Just Intonation

A tuning system having intervals that are acoustically pure

Just intonation is a tuning system that is based on the proportions of natural numbers. It is characterized by large frequency differences between notes.

Just intonation is different from the twelve-tone equal temperament which frequently used in the modern keyboard instruments (e.g.: piano). Just intonation allows for larger frequency differences between notes while twelve-tone equal temperament limits the frequency ratios between notes. These differences can be discerned by the human ear.

Just intonation has been used since ancient Greece, where many musicians and philosophers believed that the essence of music lies in its adherence to mathematical principles found in nature. This tuning system is still used in the modern time by many musicians and composers.

Example of Just Intonation

Just Intonation vs 12 Tone Equal Temperament

Writer: Frankie Chan