5420T sharp tuning with capo


Hi guys,

been a while since I posted but recently I tried to figure something out that bothers me for a while now...

I came to a point where find decent tuning stability, don't press the strings too hard (makes notes go sharp whenyou're used to small and low frets) and enjoy some soloing and strumming wthout having to tune every song.

But... to use live in my solo gigs, I need a capo. I 've tried several things like capo positioning, a different capo etc but I just can't figure out how to use it on my 5420 without rendering it detuned.

Is there a certain capo that works well on 5420? is there some technique I'm missing here? or is it just "not done"?


Are you sure you've got good intonation with the bridge positioning & saddle adjustment?


I came to a point where find decent tuning stability, don't press the strings too hard (makes >notes go sharp whenyou're used to small and low frets) and enjoy some soloing and >strumming wthout having to tune every song.

Are you attaching the capo too tight? I've had that problem before with a larger frets.


Don't know what make capo you are using, but try a Shubb. They are adjustable and allow to be set for a very light "touch"...


Another vote for a Shubb. Also, check the general setup on your guitar. A nut that's too high or too much relief in the neck won't help.


With all respect to Shubb I highly recommend you to look at G7th capos. Very unique system that actually works. I come from the singer-songwriter camp and they are the best I've ever come across.


They're pretty great indeed. The seriously impressive BEST I've come across are Elliott capos, but they're between $160 and $200.


it's set up ok: intonation seems to be ok but I'm going to get that nut height checked.

The adjustable capo seems like a very good tip as I think my capo is indeed camping it too tight. I'm going to check out these capo's you suggested - g7th capo's...which one would you pick? "perfomance 2" or "Newport" <a href="http://www.g7th.com/choosing-a-capo.aspx" rel="nofollow">http://www.g7th.com/choosin... The "performance 2 is easy to use but the newport is advertised as "particulary suited for high action". - the Shubb's? they all seem alike to me, except for materials used

Thanks guys, I was unaware of the existence of adjustable capo's


Another vote for G7th capos. Based upon my dealings with them, I would also add that the people who run the company have a high degree of integrity.


I would definitely recommend having a tech check out the nut. If it's not staying in tune if you play or press too hard the slots likely need to be widened, and the capo issue could be that they are not cut deep enough. A quick check is hold the 3rd fret, there should be a very small gap between the string and 1st fret. Small as in the size of your high E string.


Yep, another happy G7 capo user here.


They moved to medium jumbo frets on the new 5420T, they are beefier than the old 5420 or professional series frets.


They moved to medium jumbo frets on the new 5420T, they are beefier than the old 5420 or professional series frets.


If your strings are the right height you should be able to do this!


It's not about strings over frets...it's about frets over fingerboard. A Capo will pull the strings all the way down to the wood. Jumbo frets aren't good with a capo unless you file them low enough that they aren't jumbo.


Well there's two things on capos. Use the least capo tension possible. Put it as close to fret as possible. This avoids the general de-tuning.

I like to put the open end of capos toward the small strings so my index finger doesn't bump it.

I've spent a lot of time with trad fiddlers during the last few years and they like the key of D a lot. If you capo the 2nd fret, it gives you some good opportunities to play the melodies and maybe even to chord melody the tune.



Had some time with the G7th performance 2 now and it's the best capo I ever had. you can't "preset" a fixed amount of tension but after a couple of goes, you easy decide how hard the capo should press. Releasing is easy; you don't have the risk of slipping off the capo with your fingers because of the force you need to apply on trigger capo's.

My problem is partially solved; the picture mat66 posted here was very useful; looks like the nut will need some work too (Had this done by a tech but now I'm considering another tech)

thanks guys, you are a great help!


update: some adjustments by my luthier in combo with that G7th performance 2 capo and my Gretsch is getting a lot of playtime..

thanks again, this topic thaught me some interesting things once again


Didn't you hear? Capos are for girls


yeah, already replied in that topicI'm manly enough to use it and I still have margin left! :)


If you're using a Kyser or Dunlop trigger capo, that could be part of the problem... extremely strong springs in those, which tend to put a death grip on the strings-- with jumbo frets it's almost guaranteed that the guitar will be sharp at any given location on the fretboard. I use a Dunlop on my acoustic guitars, but I also play it with heavier Bluegrass-gauge strings, so it's not as much of an issue.


It's a common problem, especially on acoustic instruments with high action, big frets and big strings. That's why some people prefer that you not use a capo. If I'm the hired help with band or singer I don't usually play with, I try to avoid the capo as much as possible. I've found that some guys get pretty annoyed if I put on a capo and then have to do some "touch up" tuning when it's time to launch into the next number.

Taking the capo off yields the same result. After getting in perfect tune with the capo on the third fret, I'm all jacked out of tune when the capo comes off. My solution is to live without it most of the time. There are plenty of exceptions. In old-time string band music or Bluegrass, most banjo players have to retune or capo every time you move to another key. That gives the guitar player loads of time to make necessary adjustments. I'd never use a capo with a swing or country band--too much fiddle farting around.

I have no idea what goes on with rock bands. I don't know how to play that music, so the capo issue has never come up.

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