Jump to content


Photo

New Strobe Tuner


  • Please log in to reply
31 replies to this topic

#19 Clive Thorne

Clive Thorne

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 271 posts
  • Location:Northamptonshire, UK

Posted 11 March 2007 - 09:18 PM

Fundamentally I agree with what people are saying about 1 or 2 cents being close enough. In my business you get the same probem with digital multimeters, where someone is checking voltages ("My 24volt supply is measuring 24.125!").

But, having said that, is there some advantage in tuning as close as you 'reasonably' can, because the note then has to drift by that much more before people do start to notice, so your service interval goes up?

Just a thought,

Clive

#20 ragtimer

ragtimer

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 742 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Northern New England, USA

Posted 11 March 2007 - 09:51 PM

Dave P is right that 0.1 cents tuning doesn't mean a lot when you can change the pitch significantly just by pushing harder. The only concern I have is that these less accurate tuners can leave you with one reed 3 cents sharp and onother 3 cents flat i.e. 6 cents apart. A lot of people will notice that difference (not me, I suspect).
This topic comes up every so often and I suspect it's an issue on which there will always be a variety of opinions

I agree that 0.1 cent accuracy is a waste of your time spent punching the + and - buttons over and over to make the pattern stand still. Better to work in 1-cent increments. OK, 0.5 for mechanical engineers :unsure:

But keep in mind that the consequences of poor tuning are not so much between two notes of the same pitch (though in different octaves), but rather in other intervals. Two C's, one 3 cents flat and hte other 3 cents sharp, will have a noticeable but pleasant "wet" or "celeste" beat to them.

But, a C that is 3 cents flat and and E that is 3 cents sharp, will add 6 cents to an Major Third interval that, in Equal Temperament, is already 14 cents too wide. Equal thirds sound bad enough already, so sloppy tuning just makes them even worse.

So in general, if you tune an entire instrument with too much tolerance, some *intervals* will be too wide, and some too narrow, so some chords will sound rotten while others sound better than average. The guy who always tuens on the sharp side of tolerance has a better chance of avoiding this problem.

The best solution is to pick a temperament sytem (equal, meantone, just, whatever) and then tune with as much precision as you can reasonably muster. And hope that when the player squeezes really hard, all the reeds go off by the same amount. B)
--Mike K.

#21 Theo

Theo

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1619 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Gateshead, England. Land of the Angel of the North!

Posted 12 March 2007 - 04:21 AM

But keep in mind that the consequences of poor tuning are not so much between two notes of the same pitch (though in different octaves), but rather in other intervals. Two C's, one 3 cents flat and hte other 3 cents sharp, will have a noticeable but pleasant "wet" or "celeste" beat to them.


So in the end the accuracy of the tuning meter is just a step towards getting an instrument in tune. The final stage in the process is to listen to reeds playing together over all these important intervals, then go back and make fine adjustments till for example the 5ths all have a consitent sound over the full range of the instrument.

As with most things musical, its the judgement of the ear that is the final word.

#22 Dave Prebble

Dave Prebble

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 383 posts
  • Location:Yorkshire, England

Posted 12 March 2007 - 05:25 AM

As with most things musical, its the judgement of the ear that is the final word.


....... and no two ears are calibrated the same :unsure:

You know if you have got it right when you see that 'wow!' look on the customer's face when he plays it...... and then sends you another concertina to tune B)

Regards

Dave

#23 d.elliott

d.elliott

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1205 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England

Posted 12 March 2007 - 03:19 PM

Dave,

'ear 'ear!

Dave

#24 Paul Read

Paul Read

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1729 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Toronto, Canada

Posted 12 March 2007 - 04:15 PM

and in America I suppose your 're-bar', would be a 're-measure', which brings us nicely back to neasurement! but are we still on topic?

Dave

My daughter had a boyfriend who is a mechanical engineer. He lost many points when he told me that civil engineers make the targets for what mechanical engineers make. :angry:

#25 chainyanker

chainyanker

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 156 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:honey grove, texas

Posted 19 April 2007 - 10:47 AM

Turbo Tuner , has any one tried it yet, and how did it work?

#26 Paul Read

Paul Read

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1729 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Toronto, Canada

Posted 19 April 2007 - 10:56 AM

Turbo Tuner , has any one tried it yet, and how did it work?

I was going to wait until I'd spent more time with it but preliminary observations are:

1. It works well and readings agree with my Peterson.
2. When reading how far a reed is out it is useful to have a cheap and cheerful seiko or similar to ballpark the reading (also true for the Peterson). It saves a lot of time getting the reading.
3. Adjusting the reading up and down with the push buttons works fine but not as fast as with the Peterson
4. Switching between 1 cent and 0.1 cent adjustement steps is not as easy as on the Peterson. The biggest irritation is that switching back to 1 cent steps is not simple.
5. It is much smaller than the Peterson and can easily be carried in (for example) a guitar case.

In summary, this is a nice piece of equipment, good as a back-up but I much prefer the Peterson virtual strobe VSII (but then is costs half the price of a Peterson).

#27 Johann

Johann

    Chatty concertinist

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 104 posts
  • Location:Upper Austria

Posted 20 April 2007 - 12:48 PM

But keep in mind that the consequences of poor tuning are not so much between two notes of the same pitch (though in different octaves), but rather in other intervals. Two C's, one 3 cents flat and hte other 3 cents sharp, will have a noticeable but pleasant "wet" or "celeste" beat to them.


So in the end the accuracy of the tuning meter is just a step towards getting an instrument in tune. The final stage in the process is to listen to reeds playing together over all these important intervals, then go back and make fine adjustments till for example the 5ths all have a consitent sound over the full range of the instrument.

As with most things musical, its the judgement of the ear that is the final word.


Hi Theo,

i agree fully with you!


Biside all other sugestion concernig tuners, i find the new feature of dirks tuner in some cases very helpfull.
Especialy if i have to check chords (more reeds sounding at the same time).

Still the final judment is made by the ear.


Johann

#28 Pete Dunk

Pete Dunk

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1844 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Kent, UK

Posted 31 July 2007 - 04:44 PM

I'm getting to the point where I'm about ready to dip my toe in the muddy waters of concertina tuning. I've just about finished my second refurb which in many ways was much easier than the first. The Wheatstone I'm working on now is a brass reeded 48 key English that is once again in philharmonic tuning but is not as in tune with itself as the Lachenal I repaired previously. One way or another there is a fair bit of tuning to do so it might as well be done to concert pitch.

Now comes the hoary question of finding a tuning meter somewhat more accurate than my cheap and cheerful chromatic guitar tuner which struggles to detect the lower notes of a treble concertina and even if it did it only has a +/- 2 cents accuracy on a good day. I've read this thread with great interest but failed to draw any conclusion about the type of tuner I should be looking at.

Peterson seem to have developed a greater range of models since this thread came to an end, more compact and seemingly aimed at performing musicians but still claiming a high degree of accuracy. No doubt ease of use has been sacrificed along the way in order to pack in the features but for occasional use (I have no ambitions to be a professional repairman, just a dabbler who wants to bring old instruments back to their former glory for the sheer pleasure of playing them) I can live with a little inconvenience.

Does anyone have any thoughts regarding the relative merits of the full blown bench model (digital as opposed to valve/tube) strobe tuner at a (gulp!) mere £450 versus the much more affordable but not exactly cheap virtual strobe that sells for around £160?

I will deal with my concerns regarding the mysteries of the universal tuning rig elsewhere....

#29 Ken_Coles

Ken_Coles

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Admin
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1665 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Indiana, Pennsylvania, and Logansport, Indiana, U.S.A.

Posted 31 July 2007 - 07:15 PM

Does anyone have any thoughts regarding the relative merits of the full blown bench model (digital as opposed to valve/tube) strobe tuner at a (gulp!) mere £450 versus the much more affordable but not exactly cheap virtual strobe that sells for around £160?


I just kept my eyes open a few years back and at an amateur radio operators swap meet (for some reason they're called "hams" in the US) I got a Peterson 400 bench strobe for US$ 75 (about 40 pounds). I checked it against that of an accordion repairman doing professional work and it was within about 1 cent; good enough for me! I've used it to tune melodeons but no concertinas yet. This shopping route is worth trying if you aren't in a hurry.

Ken

#30 Dana Johnson

Dana Johnson

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 663 posts

Posted 31 July 2007 - 08:38 PM

I'm getting to the point where I'm about ready to dip my toe in the muddy waters of concertina tuning. I've just about finished my second refurb which in many ways was much easier than the first. The Wheatstone I'm working on now is a brass reeded 48 key English that is once again in philharmonic tuning but is not as in tune with itself as the Lachenal I repaired previously. One way or another there is a fair bit of tuning to do so it might as well be done to concert pitch.

Does anyone have any thoughts regarding the relative merits of the full blown bench model (digital as opposed to valve/tube) strobe tuner at a (gulp!) mere £450 versus the much more affordable but not exactly cheap virtual strobe that sells for around £160?

I will deal with my concerns regarding the mysteries of the universal tuning rig elsewhere....

If you are only tuning for yourself, spending big bucks on tuners seems a bit of a waste. Your guitar tuner won't do a good job, but I have found a few computer based tuners that will work, are accurate enough and are either freeware or shareware and can be used either on PC or Mac. They aren't ideal for lots of tuning, but I do all my first round tuning on one of these and it will both pretty reliably pick up the fundamental of even low notes and also display the harmonics as well as having a "meter" to tell you how many cents yo are off. Here is the URL for the free versions of the "Sound Color Analyzer and Tuner" for both Mac and PC, (but not the intel mac's yet it seems.)http://www1.ocn.ne.j...er/tuner_e.html" target="_blank">Lets play bamboo flute this will do pretty much all you need. and there are others out there as well. I like my other tuners a bit better, but I do a lot of tuning so it becomes more affordable. If something happened to them, I would still do OK with these. The cost ends up being a small mic you can plug into your computer. Remember, you don't need to tune to accuracy less than a cent. Concertina reeds often vary much more than that under changing playing pressure.
Dana

#31 Pete Dunk

Pete Dunk

    Heavyweight Boxer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1844 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Kent, UK

Posted 02 August 2007 - 05:02 PM

I've downloaded the software Dana and it looks quite good. Sadly the tiny room with the computers are in isn't suitable for turning into a semi-workshop so I really need something portable so that it can set it up in the kitchen where there's a lot more room. I have other instruments like a hammered dulcimer that my guitar tuner struggles with so a decent tuner wouldn't be wasted in any event, I just wanted to avoid unnecessary expense by going too far over the top.

The alternative of course would be to buy a laptop and run the free software on there, but that would cost more than the bench top strobe tuner!

Ken, we call them 'hams' here too. :D I live out in the country so I wouldn't know where to find an amateur radio swap-meet even if we have such things in the UK. Come to think of it I'd be a bit frightened of a roomful of radio geeks... :o

#32 Ironframe

Ironframe

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 31 posts
  • Location:Yorkshire

Posted 03 August 2007 - 10:38 AM

Tallship wrote:

Ken, we call them 'hams' here too. :D I live out in the country so I wouldn't know where to find an amateur radio swap-meet even if we have such things in the UK. Come to think of it I'd be a bit frightened of a roomful of radio geeks... :o

You BET we have 'swap meets' in the UK - called Radio Rallies. See here; http://www.r-clarke.org.uk/rally_dates.htm and for the details about Radio Hams (but no real explanation as to why HAM, look here; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amateur_radio. (I don't care for using Wiki as it's entirely volunteer appended info and liable to be corrupted by anyone or biased by the writer to show a particular slant if he/she so chooses, but there it is - a reference..]

Experienced rumour has it that it's no more scary than a room full of 'tina geeks - Touché!

Foxy




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users