Guitar Tuner Reviews and Buyer's Guide
Guitars of all kinds can sound beautiful, but it is important to keep them in tune, or they will sound terrible. A few people are blessed with perfect pitch and can tune perfectly by ear. For others, like me, you’ll need the help of a guitar tuner. Here’s my view of the best guitar tuner on the market today.
Our top 5 Guitar Tuners
Guitar Tuner Buyer’s Guide
To tune an instrument, it can be done with the aid of different types of tuning devices. Some are manual, which take more knowledge and practice to master. Yet, many are electronic and help tune your instruments.
Regardless of what type of tune device you are seeking, you should be aware of a few key points. We will provide answers to a few of the common questions to help you with your purchasing decision.
See our complete series where we compare the best guitar accessories for the money.
What kind of instrument are you tuning?
When looking for a tune device, this is the most important question that you should answer. Some tune models designs are for specific types of instruments. Yet, others have the capability of helping tune many types of instruments.
If you are planning to tune your guitar, then a regular electronic tuner will do the trick. Yet, if you own a lot of instruments, there is a better option. You should consider purchasing a single tuner that can tune all the instruments you need.
What type of Tuner will best fit your situation?
There are several types of electronic tuners, and each one has its own purpose, but they all do the same thing. The different types to consider are:
1. Clip-On or Headstock
These devices are usually lightweight and compact. This , which make traveling with them, a breeze. Plus, they are used while playing gigs to make sure that your instrument remains in tune. They can be used during a performance without drawing a lot of attention to the device. Some of these models come with a built-in mic that allows acoustic tuning. With these models, position is important. Many of the them will come with a swivel mechanism. This allows you to adjust the angel of the device for better visibility.
2. Rack and Tabletop
If you plan on playing in a stationary place, these models provide you with a stead and solid tune. There are different qualities of these types found in many budget ranges. They generally sit on a table or shelf. Usually, they also have various features and functions that can assist in more things.
3. Other Functions and Features to consider
Some model designs have many functions. They have several extra features that set them apart from competitors. You may want to find a model that has some of the following features and functions for a better performance.
Guitars Tuners with Built-in Metronomes
A metronome is a device that helps keep rhythm and tempo. Some devices come with a metronome function. This helps musicians of all levels improve their playing.
Tuners with auto pitch detection
If a device can compare a tune to its true pitch. The quality of the sound will be better. Some models come with an auto pitch detection. This provides you with information on your pitch at the same time.
Your tuner’s built-in display
These devices help you to see when you hit the right note. Yet, if you cannot see what the device is telling you, then the device is not effective. Thus, it is important to check out the type of display that each model has. Some work better in darker areas, while others are easier to see in well-lit areas. These features should impact your final purchasing decision.
Reviews of the Best Guitar Tuners
Snark is a well-known manufacturer of string instruments and similar accessory products. This one was designed to fit on a range of stringed instruments. With its padded clip, it fits on the headstock. This turner has had bad effects on some instruments with a nitrocellulose finish.
Yet, that aside, the display is easy to read, and it is small, which is excellent for traveling to gigs. It can rotate 360-degrees. This makes it easy to maneuver it in the best position for individual preference.
It requires one lithium metal battery to run, which comes with the bundle. The entire device only weighs .32ounces. This makes it convenient for traveling and playing. It will not weigh you down while playing.
The SN-5 model has been named on many best seller lists, from Musical Instruments to Tune Models. If the display is dim, you should be able to switch out the battery to make it brighten right up.
- Allows for 360-degree rotation
- Tailored towards guitar and bass frequency range
- Capable of resting on the front or back of headstock
- Not compatible with instruments that have a nitrocellulose finish
The FT-004 Chromatic Tuner is manufactured by Fender. It can be set to tune different instruments. Some instruments it can tune are guitars, ukuleles, violins, and bass. This one is designed to be small and lightweight to not interfere with actual playing.
You need a precision Philips head driver to be able to remove the compartment covering it. This is the biggest issue people have with this tuner. It requires one CR2 battery, which does come included with this model.
It is designed for beginners, because it displays the string that you are working with. It instructs whether the string is too high or low. Yet, it doesn’t display the actual key. This makes it easier for beginners. They are usually do not have an experienced ear.
It has a petite design. You can manoeuver the model on your instrument to the best position for you to see, thanks to the swivel clamp. It is designed so that you are able position it with a single hand, and it has a tuning range of B0-B7.
- Compatible with tuning guitars, bass, violins, and ukuleles
- Provides fast and easy results
- Designed for beginners
- Able to be adjusted with movable clip-on
- Difficult to change batteries
- Needs resetting to remain accurate
It works well if you plan on playing in areas that are rather tight and must move. With this design, it doesn’t stick out. Thus, there is a less likely chance that it will get knocked off, while playing and moving.
The NS Micro model is meant for players of all levels. The tri-color backlit screen is easy to read and displays the note that you are playing in red, yellow, or green. If the note is red, it is not close to being tuned. If the note is yellow, it is close to being tuned but not quite there. If the note is green, then the instrument is tuned for that specific note.
It also has a 360-degree swivel mechanism that makes it easy to adjust the model to the perfect angle. The clamp is padded with a quality material. This helps to ensure that it does not scratch or cause any damage to the instrument.
- 360-degree swivel mechanism
- Tri-color backlit screen for easy readability
- Accurate piezo transducer
- Adjustable calibration from 410 to 480Hz
- Creates buzzing sound if not tightened enough
- Could use brighter screen
The KLIQ MetroPitch is a 3-in-1 option. Not only does it assist you in tuning your instrument, it also acts as a tone generator and a metronome. Unlike other models, it runs off 2 AAA batteries, which makes it easy to go out and change the batteries, as needed.
This model comes equipped with a speaker and headphone jack. It also has a volume control button to help amplify the process. It has an easy to read LCD display that has LED indicators to make it simpler to know your doing it.
It comes with its own built-in kickstand to make setting it up easier. It has a metal finished that is designed to make it more durable than other models. It is designed for convenient traveling. The MetroPitch also comes with a carry case fits in an instrument case. This relieves the worry about the tuner getting messed up, due to exposure.
This model also comes with an 88-note tone generator. This is used to help people train themselves on how different notes should sound. It also provides them with an alternative way of tuning an instrument.
- 3-in-1 capability as a tone generator, metronome, and tuner
- 3-year manufacturer guarantee
- Fast and accurate
- Easy to read
- Battery drains relatively quickly
- Any background noise might disrupt accurate readings
The TM-60 model is manufactured by Korg. It can be used to tune instruments with its tuning functions or use the metronome functions. These two things can be done or together, depending on the preference of the player.
With this model, it is easy to keep up with how your instrument has been tuned. This is thanks to the memory backup function that allows you to pull up previous information. Unlike other models, this model has an auto power-off. This makes conserving batteries, a lot easier.
This model can be used to tune a broad range of instruments, due to its wide detection range. The detection range for this model is c1-c8. The metronome works well to help keep up a tempo. It ranges from 30 to 252 beats/minute, and it has a total of 15 rhythm variations to choose from.
You can also select between three different tempo settings. It has a large display screen. This helps reading the tuner easier. It also features a backlit display that allows it to be used in darker areas.
- Large backlit display screen
- Auto power-off function
- Memory backup function
- 3 different tempo settings with 15 rhythm variations
- Thin LCD meter lines
What is the Best Guitar Tuner?
A lot of musicians do not need an electronic tuner to tune their instruments. Yet, they are still handy and often helps speed up the process. With this in mind, we have found that the MetroPitch by KLIQ is the best guitar tuner, available on the market.
It does help tune an instrument to best precision. Yet, it also has many of the extra features that make it the best option for most musicians. It includes a bright LCD display screen that makes it easy to read, regardless of where you are.
It also has a high sensitivity built-in mic to help match pitch and acts as a tone generator and metronome, all-in-one. Even though it is a tabletop tuner, it is lightweight and still transported with your instrument, wherever you might need it. On top of everything else, it runs off of AAA batteries. This means if it ever starts to die, you will not have to run out to a specialized store to try and find a battery. It also means you do not have to wait for a week for one to reach your home from ordering online.
The KLIQ MetroPitch has everything that it needs to be effective.