Bought a new Suzuki M37 Melodion completely out of tune.

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    Hey folks. I bought a Suzuki M37 Melodion through Amazon and they sent me one straight out of Japan. (based on the review the melodica got here) I got it but it’s not tuned at all. Are they not supposed to deliver a proper tuned one? Should I return it or is tuning a melodica not that hard? So basically what I’m asking is receiving an offkey melodica reason to send it back?

    I bought a SuperForce 37 Hohner, AirBoard 37 Hohner, Soprano Hohner, Student 32 Hohner and this Suzuki M37. And still the Student 32 is the best one.

    Thanks guys!


    I dare to say it is quite suspicious.

    Have you succeeded in measuring the degree of “out-of-tunedness” with any digital or mobile tuner?

    Tuning melodica (or harmonica or similar instruments) is definitely not easy – and involves scrapping reeds with the file or scalpel – something that you are not expected to do if you have no significant experience (and a number of broken instruments behind).

    If you are sure you are blowing it properly and the sound is too much out of tune – probably you’ve got something which the seller did not want to sell you (if it is a shop, not a person) and you should try to get in contact.


    Your melodica should be in tune when you receive it. Sometimes there might be one or two imperfect notes, or sometimes, the whole instrument can be slightly sharp, but it should be basically in tune.

    You could send it back for a replacement, or try tuning it yourself. This is something you’ll have to learn eventually if you’re playing a lot.

    Many people tune their own instruments – have a look at the guide here

    Alan Brinton

    Suzuki M series Melodions typically come from the factory reasonably well tuned, Gido. You can download a free tuning app for Android or iPad/iPhone or go to an Internet site to check the tuning, as Rodion suggests. Does it seem to be out of tune relative to itself, or relative to the tuning of your other instruments? It might be tuned to A=440hz or A=441, while your others are closer A=443, which would make it seem flat, when actually they are sharp. If you test all its notes you can determine what standard it seems to have been tuned to and compare with the others. I would be really surprised if the factory tuning of an M-37C was just all over the place so that it was completely out of tune with itself. It might be that all the Hohners are sharp and that it’s the Suzuki that’s actually in tune (in relation to the 440 standard). But some people prefer sharp tuning.

    I have tuned an M-32C and an A-34C. Most melodicas are factory tuned sharp. These Suzukis were a bit sharp, but less so than most. I tuned them down slightly to A=440 on the M-32C and A=441 on the A-34C. I also have an M-37C, which I haven’t tuned because I don’t play it as much and there didn’t seem to be a problem.

    Alan Brinton

    Ditto on Daren’s comments. The Melodica World “How to Tune a Melodica” is excellent, and tuning is easier than most people think. It just takes some time and patience. And it’s less frustrating if you’re not striving for absolute perfection.


    Thanks for the feedback guys. Well I can send an mp3 of a song I’ve recorded last week with a Student 32 and one of the same song from yesterday with the Suzuki M-37. Lol it’s like someone is scraping their nails over a chalkboard. The standard middle C key is the worst. And that is the note you check 1st I assume. Is it possible to post music here?

    Alan Brinton

    SoundCloud is good for posting audio clips.

    A4, the A above Middle C, is usually where you start — seeing how close it is to 440hz (or 441 or 442 or whatever), deciding whether that’s where you want it, getting it where you want it, and then tuning the other keys to it.

    I’m thinking maybe you find the sound of the M-37C harsh, brittle, brassy in comparison with the more muted sound of the Hohners, which some people find dull in comparison. The sound of the M-32C is less edgy. But if my thought is correct, you’d probably like a Yamaha.

    Maybe your eardrums have been damaged, Gido, by playing your trombone at the airport.


    Well it’s starting to sound better after playing it for a while. Which is odd if you tell me. I will probably try to tune the reeds myself. It’s pretty “ok” now. If the difference between an A and a Bb is 10 steps it’s probably too high everywhere a half or 1 step.

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