Cello Tuning

Cell Tuning Guide – An Easy Way To Tune A Cello

Cello tuning is an important process that must be performed before a cellist begins playing a cello. Unless you recently purchased a pre-tuned cello, you will have to tune you cello before you play it. Cellos that are in use may also go out of tune and have to be tuned in such cases. While you may also buy a tuner to tune your cello but knowing how to do it yourself is better. Whenever tuning a cello, it is necessary to start with the tuning pegs and move to the fine tuners.

Before you can begin with the cello tuning, you will need a pitch producing device. The device should be placed within reach of the position where you will be seated with your cello. Use the device to produce an “A” pitch. Bow or pluck the “A” string of the cello to produce a sound. If pitch of the cello is lower than that of the device, gradually turn the tuning peg clockwise, and if the pitch of the cello is higher than that of the device, gradually turn the tuning pegs counterclockwise. Keep doing this until the cello’s pitch is with a half pitch close to that of the device’s pitch.

Now start turning fine tuners of your cello, just as you did the tuning pegs, but keep turning them until the pitch of the cello is somewhat the same as the pitch being produced by the device. Tuning the “A” string accurately is an important part of cello tuning because it serves as a steadfast reference to tune the rest of the strings, and ultimately the cello itself. Although you can still tune a cello without tuning this string to the “A” pitch, but it is not ideal and recommended.

Once you are sure that the “A” string is accurately tuned, proceed to tuning the other: “C,” “G,” and “D” strings. With your left hand in playing position on the fingerboard, slide it down to position it where the fingerboard meets the body of the cello. Use your index finger to pluck the “D” string lightly. Now bow or pluck the string using your right hand to produce a harmonic sound. The third finger of your right hand should at the halfway point of the “A” string as you bow or pluck it too.

Again a harmonic sound will be produced, which should be of the same pitch as that of the “D” string. If not, use the same process, as above, to tune the “D” string until the pitch of its harmonic sound matches that of the “A” string. You can proceed with the rest of the cello tuning in the same manner by tuning the pitch of the “G” string to match that of the “D,” and finally the pitch of the “C” string to match that of “G.”

If you followed the above steps correctly, and you had initially tuned the “A” string accurately, then your cello should definitely be in tune. Tuning a cello with a tuner may seem convenient, but manual cello tuning is equally easy, and can be quite fun and interesting too.

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