So, my singer hates Capo's and says they're lame and degrade the sound. Post your opinion! Lol

Discussion in 'General Music Discussion' started by Rev2010, May 8, 2021.

  1. spudmunkey

    spudmunkey SS.org Regular

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    Steve Vai's touring acoustic guitarist from a few years back wrote an entire album around some new things he was able to do with capos, without needing to completely re-tune and re-intonate multiple guitars. Using a capo SAVED him from having to re-intonate the strings all the time.
     
  2. Choop

    Choop n______n

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    Yeah, plenty of musicians use capos often -- it's really handy and more of a tool of practicality. Yvette uses them a lot since she plays in open tunings so it makes a lot of sense for her, but lots of singer songwriters do it, as well as folk guitarists, etc. I assume they are less often used in metal because most players want access to the lowest notes possible, but if it works for your situation then that's coo'.
     
  3. Hollowway

    Hollowway Extended Ranger

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    I understand what you're saying about using a capo and its effect on intonation, but that only affects the difference between an instrument with a capo vs an instrument tuned to the actual pitch. In other words, if you have an instrument tuned to E, and place a capo at the 2nd fret, you'll get F#, and it won't be intonated the same as a guitar that is tuned to F# at the nut. I totally agree with that. But, if you use a capo at the fret to get F#, I'm saying it would have the same effect as fretting the guitar at the 2nd fret to get F#. Ideally, the bassist would have multiple basses so one could be dedicated for each tuning. But, if he has to fret or capo a note, I'm thinking it's not going to make any difference.
     
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  4. Randy

    Randy The Pusterience™ Super Moderator

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    More like 'crapos', am I right guys?
     
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  5. StevenC

    StevenC SS.org Regular

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    Yeah, I agree in principle. Maybe my understanding of intonation is flawed, but I believe intonation always drifts to some extent as you go up the neck. So if you were to take two guitars one at 25.5" and another at, say, the second fret and tune them to E and F# respectively and set them up with the same intonation, then the 12th fret of the longer guitar will be more in tune than the 12th fret of the shorter. Because the 12th fret of the shorter is the 14th fret of the longer and therefore slightly less in tune.

    In absolute terms, no a capo doesn't effect the intonation of the instrument because the intonation is already set. But it could be less than ideal relative to the original tuning, leaving aside a dedicated guitar for the capo tuning, ie the distance from in tune between the F# and its octave will be greater than the distance between the E and its octave For example, digitally pitch shifting the song from E to F# would result in a more in tune sound and vice versa.
     
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  6. Dayn

    Dayn SS.org Regular

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    I think the only way a capo can affect intonation is because of the amount of pressure put on the string and if it's not put on properly. I use light strings and I fret lightly - pushing harder on the string with my finger raises the pitch, because that's what strings do particularly when they're light and the frets are big. But that problem is solved by positioning the capo properly so it doesn't pull the strings anymore than fretting it would.

    Sound-wise, it'll sound exactly like a fretted note. If you have a lot of pull-offs to an open string while using a capo, I can see how it might sound a little different compared to not using a capo, but sounding a little different is a nice trade-off compared to not being able to play the song together as a band at all.
     
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  7. Rev2010

    Rev2010 Contributor

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    *edit
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2021
  8. Rev2010

    Rev2010 Contributor

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    You're getting it, but you're confusing pitch with intonation. Let's put it like this to make it simple.... You tune a guitar using a tuner. You get all the strings in tune. Now you play a note and bend it up to a half step higher pitch. Is that note intonated?it has no bearing on intonation! Intonation is a factor of proper sting length for a given string gauge and it's action (height above the fretboard). That means the notes will be approximately close to perfect tuning no matter where the notes are played on the fretboard.

    Putting a capo on the 2nd fret will not have any difference on "intonation" as holding the string down with your finger. If the capo spring is too strong it will cause a sharpened pitch but that is not a factor of intonation.
     
  9. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    Out of tune is out of tune. Set the capo right, on a reasonably well setup guitar/bass, and it won't be terrible.

    But, loud rock/metal live? It'll be close enough.

    Recorded? I'd just set everything to whatever tuning you need for that piece of music.
     
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  10. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    ... not trying to derail or get a parallel subject, but since you all are pretty informed, what are your experiences (if any) with the Spider Capos???
     
  11. FromTheMausoleum

    FromTheMausoleum That one guy

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    A digitech drop tune pedal would fix all of this a lot cheaper than buying multiple instruments and also wouldn't destroy the fret you capo on. :)
     
  12. Hollowway

    Hollowway Extended Ranger

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    Yeah, but if the singer thinks he can hear the difference between a capo and a fretted note, he's going to flip when he hears a bass in A with a drop tune pedal.
     
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  13. Wuuthrad

    Wuuthrad SS.org Regular

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    People confuse ‘intonation’ with ‘in tune,’ because they sound alike! ;)

    This might be one of best explanations of how a capo/cejilla changes the sound of a guitar, even when playing the same notes.
    Note how this is different than just matching the register of a singer and playing “cowboy chords.”




    Heres some examples which demonstrate how capos can be used by virtuosos.





    All acoustic! So when we consider their use in electric guitar, we can confirm knucklehead status of its detractors!
     
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  14. FromTheMausoleum

    FromTheMausoleum That one guy

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    Honestly, just hide the pedal, dude won't find out.
     
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  15. Mathemagician

    Mathemagician SS.org Regular

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    I would imagine that for playing live you’d want as little gear as possible/needed so using a capo solves that issue.
    Unless you have a full roadie team available that it.
     
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  16. gnoll

    gnoll SS.org Regular

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    This is the comparison I don't understand in this thread. Isn't the thing with not using a capo that you don't need to use only fretted notes but can use open strings instead?

    I'd rather be a knucklehead than have to use a capo anyway lol.
     
  17. spudmunkey

    spudmunkey SS.org Regular

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    I definitely can tell, with my travel rig.

    Screenshot_20210508-204517_Instagram.jpg
     
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  18. Dave Death

    Dave Death SS.org Regular

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    I think capos are awesome for checking neck relief. I don't use them otherwise. Which is probably a good thing, as I have two capos and can never find one when I need it for a truss rod adjustment
     
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  19. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear

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    Yes, the purpose is to change the pitch of 'open' notes.
    But the point people are making in the thread is that to say a capo sounds bad is to say fretted notes sound bad and that only open strings sound good, which is an absurd opinion for the singer to have. A finger and a capo both do exactly the same thing (make the string contact the next fret) and there will be no sound difference between them
     
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  20. gnoll

    gnoll SS.org Regular

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    But that doesn't make any sense. Things aren't divided into just "good" and "bad" with no middle ground. Even if fretted notes don't sound "bad" they might still sound worse than open strings. And that might be enough for people to prefer not to use capos, I would think.
     

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