Mandoline

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Tuning

Tuning is the same as for the violin:

* G3: 195,9977Hz
* D4: 293,6648Hz
* A4: 440Hz
* E5: 659,2551Hz

Distance between strings

The distance between two strings is always 7 semi tones:

  1  2  3  4  5  6  7
G G# A  A# B  C C#  D
D D# E  F  F# G G#  A
A A# B  C  C# D D#  E
E F  F# G  G# A A#  B

I am curious where this figure of 7 comes from (I'm sure there is a terribly obvious reason for).

On the guitar, the interval length is 5-5-5-4-5, so you have a whole number of octaves and/or the lowest and highest string have the same tuning, as otherwise stuff like chords could become much harder. Along the way, the most important intervals, namely major third and perfect fifth, are easy to play. Let's see how that goes here.

Notes on the neck

   --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
E5 |-F--|-F#-|-G--|-G#-|-A--|-A#-|-B--|-C--|-C#-|-D--|-D#-|-E--|----|----|----|----|----|
A4 |-A#-|-B--|-C5-|-C#-|-D--|-D#-|-E--|-F--|-F#-|-G--|-G#-|-A--|----|----|----|----|----|
D4 |-D#-|-E--|-F--|-F#-|-G--|-G#-|-A--|-A#-|-B--|-C--|-C#-|-D--|----|----|----|----|----|
G3 |-G#-|-A--|-A#-|-B--|-C4-|-C#-|-D--|-D#-|-E--|-F--|-F#-|-G--|----|----|----|----|----|
   --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
   |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 | *5 |  6 | *7 |  8 |  9 | *10| 11 | *12| 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 |

Intervals

The distance between strings on the mandoline, is 7 semitones. On the guitar this is 5(4) semitones. Therefore, playing intervals using multiple strings, is also different from the guitar.

Major third (grote terts)

  • A major third is 4 semitones.
  • As an example: A major third from D: D → F#
  • With the D on the lowest string: D4 → F#4

From this, you can easily see the general pattorn for major thirds:


E5 |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
A4 |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
D4 |----|----|----|F#4-|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
G3 |----|----|----|----|----|----|-D4-|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
   |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 | *5 |  6 | *7 |  8 |  9 | *10| 11 | *12| 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 |

The lowest major third starting on the lowest string, is A#3 → D4:


E5  |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
A4  |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
D4 O|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
G3  |----|----|A#3-|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
    |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 | *5 |  6 | *7 |  8 |  9 | *10| 11 | *12| 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 |

Major third + octave (example: D4 → F#5):


E5  |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
A4  |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|F#5-|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
D4  |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
G3  |----|----|----|----|----|----|-D4-|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
    |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 | *5 |  6 | *7 |  8 |  9 | *10| 11 | *12| 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 |

Minor thirds

Example: D4 → F4


E5 |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
A4 |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
D4 |----|----|-F4-|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
G3 |----|----|----|----|----|----|-D4-|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
   |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 | *5 |  6 | *7 |  8 |  9 | *10| 11 | *12| 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 |

Minor third + octave. Example: D4 → F5:


E5 |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
A4 |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|-F4-|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
D4 |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
G3 |----|----|----|----|----|----|-D4-|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
   |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 | *5 |  6 | *7 |  8 |  9 | *10| 11 | *12| 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 |

Fifth (kwint)

  • A perfect fifth (reine kwint) is 7 semi-notes
  • E.g., from D4 → A4

E5 |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
A4 |----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
D4 |----|----|----|----|----|----|-A4-|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
G3 |----|----|----|----|----|----|-D4-|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|----|
   |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 | *5 |  6 | *7 |  8 |  9 | *10| 11 | *12| 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 |

Pentatonic scales

Am: A, C, D, E, G

KLOPT NIET!
   --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
E O|----|----|-G--|----|-A--|
A O|----|----|-C--|----|-D--|
D O|----|-E--|----|----|-G--|
G O|----|-A--|----|----|-C--|
   --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
   |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 | *5 |  6 | *7 |  8 |  9 | *10| 11 | *12| 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 |

Chords

A major

Notes: A, C#, E:

   --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
E5 |
A4 |-A#-|-B--|-C5-|-C#-|
D4 |-D#-|-E--|
G3 |-G#-|-A--|-
   --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
   |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 | *5 |  6 | *7 |  8 |  9 | *10| 11 | *12| 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 |

Asus4

Notes Asus4 chord: A, D, E


   ----------------
E O|
A O|
D O|
G O|-G#-|-A--|
   ----------------
   |  1 |  2 |  3 |

E major

Notes: E, G#, B


   --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
E  |
A  |-A#-|-B--|
D  |-D#-|-E--|
G  |-G#-|
   --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
   |  1 |  2 |  3 |  4 | *5 |  6 | *7 |  8 |  9 | *10| 11 | *12| 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 |

Chord shapes

Just as on the guitar, there are several chord chapes: Chords that are relatively easy to play with barré, so you can shift them up and down the neck to play different chords

G-shape

[1]: G major chord: G, B, D


   ----------------
E  |-F--|-F#-|-G--|
A  |-A#-|-B--|
D O|
G O|
   ----------------
   |  1 |  2 |  3 |

See also

Sources