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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, on most notes if I try to match a pitch with my sax from the piano, the tuner will tell me that I'm correct within a few cents. On the low notes, Bb to Eb, something different happens. I swear I'm matching the note but the tuner tells me otherwise. Can the tuner (or maybe me) be misinterpreting the low sax pitch? It seems to me that the tuner should pick up the fundamental pitch, but maybe it doesn't. Maybe I pick up on the fundamental pitch and the tuner does some kind of average with all the overtones. Anybody have a answer? Thanks.

BTW, the tuner always says I'm way too low, and when I lip up the pitch it sounds to me like I'm playing a bit high.
 

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I've had the same problem with compact and credit card tuners folks bring to gigs and rehearsals on both the low and high end.
At home I have a clunky old Korg select a range (low, med, high) and dial a note needle pointer tuner which is very accurate from clarinet to Bari. I just think that the inexpensive compact tuners are limited in sensitivity and mainly work well for guitar and mid range for wind instruments. Good for tuning up, maybe, but limited for serious intonation work.
 

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Many people play their low notes flat. I dont think the frequency of a low Bb is so low that a tuner would have difficulty picking it up. Maybe the extreme vibration(on your teeth) of the low notes effects your perception of all the overtones? Or the tuner's broke . . .
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
My tuner works well with the electric piano. It's right on. But the electric piano does not have the rich overtones of a low sax (alto in my case) note. Take the extreme example of the washtub bass. It sounds like it more or less has a fundamental pitch, but if you play a chord to a note on the tub, the ear tends to pick up the overtones it wants to hear and just about any washtub note works.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
When you play a middle D (octave key) is it sharp, but when you play a low D it's flat?
My middle D is perfect. My high notes tend to be sharp, but I'm relaxing the embuchure more and getting good pitch. I know low notes on the sax are typically flat, but I have a disagreement with my tuner on the extent of this tendency.

I've decided to do my long tone / intonation exercise daily for the rest of my life. It will be interesting to see where I am a year from now.
 

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My middle D is perfect. My high notes tend to be sharp, but I'm relaxing the embuchure more and getting good pitch. I know low notes on the sax are typically flat, but I have a disagreement with my tuner on the extent of this tendency.

I've decided to do my long tone / intonation exercise daily for the rest of my life. It will be interesting to see where I am a year from now.
Push in push in push in.

Tune your sax using low B on the tuner if it's a tenor.

Your pitch level is in the wrong place.

Contrary to what you may have heard the sax is made with pretty good intonation.

The high tones are way more flexible than the lows.

So you are bending the highs in tune and are naturally having a problem bending the lows.

It's not you and no long tones won't help.

Check this out.

http://www.steveduke.net/pdf/steve_duke_mouthpiece_placement.pdf
 
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