A lot of guitarists rely on apps to tune their guitars, especially beginners. Not only it is cheap (in most cases, free), but also convenient and easy to carry around. This is not to say that digital tuners are not easy to carry around, but people are less likely to forget their mobile phones than they are to forget their digital tuning devices. However, there are a lot of tuning apps in the mobile stores, and choosing one can be a confusing task. Now, all of those apps have one common purpose, which is tuning your guitar. But the way each one of these apps work is different. Some interfaces can be pretty difficult to navigate through; other tuner app developers like to get fancy and add more features onto their development like exercises, chord shapes, etc.
In this article, I looked up few tuner apps that are beginner and user friendly for both IOS and Android users. Note, however, that not all of them are free; some do need to be purchased. The good aspect about paid tuner apps is that they are usually ad-free. Believe it or not, there are apps that can’t let you tune even one string properly without forcing an ad or two into your face (don’t worry, the free apps listed here are not within these extremes). On the other hand, if you could care less about in-app ads, then you can just download the free ones.
Pano Tuner – Chromatic Tuner
You might not have heard of this app, but let me tell you, it is amazing. It might look somewhat old-fashioned and unappealing to the eye, but once you try out the tuner, you will probably overlook its appearance. The good thing I like about this tuner is that it’s chromatic. Most tuner apps provide only the standard tuning – EADGBe. This in itself is quite handy and sufficient for some people; however, some players, fingerstyle players, in particular, find use in tuning their strings to different notes to better suit the song arrangement.
It’s available for free on both IOS and Android devices. And it’s has a decent amount of positive ratings. Now, there is the paid version of this app, which enables non-standard turnings as well as an ad-free experience.
This app is a slightly more popular one thanks to its affiliation with Yousician. It has the same tuning technique as the App Yousician itself. The developers claim that GuitarTuna features the world’s most advanced audio recognition algorithm. The app works with electric and acoustic guitars as well as numerous other stringed instruments. It has a feature that automatically detects the string you are playing. Furthermore, there is a metronome and a chord library that can come in handy during practice. To make it more fun, developers added games that challenge your chord shapes knowledge.
However, some features cannot be accessed unless you spend some money. For instance, to get all the tunings and instruments, you will have to purchase them from the in-app store. One nice thing about GuitarTuna is that you don’t have to buy the whole version just to gain access to a couple of tunings. Instead, you have the option to either purchase GuitarTuna Pro, the whole version, or just purchase the paid features that you desire separately. It’s cheaper and more convenient.
Disregarding the Pro version of the app, GuitarTuna is available for both IOS and Android for free on each operating system’s respective store.
While the interface may look a bit daunting, it’s far off from that. Users were surprised by how simple to use it is. The audio recognition is accurate and quick. To make the job easier, the app has a manual in its setting page to help you utilize the features correctly.
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It’s available for IOS/Android users for free.
Pro Guitar Tuner
This app also does a good job at tuning a guitar. That’s said from the vast majority of people who downloaded this app. When I tried this app, however, I faced some inaccuracies. For instance, when I tried to tune the A string (standard tuning), it first signaled that I was close to 20 points too high. But I wasn’t; I was barely 2 or 3 points sharp. The app overestimates the points. Now, when I loosened the tuning peg to reach the green signal, the string started to really sound off. It was still out of tune. I went ahead to tune the string using a more trustworthy app.
This was my experience. You may or may not face the problem I faced. Seeing that a lot of people were satisfied with the tuning, I can say that’s unlikely that you are going to face any inaccuracies at all.
Pro Guitar Tuner is available on both IOS and Android. I would also like to add that the app does not offer any other features except for tuning. Moreover, the only tuning available for free is the standard tuning, as is the case with all the apps. If you wish to unlock the alternative tunings, you will have to purchase the Premium version, which carries with it other instruments, extra settings, future updates, as well as a no-ad experience.
Which one is the best?
You may have noticed that the title says The Best Guitar Tuner App, not Apps, so it only makes sense to choose the best app, right? I’m going to say it right from the get-go that this Best App may not be the one you fancy. We have different tastes. But we are making this evaluation based on the majorities’ opinions.
The Best App from the above four goes for GuitarTuna. This app carries over 3.5 million downloads, and most of the reviews are 5 star ratings. It’s not completely free, but it doesn’t limit its free users to just some basic features. GuitarTuna adds a decent share of fun into its app, even to the free users.
Personally, I used GuitarTuna for a long time before switching to Pano Tuner. I found that I didn’t use GuitarTuna’s practice games much, so I went to download a simpler option that does the job with the same quality.