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Scales Cheat Sheet

A Guide to Musical Scales For Guitarists

Scale pages sectons help


Scales Cheat Sheet has been built to become a guide and treasure trove for a modern guitarist. The largest part of content of this website constitutes 60 pages devoted to musical heptatonic and pentatonic scales, each bremming with abundance of useful information on note distributions, positions, intervals, chords and much more stuff you normally do not see anywhere else, or at least not on the same page.

This Help page part aims to give you a brief descriptions of scale pages and their sections.

Scale content

Each scale page on Scales Cheat Sheet starts with a table of contents. The table contains links to all the sections of the page it sits on.

Notes and key signature

The Notes and Key Signature section gives an overview about what notes a scales consists of, lists name of a degree (also using Roman numerals) for each note in the scale, and tells scale's key signature. Notes for this and most of the following it sections are color-coded.

Scale Formula

The Scale Formula section shows a sequence of whole and half steps used to build the given scale. Scales in the same family (i.e. Major) share the same steps formula.


The Fretborad section shows a distribution of a scale's notes on the guitar's fretboard. The fretboard used has 24 frets, with the nut as the 0th fret.


The Positions section gives a narrowed down distribution of notes in the scale. For heptatonic scales there are seven positions, each of them spans 5 frets.

This section is one of the most important tools for learning playing a scale in an organised and consistent manner. Each positions contains two views, one with notes (default view) and one with fingerings.


The Intervals section gives an overview of intervals found between notes of the given scale. The interval names are given in a form of a table and abbreviated.


The Pentatonic section is very similar to the Fretborad section. It shows a distribution of a pentatnic's notes on the guitar's fretboard.

Positions for Pentatonic

The Positions for Pentatonic section is very similar to the Positions section, except it consists of only 5 positions and is designed to teach you to play a pentatonic scale.


The Modes section lists all the modes found for the given heptatonic scale.

Relative Scale

The Relative Scale section, gives a name and notes of a relative scale for the scale being browsed. At present, this section is available for Major and Natural Minor scales only.

Scale Chords

The Scale Chords section gives overview of many chord families and chords based on notes of the given scale. At the very least, each chord subsection shows notes and intervals for a given chord. For chords based on 3 or more notes also a position of the chord on the fretboard and fingerings are given.

Chords Shapes

The Chords Shapes section is a tool for finding how a chord looks on the fretboard. Each shape is located in one of three subsections depending on on which string (E,A or D) root note of a chord is on

Chords Based on Scale Degrees

The Chords based on Scale Degrees section gives an overview of Triads and 7* chords based on each degree of the given scale and their names.

Chord Progressions

The Chord Progressions section describes the most popular chord progressions based on triads and 7* chords. Each chord is given as a sequence of color-coded notes.


The Backcycling section gives an overview of the backcycling process.

End of Introduction

Tools help


Scales Cheat Sheet features a couple of tools, which you might find useful as you learn playing guitar.

Scale search

Scale search tool finds scales, which share a set of chords. The tool takes chord(s) name(s) as its input.

Chords in common search

Chords in common search tool finds common chords for two scales. Found chords consist of notes found in both scales. The tool takes two scale names as its input.

Frets to scales search

Frets to scales search tool finds scales, whose notes are found on particular frets of the fretboard. Frets to scales search takes fret names and scale types to search for as its input.

Tab to scales search

Tab to scales search tool finds scale(s) using a tab. It uses up to 5 bars of the tab and up to 20 unique fret names from the tab to discover scales a piece of music represented by the tab is in.

End of Introduction