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  #106  
Old 10-02-2023, 10:19 AM
Mycroft Mycroft is offline
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Started out with a tuning fork, so I am with the "badly" contingent. Often as not just tuned the strings to be in tune with one another.

Got my first electronic tuner in the late 80s -early 90s. Never looked back.
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  #107  
Old 10-02-2023, 10:55 AM
rmp rmp is offline
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we didn't,

it was a circus...
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  #108  
Old 10-02-2023, 11:01 AM
67goat 67goat is offline
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I'm old, but not that old. The first strobe tuner was made in 1936 and the first chromatic tuner for guitars was released in 1983. I wasn't alive for the first strobe tuner. I was alive for the TU-12, but it would be another 5 or 6 years before I started playing.

I've always had a tuner.
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  #109  
Old 10-02-2023, 11:02 AM
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Rosette Rosette is offline
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Tuned to A string using 5th and 4th frets. Sometimes had to put a record on with an A chord to get the A to the right pitch as I never had a tuning fork.
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  #110  
Old 10-02-2023, 11:10 AM
Tuberoast Tuberoast is offline
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Pitch pipe and tuning fork (still have them) or to a record if you're going to play along with it.
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  #111  
Old 10-02-2023, 11:11 AM
Brent Hahn Brent Hahn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosette View Post
Sometimes had to put a record on with an A chord to get the A to the right pitch as I never had a tuning fork.
If I was playing along with records, especially singles in the 60's -- and double-especially for Beatles singles -- I'd have to tune to each song individually. Seemed like they were all different.
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  #112  
Old 10-02-2023, 11:43 AM
Joe Beamish Joe Beamish is offline
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Iíve come full circle, at least in one sense. If I donít need to be in tune with anyone else, and if I donít have a clip-on tuner handy or the battery is getting weak, I use the ancient fifth fret tuning approach to get me close, and then make adjustments. Just because it is extremely fast.
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  #113  
Old 10-02-2023, 11:45 AM
vintage40s vintage40s is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PineMarten View Post
It seems amazing that pitch pipes ever caught on as a tuning reference...
That was all I ever saw or used when I began in 1960. For decades all I knew was tuning the guitar to itself.

I did not get an electronic tuner until a few years ago. Even today when I changed strings, I used the pitch pipe to quickly bring up all the strings, then the pitch pipe again on the low string, and then tuned the guitar to itself. It was very close according the Snark.
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  #114  
Old 10-02-2023, 12:35 PM
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Rosette Rosette is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent Hahn View Post
If I was playing along with records, especially singles in the 60's -- and double-especially for Beatles singles -- I'd have to tune to each song individually. Seemed like they were all different.

True! I learned to play partly by following along with a record or CD and repeating sections to hear the parts until I got it. I could always tell when they were playing an open A or D and tune from there. I got thrown for a loop several times when I couldnít figure out what was being played because I hadnít learned about dropped and alternate tunings.

I take acoustic tuners for granted now, but when I started playing they already had chromatic tuners for electric guitar, so using an electric as the reference was another way to tune.
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  #115  
Old 10-02-2023, 12:42 PM
Tunesalot Tunesalot is offline
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Pitch pipe mainly & Tuning fork in the 70’s. So badly. No piano handy and it was hard to tune to my flute, not enough hands. Fifth fret still rocks tho now have fancy stuff. Love the uni-tune and newest snark.

Last edited by Tunesalot; 10-02-2023 at 01:36 PM.
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  #116  
Old 10-02-2023, 12:58 PM
RussellHawaii RussellHawaii is offline
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Default How did you tune up before tuners?

I used to have a wooden box with a support thingy for a tuning fork. Bang the fork and put it in the box, which would amplify the tuning fork and it would ring for 30 seconds or so. Really quite accurate if you do it right. I wish I still had this!
Pitch pipes, also. But often weíd tune to a harmonica or piano, after all those canít change their tuning and you have to match them.
I maintain that the biggest improvement in live music over the last 50 years is the guitar tuner. The change in sound quality of live bands before and after this change is apparent in many recordings.
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  #117  
Old 10-02-2023, 01:16 PM
gmel555 gmel555 is offline
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Started playing in early 1970's. Much of the time we used a piano...sometimes tuned to a song on a record or a pitch pipe if one was available. In "casual" situations -eg, sing alongs playing along, et.- being tuned w-each other to relative pitch, not necessarily spot on A440, was all we needed.
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  #118  
Old 10-02-2023, 02:32 PM
jseth jseth is offline
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Ha! Way to bring back memories...

Started out with a little pitch pipe when I started playing at 9 years old... pretty much tuned to whomever I was playing guitar with for a good while after that, then graduated to tuning fork (A-440). Oh, and whenever I played with a piano or keyboardist, I'd ALWAYS tune to them. Once actual affordable electronic tuners came out in the mid-late 70's, I used one of those...

Of course, nowadays, I'm a bit of slave to my clip-on Peterson, although I will go ahead and set one string to pitch and then tune the rest by ear, just to keep my hand in (ear in?).

I still have memories of playing gigs in the late 60's and early 70's where the bar was so noisy, there was no way in the world I could tune... I'd go in the back room or outside and tune up, then march back in to the stage and play my set. This was when my "amplification" for my guitar was a Shure 565 microphone stuffed near to the soundhole; even with the volume raised just below feedback level, you still had to beat the heck out of the guitar to get it over the PA... marginal, at best...

Performing life is SO much easier nowadays...
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  #119  
Old 10-02-2023, 03:03 PM
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keith.rogers keith.rogers is offline
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Primarily a tuning fork, though often we had a keyboard in the band back then, so that was the source. Of course back in elementary and high school band days we had those giant strobe tuners.

I've had this tuning fork long enough I don't remember when I got it. Still works, but it's pretty exclusively spending its time in the "small tools coffee cup" on my desk. Keeping it for the apocalypse, I guess.
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  #120  
Old 10-02-2023, 03:07 PM
rule18 rule18 is offline
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^ Yep, tuning fork. Still have one.

Or my mother-in-law (not kidding). She was a concert pianist and has perfect pitch. Freakin' annoyingly accurate. LOL!!!
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