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A Tuner that WORKS?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Silver Blues, Jul 26, 2012.

  1. Hey all,

    I had no idea where to put this so mods, move if necessary. I just have a simple question to a simple problem that's bugging me.

    I have two available electronic tuners, the one built into my Fender Mustang III amplifier and an Apex AT8 clip-on.

    My problem: the one in the M3 won't detect the low E (I didn't figure it would, so no harm no foul) and the AT8 takes forever and three days to respond to my bass. Plus, it's kind of obtrusive (I like smooth, understated things OK? :rolleyes:). So, I would love recommendations on a clip-on tuner that has a decent response time. I was looking at the Planet Waves NS Mini (can't get more unobtrusive than that eh?) but don't have any cognition of it's function. Help?

  2. Trabeen

    Trabeen Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    I've had great luck with a Snark SN-2, fast and accurate with a nice bright display. It is a little slow on the B if you play fives or sixes, but nothing that has ever bothered me enough to look for anything else since I've been using them.
  3. Klonk


    Apr 28, 2011
    So no pedals/stomp boxes?
  4. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    Eastern North Dakota
    People complain abut the Boss TU-2 but it works fine for me. The TU-3 is supposed to be better. People seem to like the Korg Pitch Black pedal.
  5. Phalex

    Phalex Semper Gumby Supporting Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    G.R. MI
    Turbo Tuner. Best thing EVAR!
  6. Boss TU-3 , Korg Pitchblack or TC Polytune. There is a reason you see these on EVERYONES rig. If its not broke don't fix it. Funny, I used the tuner on the Line 6 M5 the other day just cause it was there, I was almost a half step off, haha, crap
  7. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    I like both the Pitchblack and the Polytune, but either Boss TU-2 or TU-3. I wouldn't waste my time with a clip on tuner.
  8. bigsnaketex


    Dec 29, 2011
    Down South
    I use the new Planet Waves mini on my headstock. It's so small you don't even see it and it works great. It takes a while like all clip on's for the E - but I just fret it at the fifth and tune it to A!! (just make sure you're intonated or that won't work!)

    I leave mine on during gigs so I can check it. I would not do that with my Snark - it's too big.

    I also have a Boss TU3 for more precise environments or very dark and noisy stages.
  9. Eh, I'd prefer not to, not a big stompbox guy with bass. I mean if that's the only thing left then okay, but...

    Yeah, I know a guy who uses a Snark, they're not bad but yes, too big--more so than my AT8.



    EDIT: Oh, and @Rick-- I see where you're coming from, but the clip-ons are so much more convenient for me, no unplugging and plugging and stompboxes, etc.
  10. ddnidd1

    ddnidd1 Supporting Member

    Frankly, I think you're getting your $11-15 worth of clip on performance. And when it does work you're probably getting the accuracy of a ballpark guess.

    Get a real tuner.
  11. glenb73


    Dec 18, 2010
    The Boss tuner is $99 , if you can spend that much go for it, otherwise get a clip on tuner or the korg pitchblack
  12. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I just got the Korg and it rocks. However, if you're looking for a good value and don't want to spend a fortune, Hartke FT50 is a hottie.
  13. I assume you use a 4 string tuned to E?

    I had the PW NS mini clip on on my 4 string and it had a little bit of a hard time tracking the low open E but worked great using the 12th fret harmonics.

    I currently have a Boss TU-2 on my pedalboard and it works great!
    I've had a Polytune Mini as well and it works good too, very small!
  14. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    You know those tuners might work just fine, have you attempted tuning with the harmonic?

    I used to use my guitar players tuner in high school, I had to use harmonics for it to pick up the A and E.

    As far as tuners go, I like the TU-2/3, but I love my TC Electronics PolyTune, quick fix for 6. I use stomp boxes not rack stuff. If I had a rack I wouldn't mind using my tuner out and always having a tuner on, but Markbass doesn't use a mute...
  15. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005
    I currently have the DTR-2000, Pitchblack, and Pitchjack by Korg, a Peterson Strobostomp, and a Snark SN-2, and have checked out any other decent tuners...

    IMO/IME, the best tuners for $130 and less are:


    ...in that order - and for the money, a used Pitchblack from GC for $40 or so is the best tuner value today... The Boss tuners are slower tracking and less accurate than the above 3, and not in the same league performance-wise...

    The Pitchjack actually works quite well, except for the fact that you can't use it on stage unless it's in an amp's Tuner Out jack - you could tune up before going on, though...

    Regarding the clipons - the Snark is arguably the best of the bunch from my research, and I don't think very highly of it... It works OK, but nowhere near as well as a pedal or rack tuner - and not as well as the Pitchjack, either... I bought it for $11 on Amazon, and that's about all it's worth, IMO...

    For gigging, I use the DTR-2000 in my rack, and both my guitarists are using the Polytunes - with excellent results, I might add...

    - georgestrings
  16. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005

    The Snark is actually fairly accurate, if you take the time to use it as needed, but is nowhere near as quick to track as a decent pedal tuner...

    - georgestrings
  17. Shardik


    May 24, 2011
    Halden, Norway
    I have a cheap, no name tuner pedal. I just love the concept. I rarely use other pedals for bass, and could easily gig without any (even if I recently got a bass wah which is fun, but is not in gig use and I also own a phaser I use on an occational song).

    Anyway, the tuner pedal allows me to easily verify tuning between songs and also mutes the bass (selectable), which allows me to actually use the volume knob on the bass for something useful, not having to turn it down when fiddling with other stuff. That is the pedal I use most of all both for guitar and bass.

    If you really don't want any pedals at all, I have an old Korg GA-30 tuner that plugs into any bass or guitar and works great, but then you have to unplug your bass cable which is not great when gigging. I think GA-30 is discontinued, but replaced by GA-1.
  18. mambo4


    Jun 9, 2006
    for me:
    boss TU-2 wouldn't track in a live situation once too often.
    my planet waves strobe pedal seems to track reliably.
  19. Yes.

    I should probably try that... :oops: It does pick up my A and E, but takes sooooo long...

    I actually kinda like that. It has an in and an out, a lot of tuners I've seen like that have only an in, so you're unplugging and plugging all the time. Does it mute?

    I may just have to do that XD

  20. Shardik


    May 24, 2011
    Halden, Norway
    I am considering a pitch black myself. Very responsive (tried it at a friends house).

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