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Guitar Dictionary | n


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A note that is neither sharpened nor flattened.

Harmonics that occur at certain parts of the string called nodes. A note of purer tone can be produced by touching these nodes whilst the string is being plucked.

Full Article on: natural harmonics

Reverse the effect of a sharp or flat.

Full Article on: accidentals

The wooden stem that extends from the main body of the guitar and supports the headstock. The fretboard is found on the surface of the neck.

Full Article on: anatomy of the guitar

A block of wood found inside acoustic guitars where the neck meets the body. The block provides a structurally sound place to attach the heel.

Synonymous With: Heel Block,Head Block

The part of the body to which the neck is attached.

The pickup that is located next to the neck.

Synonymous With: bass pickup, rhythm pickup

The dimensions and design of the neck.

A style of neck that extends right to the end of the body of the guitar. This design of neck is used to mount the pickups and bridge and does not have a heel, making it easier to reach the higher frets. This design is found on basses more than guitars and more often on the more expensive ranges.

Synonymous With: neck-through, thru-neck

See Also: Pickups, Bridge

Short for neck through body, a style of neck that extends right to the end of the body of the guitar. This design of neck is used to mount the pickups and bridge and does not have a heel, making it easier to reach the higher frets. This design is found on basses more than guitars and more often on the more expensive ranges.

Synonymous With: Thru-neck, Neck Through Body

See Also: Pickups, Bridge

A substance derived from cellulose that is commonly used as a finish on guitars.

Synonymous With: cellulose

A point on a guitar string that, when touched lightly, will produce a harmonic (12th fret for example).

Full Article on: natural harmonics

Short for string noise. Any unwanted sounds from the guitar. This can be caused when your fretting hand or picking hand rubs against the strings when you play. String noise may not be noticed when playing acoustically but amplifiers magnify the problem. Noise gates and muting can help reduce any unwanted noise.

Synonymous With: String Noise

A sound processor that removes any components of an audio signal that are below a certain amplitude. Noise gates can be found on effects units and are used to reduce string noise.

Any process that removes or reduces unwanted noise from an audio signal. Used in the recording of guitar music to reduce string noise. One such example is a noise gate.

Any vibrato system other than the Floyd Rose locking tremolo system to clamp the strings in place. Instead the strings are anchored to the bridge by ball-ends. Non-locking tremolo systems have static bridges.

Universal symbols that make up a system of written music.

Full Article on: symbol dictionary,

  1. A sound of fixed pitch that has a set name.
  2. A written representation of a fixed pitch and its duration.

Full Article on: note duration

The component separating the fretboard from the headstock. It keeps the strings in their correct position.

Full Article on: anatomy of the guitar

The screws and metal plates that are used on a locking nut. There are three small metal plates (one for each pair of strings) that are screwed in place.

The thin slits found on the nut that holds the strings in place.