My StudyBass

Bass Tuners Guide (Page 2)

continued from Bass Tuners page 1

How You Hook Up a Bass Tuner

Generally you run a cable from your bass to the tuner and from the tuner to the amp. You want a good tuner with this hookup. With a cheap tuner you might lose some signal or tone before it even gets to the amp. One way to side step this is to run the tuner through your amp’s effects loop if you have one and you’re not otherwise using it. Or, you can get a little A/B switching box that doesn’t lose any signal and switch over to the tuner when you need it.

You can also use the built-in microphone on the bass tuner, but this isn’t practical on gigs with all the extra noise and other instruments in the background. You need to set the tuner near your speaker cabinet for it to pick up the notes with the mic.

Bass Tuner Recommendations

I suggest getting a chromatic tuner that has a mechanical needle and some lights on the display.

I see my students buy new tuners all the time. So I've used most of the tuners out there. I prefer the Boss TU-15. This would be my first choice for a first tuner that'll last you many years, but I understand it’s a little pricey.
Boss TU-15 Chromatic Tuner with Accu-Pitch

If you're on a budget and need a cheap beginning tuner, go with the Korg CA-30 Chromatic Tuner.

If you want a pedal tuner, the Boss TU-2 Chromatic Tuner is the de facto standard pedal tuner. It is quite well made.

If you want the ultimate tuner and you can afford it, get the rackmount Korg DTR-1000 or DTR-2000. These are highly accurate and have a very quick response time.

Don’t forget you will also need a second instrument cable if you’re going to pass through the tuner to your amp. Get a good quality cable with a lifetime warranty. I like Monster Cables. I have yet to have one go bad on me and I can hear a slightly better tone through them. It's very subtle though. If you're on a budget, any cable will be sufficient.

Hopefully this has helped you make a wise decision for purchasing a good bass tuner that will last you a long time.

Andrew Pouska
bass teacher