1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Best Handheld tuner!

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by grass132456, Dec 6, 2012.

  1. grass132456


    Sep 12, 2011
    Hey guys!
    I hope this is the right section, but what is the best guitar/bass tuner? Hopefully one that is easy enough to hold in your hand and can tune to every note, not just the basic EADG(BE).
  2. kellyrojo


    Feb 16, 2011
    South Carolina
    Snark.... Cheap accurate perfect. Also use the search for more info. Gl
  3. rfslick


    Dec 31, 2008
    Benicia, CA. USA
    ++1 Inexpensive and effective. Simple!
  4. esa372

    esa372 Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    I'm not sure why or when you would want to hold a tuner in your hands, but this is the best tuner available right now:

    Sonic Research Turbo Tuner
  5. grass132456


    Sep 12, 2011
    I don't want a pedal because I usually share a portable tuner with other people and if I have a pedal, it is just going to take much more time to just tune. I'm looking for simplicity and efficiency without pedals :p
  6. brianerwin


    Oct 21, 2012
    Snark!!! All the way. You can tune ALL your notes.


    Snark Tuner
  7. I personally have not had good luck with Snark tuners on basses (they work GREAT on regular EADGBE-tuned guitars). The tuner that has worked best for me is the Boss TU-80. It "chirps" when each note is in tune, giving you a definite cue.

  8. megafiddle


    May 25, 2011
    I have a Turbo Tuner ST-122, which is hand held (not a pedal).

    It's chromatic (all notes) with a range of C0 to C8. Also has the standard notes for
    various instruments, as you would expect.

    I like these, they are true strobes. The signal is converted directly to display, much as
    the rotating disc strobe tuners did, but different technology. Once the note has been
    identified, the pitch information is instantaneous.

    You do have to get a feel for it though. The tuner does not indicate "in tune" or "not in tune".
    You have to do that.
  9. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    this is by far the best "hand held" tuner at any price, but they're kinda hard to get these days; they're now made with a cool steampunk-looking aluminum housing which is apparently difficult to manufacture right, so they're in short supply. you'd need to call them to order one, and they're more like $170 now.

    (i'm lucky i have three of the older ones, including one on my repair bench :smug:)
  10. I have a TU-2 tuner. It's a pedal, but I use it as a hand held. Just because it's a pedal doesn't mean you have to have it on a pedal board or on the floor in line with your bass and amp.
  11. tjh

    tjh Supporting Member

    Mar 22, 2006
    I had several of the Snark clip ons, and just never felt real good about them .. I never used the Snark hand held ...I have the Boss TU-80, along with a couple of the less expensive Korg handhelds, along with a brand new Korg Pitchblack pedal tuner, that never gets used ... I usually just end up using whatever handheld is in the case of the bass I grab ...

    .. when I tested the Boss with my 40+ year old calibrated Peterson Strobe tuner (model 420?), it was perfectly accurate ... the TU-80 is also a metronome if that matters ...Musicians Friend has them on sale for like $22 now ... I paid mid $30's if I remember correctly ...
  12. esa372

    esa372 Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    Ah, now I get it.

    megafiddle and walterw have it - the ST-122:

  13. megafiddle


    May 25, 2011
    They are amazing tuners. You can set one of these on a table top and then play a note
    on an acoustic guitar. If you move towards or away from the tuner, you can see the pitch
    rise or fall due to doppler effect.
  14. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    ooh, i haven't tried that one!

    my favorite is testing pickup installs before i put strings back on; i hold a tuning fork over the new pickup, then over the other ones, and if the half-circle in the display flips to the other side of the ring i know the new pickup is out of polarity with the others and needs its wires reversed.
  15. TheEmptyCell

    TheEmptyCell Bearded Dingwall Enthusiast

    Jul 16, 2005
    Belfast, UK
    Buy yourself a tuner, and tell whoever the hell is using yours all the time to get their own. It's pretty unprofessional to have to borrow one of the most necessary items in any gigbag.
    Evil Undead likes this.
  16. Jay2U

    Jay2U Not as bad as he lóòks

    Dec 7, 2010
    22 ft below sea level
    The CA1 by Korg goes from C1 to C8. It can either be plugged in or use its built-in microphone. It only costs around $18.
  17. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009

    grownups bring their own tuners.
  18. Randyt

    Randyt RAAPT Custom Wood Productions

    Jul 21, 2010
    Barrie, Canada
    I really like my Peterson Strobo tuner..old type..(Blue)
  19. Thick McRunfast

    Thick McRunfast Not just good, good enough

    Sep 30, 2012
    Portland, Oregon USA
    Another Korg fan here. The CA1 I have has been bulletproof. I've given several as gifts
  20. Stilettoprefer


    Nov 26, 2010
    Yet another for Korg. Mine has proved to be pretty much indestructible, and its very accurate. I use it for setting intonation all the time.