Guitar Tuner Reviews: Choosing the Best Guitar Tuner

If you are a guitarist, it’s a given that owning a guitar tuner can be quite handy, especially if you are just buying your first guitar.  Did you know though that guitar tuners can range anywhere from $10 to $300 and upwards?  You would almost think that any guitar tuner is the same, but apparently not!

Fortunately for the average guitar player (that’s you and me), we don’t need to come even close to spending that much. We still have a lot of options.

My Guitar Tuner Recommendations

Korg CA-30 Chromatic Tuner ($19.99)

Key Features

+ Highly sensitive internal mic
+ Tunes chromatically
+ Additional quarter inch input

If you need an acoustic guitar tuner, a highly sensitive mic is crucial so the tuner can pick up the string you are tuning with accuracy.  Some tuners don’t have internal mics.  This one does.  I have a Korg tuner (which I’ll get to in a minute), and I love how easily the tuner picks up my guitar.

When I used my friend’s Korg CA-30, it was very accurate.  The fact that it is a chromatic tuner also allows me to tune my whole guitar down a half step to ‘Eb Ab Db Gb Bb Eb.’  This is a quality tuner with the most essential features for an acoustic guitar player (or electric guitar player for that matter).  Buy it now.

Intellitouch PT2 Tuner ($29.99)

Key Features

+ “Listens” to string vibrations
+ Tunes chromatically
+ 60 hour battery life

Instead of using an internal mic like the Korg CA-30, the Intellitouch attaches to your acoustic (or electric) guitar’s headstock and “feels” the string vibrations.  The advantage of this is that you can tune your guitar easily even if you are in a noisy environment.

What I like most about the Intellitouch PT2 is that you can tune your guitar in the noisiest environment, even if there are other instruments playing.  This is handy when I’m at rehearsals when everyone else is tuning up their instrument.  It’s easy to use.  You just attach it quickly with one hand.  It’s also very accurate.  Buy it now.

Korg TM-40 Tuner & Metronome ($32.99)

Key Features

+ Highly sensitive internal mic
+ Tunes chromatically
+ Additional quarter inch input
+ Built in metronome w/ headphone output

This is much similar to the Korg CA-30, but it also has a built in metronome! Metronomes are extremely useful for practice.  While it is a bit more money, you don’t have to worry about getting a separate metronome.

The Korg TM-40 is my tuner of choice.  It’s accurate, easy to use, and the built in metronome is especially handy.  It’s nice not having to lug around both a tuner and a metronome. Buy it now.

Conclusion

Korg and Intellitouch make great guitar tuners.  Another good one is by Boss, the Boss TU-80.  I’m very hesitant to recommend anything cheaper than this.  While guitar tuners may have the same features, often times the quality will be quite different.  If you go to cheap, you might not be getting a very accurate guitar tuner!

About Brett McQueen

Brett McQueen is a musician, songwriter, and the founder and editor of Guitar Friendly and Ukulele Tricks. Learn more about him here and follow him on Twitter at @GuitarFriendly.