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View Full Version : Snark ST-8 Tuner Accuracy



twokatmew
05-07-2018, 05:38 AM
Does anyone know how accurate this tuner is and what each red line represents in terms of cents? I've googled and read everything I can, but I can't find this info anywhere. Some say this tuner is very accurate, and others say it's not.

108848

Any recommendations for a clip-on tuner that displays in cents? I have a Boss TU-2 pedal tuner that's supposedly accurate to +/- 1 cent, but it's only good for instruments with a pickup. At the moment, none of my ukes has a pickup.

Thanks! :)

Uke Don
05-07-2018, 05:57 AM
Peterson's iStrobosoft displays in cents, hertz, or midi. Not a clip on though.

bacchettadavid
05-07-2018, 06:36 AM
Boss, Intellitouch, Kliq and TC Electronic all make nice clip-on alternatives to the Snark.

I use TC Electronic or Kliq tuners when I need a good clip-on.

twokatmew
05-07-2018, 03:45 PM
Peterson's iStrobosoft displays in cents, hertz, or midi. Not a clip on though.

Thanks. I just looked it up. Very interesting! Will definitely check it out. :)


Boss, Intellitouch, Kliq and TC Electronic all make nice clip-on alternatives to the Snark.

I use TC Electronic or Kliq tuners when I need a good clip-on.

Thanks. Do you use the TC Electronics Polytune Clip? Looks interesting, but the price tag gave me pause. Not that it's *that* expensive. In the meantime, I ordered myself a Kliq UberTuner. :)

bacchettadavid
05-07-2018, 04:11 PM
I use the TC Electronics Unitune.

Another one to look into is the Korg Sledgehammer. It's great for making minute adjustments if you're recording or something similar.

70sSanO
05-07-2018, 06:30 PM
I've used IMT-500 and 600 tuners for more than a decade. They have worked well enough for me to use them to do setups and compensate saddles. As for the Snark, I did get a bunch of similar looking cheap tuners off Reverb and they are fine, but I rarely use them. I recently bought 3 more IMT-500 tuners so I will always have one handy.

That said, I would think that a strobe tuner is more accurate and any clip-on is dependent on how well vibrations are picked up so, there seems to be some variation of success between instruments on how quickly "correct" notes are picked up.

John

bacchettadavid
05-07-2018, 06:59 PM
I fully agree, Camsuke. There are many advantages to being able to tune by ear.

Jerryc41
05-08-2018, 12:58 AM
I use the TC Electronics Unitune.

Another one to look into is the Korg Sledgehammer. It's great for making minute adjustments if you're recording or something similar.

Sweetwater has them now for $30, while everyone else is charging $50. I still prefer the inexpensive Snark 6. Maybe when my playing becomes exceptional I'll be able to justify an expensive tuner. : )

twokatmew
05-08-2018, 01:26 AM
It's also a great idea to practice tuning by ear :D

Absolutely, and I do. I want an accurate tuner for checking intonation. :)

twokatmew
05-08-2018, 01:29 AM
Sweetwater has them now for $30, while everyone else is charging $50. I still prefer the inexpensive Snark 6. Maybe when my playing becomes exceptional I'll be able to justify an expensive tuner. : )

Yes, I noticed that. But the Unitune at Sweetwater is not the same as the Polytune. I did order the Unitune last night, as I don't need the extra features of the Polytune. Much nicer price. :)

twokatmew
05-08-2018, 01:35 AM
I've used IMT-500 and 600 tuners for more than a decade. They have worked well enough for me to use them to do setups and compensate saddles. As for the Snark, I did get a bunch of similar looking cheap tuners off Reverb and they are fine, but I rarely use them. I recently bought 3 more IMT-500 tuners so I will always have one handy.

That said, I would think that a strobe tuner is more accurate and any clip-on is dependent on how well vibrations are picked up so, there seems to be some variation of success between instruments on how quickly "correct" notes are picked up.

John

Thx, will check into those two. My Snark seems fine for general use, but on certain notes, I have to keep trying, as sometimes it thinks an E is an A. Other notes are flat by three red lines, and I have no idea what each line represents. Some lower notes never completely "settle." All this makes me doubt the accuracy of my Snark. I tried a second unit with the same results.

It has even more issues tuning guitars, I suspect due to more resonance, especially of bass notes. One of my uke generates bizarre readings, too.

EDW
05-08-2018, 01:52 AM
Korg makes really good tuners and I have used various models and types over the years, all with good results. For fans of Peterson there is this one in a clip on, as well as lots of other options:

https://www.petersontuners.com/products/stroboClipHD/

twokatmew
05-08-2018, 02:02 AM
I use the TC Electronics Unitune.

Another one to look into is the Korg Sledgehammer. It's great for making minute adjustments if you're recording or something similar.

Yes, that one looks interesting, thx.


Korg makes really good tuners and I have used various models and types over the years, all with good results. For fans of Peterson there is this one in a clip on, as well as lots of other options:

https://www.petersontuners.com/products/stroboClipHD/

Yes, I was looking at Korg yesterday. The Petersons look interesting. Thx! :)

WaylonUkulele
05-08-2018, 02:04 AM
Never had good luck with a snark and I find I keep breaking them. Something about that knuckle and being so big. I always hit them and then they break out of the ball joint. I'm probably just clumsy. I use some sort of D'addario one which is pretty good. That said, I can't say I had any actual problems with the Snark. As a tuner it worked fine.

merlin666
05-08-2018, 04:16 AM
I have the Snark ST-8 and I liked it so much I bought another one. Does the job on ukulele as well as on 6 and 12 string guitars in variety of tunings. As for precision - it is considerably better than my finger's precision to play notes.

Joyful Uke
05-08-2018, 06:45 AM
Now I'm getting TAS, along w/ UAS. I need more tuners to try!

70sSanO
05-08-2018, 11:02 AM
Just so you know, my IMT tuners will occasionally read a different note on certain notes on certain instruments. But it has happened on most every clip-on tuner from time to time. Never been an issue, although turning off and back on helps.

I usually tune, check at the twelfth, and when finished sometimes check to other strings, by ear. Over time I think a person can hear very slight differences. I know that I'll hear a note that doesn't sound just right and then double check.

When I played bass guitar out with others, I never used a clip-on tuner, but an inline tuner through the pickups. Then again those frequencies are another ball game.

John

twokatmew
05-08-2018, 11:13 AM
Never had good luck with a snark and I find I keep breaking them. Something about that knuckle and being so big. I always hit them and then they break out of the ball joint. I'm probably just clumsy. I use some sort of D'addario one which is pretty good. That said, I can't say I had any actual problems with the Snark. As a tuner it worked fine.

I have two, and I haven't broken one, but I've owned them for less than a year. I have two of the D'Addario micro tuners. One works fine, except on this one uke that behaves strangely with the Snarks, too. The other micro tuner buzzed so much I finally took Booli's advice and used electrical tape to hold the buttons down. It still has fits on certain strings/notes on the uke I mentioned above. It's in my tool box for emergencies. :)


I have the Snark ST-8 and I liked it so much I bought another one. Does the job on ukulele as well as on 6 and 12 string guitars in variety of tunings. As for precision - it is considerably better than my finger's precision to play notes.

Me too. That's how I ended up with two of them. I have one uke that gives the Snark fits.


Now I'm getting TAS, along w/ UAS. I need more tuners to try!

Heheh, yes! Since yesterday, I've ordered two clip-on tuners (Kliq and TC Electronic), and I purchased Peterson's iStrobosoft for my Android phone. iStrobo... is amazingly accurate and works great with just the phone's microphone. I was going to order the clip-on sensor that plugs into the phone's headphone jack, but the reviews I read said it's not as accurate with the clip. I'm fine with that, and one less purchase for me! I really only wanted a cents tuner to see just how far off certain notes are on various instruments. :)

twokatmew
05-08-2018, 11:26 AM
Just so you know, my IMT tuners will occasionally read a different note on certain notes on certain instruments. But it has happened on most every clip-on tuner from time to time. Never been an issue, although turning off and back on helps.

I usually tune, check at the twelfth, and when finished sometimes check to other strings, by ear. Over time I think a person can hear very slight differences. I know that I'll hear a note that doesn't sound just right and then double check.

When I played bass guitar out with others, I never used a clip-on tuner, but an inline tuner through the pickups. Then again those frequencies are another ball game.

John

Thank you, John! I tuned my guitars for many years with just a tuning fork for a reference point. (Before that, I used a pitch pipe in the same way.) When I went back to playing electric guitar in the early 2000s, I got myself a Boss TU-2. But in the last year, I discovered clip-on tuners, and I guess I've gone a little crazy. :p:eek:

I have one uke (and a few notes on a second) that my various tuners struggle with and either go blank or (seem to) pick a random note. I had similar issues with my classical guitar that I sold a few days ago. So I can hear when a note is flat or sharp. I just wanted more detail about just how much it's off. So ...

I purchased Peterson's iStrobosoft for Android, and it does a better job on those tough notes my Snark can't get right. Also, it looks like each red/yellow line on the Snark represents 5 cents. I also learned today that 100 cents equals one semitone, so that really put things in perspective for me. :) Many thanks to UkeDon for the recommendation.

Thanks so much for your help. I'm curious. Do you know (or have an opinion on) why clip-on tuners struggle to tune certain notes on some instruments? :)

70sSanO
05-08-2018, 03:57 PM
A simplistic view of a clip-on tuner is that it is similar to a piezo pickup. A piezo has absolutely zero acoustic sound detection, yet it picks up the string frequency of the string vibrations and produces an accurate representation of the note being played. Tuning through a piezo is a good example.

Likewise a clip on tuner senses the string frequencies and displays that frequency. The sensitivity of the tuner is less especially since it is not taking direct readings from the strings; such as a saddle. I can't say how the vibrations disperse or conflict from both the nut and saddle. But I would think both influence a clip-on tuner.

John

John

Tootler
05-09-2018, 01:10 AM
Clip on tuners are a godsend. Many years ago when trying to learn guitar, tuning was a real pain. Now I use a clip on tuner to get basically in tune, then check by ear and tweak as necessary.

I use the Planet Waves mini (micro?) NS tuners. They are unobtrusive, especially if you put them under the headstock (not always possible) and I leave them on the uke.

hollisdwyer
05-09-2018, 03:48 AM
Lately Iíve been using TC Electronics Polytune Clip and their Polytune mini for my pedal board. I also have the new version of the Petersen clip (better build and design). Iím a little self indulgent keeping a tuner in every Uke case but I know that if I didnít Iíd forget to bring one with me.

Woodstock has a lot to answer for.

twokatmew
05-09-2018, 12:56 PM
Clip on tuners are a godsend. Many years ago when trying to learn guitar, tuning was a real pain. Now I use a clip on tuner to get basically in tune, then check by ear and tweak as necessary.

I use the Planet Waves mini (micro?) NS tuners. They are unobtrusive, especially if you put them under the headstock (not always possible) and I leave them on the uke.

I have two of those. One works pretty well, and the other is a complete dud. My old eyes find them harder to read than tuners with bigger displays, so I won't be buying more of them. I do love their tiny size and that they can stay on the instrument. :)

twokatmew
05-09-2018, 01:03 PM
Lately I’ve been using TC Electronics Polytune Clip and their Polytune mini for my pedal board. I also have the new version of the Petersen clip (better build and design). I’m a little self indulgent keeping a tuner in every Uke case but I know that if I didn’t I’d forget to bring one with me.

Woodstock has a lot to answer for.

I ordered a TC Electronics Unitune that has fewer features than the Polytune (but enough for me). I'm looking forward to checking it out. :) My Kliq UberTuner arrived today. It has some strong jaws on it! It's also much quicker to respond than the Snark and D'Addario micro tuners, so it's picking up notes on my solid mahogany uke that the others couldn't get. It's much easier to tune this uke now! :) How do you like the new Peterson clip tuner? It looks really interesting, but I've seen some mixed reviews.

I like to keep a tuner in every case too, plus one on the table next to me. That way I never am without a tuner when I leave with an instrument case, and I don't have to bother getting the tuner out of the case when I practice at home. :D

I'm self-indulgent too when it comes to tuners. And they're a lot less expensive than ukes! :rofl:

Uke Don
05-09-2018, 02:34 PM
I ordered a TC Electronics Unitune that has fewer features than the Polytune (but enough for me). I'm looking forward to checking it out. :)


I'm interested in your opinion of the Unitune. I tried one but was disappointed. It would not respond to any note at the 12th fret, so was useless in checking intonation.

twokatmew
05-09-2018, 04:19 PM
I'm interested in your opinion of the Unitune. I tried one but was disappointed. It would not respond to any note at the 12th fret, so was useless in checking intonation.

It's arriving tomorrow, and I will definitely post back. I'll be very disappointed if it can't recognize notes at the 12th fret.

Strumaround
05-09-2018, 06:14 PM
I've found the Snark to be easy to use, but tempermental. But I've also found this to be dependent on the strings being used.

For example, it sometimes gets confused and jumps to random notes. In these cases, it needs to be swtiched off and then on again and sometimes physically repositioned on the uke.

Oddly, it was worst when I had Aquila Black Carbon strings on it. Also, it refused to even budge when checking the tuning for the top two strings at the 12th fret. Didn't even recognise that a note was being played. For the bottom two strings, it gave weird readings at the 12th fret.

When I changed to Worth browns, it read the notes at the 12th fret perfectly every time for all strings. And now that I've added wound strings for the bottom two strings, it also reads them without a hitch.

But overall, in quiet surroundings, I've found that iPhone apps are more acurate.

YMMV.

hollisdwyer
05-10-2018, 04:41 AM
I ordered a TC Electronics Unitune that has fewer features than the Polytune (but enough for me). I'm looking forward to checking it out. :) My Kliq UberTuner arrived today. It has some strong jaws on it! It's also much quicker to respond than the Snark and D'Addario micro tuners, so it's picking up notes on my solid mahogany uke that the others couldn't get. It's much easier to tune this uke now! :) How do you like the new Peterson clip tuner? It looks really interesting, but I've seen some mixed reviews.

I like to keep a tuner in every case too, plus one on the table next to me. That way I never am without a tuner when I leave with an instrument case, and I don't have to bother getting the tuner out of the case when I practice at home. :D

I'm self-indulgent too when it comes to tuners. And they're a lot less expensive than ukes! :rofl:

I had the original Pertersen clip on which didn’t last long. That model has been removed from the market. The problem was with the case. They sent me a new model which I consider much better designed and built. The Petersen are strobe tuners, not a needle on a scale. Some people may find that strange, I don’t. Although not as accurate as the benchtop models that Luthiers use, they are very close and very sensitive. They are slightly bulkier and more solid than the TC Electronics polytune Clip. I depend on these as I was not blessed with perfect pitch.

twokatmew
05-11-2018, 04:56 AM
I've found the Snark to be easy to use, but tempermental. But I've also found this to be dependent on the strings being used.

For example, it sometimes gets confused and jumps to random notes. In these cases, it needs to be swtiched off and then on again and sometimes physically repositioned on the uke.

Oddly, it was worst when I had Aquila Black Carbon strings on it. Also, it refused to even budge when checking the tuning for the top two strings at the 12th fret. Didn't even recognise that a note was being played. For the bottom two strings, it gave weird readings at the 12th fret.

When I changed to Worth browns, it read the notes at the 12th fret perfectly every time for all strings. And now that I've added wound strings for the bottom two strings, it also reads them without a hitch.

But overall, in quiet surroundings, I've found that iPhone apps are more acurate.

YMMV.
Thx. Your Snark experience sounds very similar to mine, though I have Worth Browns on the Kala solid mahogany that gives many tuners fits. Same strings are on my concert, and the Snark has no problems tuning that instrument. I have iStrobosoft on my Android phone, and it works really well, though a clip-on tuner is my first choice. I'm not at all happy with Snark's customer service. I emailed them over a week ago and have heard absolutely nothing. I won't be buying Snark again.


I had the original Pertersen clip on which didnít last long. That model have been removed from the market. The problem was with the case. They sent me a new model which I consider much better designed and built. The Petersen are strobe tuners, not a needle on a scale. Some people may find that strange, I donít. Although not as accurate as the benchtop models that Luthiers use, they are very close and very sensitive. They are slightly bulkier and more solid than the TC Electronics polytune Clip. I depend on these as I was not blessed with perfect pitch.

I received my TC Electronic UniTune yesterday, and I really like it. The strobe setting is great! Thanks for the info on the newer Peterson clip. :)

twokatmew
05-11-2018, 05:20 AM
OK, yesterday I received the TC Electronic UniTune, and I really like it! It works great in both modes, but I really like the strobe setting. It correctly detects every single note on my Kala mahogany and other ukes. It's the most accurate of the tuners I've tried so far, with +/ .02 cent accuracy in the strobe setting. It's not quite as adjustable as other clip-on tuners, but it works fine for me.

Sadly the Kliq UberTuner starting buzzing something awful on day two, so I will be returning that one. I do like the large, bright display as well as the +/- 1 cent accuracy. The strong jaws make it not as quick to place as the other tuners, but I'd be keeping it if it hadn't developed that buzz. Though much better than the Snark, the Kliq did have trouble with a few notes on my Kala mahogany.

I also tried a Samson CT260V (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00ZFWU9H2/ref=crt_ewc_img_dp_1?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER) clip-on tuner, and though it's tiny, plasticy and inexpensive, it works very well!

Of all the tuners I've tried, the UniTune and the Samson are my favorites.

Thanks all! :)