So you still want to learn more about the process?



The Pattern

The basic pattern for tuning a temperament is as follows, including the test notes and beat per minute for the faster beating intervals.

  1. Key 49 A440 using F21, down 2 octaves and a Major 3rd, listen to the coincident partials between your reference pitch(A440 Tuning Fork) & F21 matching A49 to the beating you hear with the fork. This sets A49 to the correct pitch.
  2. A37 using F21 as your check. Match the beating to A49. Playing F21+A37 should beat the same as F21+A49.
  3. F33 using A37 as your reference. Make the coincident partial beat ~7 b.p.s.
  4. F45 using C#29 (10th) matching b.p.s. to C#29+F33, I call this a 3rd,10th check and it is a good way to check octave intervals
  5. C#41 using A37 as your reference. ~9 b.p.s., check against C#41+F45 ~11 b.p.s.
  6. D42 to F33 ~ 7.5 b.p.s. (check= A37+D42(4th))
  7. A#38 to D42 ~8.5 b.p.s. (check = A37+C#41(slightly faster than A#38+D42), F33+A#38(4th),A#38+F45(5th))
  8. F#34 to A#38 ~7.5 b.p.s. notice that step 6 uses the same b.p.s. rate. This interval can be used as a guide for the speed or the beats per second.
  9. D#43 to F#34(6th) ~8.0 b.p.s. (Use A#(4th) as a test)
  10. B39 to D#43(3rd) ~8.5 b.p.s. (Use F#34(4th) as a test)
  11. G35 to B39(3rd) ~8.0 b.p.s. (Use D42(5th) as a test)
  12. E44 to G35(6th) ~ 9.0 b.p.s. (Use A37(5th) as a test)
  13. C40 to E44(3rd) ~10.5 b.p.s. (Tests, F33(5th), F45(4th), G35(4th))
  14. G#36 to C40(3rd) ~10 b.p.s. (Tests, D#43(4th), F45(6th))

You now have tuned the temperament. There are many variations of this process, but this is a great place to begin as you will be listening to fast beating intervals(3rds & 6ths) which are easier to hear and produce more pleasant and consistent results.

How long should the process take?

This is entirely dependant on your skill and ability to set the pitches and not have them shift after you have set them where you want. As an experienced technician, I can set my temperament in about 5 minute whether I mute the temperament section or not.

Aural Tuning Part 4