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hertz question.

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by soundoholic, Jul 13, 2003.


  1. Very stupid question but I do not know.

    How much is a half step in hertz?
     
  2. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    hertz? cents? not that stupid of a question..I don't know either.

    I THINK a half step is around 40-50 cents, but I don't know how that translates to hertz :confused:
     
  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    A halftone is 100 cent.

    There can't be a fixed hertz value for a halftone.

    Here's why:

    A octave up means double frequency.
    For example, when low E is 81 Hertz, then the octave is 162 Hertz.
    So the halftone frequency difference between the low E and F is 6.75 Hz (81/12).

    Now in the next octave (E 162 and E 324 Hz) the difference between E and F is 13.5 Hz (162/12).
     
  4. ok. so this why I really want to know.

    I have to tune to 432hz(I use a needle tuner) and there are some tuners that have modes that make every note flat by a half step. (ie korg 2000 or boss tu-2) so I thought I could use that and possibly set the calibration up only by 2 hz. Would this work?
    with this idea a half step would equal ten hertz.

    is this correct? any help please.
     
  5. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    OK, this means you calibrate a to 432 Hz instead of the international standard of 440 Hz.

    You need to find a tuner with a calibration range that wide or a Hz tuning mode like Korg DT3.
    My Korg AT-2 only goes down to 438.
     
  6. I don't calibrate to 432 but my needle tuner can read down to 430 or up to 450.

    I just want a rack tuner....:bawl:

    I really wonder if a korg 2000 would do the trick by using it's cromatic mode and calibrating it up to whatever I would have to but I would read the tuner like I was tuning to a half step flat. Does this make sense? I wish I could just get hold of one.
     
  7. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    You should be able to calibrate the tuner to 432 and then tune as usual. Check the manual.

    Usally just press the CALIB button until a LED lights up over or under the right number (432).

    Then tune as usual (needle to the center).
     
  8. The korg website says: Adjustable calibration of 438–445 Hz. (Select either manual or auto)

    Maybe in auto mode it can go farther down. I don't know. I'm just gonna quit the band and join one that tunes like rest of the frickn world.
     
  9. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    How does your band do it?
    Just make your guitarist or keyboarder record a reference tone for you (best record on computer and burn on CD, audio tape isn't pitch accurate).
     
  10. we all use boss tu12h I believe. they are hand held and have needles that will register down to 430. I might just find a way to mount mine to my rack.
     
  11. we all use boss tu12h I believe. they are hand held and have needles that will register down to 430. I might just find a way to mount mine to my rack.

    Thanks for the help though.
     
  12. ConU

    ConU

    Mar 5, 2003
    La Belle Province
    Hmmnnn....I believe fundamental low E on a bass guitar is around 41Hz,no?
     
  13. moley

    moley

    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    A semitone is not a constant number of hertz. We're working with a geometric progression here, not arithmetic. Meaning, to get to the next note, you don't add, you multiply. The difference, in hertz, between say C1 and C#1 is less than the difference in hertz between C2 and C#2.

    Just remember, an octave higher represents a double in frequency. So, A=440Hz, and the next A higher is 880Hz. Whereas the A below is 220Hz. You see? The the difference between the lower two As is 220Hz, whereas the difference between the higher two As is 440Hz. Yet, it's the same interval...

    So, if you've got a frequency, and you want to work out the frequency of the note a semitone (half-step) higher, you have to multiply by the 12th root of 2, (or, 2 to the power 1/12), which (if I've done my calculation right) is 1.05946 (to 5dp - it's actually a surd).

    So, if A=440Hz, then Bb=466.16376, etc. But the steps between the notes are ever increasing, even though we always perceive it as the same interval.

    Does that make sense?
     
  14. moley

    moley

    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Low E on a bass, yes. JMX might not necessarily have been talking about that in particular.
     
  15. wulf

    wulf

    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    432Hz...

    :confused: Why???

    If you're working with an instrument that can't be tuned into standard pitch then tune by ear, using that instrument as a reference.

    Wulf
     
  16. Because I've been in the band for one year and they have been together for 14 years. I believe they have been tuning this way for that long too.

    I think it is pretty unproffesional to be tuning by ear on stage durring a performance so I do use a hand held tuner that can be read down to 430, I was just trying to get one that would go in my rack. But it looks like I'll just have to keep it like it is.
     
  17. wulf

    wulf

    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    How do the rest of the band tune up? Tuning to A=432Hz seems pretty esoteric to me, so presumably they must have gone there as an intentional choice and spent some time working on getting the whole tuning business together.

    Wulf
     
  18. moley

    moley

    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Seems like a wierd thing to do. Why 432? Just a random number or what? :D

    Wouldn't you rather tune to 440 and leave yourselves the possibility of playing with someone else on the planet? :D j/k

    Or maybe that's the ploy... if someone sits in, they'll be way sharp and sound awful :D
     
  19. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Oops, you're right - I somehow picked the wrong frequency.

    But that doesn't affect the validity of my post really.