No matter how good you play guitar or how impressive your skillset is, you’ll not sound good until the guitar gets tuned perfectly. Most players struggle to get perfect pitch, where every note can be identified without any tools.
Do you also face this problem? Well! Then, you’ll need a reliable clip-on acoustic guitar tuner to keep the guitar at the correct pitch. Getting the best headstock tuner is as challenging as tuning a perfect pitch. Don’t worry; we’ll help you decide the best option for your guitar.
In this article, you’ll be getting an in-depth review of the best clip on guitar tuner of 2022, including a buying guide. Start reading the review article from the buyer’s guide, at least before going through our top 10 recommendations – this is our first suggestion for the newbie.
RECOMMENEDED CLIP ON GUITAR TUNERS REVIEW
What's the use of clip on guitar tuners?
As you know, the ambient noise or the volumes of other instruments can’t affect the pitch of the strings. That’s why the clip-on guitar purposefully picks or detects the vibration or pitch of the strings in the actual wood of the guitar. Hence, it lets you tune your acoustic guitar in a crowded place without plugging it.
From amateurs to professionals, for everyone; who wants to maintain the consistent sound for guitar chords or individual notes, we suggest using clip-on guitars.
BEST CLIP ON GUITAR TUNERS REVIEW
1. Snark ST-8 - best rated clip on guitar tuner
The Snark ST-8 comes with a traditional clip-on design by packing some unique features in it. The display itself is a cool feature. It can be rotated up to 360 degrees, letting us view the tuning status from multiple angles.
The faster processing chip and pitch calibration feature of this tuner quickly picks up the plucked notes. So, you don’t have to continuously strum to maintain the readouts on the display.
The clip is sturdy and tight enough; that never moves around while accessing the tuner’s functions. Nothing truly comes close to its tuning performance, brightness, and build quality for this price affordable point. So, we picked it up at the first position for everyone, from students to professionals.
2. KLIQ UberTuner - Premium Clip-On Tuner for All Instruments
This chromatic tuner clip-on tool has dedicated tuning modes for various instruments. For instance, the chromatic tuning modes are dedicated to Mandolin and Banjo, whereas you’ll also get multi-key modes for other instruments, like – guitar, ukulele, violin, etc.
The tuner detects the pitches directly from the string vibrations of the instruments. So, you never will be worried about accuracy, as the ambient noise never gets in the way.
We found the screen is super bright without being dazzling; that offers great visibility both in bright and dark lighting conditions. Another nice touch is the 3 points of adjustment options for the brightness. That’s why; we primarily recommend this tuner to the professionals; who gig regularly.
3. D'ADDARIO MICRO - BEST CLIP ON BASS GUITAR TUNER
The micro headstock guitar tuner of the D'Addario brand is widely recognized as the best clip-on tuner for bass. But we found it works well enough for both bass and guitar.
This small headstock tuner is ideal for most left or right-handed stringed instruments. The lightweight micro clip-on design offers maximum position flexibility; that not every tuner can boast.
Like all renowned clip-on tuner models, the transducer of this guitar tuner accurately picks up the instrument's vibration, whereas the wide calibration range ensures precise tuning performance.
The readability of the rotating display truly impressed us. The tuner is simple-to-use and offers versatile tuning modes and great battery life. You’ll never have any trouble tuning the guitar. It is undoubtedly the perfect tuner for gigging musicians and multi-instrumentalists.
4. KORG (AWOTG) GUITAR - BEST DURABLE CLIP ON GUITAR TUNER
The Korg clip-on guitar tuner should be top of the list because of its relatively higher accuracy (+/-0.1 cent). Apart from the incredible precision, the sturdy build-quality secured clip-on clamping nature plus impressive readability of the display is also out there. The crisp and clear cutting-edge OLED display lets you view the tuning status from every angle.
The automatic power function, memory backup, and optional STROBE feature for enhanced accuracy are great add-ons to this tuner, making it the best clip on guitar tuner.
It is the most accurate guitar tuner available on the market. So, as usual, it tends to be more expensive than others, making us place the item in 4th position, but we found the precision level is almost worth paying.
5. FENDER TUNER - BEST CLIP-ON TUNER FOR ACOUSTIC GUITAR
This chromatic clip-on tuner is not as accurate as the strobe tuners, like the previous one, but we found it a real boss with a tiny package and price tag.
The compact design, solid build quality, and overall decent tuning performance against under $20 price truly can impress any guitarist. The minimalist design makes this tuner a good option for live performance.
Reading the tuning status and notes on the bright colored circular display is super easy. The accuracy and response speed are good enough for most guitarists.
It is one of the cheapest and most reliable clip-on tuners for electric guitars, acoustic guitars, Mandolins, Violins, Violas, Banjos, and other stringed instruments.
6. KLIQ ProTuner - Professional Clip-On Tuner for All Instruments
KLIQ is one of the renowned names in the world of tuner technology; that introduced a wide range of models with different feature sets and price tags. We have already reviewed the premium quality UberTuner model. Now, it’s the time for a professional ProTuner model.
We just loved the brightness adjustable display, where you can see the registered note from every angle. The advanced microprocessor and vibration sensor help accurately tune the guitar in no time.
The aesthetic is not much spectacular but the build quality is. The metal clip securely holds the instruments, while the improved design keeps the finishing touch of your instruments intact and scratch-free. The clip-on tuner could withstand heavy abuse plus offers a manufacturer guarantee of 3-years.
7. MARTISAN - BEST CHEAP GUITAR CLIP ON TUNER
Look at the key features; something is different and impressive, right? The dedicated tuning modes, fast and accurate vibration sensor, rotating and tilting bright display are enough to add this tuner to your cart.
The tuner really works well with most stringed instruments, whereas the accuracy for this affordable price point makes it a better-to-buy option than others.
8. TC Electronic POLYTUNE CLIP Clip-On Tuner
The TC electronic guitar neck tuner offers multiple tuning modes. Moreover, the Polyphonic tuning feature lets you tune all guitar strings (up to 6 strings) at once.
The ultra-precise strobe function gives you a total ±0.02 cent tuning accuracy, whereas you’ll get 0.5 cents accuracy in chromatic mode.
The super-bright display can be clearly viewed from every angle. Another sweet spot of this clip-on tuner is the automated orientation. The left-handed guitarists generally use the PolyTune Clip at the back of the guitar headstock; luckily, the display flips accordingly.
Another best part of this chromatic tuner is the chromatic mode, which helps quick on-stage tune-ups of the instrument, making it perfect for live performers. Overall, this guitar tuner clip on is a great buy.
9. Fishman Guitar Tuner (ACC-TUN-FT2)
Fisherman FT-2 is a reliable digital chromatic clip-on tuner; that comes with a large easy-to-read display. The flipping display basically acts like an on/off power switch. When you flip the screen up the tuning device will turn on; when you flip it down, the device will be turned off. It means; you don’t have to fumble the tiny buttons in the dark stages.
The bright and large LCD screen is easy-to-read; helps you tune the instruments with ease. Moreover, it has a fully chromatic mode, though it works well with most stringed instruments.
10. D'Addario NS Micro Sound Hole Tuner - PW-CT-15
The D'Addario NS PW-CT-15 clip-on tuner is something different from others. It is a micro soundhole tuner; that has to be fitted on the rim of the soundhole of the instruments. Otherwise, it acts similarly, measuring the string vibration.
We found the soundhole placement of this tuner is much more convenient than other headstock mounted tuners. You can leave the tuner permanently fitted on your guitar.
However, it has 0.3 cent accuracy, which is impressive enough. This vibration tuner is a great option for amateurs, as the simple operation allows you to operate it only with a single hand while playing.
How do clip on guitar tuners work?
The clip-on guitar can be operated with any type of guitar in various tuning modes. When you firmly clamp on the tuner to the guitar’s headstock, the transducer measures the vibrations and pitch of the string.
Why do I need a clip-on tuner over a pedal or rack tuner?
The early models of clip-on tuners used to struggle with accuracy; luckily, the modern clip tuners offer high-end accuracy. Plus, you’ve already known that the guitar vibration tuners won’t impact the tone of the guitar.
Where, the pedal-based or rack mounted tuners potentially dilute the signal strength of the guitar, which ultimately impacts the tone without getting anything in return. The clip-on headstock tuners are lighter, smaller, and even cheaper than the pedal tuners. So, the clip-on tuners never impact the guitar’s tone anyway.
Types of tuners
Several types of clip-on tuners for acoustic guitars are available there in the market. Have a close look at each type and its pros and cons to decide which types will be the best for you.
Handheld tuner models are the first digital tuners; they work as microphone tuners and line tuners. Nowadays, they are available with all the bells and whistles; even some models have integrated speakers for playing reference pitches. It helps multiple guitarists tune their guitars at the same time.
The pedal tuners are reliable and durable enough. It incorporates a handy feature, like – bypasses, that helps the players tune up their guitars and correct the pitches without subjecting the sound to the audience.
The rack-mounted features are generally found in the studios, as they are high-end and expensive among all. The professionals; who run in a large rig by having a huge display in front of them use these rack-mounted tuners. Such tuners are capable of having multiple input and output. Only a large screen display could help tuning, as the guitarists could see the tuning status from a distance.
Have you ever used the microphone of a cell phone or table? The app-based tuners work in the same way. It is a handheld unit and works in microphone mode. Most app-based tuners have no calibration options and the accuracy is not reliable enough. So, we should not use an app-based tuner as a primary tuner.
What to look for in the best clip-on tuners?
There are certain things; that will help you identify which one is the best acoustic guitar tuner. They are -
A tuner with 2 cents or 2/100 semitone is the best clip-on tuner for acoustic guitar.
Try to choose those tuner models; whose brightness will let you tune the guitar outdoors in dark. Keep in mind; extra brightness could make it hard to see the fretboard. That’s why; some advanced models come with adjustable screen brightness.
The best clip-on guitar tuners mostly have soft-touching rubber-coated sturdy springs on the clamps to maintain top-notch accuracy. On the other hand, the cheaper models use delicate high-density foam that dampens the vibration and reduces accuracy.
A guitar, which gets slightly out of tune could derail your consistency or completely ruin the chance of showing your excellence. So, we insist you have a reliable guitar tuner for acoustic guitar for accurate tuning.
We loved overall everything about the above-mentioned clip-on guitar rig tuners. We hope you’ve also liked our recommendations and found the clip-on guitar tuner reviews and buying tips useful for decision-making.
Hey all, I’m Elise, I love to play music with the most lovely tuning instruments. I tried many of the musical instruments that I wished to play. Like me, many might have been seeking for good musical instruments. For those, I would like to provide a good list of instruments that I tried playing. This may help your search progress! Move ahead and read the articles.