Reviews: Snark SN-1X Tuner

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For anyone who plays a stringed instrument, one of the challenges is keeping it tuned.  Now there are countless tuners and what not out there to choose from, so the big question is what does one use and in what setting?

The Snark SN-1X tuner is very simple, you clip it to the headstock of your guitar, turn it on and then play a string.  It works by sensing the the vibrations in the instrument and then translating it to the pitch which is displayed on the LED Screen.

The Good:

The tuner is relatively inexpensive.  You can find this model online for $10 – $20 dollars.

The display can be rotated in any direction, so if you want it mounted to the backside of your headstock so it is not really visible on stage, you can do that.  If you want to view it from the front (which to me makes no sense) you could do that as well.

In previous bands I have tended to play in dense heavy fog with lights and strobes.  The color display is easy to read and at a quick glance, you can see what the note is.

It is fairly accurate.  I also utilize the tuner in Positive Grids JamUP Pro guitar app and a small Korg plug in tuner.  All three are about equal.

Lastly it really stays put when playing live.  I tend to view live performances as a reason to be as active as possible and that I am playing a semi-violent contact sport against the instrument. (I do have photos to demonstrate it but they are a little, well, bloody and for the guitars, parts are missing)  Not once have I had mine fall off.

The Bad:

The only gripe I have about this product is that you sometimes have to find the sweet spot on the headstock to get it to really register the note being played.  On most of my guitars and basses I can simply clip it onto the top end of the headstock, tune and start jamming or recording.  From time to time I will have to reposition it to have it respond.  I find this to be more of the case with my 5 string bass and 7 string electric.

The Verdict:

I really like mine and would recommend this to anyone.  As a rule of thumb, always have a back up, but as of yet, I have not needed one.  The battery lasts a long time, it is super small and convenient and does not require a separate lead or additional cables or power sources…  That and it is $40 to $80 bucks cheaper than most pedal tuners on the market.

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