1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Pattern for Natural Harmonics

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by DoobieDoober, Feb 14, 2014.

  1. DoobieDoober


    Nov 19, 2013
    I know what harmonics are, I know how to get them. I know natural harmonics and artificial harmonics. What I want to know is if there is some pattern for getting natural harmonics, right now it just seems like they're spread randomly around the fretboard.
  2. Sgroh87


    Dec 4, 2012
    DFW, Texas
    Divide the string length in half and get the first harmonic (octave). Divide the string by three and get the second harmonic (octave and fifth). Divide it four and get the third harmonic (two octaves). The pattern is 1/X divisions of the string gives you gives you the X-1 harmonic. Once you learn the harmonic sequence you'll be able to find them all.
  3. jefkritz


    Oct 20, 2007
    iowa city, IA
    divide the string into 2. there's a harmonic there.
    divide the string into 3. there's a harmonic there.
    divide the string into 4... and so and and so forth.
    roughly speaking, harmonics work because you're hitting the string at a certain fractional place and cancel out all of the harmonics that resonate with a wavelength that doesn't line up with the fraction of the string you're using.
  4. Gries Amps

    Gries Amps Commercial User

    May 14, 2008
    Mattapoisett, MA
    Owner, Gries Amplification
  5. Clef_de_fa


    Dec 25, 2011
    Check Pythagoras he found out that dividing the lengh of a string by 2/3 you have the 5th and so on so long ago that guy was a genius.
  6. Stick_Player

    Stick_Player Banned

    Nov 13, 2009
    Somewhere on the Alaska Panhandle (Juneau)
    Endorser: Plants vs. Zombies Pea Shooters
    'tis easy...


    1/1 = open string - Fundamental
    1/2 = at the 12th fret (for fretted instruments) - Octave
    1/3 - Octave + Perfect Fifth
    1/4 - two Octaves
    1/5 - two Octaves + Major Third
    1/6 - two Octaves + Perfect Fifth
    1/7 - two Octaves + Minor Seventh
    1/8 - three Octaves
    1/9 - three Octaves + Major Second
    1/10 - three Octaves + Major Third
    1/11 - three Octaves + Augmented Fourth
    1/12 - three Octaves + Perfect Fifth
    1/13 - three Octaves + Major Sixth
    1/14 - three Octaves + Minor Seventh

    on and on...

    The Fundamental through the 14th harmonic (fundamental being the 1st), gives you a Dominant 13 +11 chord.

    Ex.: Using the Open G-String, the harmonics ascend (see above list):

    G, G, D, G, B, D, F, G, A, B, C#, D, E, F

    All the notes found in a G13(+11).
  7. DoobieDoober


    Nov 19, 2013
    Thanks guys, I understand the whole fraction thing now. It'll still take some time to learn all the notes though.
  8. lasdisc


    Jan 18, 2014
    Harmonic fractions
  9. lasdisc


    Jan 18, 2014
    In plain simple English for the ultimate laymen! What do you guys mean when you refer to harmonic fractions? What on earth does that mean😳 Thnx