Oct 18 2011, 02:00 PM
Set temperament, then measure/tune just the bowing halfway between the nut and where the neck meets the body of the violin (way up the fingerboard). Unfortunately my suction cup pickup has broken and I'm having difficulty finding a replacement, so I've been using my "Band" (by Headway) pickup for tuning. It fits like a rubber band over the lower f-holes.
Here's an example:
G: +0 cents D: -7 cents A: +0 cents E: -7 cents I call this one "gentle, dynamic, and expressive." I've had some really good audience appreciation and it feels better to play than the "fool's gold" discovered recently. The open 5ths don't sound as good on their own as I would like, but I thought it was worth mentioning because of the audience feedback. To me this proves that tuning the open 5ths doesn't necessarily mean a better result on the violin.
P.S. I think the sweet spot for placing the bow is on the 4th "fret".
Oct 22 2011, 02:09 PM
Also try: G: +4 cents D: +1 cents A: +2.5 cents E: +5.5 cents.
This is from a mandolin tuning temperament found awhile back. It's a scrambled linear pattern (1,2.5,4,5.5).
Measure/tune with bowing only, placing the bow on the 4th "fret".
I wouild also call this "gentle, dynamic, and expressive."
Oct 25 2011, 11:53 PM
I've been having some good luck measuring/tuning bowing only, placing the bow on the 2nd "fret." I liked VLN temperament
(G: -3.8 D: -1.9 A: 0 E: +1.9) here with regularly tuned guitars and amplified violin. Very smooth. Also tried the opposite to 3rds which gave a nice fresh bright sound (negating the values, so C: -7.8 G: -2.6 D: +2.6 A: +7.8 E: +5.8 B:+7.8.)
Tuning changes, depending on where the string is bowed. I'm not sure where the sweet spot is. Tuning also changes depending on where the tuning pickup is located as well. I've tried placing the tuning pickup pretty much everywhere on the violin, and I think the lower left F-hole produces the best results, however I could be mistaken since I am just one voice. I'm hoping that someone else out there takes up posting results as well, or refuting my experiments.
P.S. For solo recording I've had some success with half tempered opposite 3rds (C: -3.9 G: -1.3 D: +1.3 A: +3.9 E: +2.9 B: +3.9). It gives a unique sound and sounds less constricted than full tempered opposite 3rds.
Nov 17 2011, 06:12 PM
I re-recorded a solo number with the following temperament, placing a suction cup tuning pickup gently on the lower left f-hole, and measuring just bowing, placing the bow on the 2nd "fret", and am very pleased with the results compared to a previous incarnation.
G: -6.8 cents
D: -10.2 cents
A: -6.8 cents
E: +0.0 cents
This I believe is a sine wave (not zero based).
P.S. I had a listen to the solo recording while watching TV and it sounded out of tune. It sounds in tune when it's the only thing happening.
The neverending quest for perfection continues...
Nov 29 2011, 02:57 AM
How about this one to try out:
Set temperament to VLN (G: -3.8 D: -1.9 A: +0.0 E: +1.9).
Place the suction cup tuning pickup gently on the lower left f hole.
Tune by balancing the speed up/down of bowing/resonance, with the bow placed on the second "fret".
Resonance is the tone generated when the bow is lifted off the string after bowing a note.
This tuning is excellent when the violin is amplified. It may be too colourful for strictly acoustic tone; see what you think. If only there were some way to vote on your favourite tuning here.
P.S. I also tried with the above, tuning just resonance, with the bow placed on the second "fret" with good results both acoustically and amplified. It's getting there...
Dec 13 2011, 02:53 AM
Well this may be the one:
G: +0 cents
D: +1.9 cents
A: +0 cents
E: +1.9 cents
This may be the most non-offensive violin tuning yet, amplified with regularly tuned guitars.
I've used this temperament by tuning just resonance, with the bow placed on the 2nd "fret", and suction cup tuning pickup placed gently over the lower left f hole. Resonance is the tone created when the bow is lifted off the string after bowing a note.
P.S. I've tried this tuning method purely acoustically and it works well. This may be the one to beat.
I guess the weak spot, like with regular VLN tuning, is the low A chord (A on G and E on D). Still this one is tough to beat.
Jan 12 2012, 02:53 AM
Also try this one:
G: +0+3.1 = +3.1 cents
D: +1.9+0 = +1.9 cents
A: +0-3.1 = -3.1 cents
E: +1.9-2.1 = -0.2 cents
B: +0-3.1 = -3.1 cents
This one has components of fifths and sort of half tempered thirds mixed in.
This time place the suction cup tuning pickup gently on the center of the chin rest, and measure just the resonance of the bow with the bow placed half way up the string where the body of the violin meets the neck. Resonance is the tone generated when the bow is lifted off the string after bowing a note (in this case the open strings).
I like this one. Hope you do to.
Best of luck,
P.S. I like the above for purely acoustic tone. For a darker and stronger tone amplified, tune the same way, but reverse the signs of the sort of half tempered third component, so
G: +0-3.1 = -3.1 cents
D: +1.9+0 = +1.9 cents
A: +0+3.1 = +3.1 cents
E: +1.9+2.1 = +4.0 cents
B: +0+3.1 = +3.1 cents
Jan 26 2012, 01:42 AM
This one is sort of based on seconds. A perfect second is +3.9 cents sharp, so that's where that comes from, even though the seconds are "in tune" with each other here. For the violins, I've tuned with a suction cup tuning pickup placed gently on the center of the chinrest, and holding it there with my chin when bowing the open strings (and tuning just the resonance) placing the bow about halfway down the strings where the neck meets the body of the instrument. Resonance is the tone made when the bow is lifted off the string after bowing a note. The low A chord also sounds good on my GDAE violin with this tuning method and temperament tonight, unlike the method and tuning temperament described previously as the one to beat.
G: +0.0 cents
D: +3.9 cents
A: +0.0 cents
E: +3.9 cents
B: +0.0 cents
I tried this on my DAEB violin and my GDAE violin with good results, better than the +1.9 cent version (the one to beat) tonight. I also tried this on the guitar with some good results tonight. I've extended the above temperament to the entire 12 semitone range for trial on other instruments, and will report back on any success.
Mar 6 2012, 03:18 AM
After changing to new strings, I've been struggling to get a good sound. It's been a week, and I've reverted to a long time ago previous tuning with some modification. I've just tried it in an amplified session tonight, and I'm excited about it. It's based on modified full tempered thirds and modified full tempered fifths.
G: +6.1 cents (+6.1+0)
D: +1.9 cents (+0+1.9)
A: -6.1 cents (-6.1+0)
E: -2.2 cents (-4.1+1.9)
B: -6.1 cents (-6.1+0)
Tune with the suction cup pickup resting in the middle of the chinrest, and put your chin on top of it to keep it steady. Tune with rapid staccato bowing near the bridge, balancing the display speed up/down instead of caging it. I'm calling this tuning "smooth and solid." The low A chord sounds amazing with my Menzel nylon core strings. It outperforms my previous attempt at modified half tempered thirds and modified full tempered fifths with the same tuning method, even though modified half tempered thirds are closer to EQU than modified full tempered thirds.
Mar 22 2012, 01:12 AM
And here's another adventure in tuning space.
C: +7.8+1.9=+9.7 (untested string)
This one uses a more accurate 3rds tuning component.
Tune with the suction cup tuning pickup gently placed downward in the middle of the chinrest and keep your chin on it to keep it in place. Tune the open strings, dampening the strings near the nut (like doing a zero fret harmonic), bowing in the regular bowing spot, tuning with only caging the resonance. Resonance is the tone generated when the bow is lifted off the string after bowing a note.
Surprisingly this tuning sounded pretty decent on the open string 5ths in an acoustic setting, and it uses somewhat better math. Anyone else care to take a shot at a better temperament or an alternate use to this one?
P.S. Amplified violin was another story. For amplified in a celtic setting, I tuned with the above temperament entered manually and tuned resonance on the 7th fret harmonics. So for the G string I entered +7.8 cents manually with EQU temperament, and tuned the resonance of the D harmonic on the G string. Suction cup tuning pickup in the middle of the chinrest and bowing in the regular spot. Anyone else care to report on this one? It doesn't sound perfect with the open 5ths, but matches a standard tuned guitar nicely.
P.P.S. After playing around with different techniques I've found an easy to tune acoustic method with the above temperament. Set the temperament to the above, then dial in +3.9 (this adds 3.9 cents to all the values), and tune just the resonance of each string, bowing in the normal bowing location. Resonance is the tone generated after the bow is lifted off the string after bowing a note. Suction cup tuning pickup is gently placed over the lower left f-hole (yes I've reverted to this location). This tuning method produces results on my violin acceptable for both fiddle tunes and more.
May 10 2012, 02:14 PM
This one has worked for me amplified and acoustically:
G: +7.8 +0 = +7.8
D: +0 +3.9 = +3.9
A: +0 +0 = +0
E: -7.8 +3.9 = -3.9
The sum is a linear function over the GDAE interval. I'm not sure what the best way to expand this to the 12 semitone range is.
I've tried expanding it as C: +5.8 +3.9 = +9.7 and B: -5.8 + 0 = -5.8. Worked acceptably on my DAEB violin, but haven't tested the C string yet. Beyond that I have no idea, and I'm not sure this is the best way to go with this one. What's nice about this is the amount of thirds that are in tune with the thirds component (+5.8,+7.8,+0,+0,-7.8,-5.8), and the sum, the linear function, is reminiscent of Lucy tuning over the GDAE intervals (see the web), except Lucy tuning is 4.5 cents down per fifth, instead of 3.9.
For the violins I tuned with the suction cup tuning pickup gently over the lower left f hole, and measured just the resonance in the normal bowing spot of the open strings. Resonance is the tone generated when the bow is lifted off the string after bowing a note.
May 18 2012, 11:05 PM
Hi all. Here's a temperament that is mellower and easier to play on my GDAE and DAEB violins. Use the previous tuning method with this temperament:
F: +5.8 cents
C: +7.8 cents
G: -1.0 cents
D: +1.0 cents
A: -7.8 cents
E: -5.8 cents
B: -14.6 cents
F#: -12.6 cents
I'm not sure about the F and C and past the B. I like how many thirds are in tune (every major third and every other minor third) and there are still perfect fifths every other time, and the dropped fifths are somewhat reasonable. The D/A combo is the weakness on my GDAE violin, but I still feel it is acceptable. Another nice feature of this tuning is that tone changes over the instrument for texture variety.
A perfect minor third is +15.6 cents (for example from A to C), and a perfect major third (for example G to B ) is -13.6 cents. A perfect fifth is +1.95 cents. In order for the thirds to be in tune it produces +2.0 cents for a perfect rounded fifth.
I feel like this is getting close to a perfect temperament. It beats EQU to my ears on my GDAE violin.
P.S. Half-tempered works out better when the GDAE violin is amplified (so divide the above values by two). It's less offensive to electric cello and guitar.
P.P.S. Half-tempered doesn't work when the GDAE violin is unamplified. Will keep you posted.
P.P.P.S. For the GDAE violin acoustically, dial +3.9 cents with the above temperament set (this will add 3.9 cents to each value), place the suction cup tuning pickup gently over the lower left f hole, then tune by balancing bowing and resonance speed up/down on the display. This creates some of the more beautiful tones I've ever had, and it is the first time I've been able to nicely blend with a friend's plastic low D whistle. Resonance is the tone generated when the bow is lifted off the string after bowing a note.
For the DAEB violin acoustically, dial +7.8 cents with the above temperament, and tune with the same technique.
By dialing in +3.9 with GDAE it has the effect of somewhat centering the values in the GDAE range, and likewise DAEB with +7.8 somewhat centers the values in the DAEB range.
P.P.P.P.S. For the GDAE violin amplified, dial +5.9 cents with the above temperament and balance bowing the open string and bowing the 7th fret harmonic (so the open G string and the D harmonic on the G string etc.). I call this tuning "full energetic and strong". Suction cup tuning pickup is gently placed over the lower left f hole. This raises another possibility: by balancing the G and D on the same string this has a similar, but not identical, effect to averaging the two temperament phases, so the D/A open string combo is improved.
P.P.P.P.P.S. For the GDAE violin amplified AND unamplified, dial +3.9 cents with the above temperament set (this will add 3.9 cents to each value), place the suction cup tuning pickup gently over the lower left f hole, then tune by measuring just bowing on the display. The weakness is the lower A chord and the D/A open fifth, but nevertheless the results are still pretty decent, and both amplified and unamplified had some good audience reaction.
This is a "lo-fi" version of our main content. To view the full version with more information, formatting and images, please click here