Planet Waves NS Micro Headstock Tuner Review
Most things in a my life are some variant of gray, meaning very little is black and white. I'm not really a philosopher or anything, just contemplative of how the other side might see things. The result is that I KNOW very little.
But I know I love my D'Addario Mini Headstock Tuner. Seriously, it's one of the very few things that I require when I play guitar (right alongside a guitar, strings, and a pick - even then, I could get by without a pick). It fits on almost every one of my guitars perfectly and is not limited to just guitars because I also use it extensively on my guitalele. The size is small, the screen is bright, the battery has yet to die, and I can finally do what I always preach doing: Tune every time you play.
See, it's easy to fall into a habit where you don't tune every time you play and experts say that this leads to a bad musical ear. They say that if you always start out with the guitar in tune, then you will be able to know right off the bat if it's not in tune later on - a trick that will come much slower if your guitar gradually falls out of tune and you're none the wiser until the next time you plug in a tuner.
Having no musical ears to speak of, though, I just like to know that I'm starting where I'm supposed to and if the chord sounds wonky, it's because I'm doing something wrong, not that the string's pitch is off.
I went YEARS before I got a tuner, always relying on friends to tune it, or tuning it myself (ending up with just about the right distance between the notes, just the wrong notes) and it was only when a kind soul gave me a tuner as a gift that I was able to start this whole "playing in tune" thing. It was a plug-in tuner running on a 9V battery and I moved from tuner to similar tuner, but the issue was always that it required a cord, and wasn't the easiest thing to use. Or at least, not nearly as convenient as a headstock tuner would be.
D'Addario came out with a headstock tuner that was great, but pretty big, and then came out with the mini headstock tuner that I fell in love with. Everything about it is great to me from the price ($20.00) to the instruments it could tune, to the fact that it isn't taking up a ton of real estate on the headstock. I love it.
So I was pretty shocked to see that D'Addario said they improved it with the new NS Micro Headstock Tuner. Whereas the old tuner had two buttons, the new one features five buttons which include a power button, a visual metronome button and arrows to adjust, and a reverse button so the note letters are flipped.
|Photos courtesy of Planet Waves|
That last part should be a huge plus to left-handed musicians.
The ratchet clamp has also been improved is seems far less fragile (even though I've never had a problem with mine, I could see how an overzealous person could snap it). It still features an auto-off function to save the battery life, too.
It even comes with another color in the display going from red to yellow to green instead of just red to green. It's certainly not needed, but it is cool when you're tuning on the fly and focusing on the color while you're spinning the tuning key. It gives you some pause before you hit the sweet spot.
And it's smaller.
That's pretty awesome. The updated product is better in every way AND it's smaller.
How much is it?
Oh yeah, that's the other thing: it's CHEAPER, too. How about that? On Amazon it's a mere $12.61 which means that from now on, when a musician is playing out of tune, it's not because they can't afford a tuner, or don't have a cord to plug into their tuner, it's because they are openly insulting you with their mangled notes. At that price, I plan on buying a few more for the different general locations of guitars so I can get to playing in-tune guitars faster instead of walking around the house looking for the one guitar that I had the tuner on last.
If you're a musician who is looking for an affordable, quality, and most covert possible way to tune your guitar, this is it. You need it, and you must buy it. If you live with a musician who doesn't tune regularly, they need this, and you must buy it. There's just no reason not to. Ears and tones are at stake here, people!
For more information, click HERE!