Persian Santoor tuning charts and the location of courses
Persian Santour tuning charts
Persian Santur tuning charts


The standard Persian Santoor has a total amount of 18 courses and will be called G-tune santoor (Santoor-e Sol Kuk) with 90 cm wide at the broad end, 36 cm wide at the narrow end and 6 cm deep. The right 9 courses (bridges) can be strung with either phosphor bronze musical wires or brass ones. In order to prevent some mistakable terms we call all courses, which care about the bass position and are strung with brass or phosphor bronze strings, brass courses and the courses strung with steel strings as steel courses.

The right side of this brass courses will not have a sound application. The left side of brass courses can only be sounded. The correct location of the brass courses should be adjusted in the way, so that the sound combination of two notes at the left side and right side of any brass cou
rse builds a perfect fifth or fourth.

The left 9 courses must be strung with steel musical wires. The steel courses should be positioned in a way, that the sound combination
of two notes at the right and left side of any course builds an octave.

While the right side of the steel courses care about the midrange position, the left side cares about the treble position. Depending on the mode the 1st, 4th and 7th course can be slightly moved for some millimeters to the right side, so that the both sides of the course causes two different sounds.




Tuning Chart for Dastgah-e Shur


First Position brass strings

Second Position steel strings

Third Position steel strings


E3-Koron E4-Koron E5-Koron


F3 F4 F5


G3 G4 G5


A3-Koron A4-Koron A5b


B3b B4b B5b


C4 C5 C6


D4 D5-Koron D6-Koron


E4b E5b E6b


F4 F5 F6


with different transcription forms like santour or santur is the hammered dulcimer of Iran (Persia).

The archetype of the instrument may be seen in a harp, carried horizontally and struck with two sticks, found in iconographical documents of the ancient Babylonian (1600-911 BCE) and neo-Assyrian (911-612 BCE) eras.

Iranian santoor consists of a trapeziform case made of walnut wood, approximately 90 cm wide at the broad end, 36 cm wide at the narrow end and 6 cm deep. The strings are fixed to hitch-pins along the left-hand side and wound round metal wrest-pins on the right by means of which they are tuned with a tuning-key (Tuning Wrench). Each quadruple set of strings rests on a movable bridge of hardwood (kharak).  The bridges are placed so that the strings are divided into three sections, giving the fundamental note and two higher octaves.

There are nine (or sometimes 10, 11 and 12) quadruple strings an either side so that, with 18 groups of strings, 27 different notes can be played. The bass strings are of brass or copper and the trebles of steel.

Iranian santoor is played by striking the strings with two light hammers (mezrab) held in three fingers of each hand. The ends of the sticks are usually covered with cloth to soften their impact on the strings.



Persian Santoor Tuning Charts
Persian Santour tuning charts
Persian Santur tuning charts