About that tuning...

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Posted by Steve Dedman on April 10, 2002 at 11:29:23:

I was just wondering how many of you have had the same experience I recently encountered.

When I got my new 56j, I sat down with a tuner (Korg CA-20) and tried to get to know the horn somewhat. The tuner showed me about what I'd expect to see: E below the staff sharp, D in the staff flat, C# below the staff sharp as 2+4 fingering, etc. So I tried to find the happiest medium that I could and do a tiny bit of pushing, pulling, and lipping. S' OK. I've been doing it all my life.

Surprise! When I got the horn into ensemble, it was awful. By the end of rehearsal, the slides were back to where they started pretty much, and it sounded great.

Over the weeks since, I have messed with the tuning on the horn some, but always find that the original tuning works the best in ensemble. So now a couple of questions:

Could my tuner be on the fritz? When I say it says I'm out of tune, I mean it registers a 1/2 step off. Anyone have any experience with the tuner going stupid when the batteries start to get low?

I know that in ensemble, ensemble pitch is the final word. But can the ensemble be THAT far off? I hardly think so.

Is this a typical new-horn-syndrome? Does it go away? I'm playing in tune (at least the conductor and other sections aren't grimacing at me), but I'm just intellectually having a hard time reconciling this discrepancy.

Thoughts? Suggestions? (apropos only, please)

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