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So I bought a digital clip-on tuner from eBay. Tuning accuracy: ±0.5cents it said. Nice clear display. Looked really good. Only one problem. Most of the time when it says the guitar is in tune it isn't. It may be accurate to ±0.5cents but I am sure it doesn't read to anywhere near that.
If what I understand is true, I'm not uspposed to be able to hear less than about three or four cents, but my hearing is certainly better than this tuner. It's not that it ever says that I am out of tune when I am in, but it seems to have a very wide range of what it considers "in tune".
So, finally, to the question. Are they all like this or did I just choose a rubbish one?
If there is any consensus on what is a good one, and preferably not too expensive (expensive is out of the question at the moment) I would be very grateful.
Just as a little foot note, the tuner function in GarageBand works well, but restricts me to being attached to my computer.
Thanks for the reply and the interesting suggestion. The clip-on tuners will work even in noisy surroundings where tuning by ear is difficult (such as an open mic session perhaps). Is that possible with your arrangement? If it is that may well be the way to go.
All the best.
Sorry. More questions. If it can work in noisy environments how does it pick up the vibration of your instrument and ignore all the other sounds? It there some sort of attachment?
All the best.
What brand did you buy?
It says Cadine on it and it was made in China. I chose it because it had a very clear display, but it was also quite cheap (so I should have known better I suppose).
All the best.
I have a cheap Sanyo I got for under $20 at a local book store. It doesn't have clip on sensor but it does have line in/out for an electric. I've found it works just fine with a piezo - even in a friends studio with a band cranked up to 11 I was able to plug my CBG in and tune it when I couldn't even hear myself over the band.
But usually I just use my phone. On Android I've had really good luck with g-Strings and daTuner.
I'm sure none of these methods have the accuracy of a nice strobe - but they're more than sufficient for the build level of my guitars ;) Maybe with some better tuners and a bit more time getting the bridge set just right it would be worth it to use a nicer tuner...but for me the cheap sanyo and my phone are at least more accurate than my ears!
Hi Jason and Penfoot.
Thank you for the recommendations. It's interesting that so far nobody has recommended a clip on one, and yet I see many people with them on the headstock even while playing. Are they there for purposes of decoration (surely not).
Anyway, thanks again for the information.
All the best.
I've just never had the opportunity to try a clip on. I have found that just laying my cheapie on my guitar gets MUCH better response than the mic alone. I tend to do that with the phone too. Seems to help keep out a lot of the extraneous sounds.
I've seen some nice high end clip ons though so I assume they can work well. Sounds like you may have just lost a round of ebay roulette with the one you got ;)
I have used a clip on in my local music store and it works fine, I know some proffesional musicians who use the clip ons and like them, all these people have way better ears than me so they must be working. John I think you just got a bad one.
Gitty sell a cheap one that he says works well.
I have a KORG chromatic tuner I have been using to tune my 3 string. When I compare it to my Q12E chromatic tuner it is very close. What I'm wondering is that many builders are putting together cigar box guitars that perhaps are not true to scale and tuning them is not an easy matter. Cigar Box guitars are tuned to approximate tunings that may in the end just sound good to the builder / player. A decent digital tuner should easily put you in the range when tuning(30.00). Since I am so early into this I would yield to someone like KeniLee he seems to have a handle on these issues...Peter