This calculator shows guitarists how to play scales explained on this page.
Select the scale you want from the dropdown list.
There are 2 examples of each scale, starting with a root note on the 6th and 5th strings.
Often you would play scales toward higher fret positions on higher strings for more range.
Nevertheless, these scales still give you a clear idea of the different sound of each scale.
Loading images ... please wait
"R" above designates the root note of the scale.
This is also known as the tonic, and is the first note of the scale.
So if you want to play a scale in the key of A, you could use the scale shown above with the root note on the 6th string, and start from an A (5th fret on the 6th string).
Or to play a scale in the key of C, use the scale with the root on the 5th string, starting from C (3rd fret, 5th string).
You can also play the same scale in C from the root at the 8th fret on the 6th string.
Other notes of the scale are shown above.
Most scales have the root note and other notes from the 2nd to the 7th.
Often, some of these notes are a semitone flatter or sharper than the natural note in the major scale.
Here's an explanation of some of the scale notes you'll see:
- m3 is the minor 3rd or flattened 3rd, a semitone flatter than the major 3rd
- ♮7 is the natural 7th note of the major scale
- ♭7 is the dominant 7th, a semitone flatter than the natural 7th
- ♭♭7 is a double-flatted 7th, 2 semitones flatter than the natural 7th