If you are an iPhone user you will no doubt have seen the various guitar tuner apps available but if you are looking for the ultimate tuner app then you should check out Peterson Tuners’ iStrobosoft app. When I think of Peterson Tuners I think of the flagship model, the AutoStrobe 490 which if you have ever seen Paul Gilbert’s “Get Out Of My Yard” instructional DVD you will see he has one in the background in his studio and are used by guitar techs the world over. Peterson also produce a rack version called the VS-R StroboRack and a very cool stomp box version called the StroboStomp 2 which is going on the wishlist after using this app.
I downloaded iStrobosoft from the iTunes App Store which cost me $12.99 US which, for an iPhone App might sound like a lot but you really can’t bundle this application in with the millions of crappy iPhone apps available, this is a professional piece of software that is accurate, useful and worth way more than $12.99! I paid about twice that price for my now redundant Korg tuner which wasn’t even backlit so pretty useless even in the rehearsal studio! I was sent the additional lead to plug into my electric guitar which I think is a necessity unless you are an acoustic guitarist, and for an additional $12.99 you transform your iPhone into a Peterson tuner, very cool. I did notice a couple of display glitches which also happen on my Korg which you will also see in my video, when playing the low E sometimes the display said B3 not E3 although it continued to tune correctly, but seeing as this is a software application it is the kind of bug that can be easily patched with an update from the App Store once Peterson fix it.
iStrobosoft is simple to use, no need for any pesky instructions and if you want to delve deeper all you have to do is click on the i link in the bottom right of the screen to get to the settings screen where you can calibrate the app and set up different drop or capo tunings. I only just realised too that you can switch to fullscreen mode by using your fingers to zoom the display as if you were zooming in on a map or photo, but to be honest it is fine using the tuner in normal mode. I rate this app very highly and absolutely recommend anyone in need of a portable tuner to download it and purchase the iPhone adaptor.
Here is a full list of features:
- Exclusive strobe display allows you to achieve an unmatched level of accuracy.
- Note/Octave window displays the correct note and octave for the note being tuned.
- Cents display allows you to see how far out of tune your note is in cent values.
- Glowing flat/sharp indicators assist when tuning a note very far from the target position and it is difficult to gauge which direction the strobe is moving.
- Noise filter: Use the noise filter when utilizing an external mic or clip-on tuning device to help reduce the effect of extraneous environmental noise during tuning.
- Input boost: The input boost will raise all input frequencies by +24dB.
- Calibration mode: iStroboSoft can be calibrated to an external source guaranteeing 1/10th cent accuracy.
- Drop/Capo mode: iStroboSoft will auto-transpose notes up or down to one full octave.
- Full screen mode permits the strobe display to be maximized on screen to allow better viewing from a distance.
- Adjustable Concert A: Change the Concert A reference of the tuner to accommodate tuning to a fixed instrument, such as a piano, or tune instruments that do not utilize the typical Western A440 reference.