It’s All About The Strings
Guitars are cool instruments and lots of people — be they young or old — have spent time playing them or trying to learn to play them or just aspiring to be able to play them. The point of a guitar is to be played, so talking about how fancy they might look or their construction and how it affects the sound is useful, but it doesn’t get to the heart of the matter. Which is that practice is how you become proficient in playing a guitar. But a guitar, like any stringed instrument, must be tuned — which is to say that the various strings must be calibrated for a particular “sound” so that when strummed or plucked or whatever you want to call it when a string is “activated” — the strings must either sound off in their correct frequency manner and/or harmonize together so as to create the intended sound. This is all a fancy way of saying you have to tune the strings properly.
Now tuning a guitar has been done a number of ways in the past — there are those who tune “by ear” which works if you possess the aural ability to do so, and then there’s using a pitch pipe (sort of like a one-sound harmonica) to tune a string, or using the notes of a piano (which obviously must have been tuned already). None of this is 100% since it relies on the person listening to the sound as they tune the string and of course such methods are far from being today’s high tech. So if you’re looking for a simple but high tech method for tuning a stringed instrument like an acoustic or electric guitar (or ukulele or banjo or steel guitar or mandolin, etc.) and you don’t want to be lugging something that can’t fit in an oversize pocket or knapsack with ease, then you’re looking for Band Industries’ Roadie 3 Automatic Guitar Tuner.
Look At The Roadie 3
So there’s two things about the Roadie 3, the first being to describe what it is that you’re looking at and the second being to describe what it does. Tackling the “look” first, it’s a small flask-like shaped device with a big button on one side and a LCD screen next by. The LCD screen is in color which makes it easier to see for older eyes. There’s a battery operating the electronics and Bluetooth for the app (more on that later), but there’s also a mechanical aspect so having this battery be rechargeable makes for an easier ride. Band Industries says it can perform its task of tuning a guitar about 50 times before the battery is depleted, so realistically it’s obvious that recharging isn’t going to be needed every day or even every week. Doing that recharging gets sped up using USB-C and a cable is provided.
Using The Roadie 3
Now as to physically what the Roadie 3 does, the actual procedure is very simple. You just place Roadie 3’s rotating insert against/over the peg on the headstock so that its motor can ratchet the string around the peg and tighten it. As you pluck the string, the motor is doing its thing and once it’s done, a beep sounds off. Then you go to the next string and repeat — of course you’ve set to use the tuning desired — for example starting with an “open E” and then you have to go in order because Roadie 3 expects that.
So What Else
So you’ve hit the power button and picked from the menu: the easiest being the string winder that does exactly what it sounds like — it takes the sting out of having to wind a string around the peg by hand and it’s a fast way to do this, especially if you’re playing guitar and the string broke on you and it’s not just practice at home. And as expected, you can reverse the procedure and do the exact obvious.
So then you’d use the Tuner setting and select from a great number of tuning choices, for example open E like noted above, and the speed is slow for most accurate or fast which is a bit less accurate. Because there’s over 150 alternate tunings that can be employed, along with customized tunings — otherwise why bother having an LCD screen with options in the first place?
So what about the Metronome setting? The Metronome setting gives you an internal beep sound or it can be a vibration or both. You can set beats and change the tempo as well.
There’s also a free iOS/Android app — the Roadie 3 will work without it, but it adds a lot of dimensions for use: for example choosing from many tunings, allowing for exploring alternate tunings, accessing a chromatic tuner and storing profiles for each instrument. Plus creating custom instruments (as long as they have geared pegs, controlling the beep and vibration functions and accessing music news.
The Roadi 3 Automatic Guitar Tuner has an accuracy of +/- 0.1Hz and has an anti-slip grip to avoid mishaps from greasy fingers (good because no case is included). It does a lot besides just tuning the strings of an instrument, but the simple fact is that it eliminates guesswork and puts you right over the target right. For more details go to https://www.roadiemusic.com/roadie3