All you need to know about Guitar Capo

The Guitar Capo- A Boon For The Guitarists

A Capo is used to change (raise) the key of your open chords. A capo is most commonly used by guitar players that aren't good at ‘barre’ chords, or for guitar riffs that require open strings in a key other than where open strings are available.
(In a ‘barre’ chord you use your fore-finger as a capo).

A capo can be used on an electric guitar as well. Even though it's electric, it's still a guitar (so same rules apply). Most famous people you see performing with electric guitars know ‘barre’ chords and don't need a capo.
You clamp the capo on the guitar to make a chord an octave higher or make it easier to perform more complicated chords. If it’s in a ‘sone’ it usually stays on the guitar during the whole song but occasionally one performer will remove it in the middle of the song. Usually electric guitars don't use them, but they can, if needed.
Beginning guitarists use capos to change the key of a song so they don't have to learn it in a new key to sing it. Advanced guitarists use capos to extend the range and possibilities of the guitar without constant retuning and detuning. It is also easier to employ a capo, than to purchase a ‘Quinto’ (guitar tuned up a fifth) or ‘requinto’ (guitar tuned up a fourth) and the strings generally last longer.

Capos come in different brands but the common kinds are the elastic capos (the nylon capos and the steel string capos), which are the least expensive and commonly used by guitar players.

To use the capo, attach it in any of the frets. Also make sure the clamp can hold all the strings down. Inspect for any kind of pulling of the guitar strings because it may result in the guitar sounding out of tune.
A special kind of capo, the third hand capo, is a gadget that can surely and easily clamp all the strings of the guitar in place. Like the ordinary capos, it allows the guitar player to play tunes that may be difficult to get or to play using the ‘barre’ guitar strings.

The basic premise of the capo is that, it shortens the length of your guitar's strings. You can technically place a capo anywhere on a guitar's neck, but most players typically don't attach it much higher than the seventh fret. The fret on the neck where you attach the capo now becomes your guitar's nut. For example, if you capo your guitar on the second fret, you have raised your guitar's pitch two half-steps or one whole step. That means that a chord you now play on your guitar (keeping in mind that you need to play the chord in relation to the capo now and not your guitar's nut) will be one whole step higher than it was without the capo. If you finger a D chord, what you will hear will be an E chord. If you finger an A chord you will hear a B chord, and so on. The idea is that if you want to play a song in D sharp, but don't want to learn the complicated way to play a first position D sharp on your guitar, you can simply capo your guitar on the first fret (raising the guitar's pitch one half step) and play a D chord like you normally would. The result is a chord that looks and feels like a D to you, but sounds like a D sharp to everyone else.

The important things to remember while using a capo are:

1) Figure out how your capo attaches to your guitar neck. There are several types of capos on the market today. Some are spring-loaded, others use an elastic type of material, and others are manually clamped to the fret-board by the guitarist. Whichever type you prefer, take a second to understand how it is supposed to hold the strings down to the fret-board.

2) Always attach your capo as close possible to the fret that you want to capo. For example, if you want to capo your guitar at the second fret, don't put the capo right in the middle of the space between the first and second frets, but rather slide it down so it's as close to the second fret as it can be. Don't put it on top of the second fret, but put it as close as it can be without touching it. This helps make sure you stay in tune.

3) Speaking of tuning, always check your tuning when you apply a capo. Often a guitar will have intonation issues, this means that the guitar might be in tune at the first fret but will get further out of tune as you move up the neck. Try to correct any problems with intonation by checking your tuning every time you apply a capo.

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