While there are a handful of different tuners anyone can pick from that will lead you to get your guitar or bass in tune, clip-on tuners that you place on your headstock are some of the most popular ones out there and are especially used often by those who enjoy performing live or intend to in the future!
This article will share with you some of the best clip-on tuners that serve different budgets and come in varying styles and features so that you can find one that suits you and your personal needs.
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I love Korg tuners and metronomes, and like many of their other accessories, their clip-on tuner is affordable and one of the most compact ones you can find.
The design allows itself to fit nicely anywhere on your headstock, especially in between the tuning pegs, which isn’t something every clip-on guitar tuner can do because of the shape of their screens.
- Even more compact and stylish design; simple and easily readable LED display
- Clip with enhanced holding power and a rubberized grip that protects your instrument
- Improved Detection accuracy in the low-frequency region
- Reverse function vertically inverts the meter display
- 24-Hour battery life, and an auto-power-off function
Snark tuners are excellent and have all of the qualities you want in one, namely being simple and accurate, which is possible due to its very tight clamping mechanism that picks up your instrument’s vibrations very well; after all, the ST stands for Super Tight!
The rounded display helps it stand out from others, not only in looks, but it’s also able to rotate 360 degrees too, and therefore, can find itself fitting in most areas on your headstock.
- Faster processing chip
- “Stay Put” Clip
- Enhanced accuracy
- High definition screen
- Screen can be read from any angle
The FCT-2 clip-on tuner by Fender is extremely popular amongst beginner and professional guitarists and bassists alike because of its small size, easy-to-read display, and rotating hinges.
Importantly, it’s sturdy and sensitive to detecting the vibrations on your guitar, which lets you get a very accurate tuning, but that’s something you should expect from any good clip-on tuner.
- Compact, dual-hinged clip-on tuner
- Guitar, Bass, Ukulele, Violin and Chromatic tuning modes
- Color LCD screen with easy-to-read tuning needle
- Tuning Range B0 – B7; A440 calibration
- Includes CR2032 battery
KLIQ might not be as well-known as some of the other brands in this guide, but I’m definitely a fan of their products, like the Metropitch Metronome and Tuner combo, as well as their padded guitar straps.
That being said, one of the main advantages of their clip-on tuner over some of the others on the market is that it consists of a USB-rechargeable battery. Most clip-on guitar tuners use a CR3032 battery, which tends to last quite a while, but rechargeability is a neat feature to have any day of the week.
The Polytune Clip-On by TC Electronics is easily one of the most high-quality headstock guitar tuners on the market due to its stainless steel construction, high precision, and its ability to read the tuning of multiple strings at once with its gorgeous display.
The only drawback is that it is considerably pricier than some of the other clip-on guitar tuners in this guide, but if you want the best of the best and can take advantage of what it offers, it’s absolutely worth it.
- State-of-the-art clip-on tuner
- Polyphonic perfection
- Strobe tuner with +/- 0.02 cent accuracy
- Ultra-bright and easy to read display
- Adaptive screen ensures a perfect readout no matter where you place it
Whether you’re playing live and don’t feel like looking down at a tuning pedal, or you’re simply playing at home or in the studio and want something super convenient, a clip-on guitar tuner can be a fantastic choice.
Hopefully, one of these recommendations will catch your eye, but ultimately, they will serve their purpose, and that’s to help you stay in tune and sound good!
If you like to play on stage, clip-on guitars are great, but you might enjoy tuner pedals even more! Check out my guide to the best tuner pedals for guitar and bass to find a great selection of them like the ones here.