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#1165161 - 03/19/09 08:52 AM Electronic computer piano tuner  
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 383
eightyeight_keys Offline
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eightyeight_keys  Offline
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Melbourne, Australia
My technician tuned my RX2 today and did the new piano set up with very good results. It is brighter, sounds louder, clearer, more sustain and the bass is improved.

He tuned the piano using a PDA handheld computer with a touch screen and software. This great little device provided a handy visual aid to the tuning. It also provided information as to the level of each of the harmonic series (16?) and the partial of the offending notes that I have in my bass area of the RX2. He was able to see the actual partials and voice them out. However, the voicing out was roughly about 80%, so if the note is played soft there is no "ringing" but a loud push of the key still produced the offending upper harmonic.

Anyway, my point here is can anyone help me to find out where I can buy one of these devices? This device/software can show if a single string is in tune to A440, or whatever it is set to, and also it can tell us if a unison is in tune. It also has built in the ability to do octave stretching. Very handy! Its just nice to have a visual aid - I was most impressed! My tech did not volunteer any information - I got the sense that I should not ask - like it was his secret thing..? I am a hobby tuner, having done a tuning course several years ago by correspondence, and in need to learn more. I am still very interested in this field.

Can anyone help me with information about this piano tuning program and devices for tuning electronically?

Thank you!


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#1165173 - 03/19/09 09:16 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: eightyeight_keys]  
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RonTuner Online content
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If you got a look at it, see if it is one of these - all run on a pocket pc... there are screenshots on the websites.

Tunelab Pro (www.tunelab-world.com) ?
Reyburn Cyber Tuner (www.reyburn.com) ?
Verituner (www.veritune.com)

Ron Koval

#1166234 - 03/21/09 05:25 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: RonTuner]  
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pno Offline
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♪oron♪o, on♪ario, canada...
Is there a good one that runs on a Mac instead? I don't have a Pocket PC. I want one not for doing tuning but for checking when it's necessary to get tuning and do some harmonic analysis of my piano.


♫♫♫ ♫♫♫
YAMAHA C2M PE
#1166257 - 03/21/09 07:54 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: pno]  
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David Jenson Offline
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David Jenson  Offline
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Originally Posted by PNO
Is there a good one that runs on a Mac instead?


Click on Ron's links one by one and read the first page. You'll get your answer. Be prepared to shell out big bucks!


David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
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#1166277 - 03/21/09 09:46 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: David Jenson]  
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cps Offline
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The computer between your ears will tell you when the piano needs a tuning. And do you really want to go into a "harmonic analysis" of your piano?

Greg


Yamaha accredited tech (Japan & Australia)
Technician for www.loganspianos.com.au
#1166313 - 03/21/09 11:09 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: cps]  
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Ron Alexander Offline
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Just curious, but what do you expect to accomplish with a "harmonic analysis" of your piano?

If your ear cannot tell you when your piano needs tuning, it sounds like you may be wasting money on an ETD.


-----------------
Ron Alexander
Piano Tuner-Technician
#1166355 - 03/21/09 12:46 PM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: Ron Alexander]  
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David Jenson Offline
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David Jenson  Offline
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Maine
Yea, I got a kick out of that "harmonic analysis" thing. Exactly what ... does that mean?

Never-the-less I'd just as soon see the ETD folks make a buck.

Since I use a Mac, maybe it'll end up on eBay in a few months and I'll get a crack at it for half price or less. See how devious I can be?


David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
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#1166403 - 03/21/09 02:00 PM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: David Jenson]  
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Ron Alexander Offline
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Ron Alexander  Offline
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HAHAHA Devious Dave!!!!


-----------------
Ron Alexander
Piano Tuner-Technician
#1166405 - 03/21/09 02:02 PM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: Ron Alexander]  
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Ron Alexander Offline
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Harmonic Analysis...isnt that something they do in California!!!! crazy


-----------------
Ron Alexander
Piano Tuner-Technician
#1166502 - 03/21/09 06:04 PM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: Ron Alexander]  
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BFlat Offline
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BFlat  Offline
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Pno,

If you are serious about studying "harmonic analysis" we recommend that:

(a) download a freeware copy of a good spectrum analysis software application from the Internet. This widely used research tool allow the user to analyze any acoustics waveform available at the computer's microphone input.

(b) Read the late John Backus' book “The Acoustical Foundations of Music” Second Edition, W.W. Norton and Company, New York, 1977. An outline of the book's introduction follows.


"Exploration of the relationship between science/mathematics and music has occupied many of the great minds of
history: Pythagoras, Aristotle, Ptolemy, Huyghens, Euler, Ohm, Young, Helmholtz, and many others.
• Since it is possible to examine music from a scientific perspective, it is valid to apply the process known as the
scientific method in the quantitative study of music and acoustics.
• Experimentation, and the subsequent interpretation of the results, can provide a set of laws and principles that can
explain physical behaviors. We must keep in mind, however, that any conclusions are open for skepticism and scrutiny,
for history has shown that the scientific truths of one generation may be refuted by the research of the next generation.
• “A more practical reason for the study of acoustics of music is to acquaint the musician with the basis of his craft, and
enable him to understand which physical things are important to it and which are not. He should know, for example,
that a rise in air temperature affects the intonation of the winds, and not of the strings.” (p. xiv)
• Simply put, the more you know about acoustics and the more you understand the physics of sound, the better
equipped you are to deal with any number of questions or situations that occur in the practice of musicmaking. The
practical value of this knowledge cannot be overstated, so long as the individual actively seeks to integrate the
information into action."

Both of the above recommendations will "co$t" you far less than the price of many electronic tuning devices.

If, as a result of your studies, you develop a new or unique tuning temperament, let us know. Rarely does the musician (JS Bach excepted) advance the science of sound. That task is usually left to the scientist, the researcher or the tinkerer.

Good Luck!

Notes on Mr Backus' book is available at this link.
http://emu.music.ufl.edu/downloads/backus-intro-thru-3.pdf

Bflat

Last edited by BFlat; 03/21/09 06:20 PM.
#1166544 - 03/21/09 08:03 PM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: BFlat]  
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pno Offline
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♪oron♪o, on♪ario, canada...
Hey, Thanks everyone!

Thank you, Bflat! You saved me so much money!! laugh I am a "geek" type of person. I like to know why and how, instead of blindly trusting a tech. But don't count on me inventing another unique tuning method. LOL...


♫♫♫ ♫♫♫
YAMAHA C2M PE
#1166552 - 03/21/09 08:26 PM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: pno]  
Joined: May 2004
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Keith Roberts Offline
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Keith Roberts  Offline
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Murphys, Ca
But he didn't save you any time. It will still take about 100 tunings before you get good enough to make the tuning hammer perform for you. The ETD will only tell you that the string is not at the pitch you thought you left it. By then, if you are doing all 100 tunings on one piano, over the course of a year, all the pins will be so loose they won't stay anyway and you will get experience with tuning pin tightner.

Just having the harmonic analysis and knowing that the unison is out of tune doesn't mean yo can put it there. Not without practice. (lots of it)

Sure, it doesn't seem like it would be hard, does it?


Keith Roberts
Keith's Piano Service
Hathaway Pines,Ca
#1166578 - 03/21/09 09:31 PM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: Keith Roberts]  
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pno Offline
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♪oron♪o, on♪ario, canada...
Keith,

I am not going to tune my piano. In fact, I am not interested in tuning any piano. 250 strings. I don't have the patient like you guys. laugh

But I like to know if any note is on pitch or by how much it's out of tune without the hassle of counting beats. I also want to know what partials distribution each note has to understand what would contribute to my ideal sound on a scientific basis.

I will still get a tech to do the "dirty" work. wink


♫♫♫ ♫♫♫
YAMAHA C2M PE
#1166640 - 03/22/09 12:22 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: pno]  
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RonTuner Online content
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RonTuner  Online Content
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Chicagoland
Ok, you are wanting to document change... with a Mac.

There are cheap or free downloads - search under "chromatic tuners" Look at them all to see which ones will display the amount flat or sharp from standard pitch. Your piano will NOT be tuned to a standard mathematical pitch. BUT you can write down what the chromatic tuners reads soon after a fresh tuning to use for your master reference. While it may not be precise enough to tune by, it will be plently for what you are looking for. Add a good hygrometer, and you can watch the effect of humidity on different parts of the scale...

enjoy!

Ron Koval

#1166663 - 03/22/09 01:24 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: RonTuner]  
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daniokeeper Offline
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Quote
Is there a good one that runs on a Mac instead? I don't have a Pocket PC. I want one not for doing tuning but for checking when it's necessary to get tuning and do some harmonic analysis of my piano.


I don't know Macs, but I've had luck running some Windows apps under Linux with
Codeweavers which is available for a fee. There's also WINE (Wine Is Not an Emulator) which is free and also available for Mac. This might broaden your choices. If you want Windows software, you could inqire as to whether the vendor has a trial version and see if it runs on your Mac under one of these "non-emulators." smile


Joe Gumbosky
Piano Tuning & Repair
www.morethanpianos.com
(semi-retired)
#1166696 - 03/22/09 05:14 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: daniokeeper]  
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David Jenson Offline
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David Jenson  Offline
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Maine
Originally Posted by joe Grumbosky
There's also WINE (Wine Is Not an Emulator) which is free and also available for Mac.


It's available for Intel Macs, but the older Power PC chips (G3/G4/G5) machines will turn up their noses.

'Much better to just buy a cheap window box if you need to use Windows applications. (In that statement, I'm not being devious. See a former post in this thread where I was maliciously assigned the moniker "Devious Dave" laugh )

Originally Posted by Ron Alexander
Harmonic Analysis...isn't that something they do in California!!!!


Ron, I have a sister who lives in CA. She says they do a LOT of things in CA! I'll ask her if analysis of any kind is one of them.

Last edited by David Jenson; 03/22/09 05:23 AM. Reason: added much more humor!

David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
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#1167154 - 03/23/09 07:35 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: David Jenson]  
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UnrightTooner Offline
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Bradford County, PA
Pno:

Best of luck on your endeavor. I do not think the final word on tuning and scale design have been written. Inharmonicity “curves” are ideally straight lines on log-log paper, but is that really ideal? I would like to see tuning and scaling work hand in hand for a better sounding instrument. But then I think the “sense of pitch” from a note is important, not just the beats…

As far as a machine telling you if your piano is in tune, well, except for tuners that do not measure iH, (and I suppose Mr. Stopper’s) they all have options for stretch. So, “in tune” is a preference not a reference.


Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?
#1169528 - 03/27/09 12:25 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: UnrightTooner]  
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danielmc351 Offline
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http://www.netcat.li/instrument-tuner/

I've had a play with this software, seems to have all the bells an whistles, but took me a while to get the hang of it, as the documention is pretty ordinary. Free to download, 30 day demo.

I did however feel bad for my 1920's Challen Baby Grand being subjected to this clinical cutting edge software.

Was fun thou.

#1169684 - 03/27/09 10:52 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: danielmc351]  
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pno Offline
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♪oron♪o, on♪ario, canada...
Yes. I found a lot of FREE (or near free, 10 bucks) software online too. No need to pay $1000 when you can have it free!

For Mac:

Tuner:

http://www.katsurashareware.com/store.html

Audio spectrum analyzer:

http://dogparksoftware.com/iSpectrum.html

I am sure there are plenty of other free options available!


♫♫♫ ♫♫♫
YAMAHA C2M PE
#1169727 - 03/27/09 11:57 AM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: pno]  
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UnrightTooner Offline
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This reminds me of the old joke about the Atlas body building program. A teenage boy would save up his money from the newpaper route to make payments on a set of body building weights. Sooner or later the teen would be asked when Atlas would send him the muscles!

Microsoft Word does not make anyone a writer. Would ETD software make anyone a tuner?


Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?
#1169766 - 03/27/09 01:15 PM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: UnrightTooner]  
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pno Offline
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♪oron♪o, on♪ario, canada...
Originally Posted by UnrightTooner
Would ETD software make anyone a tuner?


No. But a ETD would make a perfect "tuning examiner". :P Shhh... Don't let the tuners know!


♫♫♫ ♫♫♫
YAMAHA C2M PE
#1169794 - 03/27/09 02:08 PM Re: Electronic computer piano tuner [Re: pno]  
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UnrightTooner Offline
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You are probably right. You can cuss it out without any consequences!


Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?

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