verb (used with object), tuned, tun·ing.
- to adjust (a circuit, frequency, or the like) so as to bring it into resonance with another circuit, a given frequency, or the like.
- to adjust (a receiving apparatus) so as to make it compatible in frequency with a transmitting apparatus whose signals are to be received.
- to adjust (a receiving apparatus) so as to receive the signals of a particular transmitting station.
- to utter, sound, or express musically.
- to play upon (a lyre).
verb (used without object), tuned, tun·ing.
- to adjust a radio or television set so as to stop or avoid receiving (a station or channel).
- Slang.to stop paying attention to a person, situation, etc.
- to cause a group of musical instruments to be brought to the same pitch.
- to begin to sing.
- to bring into proper operating order, as a motor: Before starting on our trip we should have the car tuned up.
Origin of tune
Synonyms for tune
Word Origin for tune
late 14c., "a musical sound, a succession of musical notes," unexplained variant of tone. Meaning "state of being in proper pitch" is from mid-15c.
"bring into a state of proper pitch," c.1500, from tune (n.). Non-musical meaning "to adjust an organ or receiver" is recorded from 1887. Verbal phrase tune in in reference to radio (later also TV) is recorded from 1913; figurative sense of "become aware" is recorded from 1926. Tune out "to eliminate radio reception" is recorded from 1908; figurative sense of "disregard, stop heeding" is from 1928. Related: Tuned; tuning.
to the tune of
To the sum or extent of, as in They had profits to the tune of about $20 million. This idiom transfers tune, a succession of musical tones, to a succession of figures. [First half of 1700s]
In addition to the idioms beginning with tune
- tune in
- tune out
- tune up
- call the tune
- carry a tune
- change one's tune
- dance to another tune
- in tune
- to the tune of