How to Capo Correctly

Capo: How to Capo Correctly on the Guitar - part 1

Today I'm going to explain how to properly capo your guitar. Technical info: a capo is a device that conveniently allows yo
u to change where the nut is on your guitar, allowing you to play open, or first position chords, in different keys.  For example, I can play in the key of A if I play a first position G chord while having my capo set on fret 2.  One challenge I have with most capos though is the way they pull your guitar sharp, or out of tune, when you put them on.  I originally thought it was primarily based on spring strength in the quick-release type capos.  I researched different capos because I was frustrated with the way the guitar would get pulled out of tune when I played.  Quick release capos especially I thought, because the spring is so strong.  I spent a lot of money on capos like the Keyser, Shubb, G7th, Planet Waves and such searching for the right capo that I could move quickly in a live performance, but would not have to deal with the frustration of being out of tune.  What I discovered is that I was simply placing the capo on the guitar neck in the incorrect position. 
Capo: How to Capo Correctly on the Guitar - part 2

Typically what I used to do is place the capo right behind the fret in a way that you could see quite a space between the capo and the fret.  But in general, it is not your capo and the spring strength that is causing the issue, but rather where you are placing it on the neck.  The capo should actually be sitting almost on the fret, but set so that it is just behind it.  The edge of the capo should be placed right on the back half of the fret behind which you are capoing.  It should not deaden the strings all yet about half the capo should be touching about half the fret. You may need to practice to get it right, and also practice to put it in the correct position quickly, such as when you are playing live. 

Capo: How to Capo Correctly on the Guitar - part 3

The idea is that by capoing in the right position does not pull your guitar out of tune.  If you place the capo too far back you can hear that the guitar will typically go sharp.  By placing the capo in the correct place, you will have a guitar that is always in tune (or at least as much in tune as you had it when you started!).  This works with quick release type capos as well as others.

Watch the video on How to Capo Correctly