My electric guitar sounds out of tune when I play it up the neck!
- Article #1720724
- Updated on Oct 1, 2013 at 4:11 PM
If your electric guitar sound out of tune as you play up the neck, your intonation may need adjusting. To do so, follow these steps:
- Hold the guitar in playing position. Then, using a quality tuner, tune all the strings. Make sure to take your time and get it as precise as possible to obtain the best results.
- Once your guitar is in tune, we can begin the intonation process. Starting with the lowest string, play the string with a pick and make sure it is in tune. Then, play the harmonic at the 12th fret and make sure that it is in tune. We tune the harmonic at the 12th fret to ensure that the string is precisely in tune.
- Next, fret the string at the 12th fret and tune that. If the note is flat, you’ll need to adjust your saddle so that it moves toward the pickups. An easy way to remember this is Flat = Forward. If the note is sharp, adjust the saddle so that it moves away from the pickups.
- Repeat steps 2 – 3 for all the strings.
- Once you’re done, it might be a good idea to check the octaves on the lower frets. While it’s OK to use a tuner for this step, it’s a good idea to do this with your ears as well. Your ear will be able to hear whether the intonation sounds off or not.
Note: This procedure is for electric guitars. The intonation on your acoustic guitar cannot be set.