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PROS: Inexpensive, simple.
CONS: Would be nice if the cable was detachable.
For certain instruments a standard electronic tuner just won’t work. Installing a pickup, or even an onboard tuner, can ruin a classic instrument. Peterson practically invented the electronic tuner market, so it’s no surprise they found a solution to this problem with the PitchGrabber.▼ Article continues below ▼
It’s a small spring-loaded clip with a piezo transducer installed in it, connected to an 8’ braided cable that ends in a standard 1/8” plug. It’s simple – place the clip on an instrument, and connect the plug to an electric tuner, or ideally, a smart phone/tablet that has a tuning app. It’s great for acoustic guitars, violins, cellos, as well as brass instruments like tubas and trumpets. With the long cable it would be easy to attach a smartphone to a music stand, and connect to a brass instrument for practice, which would be excellent for slide trombones.
The only downside is the cable; while it’s plenty long, if it gets damaged or snagged, there’s no way to replace it other than replacing the whole unit. At $19.99 it’s not a big investment for such a neat little tool, but it would be worth a little extra to have a detachable cable. For instructors, this is a no brainer; it can easily teach pitch to students for a variety of instruments. Playing in tune is considered a standard quality in a musician, and this is a great tool for developing an ear.