Pedal Tuner VS Clip-On: Which is Most Suitable

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What is Pedal Tuner?

A pedal tuner, or electronic tuner, is an instrument that can accurately tune the guitar. Electronic tuners are small enough to fit on a pedalboard and are typically powered by a single 9-volt battery.

The guitar is not tuned to any particular pitch other than A = 440Hz which is used for standard tuning, but instead adjusted until the note E4 at the first fret sounds exactly like an E4 played on a piano or other keyboard type of instrument, without any other notes sounding anywhere else on the instrument. It can also be used to tune other instruments, such as violins, cellos, and mandolins.

Pedal tuners are small enough to fit on your pedalboard. They are typically powered by a 9-volt battery or some other power supply. The most common type is the digital multi-meter type which has two meters on the front of the device. One meter shows how high you are tuned, while the other shows how low you are tuned.

Types of Pedal Tuner

Pedal tuners are pedals with one or more strings, in most cases three. They have a tuning mechanism in the middle of the unit which allows you to tune your guitar, ukulele, etc. They are most commonly found on acoustic guitars but can also be found on electric guitars and basses.

Pedal tuners are often used for this purpose because they are compact and require less space than other methods that use string trees, such as using a capo. However, if you want to tune multiple instruments, a pedal tuner is not recommended as it takes more time and effort.


  • Get a detailed overview of the entire tone curve
  • See exactly how much each pedal contributes to your overall sound
  • Save and share your settings with other users

A pedal tuner is a great tool for musicians. The app will help you tune your instruments without having to worry about damaging them in the process. You can even use it to tune your own voice or other sounds.

We built the world’s only real-time pedal tuner for intonation of guitar and bass. This is not an app that simply notes when you are in tune, but rather one that dynamically responds to your performance in real-time, showing you exactly what frequencies your instrument emits at any given moment.


Pedal tuners are used to tune a guitar or bass. They have a simple, guitar-shaped housing and typically have two-foot pedals: one to stop or start the tuning process, and one for adjusting the pitch of each string as desired.

Pedal tuners use a piezo sensor as their detector, which can sense vibration from nearby strings. The pedal tuner will produce an output signal whose frequency corresponds with the desired pitch of that string.

What is Clip-On Tuner?

A clip-on tuner is an instrument that is used primarily to tune stringed instruments such as guitars and violins. They are used in place of a traditional violin, violin bow, or guitar tuner for the following reasons:

  • They can be attached to your instrument quickly.
  • Their readings are quick and accurate because they use an LED display that does not rely on mirrors or lenses.
  • They can also be placed atop acoustic guitars so they do not touch the strings while being tuned.

Clip-On Tuners are sold in many different types. Some clip onto the head of your instrument while others are placed on the end of it. They come in both weighted and non-weighted models, but damage to acoustic guitars has been known to occur if the tuners are placed on the end of them by accident at any point during tuning. This is due to the tuners’ lack of padding around them so they can be moved easily. If you do not want this to happen to your acoustic guitar, we recommend that you use a clip-on tuner that is weighted.

Clip-On Tuners will generally come with a thin, 1/8″ (3.5mm) cable attached to them; this cable enables the tuner to be placed onto the headstock of an acoustic guitar and behind the nut of an electric one.

Types of Clip-On Tuner

Clip-on tuners come in two variants: headstock and tuning fork. The headstock design is used on most acoustic guitars, though an increasing number of electric guitars are using it as well.

The great thing about the headstock model is that it is always in front of you and can be seen from any angle. This is the main reason why the Ovation acoustic guitars have their tuning heads mounted on the headstocks. The other primary advantage is that it can be used indoors, as well as out.

The tuning fork design is the other primary type of clip-on tuner, though all other formats are history. This sleek, compact design allows for a very thin headstock construction width. If that’s not enough, they’re also more affordable than most other models and tend to be more accurate in terms of tuning and tone detection.


  • The tuner is equipped with a sharper, brighter display for easier reading
  • The tuner has both an A4 frequency and a chromatic mode to provide greater versatility for guitarists
  • A sensitivity switch enables the user to tune all instruments without interference from other nearby devices, such as mobile phones or mp3 players
  • The tuner is outfitted with a large backlit LCD display that makes it easy to read in any lighting condition. It runs on two AAA batteries which are included in the package.


A Tuner is a device used to tune musical instruments or voices without the need for a keyboard or other manual device. Tuners are most common devices that can be clipped onto various string instruments (e.g., guitars, violins, cellos), but some also exist for wind instruments (e.g., saxophone; see below). The most common type of clip-on tuner consists of either one or two microphone capsules with narrow beams that determine how precisely each instrument can be tuned.

Which Will Be The Right Tuner For You?

It’s surely no surprise that many musicians and guitar players use a pedal tuner. These devices are usually more accurate, they work on both electric and acoustic guitars, and they can be more convenient to set up. But as with all choices in life, there are some pros and cons of pedal tuners versus clip-on tuners.

Clip-On Tuner

Clip-on tuners are easy to attach to your guitar. Some come with a clip that can be easily attached to any part of the body, while others connect to the headstock using a screw or an adhesive pad.

Pedal Tuner

pedal tuners are definitely more accurate than clip-on tuners, and these devices can be quite useful as well as very useful guitar accessories.


So, there it is! The final verdict. You should choose whether to buy a pedal tuner or clip-on, depending on the style of playing you want to do. If you would like to focus on accuracy and precision, go for the pedal tuner. The option that gives you more versatility is the clip-on – it provides an easy way to accurately tune your instrument without actually pulling out an instrument.


Are pedal tuners more accurate than clip-on?

Generally, pedal tuners are considered more accurate than clip-on tuners, but high-quality clip-one can be just as accurate. But, direct input from guitar to tuner eliminates both issues. However, a pedal is not an option for an acoustic instrument.

Are pedal tuners more accurate?

They work with electric instruments and read the pitch based on the signal that comes from your guitar. They’re great for playing live because of their durability. They are discreet and will mute the signal of your instrument when active. Pedal tuners are also generally more sophisticated and more accurate.

Are clip-on tuners better?

Are clip-on guitar tuners any good? That’s a good question. For acoustic guitar players, it’s a no-brainer. Some affordable acoustic-electric guitars will have an onboard tuner in their pickup and preamp system, but otherwise a clip-on is your best bet.

Do clip-on tuners damage guitars?

No damage. won’t vouch for any other make as there may be some that do damage, but before this tuner and guitar, an intellitoich was pretty much permanently on my guitar. Not sure where the fear of doing this comes from other than maybe years ago they did damage or maybe a cheaper tuner.


Q: Should you get a clip-on tuner for your guitar pedal?

A: Of course, you could stay in tune with a pedal tuner, or with a fancy rack-mounted unit like the Korg Pitchblack Pro, but let’s imagine your pedalboard is already overcrowded as it is. Removing the tuner would free up some valuable real estate for, ooh, an analog delay pedal, for example. The clip-on tuner could make that a reality.

Q: Should I remove the tuner on my pedal tuner?

A: Of course, you could stay in tune with a pedal tuner, or with a fancy rack-mounted unit like the Korg Pitchblack Pro, but let’s imagine your pedalboard is already overcrowded as it is. Removing the tuner would free up some valuable real estate for, ooh, an analog delay pedal, for example.

Q: How do you tune a guitar with a clip on tuner?

A: Using a clip-on guitar tuner couldn’t be easier. Simply attach the tuner to the headstock of your guitar and pluck the string you wish to tune. The screen will then light up, showing you if you need to sharpen or flatten the note-that’s it!

Q: What does the Fender Bullet clip-on tuner look like?

A: It looks a little like a sniper scope, and perhaps there’s something in that, for Fender’s Bullet clip-on tuner offers a very discrete tuning performance with a circular display mounted on a cylindrical barrel design that can be mounted on the front or back of the headstock.