FRETS.COM Illustrated Glossary

It's a bend you need

© Frank Ford, 11/4/98; Photos by FF, October 1998

"Relief" refers to the amount of forward curvature to the neck. Proper relief is critical to the playability of any fretted instrument. The harder you play, the wider the excursion of the string as it vibrates, and the more relief or forward neck curvature you need.

Relief is best visualized by mashing down one of the middle strings above the first fret and at the fret where the neck joins the body:

If you then look CLOSELY, you can see how high the string is held away from the frets at the midpoint between your two hands:

For more information about relief, check out
this article in the Buzz Diagnosis section.

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