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Thread: Best Way To Tune?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
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    Default Best Way To Tune?

    I searched "tuner" and read some of the threads but didn't find the info I was looking for.

    I am wondering if using a mobile app for tuning is good, or if using a clip on or other 'analog' style is better?

    I have no tuner for my uke at the moment, believe it or not! I think when my daughter was using it I had her tune it with an app I had for my electric bass which had an uke option. But that phone got replaced and I have been avoiding downloading apps willy nilly on this phone.

    So, is there some great uke app out there I should get, or buy a standalone tuner instead?

  2. #2
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    Default

    I find it easiest to use a clip on tuner, people will argue about which is best, but I've been using the same Snark SN6 that I bought just after my first uke, about 3.5 years now.

    (There are some online tuners you could use in the mean time, until you get one.)
    Trying to do justice to various musical instruments.

  3. #3
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    Apps work pretty well if you're in a quiet place and most any tuning app will work: it doesn't need to have a uke mode. I have Fender Tune on my phone, and I expect most apps will work well enough.

    If there's a lot of ambient noise-or worse other instruments playing- then microphone based options are really frustrating. Clip on are easy and effective and there are a bazillion brands that all have their followers.

    While some are more precise than others, they're pretty much all good enough for a uke (I've several that can't register low enough for a bass). The main difference to me is the display: make sure you get one that you can orient visible and that is bright enough to read. Person, I like daddario micros (small enough to leave on the head stock) and Fender California (colorful, they turn on and off automatically when attached, and I've never met somebody else with one so it's easy to ID as mine). The name brand tuner is Snark and lots of people swear by them. The downside is that everyone has them so their easy to lose track of if you lend one to a neighbor.

    Another debate is buying one really good tuner and keeping track of it or buying a bunch of cheap ones. Which is best depends on how organized you are and how sneaky your cats are. My wife has one fancy Peterson HD strobotuner. I have a dozen tuners. Only the cat knows where most of them are.

    If you have a pickup then you can get good tuners to plug into, but they're a pain of you're not already plugging in. I put these in the category of if-you-dont-know-you-need-it-you-dont-need-it

    IMHO it's also worth learning to tune by ear. That way you're not stuck if you run across a wild ukulele in the woods without a tuner or your phone . Seriously, it's much easier to check spot check if something is close enough by ear than to start pulling out gear. There's a recent thread debating this at length (titled something like "tunerless tuning")

    A couple of related recent threads:
    No tuner tuning
    Clip on tuners
    Favorite Digital Tuners
    Last edited by Arcy; 04-20-2019 at 09:04 AM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
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    Default

    Like Croaky, I have been using the Snark tuner for about four years. I have heard many people complain about theirs breaking, but mine hasn't given me any trouble. However, since we're talking about the "best" way to tune I will confess that I have been coveting a Peterson chromatic tuner. They are expensive, but since I no longer have UAS I have the disposable income.

  5. #5
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    Playing guitar for almost fifty years, then playing uke and bass uke the last 6 years, I can't ever tune by ear, even using a pitch fork for one string. I'm totally reliant on-clip on or built in tuners. I have the D'Addario/Planet Waves mini tuner on each of my ukes and basses that don't have one built in, about 27.


    This is Michael Kohan in Los Angeles, Beverly West near the Beverly Center
    9 tenor cutaway ukes, 5 acoustic bass ukes, 11 solid body bass ukes, 9 mini electric bass guitars (Total: 34)

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  6. #6
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    Another Snark user here. Always found them to work well. As you get more experienced, use your ears too. You might have your clip on tuner, and the indicator for a given string is on green, but sometimes I can still hear that the string needs fine tuning and I’ll do that by ear. But the Snark is a good reliable tool I have found

  7. #7
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    I'd suggest getting, and getting used to using both a clip-on and a smartphone app. You're always going to have your phone on you. Some apps have handy extras like a metronome and a library of chord charts. But when there's lots of ambiant noise reach for a clip-on. I have a Snark and a cheap no name. They agree with each other, but the Snark registers changes a tad faster.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
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    Clip on tuners are best.

    Once tuned I manually check each string
    Col.
    From the UK with a bad case of MIAS.
    Korg PA700, Korg Kross 2, Gibson LP, Fender Jazz Bass,
    + Amps, PA, Boss GT100, mixer.
    Ukes - Kala KA-TEME and Risa ST electric solid body.
    Uke wish list, a Bass, make and model yet to be determined

  9. #9
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    This is my favorite clip-on tuner:

    TC Electronic UniTune Clip-on Tuner

    They're not cheap, but are very accurate, and they make it easy to "temper" the tuning on ukes where the intonation is less than perfect.
    If music be the food of love, play on! -Bill Shakespeare

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steedy View Post
    This is my favorite clip-on tuner:

    TC Electronic UniTune Clip-on Tuner

    They're not cheap, but are very accurate, and they make it easy to "temper" the tuning on ukes where the intonation is less than perfect.
    +1

    There are so many clip tuners and just about anyone will work.

    Applications can be good too, like the DaTuner in android. I just much prefer the clips.

    There is also the good old tuning fork, in case the battery apocalyps happens heh.
    Last edited by Jarmo_S; 04-20-2019 at 05:43 PM.

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