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Cdim Chord Piano

The Cdim chord is made up of three notes – C, Eb, and Gb.

If you’re new to chords, the ‘dim’ is short for ‘diminished’ and the chord is also referred to as the ‘C diminished triad’.

You can actually play a Cdim chord on piano in three ways:

  • Root Position – This is where the C note is the lowest note of the chord
  • First Inversion – This is where the Eb note is the lowest note of the chord
  • Second Inversion – This is where the Gb note is the lowest note of the chord

I’ll quickly explain this in some more detail, with images and audio clips below.


Cdim Chord Piano – Root Position

Whenever you play a Cdim chord on piano, and C is the lowest note, that’s known as root position. It looks like this:

Piano keyboard with a C diminished chord highlighted in root position
Cdim Chord Piano – Root Position

There are seven places on a standard piano where you can play a Cdim chord in root position. If you have a piano close by, try playing each one.

Below you’ll see what all seven look like on sheet music. Click the play button if you’d like to hear what they sound like too.

Sheet music showing all seven C diminished chords in root position from low to high

Cdim Chord Piano – First Inversion

Whenever you play a Cdim chord on piano, and Eb is the lowest note, that’s known as the first inversion. It looks like this:

Piano keyboard with a C diminished chord highlighted in first inversion
Cdim Chord Piano – First Inversion

And here it is played in all places on a standard piano. You’ll notice that there are seven of these too.

Sheet music showing all seven C diminished chords in first inversion from low to high

Cdim Chord Piano – Second Inversion

Whenever you play a Cdim chord on piano, and Gb is the lowest note, that’s known as the second inversion. It looks like this:

Piano keyboard with a C diminished chord highlighted in second inversion
Cdim Chord Piano – Second Inversion

And here is the second inversion played in all places on a standard piano. There are six of these.

Sheet music showing all six C diminished chords in second inversion from low to high

That’s all for this post. I hope you enjoyed learning about Cdim chords on piano. Now it’s time to go play some music using these chords!