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Major second
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Major second

The musical interval of a major second — also called a whole-tone — is the relationship between the first note (the root or tonic) and the second note in a major scale (and also a minor scale). It is the inversion of the minor seventh. It is abbreviated as M2.

It can be produced by starting on a high note and playing the second below or by starting on a low note and playing the second above.

A major second in just intonation corresponds to a pitch ratio of 9:8 or 1:1.125 while in an equal tempered tuning, a major second is equal to two semitones, a whole-tone, a ratio of 1:22/12 (approximately 1.122), or 200 cents, 3.910 centss smaller.

The major second is considered the most dissonant interval besides the minor second and major seventh.

See also

musical tuning, whole-tone scale, tonus.

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