Do people generally tune the bayan, for instance to get equal tones at the chat on opposite sides of the syahi? My bayan makes a kind of annoying buzz/off-key sound that _seems_ to improve when I do this. Just wondering if it is common practice.
It's hard to disappoint a pessimist.
Yes, ideally the baya should be in tune all the way around. Also, I like to tune mine to Sa or Pa. This especially makes a big difference when you're playing vilambit. The baya essentially becomes a drone, and it sounds much better when it's set to a pitch that makes sense within the music.