Introduction to Pitch Systems in Tonal Music: Tuning with Pure Major and Minor Triads

Tuning with Pure Major and Minor Triads

This presentation uses 3:2 ratios to create a 12-tone set very much like the twelve tone chromatic system in common use today. Despite its out-of-tune triads, this scale seems very functional but suffers from a gap in its frequencies, another comma, meaning it is not circular. Since the tonal pitch system relies on circularity (the ability to modulate from any key center to another without adjusting the tuning system), it becomes clear that although fifths and triads sound best when tuned to simple ratios some adjustment will have to be made to these pure ratios to make a truly circular pitch system.