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Encyclopedia > Stringed Instruments Tunings

A list of tunings for stringed musical instruments from around the world. Strings or courses are generally listed from low to high pitch. Octaves, where shown, are given in scientific pitch notation, where the A above middle C is shown as "A4." The strings of a harp A string is the vibrating element which is the source of vibration in string instruments, such as the guitar, harp, piano, and members of the violin family. ... A course is a pair of adjacent strings tuned to unison or an octave and usually plucked together as if a single string, in musical instruments such as the lute, vihuela or mandolin. ... Pitch is the perceived fundamental frequency of a sound. ... This article or section may be confusing for some readers, and should be edited to be clearer or more simplified. ... In Western music, the expression middle C refers to the note C or Do located exactly between the two staves of the grand staff, quoted as C4 in note-octave notation (also known as scientific pitch notation). ...


Multiple-string courses (i.e., paired or tripled strings) are shown with the strings inside parentheses; e.g., (E2 E3).

Contents

A

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Andylin (F F) (C C) (G G) (C C) 8 strings/4 courses Andy Irvine Pitched between a mandolin

and mandola Andy Irvine (born 14 June 1942) is an Irish folk musician, singer, and songwriter, and a founding member of the popular band Planxty. ...

Archlute (F F) (G G) (A A) (B B) (C C) (D D) EFGCFADG 20 strings/14 courses The first 6 courses are double

strung with unison pairs An Archlute by Matteo Sellas, Venice, 17th century The archlute (Italian arciliuto, German Erzlaute, Russian Архилютня) a European plucked string instrument was developed around 1600 as a compromise between the very large theorbo, the size and re-entrant tuning of which made for difficuties in the performance of solo music, and...

B

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Baglama (Greek) (D D) (A A) (D D) 6 strings/3 courses Greece Modal D standard tuning
Bajo quinto (A A) (D D) (G G) (C C) (F F) 10 strings/5 courses Mexico Standard tuning.
Bajo Sexto (E E) (A A) (D D) (G G) (C C) (F F) 12 strings/6 courses Mexico Standard tuning
Balalaika E E A 3 strings/3 courses Russia Standard alto tuning
Balalaika E A D 3 strings/3 courses Russia Standard bass tuning
Balalaika E A D 3 strings/3 courses Russia Standard contrabass tuning
Balalaika E E A 3 strings/3 courses Russia Standard piccolo tuning
Balalaika E E A 3 strings/3 courses Russia Standard prima tuning
Bandola (F# F#) (B B) (E E) (A A) (D D) (G G) 12 strings/6 courses Colombia Standard tuning
Bandurria (G# G#) (C# C#) (F# F#) (B B) (E E) (A A) 12 strings/6 courses Spain Standard tuning. One octave higher

than the laud. A bajo sexto (Spanish: lower sixth) is a type of 12 string guitar used in Mexican music. ... Balalaika The balalaika (Russian: балала́йка; IPA ) is a stringed instrument of Russian origin, with a characteristic triangular body and 3 strings (or sometimes 6, in pairs). ... Balalaika The balalaika (Russian: балала́йка; IPA ) is a stringed instrument of Russian origin, with a characteristic triangular body and 3 strings (or sometimes 6, in pairs). ... Balalaika The balalaika (Russian: балала́йка; IPA ) is a stringed instrument of Russian origin, with a characteristic triangular body and 3 strings (or sometimes 6, in pairs). ... Balalaika The balalaika (Russian: балала́йка; IPA ) is a stringed instrument of Russian origin, with a characteristic triangular body and 3 strings (or sometimes 6, in pairs). ... Balalaika The balalaika (Russian: балала́йка; IPA ) is a stringed instrument of Russian origin, with a characteristic triangular body and 3 strings (or sometimes 6, in pairs). ... The Bandola is a small pear-shape chordophone found in Venezuela and Colombia. ... The bandurria is a plectrum plucked chordophone from Spain, similar to the cittern, primarily used in Spanish folk music. ...

Banjo (tenor) C G D A 4 strings/4 courses USA via Africa Standard tenor jazz tuning
Banjo (tenor) G D A E 4 strings/4 courses USA via Africa Irish tenor tuning
Banjo (5-string) G D G B D 5 strings/5 courses USA via Africa Open G tuning
Banjo (5-string) G C G B D 5 strings/5 courses C tuning
Banjo (plectrum) C G B D 4 strings/4 courses USA via Africa Standard plectrum tuning
Bass guitar E1 A1 D2 G2 4 strings/4 courses Bass, electric bass Standard 4-string tuning

For other uses, see Banjo (disambiguation) A modern 5-string banjo The banjo is a stringed instrument of African American origin adapted from several African instruments. ... For other uses, see Banjo (disambiguation) A modern 5-string banjo The banjo is a stringed instrument of African American origin adapted from several African instruments. ... For other uses, see Banjo (disambiguation) A modern 5-string banjo The banjo is a stringed instrument of African American origin adapted from several African instruments. ... For other uses, see Banjo (disambiguation) A modern 5-string banjo The banjo is a stringed instrument of African American origin adapted from several African instruments. ... For other uses, see Banjo (disambiguation) A modern 5-string banjo The banjo is a stringed instrument of African American origin adapted from several African instruments. ... The electric bass guitar (or electric bass) is a string instrument played with the fingers by plucking, slapping, or using a pick. ...

C

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Cavaquinho D G B D 4 strings/4 courses Cavaco Brazil Standard tuning
Cavaquinho D G B E 4 strings/4 courses Cavaco Brazil 'Guitar' tuning
Cavaquinho G G B D 4 strings/4 courses Cavaco Brazil Alternative tuning
Cavaquinho A A C# E 4 strings/4 courses Cavaco Brazil Alternative tuning
Cello C2 G2 D3 A3 4 strings/4 courses Violoncello Europe Standard tuning
Charango G C E A E 10 strings/5 courses Quirquincho Bolivia, Peru, Argentina

Chile, Ecuador The cavaquinho is a small string instrument (like the ukulele) of the European guitar family with four wires or gut strings. ... The cavaquinho is a small string instrument (like the ukulele) of the European guitar family with four wires or gut strings. ... The cavaquinho is a small string instrument (like the ukulele) of the European guitar family with four wires or gut strings. ... The cavaquinho is a small string instrument (like the ukulele) of the European guitar family with four wires or gut strings. ... The violoncello, almost always abbreviated to cello, or cello (the c is pronounced as the ch in cheese), is a bowed stringed instrument, the lowest-sounding member of the violin family. ... Visit the Guitar Portal A Bolivian charango This article is about an instrument. ...

Standard C6 tuning
Charangon C F A D A 10 strings/5 courses Baritone Charango Andean Region F6 tuning
Charangon D G B E B 10 strings/5 courses Baritone Charango Andean Region G6 tuning
Cuatro (B B) (E E) (A A) (D D) (G G) (Puerto Rican) 10 strings/5 courses Puerto Rico Standard tuning
Cuatro A D F# B (Venezuelan) 4 strings/4 courses Venezuela Standard D6 tuning
Cümbüş (A A) (B B) (E E) (A A) (D D) (G G) 12 strings/6 courses Turkey Standard tuning
Cümbüş (D D) (E E) (A A) (D D) (G G) (C C) 12 strings/6 courses Turkey Alternative standard tuning
Cümbüş (D D) (G G) (A A) (D D) (G G) (C C) 12 strings/6 courses Turkey Egyptian/Arab tuning
Cümbüş (E E) (A A) (B B) (E E) (A A) (D D) 12 strings/6 courses Turkey Turkish/Armenian tuning
Cümbüş (C# C#) (F# F#) (B B) (E E) (A A) (D D) 12 strings/6 courses Turkey Turkish Armenian alternative tuning
Cümbüş (F# F#) (B B) (E E) (A A) (D D) (G G) 12 strings/6 courses Turkey New Turkish classical tuning
Cümbüş (A A) (D D) (E E) (A A) (D D) (G G) 12 strings/6 courses Turkey Old Turkish classical tuning
Cura cümbüş (G G) (D D) (A A) (E E) 8 strings/4 courses Turkey Standard mandolin-style tuning
Tambor cümbüş (D D) (A A) (D D) 6 strings/3 courses Turkey Standard tambor cümbüş tuning

The Charangon is a small lute-like fretted stringed instrument, of the charango family. ... The Charangon is a small lute-like fretted stringed instrument, of the charango family. ... The name cuatro can refer to any of several Latin American instruments of the guitar or lute family. ... The name cuatro can refer to any of several Latin American instruments of the guitar or lute family. ... Standard Cümbüş The cümbüş (IPA: , sometimes approximated as by English speakers) is a Turkish stringed instrument of relatively modern origin. ... Standard Cümbüş The cümbüş (IPA: , sometimes approximated as by English speakers) is a Turkish stringed instrument of relatively modern origin. ... Standard Cümbüş The cümbüş (IPA: , sometimes approximated as by English speakers) is a Turkish stringed instrument of relatively modern origin. ... Standard Cümbüş The cümbüş (IPA: , sometimes approximated as by English speakers) is a Turkish stringed instrument of relatively modern origin. ... Standard Cümbüş The cümbüş (IPA: , sometimes approximated as by English speakers) is a Turkish stringed instrument of relatively modern origin. ... Standard Cümbüş The cümbüş (IPA: , sometimes approximated as by English speakers) is a Turkish stringed instrument of relatively modern origin. ... Standard Cümbüş The cümbüş (IPA: , sometimes approximated as by English speakers) is a Turkish stringed instrument of relatively modern origin. ... Standard Cümbüş The cümbüş (IPA: , sometimes approximated as by English speakers) is a Turkish stringed instrument of relatively modern origin. ... Standard Cümbüş The cümbüş (IPA: , sometimes approximated as by English speakers) is a Turkish stringed instrument of relatively modern origin. ...

D

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Double bass E1 A1 D2 G2 4 strings/4 courses Bass, bass fiddle, contrabass, string bass, standup bass, doghouse bass Orchestral tuning
Double bass F#1 B1 E2 A2 4 strings/4 courses Bass (as above) Solo tuning
Drumtar EADGBE 6 strings/6 courses Standard tuning
Dulcimer D3 A3 (D4 D4) Generally 4 strings/3 courses Mountain, Appalachian or lap

dulcimer Side and front views of a modern double bass with a French bow. ... Side and front views of a modern double bass with a French bow. ... The drumtar, not to be confused with the drumitar, is a plucked stringed instrument created from a snare drum. ... Dulcimer is the name given to two types of stringed musical instrument: The Appalachian dulcimer, a three-course, fretted, plucked instrument which is also referred to as a mountain dulcimer or just a dulcimer, and The Hammered dulcimer, which is a hammer-struck, trapezoid-shaped zither The instruments are quite...

United States Standard Mixolydian tuning. The dulcimer

is generally diatonic. The melody strings are generally paired and sit nearest to the player's body.

F

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Fiddle G3 D4 A4 E5 4 Strings/4 courses Violin Standard tuning
Fiddle F3 C4 G4 F5 4 Strings/4 courses Cajun tuning
Fiddle G3 D4 G4 B4 4 Strings/4 courses Open G tuning
Fiddle G3 D4 G4 D5 4 Strings/4 courses Sawmill tuning
Fiddle G3 D4 A4 D5 4 Strings/4 courses "Gee-dad"
Fiddle D3 D4 A4 D5 4 Strings/4 courses Open D tuning
Fiddle A3 D4 A4 E5 4 Strings/4 courses Old-timey D tuning
Fiddle A3 E4 A4 E5 4 Strings/4 courses High bass, high counter
Fiddle A3 E4 A4 C#5 4 Strings/4 courses Black Mountain Rag tuning

The term fiddle refers to a violin when used in folk music. ... The violin is a bowed string instrument with four strings tuned in perfect fifths. ... The term fiddle refers to a violin when used in folk music. ... A scordatura (literally Italian for mistuning) is an alternate tuning used for the open strings of a string instrument. ... The term fiddle refers to a violin when used in folk music. ... A scordatura (literally Italian for mistuning) is an alternate tuning used for the open strings of a string instrument. ... The term fiddle refers to a violin when used in folk music. ... A scordatura (literally Italian for mistuning) is an alternate tuning used for the open strings of a string instrument. ... The term fiddle refers to a violin when used in folk music. ... A scordatura (literally Italian for mistuning) is an alternate tuning used for the open strings of a string instrument. ... The term fiddle refers to a violin when used in folk music. ... A scordatura (literally Italian for mistuning) is an alternate tuning used for the open strings of a string instrument. ... The term fiddle refers to a violin when used in folk music. ... A scordatura (literally Italian for mistuning) is an alternate tuning used for the open strings of a string instrument. ... The term fiddle refers to a violin when used in folk music. ... A scordatura (literally Italian for mistuning) is an alternate tuning used for the open strings of a string instrument. ... The term fiddle refers to a violin when used in folk music. ... A scordatura (literally Italian for mistuning) is an alternate tuning used for the open strings of a string instrument. ...

G

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Gadulka A3 E3 A4 3 strings/3 courses The Balkans 3 playing strings, with up to 10 sympathetic strings.
Guitar E2 A2 D3 G3 B3 E4 6 strings/6 courses Axe (colloquial) Standard tuning
Guitar D2 A2 D3 G3 A3 D4 6 strings/6 courses " DADGAD Dsus4 tuning
Guitar D2 A2 D3 G3 B3 D4 6 strings/6 courses " Double drop D tuning
Guitar D2 A2 D3 G3 B3 E4 6 strings/6 courses " Drop D tuning
Guitar E2 A2 E3 A3 C#3 E4 6 strings/6 courses " Open A major tuning
Guitar C2 G2 C3 G3 C3 E4 6 strings/6 courses " Open C major tuning
Guitar D2 A2 D3 F#3 A3 D4 6 strings/6 courses " Open D major tuning
Guitar E2 B2 E3 G#3 B3 E4 6 strings/6 courses " Open E major tuning
Guitar E2 B2 E3 G3 B3 E4 6 strings/6 courses " Open E minor tuning
Guitar D2 G2 D3 G3 B3 D4 6 strings/6 courses " Open G major tuning
Guitar D2 G2 D3 G3 Bb3 D4 6 strings/6 courses " Open G minor tuning
Guitar Banjo E2 A2 D3 G3 B3 E4 6 strings/6 courses Standard guitar tuning

Gadulka Tuning The Gadulka (Bulgarian: Гъдулка) is a folk Bulgarian string musical instrument played with a bow. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Sympathetic strings are strings on musical instruments which begin resonating, not due to any external influence such as picking or bowing, but due to another note (or frequency). ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ...

H

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Hualaycho See Walaycho

The walaycho, or hualaycho, is a small lute-like fretted stringed instrument, the smallest member of the charango family. ...

I

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes

J

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Jouhikko D A E 3 strings/3 courses Jouhikannel Finland Standard tuning

The jouhikko is an ancient, usually three-stringed Finnish bowed lyre, also called jouhikannel (see kantele). ...

K

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes

L

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Laud G# C# F# B E A 12 strings/6 courses Spanish laud Spain Standard tuning

Look up laud in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

M

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Mandobass E A D G 4 strings/4 courses Europe Standard tuning
Mandola (C3 C3) (G3 G3) (D4 D4) (A4 A4) 8 strings/4 courses Tenor mandola Europe Standard tuning. Pitched a 5th below mandolin tuning.
Known in Europe as the tenor mandola.
Mandocello (C2 C2) (G2 G2) (D3 D3) (A3 A3) 8 strings/4 courses Europe Standard tuning. Pitched an octave below the mandola.
Mandolin (G3 G3) (D4 D4) (A4 A4) (E5 E5) 8 strings/4 courses Mando (colloquial) Europe Standard tuning
Mandolin (Octave) (G2 G2) (D3 D3) (A3 A3) (E4 E4) 8 strings/4 courses Octave mandola Europe Standard tuning. Known in Europe as the octave mandola.
Pitched an octave below the mandolin.
Maulincho See Walaycho

mandola A mandola (US and Canada) or tenor mandola (Europe, Ireland, and UK) is a stringed musical instrument. ... The mandocello (sometimes spelled mandacello) is a musical instrument of the mandolin family. ... A mandolin is a small, stringed musical instrument which is plucked, strummed or a combination of both. ...

N

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes

O

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes

P-Q

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes

R

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Requinto A D G C E A 6 strings/6 courses Latin America Standard tuning
Ronroco (G G) (C C) (E E) (A A) (E E) 10 strings/5 courses Ronrroco Andean Region Standard C6 tuning (tuned an octave below the charango).

When applied to musical instruments, the term requinto is used in both Spanish and Portuguese to mean a smaller, higher-pitched version of another instrument. ... A small lute-like fretted stringed instrument, in the Charango family (see) charango. ... The Andean Region is one of the 10 adminsitrative regions in which Venezuela was divided for its development plans; the region is composed of the states of Táchira, Mérida, Trujillo, Barinas and the Páez Municipality of the state of Apure; the region is located straddling the Andes...

S

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes

T

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Tiple A D F# B 10 strings/4 courses Pronounced "tee-play" United States; CF Martin Standard Martin D6 tuning. The D and F# are triple-strung; the other strings are paired.
Tres G C E 6 strings/3 courses Tres Cubano, Cuban Tres Cuba Standard C major tuning
Tres A D F# 6 strings/3 courses Tres Cubano, Cuban Tres Cuba New D major tuning
Twelve string guitar (E2 E3) (A2 A3) (D3 D4) (G3 G3) (B3 B3) (E4 E4) 12 strings/6 courses Standard tuning

The Spanish word for treble or soprano, often applied to specific instruments. ... The Martin logo. ... The Tres is a 3 course chordophone which was created in Cuba. ... The Tres is a 3 course chordophone which was created in Cuba. ... The twelve string guitar is an acoustic or electric guitar with twelve strings, which produces a richer, more ringing tone than a standard six string guitar. ...

U-V

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Ukulele G C E A 4 strings/4 courses Uke (colloquial) Hawaii Standard C6 tuning for soprano, concert and tenor.
Ukulele A D F# B 4 strings/4 courses Uke (colloquial) Hawaii D6 tuning for soprano, concert and tenor.
Ukulele D G B E (Baritone) 4 strings/4 courses Baritone Uke (colloquial) Hawaii Standard Baritone Uke G6 tuning
Viol D G C E A D (Bass Viol) 6 Strings/6 courses Europe Bass Viol tuning
Viol A D G C E A D (Bass Viol) 7 Strings/7 courses Europe 7-String Bass Viol tuning
Viol G C F A D G (Tenor Viol) 6 Strings/6 courses Europe Tenor Viol tuning
Viola C3 G3 D4 A4 4 strings/4 courses Europe Standard tuning. Pitched a 5th below the violin.
Violin G3 D4 A4 E5 4 Strings/4 courses Fiddle (colloquial) Standard tuning
Violin F3 C4 G4 D5 4 Strings/4 courses Fiddle (colloquial) Cajun tuning to accompany accordion

The ukulele (Hawaiian: , IPA pronunciation: ; Anglicised pronunciation usually IPA: ), sometimes spelled ukelele (particularly in the UK) or uke, is a chordophone classified as a plucked lute; it is a subset of the guitar family of instruments, generally with four strings or four courses of strings. ... The ukulele (Hawaiian: , IPA pronunciation: ; Anglicised pronunciation usually IPA: ), sometimes spelled ukelele (particularly in the UK) or uke, is a chordophone classified as a plucked lute; it is a subset of the guitar family of instruments, generally with four strings or four courses of strings. ... The ukulele (Hawaiian: , IPA pronunciation: ; Anglicised pronunciation usually IPA: ), sometimes spelled ukelele (particularly in the UK) or uke, is a chordophone classified as a plucked lute; it is a subset of the guitar family of instruments, generally with four strings or four courses of strings. ... Various sizes of viol, from Michael Praetorius Syntagma musicum (1618) Early Italian tenor viola da gamba, detail from the painting , by Raphael Sanzio, c. ... Various sizes of viol, from Michael Praetorius Syntagma musicum (1618) Early Italian tenor viola da gamba, detail from the painting , by Raphael Sanzio, c. ... Various sizes of viol, from Michael Praetorius Syntagma musicum (1618) Early Italian tenor viola da gamba, detail from the painting , by Raphael Sanzio, c. ... The viola (French, alto; German Bratsche) is a bowed string instrument. ... The violin is a bowed string instrument with four strings tuned in perfect fifths. ... The violin is a bowed string instrument with four strings tuned in perfect fifths. ...

W-X

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes
Walaycho (C C) (F F) (A A) (D D) (A A) 10 strings/5 courses Waylacho, hualaycho, maulincho Andean region F6 tuning
Walaycho (D D) (G G) (B B) (E E) (B B) 10 strings/5 courses Waylacho, hualaycho, maulincho Andean region G6 tuning
Waldzither C G C E G 9 strings/5 courses Forest zither Germany Open C major standard tuning
Waldzither G D G B D 9 strings/5 courses Forest zither Germany Open G major tuning
Waldzither G D G B D 9 strings/5 courses Forest zither Germany Open G major standard tuning. Mandolin-sized waldzither.

A small lute-like fretted stringed instrument, the smallest member of the charango family. ... A small lute-like fretted stringed instrument, the smallest member of the charango family. ...

Y-Z

Instrument Tuning Strings & Courses Alternative Names Origin Notes

See also

Scale (string instruments) or "Scale length" In a string instrument, the scale length (often simply but confusingly called the scale) is the sounding length of the strings. ...


 
 

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