A guitar tuner and tuning devices serve to tune the guitar, and should absolutely not be missing among your guitar material.
And are different types of guitar tuners : clip-on tuners, digital tuners (pedal tuners, rack tuners, etc), handheld tuners, tuner apps (for Smartphone, Tablet, iPad, etc), tuning fork, integrated tuners (like some acoustic guitars) ….. An important feature of the guitar tuner is chromatic and non-chromatic tuners. The non-chromatic tuner is perfect for the standard E tuning of a guitar or bass guitar, and is ideal for beginners. This tuner only recognizes the 6 string names or the 6 notes of the open strings of guitar. The chromatic tuners only become important when alternative tunings are used such as: open G-tuning, drop-D, drop-B, drop-C, open E-tuning, flat tunings, etc.
Mind you, there are a lot of price differences in guitar tuners, from 10 euros to 250 euros. An expensive tuner is not a real must, certainly not for starters, but we still notice from experience that more expensive tuners (such as the Korg rack tuners) score much better in terms of accuracy than the cheaper versions. So a golden tip : don’t save on a decent guitar tuner!
Clip-on tuners are very useful as they are clamped to the head stock of the guitar, and can also stay there while practicing guitar.
These clip-on tuners work through the vibrations transmitted through the body and guitar neck, and work with classical, acoustic and electric guitars. Please note, this guitar tuner is subject to ambient noise.
When you are playing with 2 guitarists, or for example the drummer is playing, it is difficult or sometimes even impossible to tune the guitar.
Pedal and rack tuners only work with an electric or acoustic guitar with jack connection. These tuners are easy to use since the guitar cable has to be plugged in, so this tuner is not subject to disturbing factors from the environment. It is also useful that these guitar tuners can be linked to further guitar effects and guitar amplifier and can therefore also be visually nicely integrated into an effect pedal board or a guitar rack. This way you can check the guitar tuning at any time while playing the guitar. The tuners are more expensive, but experience shows that they are a lot more accurate than, for example, clip-on tuners.
Handheld tuners, a tuner that you can use via a built-in microphone and/or via a jack cable input. These are relatively accurate when using a cable. The disadvantage is that they are not made to integrate into, for example, your pedal board. It is literally to hold in your hand, and to put away again after voting. When using via the microphone, you have to pay attention to ambient noises again. How to prefer the tuner as close as possible to the body of your guitar.
Tuner Apps … naaaaah, don’t do it. The big advantage : it is free to download, you always have it at hand, easy to install on your Smartphone, iPhone, Tablet, iPad, etc. But it works via the microphone of your device, and again the accuracy here leaves a lot to be desired and this is also extremely subject to ambient noise, vibration and noise. So, in case of emergency (if you have forgotten your guitar tuner) this is acceptable. In all other cases, this is not recommended.
Stemvork … oh no oh no. For musicians with many years of experience and with very good to perfect hearing, this is best to do. For beginner musicians and guitarists, and actually for 99.99% of all other guitarists up to even professional level: buy a decent tuner before you get into a fight with the rest of the band.
Integrated tuners as with an acoustic guitar with built-in tuner and pre-amp. Very useful when you play acoustic guitar, and you don’t have to drag a tuner with you. You can tune your guitar at any time because the tuner is nicely built in above the acoustic guitar. My experience : these tuners are quite OK, just in case, they are even quite good, but I notice that again the accuracy leaves something to be desired. When an acoustic guitar is perfectly tuned, and I then check it with a rack tuner (which is very accurate but also expensive), I notice a clear deviation.