Let’s look at how to play a Ddim (D diminished) chord on the piano. We’ll also learn the pattern for building any diminished chord.
What Are Diminished Chords?
So to build a diminished chord, we’ll start by building a minor chord. Minor chords are built using the first, third and fifth notes of the matching minor scale (learn how to build a minor scale here).
Then to convert the minor chord into a diminished chord, we’ll lower the upper-note 1/2 step.
How to Play a Ddim Chord
Then we’ll lower the highest note A 1/2 step, to A♭.
So to play a Ddim chord, we’ll play:
D – F – A ♭
Another way to write diminished chords is with the º symbol. So we could also write Ddim as Dº.
How to Label the Notes
Diminished chords are built using a root, a minor third, and a diminished fifth. Since D is our root note, the fifth will be some sort of A as we progress alphabetically (D – E – F – G – A).
Other Chord Types
There are many other types of chords you can learn. Here are some others:
Now you know how to build a Ddim chord on the piano, and you can use that pattern to build any diminished chord.
Diminished chords aren’t as common as minor chords, but it’s good to know how to build them for when you need them.
Piano chords are a quick and straight-forward way to learn and enjoy the piano!