The Korg Guitar Tuner certainly didn’t deserve our resentment when it finally gave up the electronic ghost. It lasted more than ten years, maybe twelve. That’s way awesome for a ten dollar tuner! And… we didn’t even pay for it. It was a second-hand gift from a friend! Ten years is a lot of dedicated service for free.
Consider, too, that it continued to work as well as any tuner ten times as expensive even when the two plastic pieces of the case broke apart, and the battery slot cover disappeared. That is some reliable circuitry! And the case breaking was totally our fault.
Still, it met the final fate of all household electronics which persist in failing us. Out comes the hammer or pliers or other tool of mass destruction. And anything that survives being thrown across the room into the far wall is fair game for more focused dismemberment.
Now don’t think the Martian headquarters here are a minefield of destroyed circuit boards and shattered windows where the atmosphere leaks in. You don’t really think we’d raise a cat in that environment, do you? It’s just that every now and then… every few years… we have a little too much fun scavenging dismantled electronics for odds and ends to collage.
The last consumer electronics device to get a one way trip to Davey Jones’ locker was a portable CD player, about five years ago. We had exactly two things that once belonged to our now-deceased grandmother. The CD player was one, and it did give a couple years of pleasure. It even made it on stage once to play a CD of background music through our amp between sets. But one day… When it refused to cooperate any longer… It was just a thing, and we know grandmother isn’t really connected to it in some ghostly way, but we were still irritated with it for becoming useless junk. What else will you take from us, cruel and heartless orb of misery?! Our blood? Our soul?
You know how it gets sometimes.
The other thing was a lovely dark glass container that is just right for holding our guitar picks. We are pleased to report it still works just fine! And, so does our new tuner. The old Korg treated us so damn fine that we got another one just like it – in black. You simply cannot beat this machine for the price tag of $10.41.
It’s also nice to get the J-45 back in tune, too. It seems four months passed since we could tune our acoustic guitar properly to perfect concert pitch. Tuning your A string to a machine-generated tone of 440 Hertz by ear is not as easy as a concert violinist makes it look. When you go to the orchestra, and that person stands up and plays a note, and then everyone tries to match it, they are tuning to the first chair violinist’s concert A. That note vibrates at 440 Hertz, a measure of frequency. Some conductors like to pitch their A slightly higher for … we don’t know why. They think it sounds better. Our impression is that sometimes small groups in traditional Indian music also have a “fudge factor” when they tune to their drone (such as concert D), but we can’t find a citation.
Anyway, we’re no first-chair concert violinist so we find that part somewhat challenging. When the new tuner arrived today, it revealed our recent attempt to tune to 440 Hz was about… a half step flat. Or more. In the name of the almighty Kirby, are we truly that tonally dumbfounded? No wonder singing is so hard! New Tuner, welcome to the Martian studios. We’re glad to have you here. What do you say we shoot for another decade of rock?