WHEN I ASKED SUPER-TECH GARY BRAWER to identify the most common
question he gets hit with, he did not hesitate: “Guitarists are constantly
asking how they can make their guitars get in tune and stay in tune better.”
Over the years we’ve seen any number of tools to assist in this endeavor,
from Floyd Rose locking whammies to nut lubes to robotic systems that
tune your guitar for you at the touch of a button. All of those things are
effective in their own way and can certainly help an instrument to stay in
tune, but none of them—not even the Floyd—can prevent a guitar from
going out of tune, because that’s impossible, right? All guitars go out of
tune. It’s just the nature of the beast.
Well, meet the Evertune bridge, an ingenious device that promises to
keep your guitar in tune forever, or at least for the life of a string set.
Okay, you got my attention. But does it work? And, if so, how?
The bridge is made up of a series of springs and levers that occupy
a cavity a little larger than that of a Strat-style whammy system. (Yes,
your guitar needs to be routed to accommodate the Evertune.) Each
string gets its own “module” that maintains constant tension on
the string. What that means is, for a given gauge, the correct tension
will give you the same pitch, no matter what happens to the string due to temperature changes, crazy
bends, etc. Sounds good, but I had to try it
myself to believe it.
The Evertune arrived in a Tele. I took it
right out of the case, hit a chord, and it was
perfectly in tune. Not kind of in tune, but
dead on. Then things started to get nuts. I
bent a note on the G string and the pitch
didn’t change. It’s the craziest sensation. In
this mode, called the “sweet spot,” the Evertune
keeps the tension the same regardless
of whether I bend a note, turn the tuning
machines, you name it. I cranked every tuning
machine a couple of turns and hit a
chord—perfectly in tune. It was amazing,
but what if I want to bend notes?!?
Easy. To get into the bending range, I
turned the tuning machine of the G string
several turns until I finally heard the note
go sharp. This means that the tension of the
string is right at the point where it will overrule
the tension of the module. I backed off
a quarter turn and the string went back to a
perfect G, only now I could bend all I wanted.
I bent the string as high as I could—a move
that would cause the string to come back
flat on pretty much any guitar I’ve ever
owned—and it returned exactly to pitch.
The Evertune is totally mechanical—no
servos or anything like that. It works dynamically,
with each module acting like a see-saw,
instantly sensing any increase or decrease
in tension and compensating in real time.
The installation obviously needs to be handled
by a pro, but I was able to change strings
myself no problem. Despite all the complicated physics and engineering involved in
its design, you can suss out most of what
the Evertune does by ear. Getting the strings
back to pitch after changing them took a little
while (it’s accomplished with a 2.5mm
hex wrench), but no longer than, say, with
a Floyd Rose system. And the cool thing is,
once I got the brand new strings in tune, I
didn’t have to stretch them out or fuss with
all the retuning that a new set of strings
requires. The Evertune does all that for you.
This bridge is definitely a marvel of engineering,
and most guitarists would love a
guitar that never goes out of tune, but here’s
where I see it really paying off. First off, in
the studio. You could quickly and easily lay
down multiple tracks and never stop to check
your tuning. Or, if you’re producing an artist
who has questionable technique, you no
longer have to worry about them squeezing
a chord out of tune. Put each string in the
sweet spot and no matter how hard they
yank on that barre chord, it won’t go sharp.
Anyone who has ever played a TV date knows
that (A) you’ve got one shot and you have
to be perfect, and (B) those studios are often
freezing cold. The Evertune bridge will take
away any fears of playing out of tune in front
of a potentially huge audience. But for guitarists
who are sick of tuning up onstage at
a bar gig or anyone who has struggled to
keep an instrument in tune (like all of us),
you need to check this out ASAP. It’s one of
the most amazing innovations I’ve seen in
a long time.
CONTACT Evertune, evertune.com
MODEL Evertune T model
PRICE $330 retail/installation $200-$300
KUDOS Amazing, groundbreaking design. Delivers
on the promise.
CONCERNS Routing for installation might put
off some players.