thing as an in tune guitar. Fortunately, the human ear is pretty forgiving, and this will only drive you crazy if you watch music with your eyes.
     
  14. K-man

    K-man Member

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    :messedup Good luck trying to bend on that!
     

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