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Stagehand
11-04-2014, 06:24 AM
When you have an uke professionally "set up" how close to perfect intonation should be expected. Both at the 12th harmonic and fretted at the 12th.
Thanks

Doc_J
11-04-2014, 07:43 AM
I guess it depends on the instrument and what all you were having done to it.

How off was the instrument to start? Were the frets accurate for the scale?
Did you have a new saddle made ?
Was the saddle compensated?

Stagehand
11-04-2014, 08:25 AM
Your right I should have given more info.
The uke in question is a new Epiphone Les Paul.
The luthier installed a bone nut and non compensated saddle. It has to go back anyway because of a buzz on the C string. The intonation on the C string is less than wonderful. The rest of the strings are within 5 cents.
I am just trying to get a feel for what is a reasonable expectation.
Thank you.

ProfChris
11-04-2014, 08:29 AM
On a soprano with a straight saddle I achieve spot on at the 12th for A and G, damned close for E and a fraction out for C. That's as close as you can get without compensating for strings individually.

The 12th fret harmonic will be an octave above the open string no matter what the setup, unless the string is defective.

Of course, if frets or saddle are misplaced, all bets are off.

ProfChris
11-04-2014, 08:33 AM
Our posts crossed. With a straight saddle the C will be a bit flat at the 12th, less so with a thinner string like a fluorocarbon. But you can learn to compensate when playing by pressing down a fraction harder.

UkulelePlace
11-04-2014, 09:25 AM
Our posts crossed. With a straight saddle the C will be a bit flat at the 12th, less so with a thinner string like a fluorocarbon. But you can learn to compensate when playing by pressing down a fraction harder.

Did you mean to say the C string will be a bit sharp at the 12th?

IamNoMan
11-04-2014, 10:13 AM
Your right I should have given more info.
The uke in question is a new Epiphone Les Paul.
The luthier installed a bone nut and non compensated saddle. It has to go back anyway because of a buzz on the C string. The intonation on the C string is less than wonderful. The rest of the strings are within 5 cents.
I am just trying to get a feel for what is a reasonable expectation.
Thank you.Reasonable expectation is the keyword here. How good are your ears and the ears of those people you play with? How far up the neck do you customarily play? Most of us mortals can't make a distinction of 5c off. Well 5c or 6c is the limit of distinction for most players anyway. If the intonation is not pitch on at the octave this would be unacceptable to me for an acquisition. A vintage instrument maybe.

I use this rule of thumb. I want the intonation of each string to be accurate for each string 2 or 3 frets above The highest fret I customarily play at. If the intonation is on, to less than 5c. That is OK by me. I figure if my skills or ear improves enough for this to be a problem I should be thankful for my blessings and purchase a higher quality instrument. The two provisos to this are: Do my musical associates wince at how far off my instruments intone and how am I measuring that 5c off. If your buddies that you customarily play with have a problem with your instruments intonation you may have a problem; if you see what I'm driving at. Just what is 5c off anyway. My repairman uses a fancy strobe tuner. He will use a blue snark for this purpose but gets persnickety at less accurate tuners. I usually have him check the intonation on each string up to 2 or 3 frets above the octave. He does this a hell of a lot faster than I can. When he tells me there is a problem I check for myself around the problem areas. If my ears can't tell the difference I don't worry. When the intonation is a problem for my ears it is decision time.

There was mention recently of individually adjustable saddles. I don't know anything about them but it sounded intriguing.
http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?101501-Vorson-steel-strriged-ukes