Cell phone app tuner for intonation?

eclecticsynergy

Senior Stratmaster
Sep 23, 2014
4,165
NY
I'm not at all up to date on tuning apps but something tells me a quality tuner pedal might be more precise for setting intonation than apps or clip-ons. This is a procedure where accuracy is pretty important.
 

ToneRanger

Most Honored Senior Member
Jun 8, 2009
8,412
Area 51
Peterson has a Strobe Tuner app for $4.99, but looks like only Equal temperament is available - the GTR temperament setting is what makes the Peterson tuners great, so without that I wouldn't bother.
 

eclecticsynergy

Senior Stratmaster
Sep 23, 2014
4,165
NY
Peterson has a Strobe Tuner app for $4.99, but looks like only Equal temperament is available - the GTR temperament setting is what makes the Peterson tuners great, so without that I wouldn't bother.
Have the Strobostomp on one board and a cheapo on the small board.
I miss the Peterson when it isn't there.
 

ToneRanger

Most Honored Senior Member
Jun 8, 2009
8,412
Area 51
Have the Strobostomp on one board and a cheapo on the small board.
I miss the Peterson when it isn't there.
Big time - I had an acoustic rhythm guitarist I used to play with and he was skeptical of my Peterson (I was using the VS-II back then,) until he tried it once using the GTR temperament - after that he wanted to use it every gig - I was finally like, "DUDE - get your own!" 🤨
 

StratUp

Most Honored Senior Member
Sep 5, 2020
7,300
Altered States
I've been using the Fender app for a tuner on i-phone when I'm playing remotely and/or my tuner isn't handy. I don't know if you can get it for Android.

It's "OK". Solves the problem when playing acoustic by the lake. Seems to have wide margins on "in tune". I wouldn't want to attempt to intonate with it. It's also a little slow to catch up with where you are. I'll be checking some of the apps mentioned here to see if they are available on i-phone.
 

dirocyn

Most Honored Senior Member
Jan 20, 2018
6,569
Murfreesboro, TN
It's nice to have a reading in cents. Not really necessary. Honestly it's not necessary to have intonation more precise than your everyday tuning. If you play around with a precise tuner, you'll likely find that some of your frets are a few cents sharp or flat even with the intonation set correctly. That fact does really bother people who are cursed with perfect pitch; for them compensated nuts or "true temper" frets may be helpful.

It IS important to have a tuner where "dead on" is a precise point. Which is the case for most tuner apps. I've used the Gstrings app, it doesn't tell you how many cents but it does have a display down to 0.1 Hz. Which is reasonably close. At the low E string, E2 (82.4 Hz), 0.1Hz = 2 cents. For the high E string (E4, 329.6Hz) 0.1Hz = 1/2 cents. That's plenty close for me, but I don't have perfect pitch.
 

CB91710

No GAS shortage here
Double Platinum Supporting Member
Feb 24, 2019
10,410
SoCal
My preferred app is the Peterson Strobotune, but as far as I can tell, it is now only available for IOS.
Their site shows it as being for Android as well, but it is no longer in the Play Store.

I still have it on my Android devices, and extracted the Apk so I can continue to use it.
 

CB91710

No GAS shortage here
Double Platinum Supporting Member
Feb 24, 2019
10,410
SoCal
The Peterson Strobe tuner app is the only thing we use for intonation adjustments in our shop. I think it’s $10? It’s much better than any other tuner app.
No longer available on the Google Play store, despite Peterson having the "Play" logo on their site.
I had to extract the APK from my old phone to install the app on my new one.
 

The_Whale

Strat-O-Master
Apr 11, 2020
532
Gaithersburg, MD
Honestly it's not necessary to have intonation more precise than your everyday tuning. If you play around with a precise tuner, you'll likely find that some of your frets are a few cents sharp or flat even with the intonation set correctly.

This is a far too often overlooked point when setting the intonation.
 

CB91710

No GAS shortage here
Double Platinum Supporting Member
Feb 24, 2019
10,410
SoCal
It's nice to have a reading in cents. Not really necessary. Honestly it's not necessary to have intonation more precise than your everyday tuning. If you play around with a precise tuner, you'll likely find that some of your frets are a few cents sharp or flat even with the intonation set correctly. That fact does really bother people who are cursed with perfect pitch; for them compensated nuts or "true temper" frets may be helpful.

It IS important to have a tuner where "dead on" is a precise point. Which is the case for most tuner apps. I've used the Gstrings app, it doesn't tell you how many cents but it does have a display down to 0.1 Hz. Which is reasonably close. At the low E string, E2 (82.4 Hz), 0.1Hz = 2 cents. For the high E string (E4, 329.6Hz) 0.1Hz = 1/2 cents. That's plenty close for me, but I don't have perfect pitch.
One concept that I've seen (but haven't tried, because it doesn't bother me) is to shift your tuning and intonation into the area most frequently used.
Open string tuning and 12th fret intonation works well for most users because the majority of traditional music is played using "cowboy chords", but some styles and players spend the majority of their time higher up on the neck.

For them, it may make sense to tune at the 5th fret, and set intonation comparing the 5th with the 17th.
This also has the benefit of taking the nut height and position out of the mix... which can be good or bad. If the nut height and position are correct, NBD, but if the nut is too high or not placed properly, it will throw off the open strings, and you're still going to be sharp on the 2nd and 3rd fret if it's too tall.
 


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