Complete instructions on how to tune an acoustic guitar - The Music Page Plus

Complete instructions on how to tune an acoustic guitar

An acoustic guitar is a guitar that uses only an acoustic sound board to help transmit the strings energy into the air in order to produce its sound. The sound waves from the strings of an acoustic guitar resonate through the guitar’s body, creating sound. The soundboard will add various tonal qualities due to its own mix it also has a strong effect on the loudness of the guitar, it does not rely on electronic amplification like other guitars

The main source of sound in an acoustic guitar is the string, which is plucked or strummed with the finger or with a plectrum. The string vibrates at a necessary frequency and also creates many harmonics at various different frequencies. The frequencies produced can depend on string length, mass, and tension

Because stringed musical instruments tend to drift out of tune as the strings slacken, learning how to tune an acoustic guitar should be one of the first things beginners are taught to make sure you learn to play guitar that sounds great. You can learn the basics of tuning, how to fine-tune your guitar to get it precise, there are three methods that are can be used during acoustic guitar tuning, they include;

Doing the basic tuning

Identify the correct notes for each string.

For you to tune the guitar, you must know the proper notes for each string. Starting with the thinnest to the thickest string, the standard tuning for the strings is, from low to high:

E (thickest string)





E (thinnest string)


Know the correct tuning pegs for each string.


Follow each string up to the corresponding tuning peg to make sure you know which peg to turn to tune each string, and which direction. Before you consult a tuner, pluck the string a few times and turn the peg to make it go up and make it go down.


Pluck each string and turn the plug individually to match it to the correct pitch


For an electric tuner, turn it on and hold it close enough to the guitar so it can pick up enough sound. Pluck the string repeatedly and turn the tuning peg until it matches the pitch as closely as possible. If too high lower the note turning the tuning peg thus loosen it until you have the desired pitch.


To match the sound of a string immediately below use the 5th fret


The 6th string, 5th fret note should be identical to the 5th string played openly, they are both as. This system ensures that the intervals between notes are identical, so that even if the guitar is not perfectly tuned, it is tuned relative to itself. To tune the 5th string, for example, you would play the 6th string, 5th fret note and match the tone of the 5th string exactly to this.


Play a few notes to check the intervals.

An acoustic guitar is made of wood, and the resonance of the strings, even when tuned properly, might not sound exactly right. Play the first-position chord to check and to make sure the guitar sounds correct and is in tune. Make slight adjustments if needed string will be tuned slightly flat to make it perfectly tuned



Play and re-tune your guitar for 15-20 minutes after putting on new strings.

Strings need time to stretch out when first placed, meaning they fall out of tune very quickly. To help get them in shape, tune the guitar and then play for a few minutes. Re-tune and replay until the strings stay tuned.


Tuning more precise

Have a quality chromatic guitar tuner

The easiest and most accurate way to tune your guitar properly is to use an electronic guitar tuner that reads your tone, usually provides a visual gauge of how on or off of pitch you are, and tells you which direction you need to tune. It does everything but turns the pegs for you.

Tune up, don’t tune down, whenever possible.

It is important for acoustic guitars, to tune from flat to sharp, rather than tuning from sharp to flat. Since you are more likely to slip out of tune if the tension on the string is going down, so it’s better to create the correct directional tension on the string by tuning up, instead down

Always use fresh strings.

Old worn-out strings won’t stay in tune as easily. If you are having to constantly re-tune to know when something is a little off. Listen to the notes as you tune and you will be able to tune more accurately.

Using alternate methods

Tune the guitar to a piano.

If you have a well-tuned and maintained piano or keyboard and you are familiar with the notes, one easy way to quickly tune your guitar is to play each note and match the pitch of the corresponding string.

Check out free online tuners

Lots of tone-generating devices are available that you can use quickly to get your guitar in tune. One of the most effective tuners available is the basic tuner available in the apple app store. It is super cheap and accurate.

Tune the guitar to itself harmonically.

You might not be able to get a guitar in perfect pitch, but you can at least make sure the guitar is tuned to itself appropriately by matching the intervals of all the strings. So, to tune the guitar, you can play an a on the e string and tune the a string .this is a good way of checking the relationships between all the strings


Some guitar players like to tune the bottom string to d, rather than e, making it easier to play certain chords and some styles of music this is the dropping d tuning. Other ways are the Irish tuning, open c tuning, open D tuning, and open g tuning. Make sure you get the right guitar and tune it according to the sound you want it to produce.

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