True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick??? - Jemsite
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post #1 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 10:38 PM Thread Starter
 
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True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

Hi All,

Apologies if this has been discussed to death already, but i wondered what the general feeling was on here towards this new fangled 'True Temperament' neck/fret thing?

I see Steve Vai is singing it's praises and has been for some time, but personally i'm not convinced yet and wondered if somebody here could educate me and put me in the picture.

Here's my somewhat basic view of it..........Having been a huge Steve Vai/Ibanez Jem fan for the last 20+ years, i can't help but think that this is the latest gimmick. I've listened to guitar based music, primarily rock/heavy metal, for over 30 years and it all sounds pretty damn good to me.

Am i to assume that if, in hindsight, all my favourite guitarists/bands had the benefit of 'true temperament' necks/fretboards that the music would in some way sound better? (even though it sounds perfectly good to me as it is!!!!)

I guess in the pursuit of absolute perfection that this may have some small benefit...but is it really that important to get 'Perfect' notes and intonation (apologies in advance if i'm missing the point here).

Basically, i really don't see that true temperament is going to have any impact on me whatsoever...unless i suddenly acquire absolutely perfect pitch hearing!!!!

Furthermore, as Steve Vai has been praising true temperament as the way to go for some time now, and been quoted as saying that he's going to have all of his guitars converted to true temp fretboards......how come the lateset Ibanez Jem signature models are not fitted with a true temp neck???? (baring in mind that they couldn't wait to change the 7VWH fretboard to rosewood from ebony all those years ago).

Finally, i just happen to think that true temp fretboards look absolutely dire with the jagged edges....ever since i started playing the guitar i've been used to seeing nice straight fretwire fitted at right angles to the neck. I'm not averse to change if it's worthwhile, but not with this.

Sorry to go on..........but I'm sure i must be missing a huge point here with my 'Simplistic' view of it all
To my mind, unless you are playing a guitar on a clean setting, or perhaps acoustically, there is no real need for true temp........unless you have either perfect pitch hearing or you have very little else in life to amuse you!!!!!

Thoughts please.

Later,
Snakeman4968
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post #2 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 10:47 PM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

hey, good question! cant wait to see spme answers myself either!
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post #3 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 10:55 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryancap77 View Post
hey, good question! cant wait to see spme answers myself either!
Not just me then LOL, i'm hoping somebody will come along with a very educational and informative answer that makes me look a right idiot......but for now, i just can't see the point of true temp :-)

Snakerman4968
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post #4 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 11:11 PM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

One of the other really good by products of a "true tempered" neck is the sustain you get. To some degree, I would think it would eliminate the need for a sustainer altogether. This is based in part on one of the clips up on youtube that I saw of course. Maybe it works in all guitars, maybe not. I know after watching the video, I momentarily gasped after just forking out the dough for a sustainer!
It's not a gimmick, I don't think. But I'm pretty sure it's not for everyone either. I wouldn't go out and switch out all my necks because really, I'm not good enough to be worried about having every note or chord I play in perfect pitch....
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uehDWQNActA
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post #5 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 03:42 AM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

Ultra accurate intonation across the WHOLE ENTIRE fretboard seems like a pretty big step forward. It used to be only intonated properly at 12 and therfore pretty close for the rest.

I'd imagine it would become rather apparent when playing complex chords stacked with distortion so all the overtones should meld together better.

But yeah, for the average joe, they wouldn't be able to tell the difference, and i couldn't imagine it being cheap.

Toodles!
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post #6 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 04:05 AM
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

Huh??? Hadn't heard of this yet. I agree--pass the popcorn and let's wait for some insight...



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post #7 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 04:17 AM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

I've never tried one, but most players come to realize that naively tuning a guitar perfectly from string to string leads to a really bad result. It's really noticeable on the B string when using open chords, for some reason. Tune the guitar so that the open G (3-2-0-0-3) sounds perfectly in tune, then try to play an open A or open E - you'll get sour horrible stuff happening between the notes on the B and G strings.

It's possible to imitate tempered tuning on a guitar without resort to Buzz Feiten or a crazy new fret job - tune your G string perfectly with a reference note, and from there, you want the higher (B & E) strings to be increasingly sharp, and the lower D, A, and E to be increasingly flat. I'm talking just a few cents difference here, but it smooths out the inequalities across all the strings and compromises the tuning such that no position is perfect, but no position is horribly out of whack either.
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post #8 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 05:16 AM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

Quote:
Originally Posted by TMatt142 View Post
One of the other really good by products of a "true tempered" neck is the sustain you get. To some degree, I would think it would eliminate the need for a sustainer altogether. This is based in part on one of the clips up on youtube that I saw of course. Maybe it works in all guitars, maybe not. I know after watching the video, I momentarily gasped after just forking out the dough for a sustainer!
Intonation isn't related to sustain, you won't get more sustain from a true temperament neck.

I think its a cool idea, but for a lot of people it isn't really necessary. Both of my MusicMans have compensated nuts, so they have much better intonation around the first 5-7 frets. It isn't perfect (open D chords still have the annoying sharp F#) but it is very good.
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post #9 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 05:37 AM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

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Originally Posted by littlephil View Post
Intonation isn't related to sustain, you won't get more sustain from a true temperament neck.

I think its a cool idea, but for a lot of people it isn't really necessary. Both of my MusicMans have compensated nuts, so they have much better intonation around the first 5-7 frets. It isn't perfect (open D chords still have the annoying sharp F#) but it is very good.
If intonation isn't related to sustain, then explain the youtube clip I posted...???
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post #10 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 07:00 AM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

He's using controlled feedback. You can hear shortly after he holds the note, it dips a bit, but then gets louder again, because the amp is feeding back, making the note sustain. You can get that same sustain with any guitar if you're using high gain, you just have to find the right spot to position the guitar in relation to the speakers.

If intonation was related to sustain, when you set a specific fret to be in tune (ie the 12th, how most people set the intonation) it would sustain longer than other frets, which it doesn't, there is no noticeable difference.
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post #11 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 08:18 AM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

Quote:
Originally Posted by snakeman4968 View Post
Hi All,

Apologies if this has been discussed to death already, but i wondered what the general feeling was on here towards this new fangled 'True Temperament' neck/fret thing?

I see Steve Vai is singing it's praises and has been for some time, but personally i'm not convinced yet and wondered if somebody here could educate me and put me in the picture.

Here's my somewhat basic view of it..........Having been a huge Steve Vai/Ibanez Jem fan for the last 20+ years, i can't help but think that this is the latest gimmick. I've listened to guitar based music, primarily rock/heavy metal, for over 30 years and it all sounds pretty damn good to me.

Am i to assume that if, in hindsight, all my favourite guitarists/bands had the benefit of 'true temperament' necks/fretboards that the music would in some way sound better? (even though it sounds perfectly good to me as it is!!!!)

I guess in the pursuit of absolute perfection that this may have some small benefit...but is it really that important to get 'Perfect' notes and intonation (apologies in advance if i'm missing the point here).

Basically, i really don't see that true temperament is going to have any impact on me whatsoever...unless i suddenly acquire absolutely perfect pitch hearing!!!!

Furthermore, as Steve Vai has been praising true temperament as the way to go for some time now, and been quoted as saying that he's going to have all of his guitars converted to true temp fretboards......how come the lateset Ibanez Jem signature models are not fitted with a true temp neck???? (baring in mind that they couldn't wait to change the 7VWH fretboard to rosewood from ebony all those years ago).

Finally, i just happen to think that true temp fretboards look absolutely dire with the jagged edges....ever since i started playing the guitar i've been used to seeing nice straight fretwire fitted at right angles to the neck. I'm not averse to change if it's worthwhile, but not with this.

Sorry to go on..........but I'm sure i must be missing a huge point here with my 'Simplistic' view of it all
To my mind, unless you are playing a guitar on a clean setting, or perhaps acoustically, there is no real need for true temp........unless you have either perfect pitch hearing or you have very little else in life to amuse you!!!!!

Thoughts please.

Later,
Snakeman4968
I agree with most of what you're saying there Snakeman.

Regarding one question you raise - "how come the lateset Ibanez Jem signature models are not fitted with a true temp neck????" - I don't know the answer, but I'd guess a few things:
- It's expensive compared to normal frets
- It looks weird and might put customers off
- Steve doesn't yet appear to have adopted the system on all of his main guitars (just EVO as far a I can tell)
- Ibanez may not have the in house expertise to do it

Like I say, these are just guesses, so don't shoot me...

That aside, I'd love to try a true temperament guitar just to see how well (or not) it plays...
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post #12 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 08:43 AM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

99% of working guitarists out there arn't using the system and are writing and playing live just fine.
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post #13 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 11:57 AM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

I saw a thread a couple of months ago where a guy built a custom JEM with the true temperment frets. It looked strange to me. I'll see if I can find it. He posted positive comments about the frets.

I remember Vai talking about them years ago, yet I've never seem him use them. In this thread there is mention of them being on EVO, but the last time I saw EVO, it still had regular frets.
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post #14 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 12:06 PM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

Here is a thread by the same guy. Apparently, he liked the frets so much he bought another guitar with them. His first post in this thread has a link to the thread I was talking about.

http://www.jemsite.com/forums/f19/ng...ue+temperament
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post #15 of 46 (permalink) Old 06-03-2011, 12:49 PM
 
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Re: True Temperament...The Way To Go Or Gimmick???

LOL! I found a thread from 2009 that had a picture of Vai with EVO with the TT frets. Shows you how much I keep up. Wouldn't he put that neck on a guitar that doesn't have a huge crack in it?
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