View Full Version : Review: Planet Waves Clip-On Tuner

Ukulele JJ
03-26-2009, 04:59 PM
Last weekend I picked up a Planet Waves Chromatic Headstock Tuner (http://jazzmando.com/new/archives/000990.shtml) from my local music store (http://www.eastsidemerc.com/) for about $40. I'm sure you can get it a bit cheaper on the internets, but my LMS has been really cool about getting in some ukuleles and uke strings, books, pitchpipes, etc., and I wanted to give them some business. They're becoming a rare oasis in the ukulele desert that is Nashville, TN.

Anyway, I'm pleased with my purchase. It works great on both my Oscar Schmidt and on the less-traditionally-headstocked Flea. Unlike some other clip-ons, the form factor is very compact, with nothing "jutting" out from it. Perfect for slipping into the gig bag or keeping in your front pants pocket, even if you sit down.

The display is easy-to-read in various lighting conditions, and does the old red-to-green trick when the string is in tune. I attached some pictures I took indoors and out, so see for yourself. The little virtual needle has several screen positions, so it seems to "sweep" smoothly.

I haven't had any problems with false/incorrect reads, and the accuracy seems really good. You can adjust the pitch reference five MHz higher or lower than the standard A = 440.

The downside?

t's a bit more expensive than most of its competitors.
The lack of a swivel wasn't a problem for me, but it means that the position of the screen relative to the clip is fixed in such a way that lefties might have trouble using it.
The clip itself is right over the battery door, which makes installing/changing the battery somewhat fiddly.
The button to adjust the pitch calibration is placed near where you'd grab it to clip/unclip or angle it, and I've inadvertently changed that setting a few times.

Those gripes aside, I really like the thing. :shaka:


03-27-2009, 10:15 AM
Cheers, really useful review. I was looking at buying one of these clip on tuners because the one I have is a bit innacurate