Metronomes are excellent tools that help musicians and players of all type of instruments to control and improve their musical performance in relation to time. A musician or instrumentalist playing or practicing without a metronome could find it difficult to determine if he or she is playing in the right direction.
When tempos transcend into elastic form, your playing process could become more of guesswork in trying to figure out accelerandos and ritards, unless your playing pattern and style are properly configured to yield evenly.
The sight of a traditional clockwork metronome ticking away can dredge up memories of endless piano scale rehearsals in Aunt Mary’s parlor, but metronomes have come a long way since then. Modern electronic metronomes don’t just provide precise timekeeping; they also provide visual, auditory, and sometimes tactile cues for practicing and performing musicians.
If you’re in the market for a new metronome, whether for a beginning piano student or a seasoned cover band, we invited you to check out the top 7 contenders listed above. If you’d like to learn more about the world of metronomes, continue reading our in-depth shopping guide.
What are the Best Metronomes to Buy?
The Boss DB-90 is regarded as the best and most advanced digital metronome eve to grace the market. The Boss DB-90 is extremely suitable for drums, bass guitars, keys, vocals and whatever instrument you bought it for, this is a metronome will surely improve your speed and skill.
Boasting four distinctive click kinds, comprising a human voice count, the Boss DB-90 is suitable for helping you to stay on track with your downbeat. It gives you the ability to practice to a real beat. At 1.25 pounds in weight, this metronome is among the most compact units in the market.
The device is more than capable of hooking you up with drum machine rhythms that are based on a PCM sample. It has its own Note Mixer feature that enables you to program personalized beats by yourself.
Other great components of this wonderful metronome are the available inputs that enable you to connect your guitar, bass, mic, including drum triggers. Drummers will love the onboard rhythm coach even as the controls are easy and have a low learning curve. You can also connect a controller keyboard and enjoy the best of MIDI inputs without waking up the neighbours.
Korg was founded with one driving principle: making high quality digital instruments and accessories a viable option for gigging musicians. Something that many musicians don’t appreciate is that digital accessories and equipment have grown by leaps and bounds both in regard to the fidelity of sound they’re capable of as well as they’re overall affordability.
Case in point, Korg itself was actually founded because Tadashi Osani (a notable performing musician in his local Japan) was dissatisfied with the Wurlitzer Sideman rhythm machine he used to supplement his gigs. The company’s first device, the Disc Rotary Electric Auto Rhythm maching Donca-matic DA-20, was both a solution to the problem faced by Osani as well as the company’s first step towards the legacy they’ve established in the present day.
The most notable thing about this metronome is that it produces an audible tone when the metronome function is used, as opposed to providing solely visual feedback. The important thing about this is that having auditory feedback helps to increase your sense of timing because once you learn to feel the various divisions of rhythm (triplets, eighth notes, quarter notes, etc.) it gives a feeling more similar to practicing with a band. The only flaw here is that the metronome uses a “beep” as opposed to the more standard percussive noise you generally find with a metronome. The device also has 15 rhythm variations housed within the unit, which increases its overall amount of flexibility.
The detection range of the tuner spans from C1 to C8, so odds are you’re going to be able to tune just about any instrument with this tuner. The device uses a backlit LCD display, which is great for outdoor applications. It still suffers from glare like any other screen, but not to the point where you’ll be unable to read the tuner.
An interesting feature of the Korg is TM-50 is that it features a “sound back” design. The sound back design allows you to play a tone in the same octave as what you’re trying to tune to. This helps to hone your sense of pitch because it allows you to practice matching a pitch by ear, which is incredibly valuable practice to any beginning musician.
A great option for musicians looking for both a solid tuner and a powerful metronome, the Korg TM50 Instrument Tuner and Metronome is a great addition to any musicians collection of musical accessories. Just be sure to keep in mind that unlike tuners which read pitch based on vibration this tuner actually tunes via the sound outputted by your instrument, making it less ideal for noisy circumstances. credit: equipboard.com
KLIQ was born out of the market not meeting the needs of musicians. In particular, in KLIQ’s case a band of NYC musicians found themselves growing dissatisfied with the accuracy of your run of the mill clip on tuner. Now for most applications a clip on tuner is going to be very serviceable but they do have a +/-5 cent (the system which measures pitch) variance in most cases. This isn’t going to be readily apparent in most live applications (non-musicians generally don’t start to hear a tone as out of pitch until it’s +/-20 cents off) but it can be incredibly distracting in the studio.
To alleviate this concern, KLIQ set out to create a line of cheap instrument accessories (tuners in addition to other products) which would be affordable for most gigging musicians while still being durable enough to hold up to the rigors of touring and regular performance.
The key thing to note about this tuner is that it has an accuracy of +/- 1 cent, making it a great fit for situations where an accurate pitch is required. This is why it’s more expensive than say a Snark, because it requires extra power and a more careful design in order to guarantee this level of accuracy.
The tuning range of the product is between A0 and C8, which ensures that just about any instrument will be recognized with the tuner. It also comes with a “flat” tuning mode, allowing you to tune a guitar to a non-concert tuning. It also comes with four different tuning modes: Guitar, bass, violin, ukulele, and chromatic. The chromatic mode covers every instrument that doesn’t have a mode listed above, so while brass, woodwind, and different string instruments don’t have their own exclusive settings they can still be accurately tuned with this device.
The onboard metronome is also relatively flexible for a device of this price, allowing for fifteen different time signatures. The unit houses a built in speaker and an onboard volume control. The only thing to note in regards to the metronome is that it doesn’t have polyrhythm functionality, so you can only play one rhythm simultaneously.
Lastly, this tuner also has a three year guarantee from the manufacturer. This is really impressive for an electronic in this price range, because it does a lot to show their faith in the accessories that they produce. Just keep in mind that the standard warranty limitations apply, so while it’s covered for manufacturer error it’ll still be on you to replace should you choose to modify any of its components.
The KLIQ MetroPitch is a great bargain for any musician who needs both a reliable tuner and a powerful metronome. For the price you definitely can’t go wrong if accuracy is a primary concern, however for anyone who spends the majority of their time playing at home or jamming with friends there’s not going to be a huge difference in performance between this tuner and a cheaper Snark or Korg headstock tuner.
The Matrix MR600 is another portable and pocket-sized music tuner you can carry about to any practice class or show to aid your instrumental playing. Designed with a dimension of 8 x 5.5 x 1.4 inches, the Matrix MR600 offers compact feel and convenience.
The Matrix MR600 features a pendulum style LED display that offers clear and precise visuals for beat selections and tuning. It has a chromatic output which contributes to your speed in learning musical beat and styles of play. The adjustable downbeat works side by side with the awesome volume control that can be set to any time signature. The device is remarkable for its immense help in allowing music players to have the perfect timing they have always longed for.
Made of plastic, the Matrix MR600 isn’t the strongest or most durable metronome on the market. So care has to be taken not to drop it carelessly because the plastic dial will likely be the place of impact when dropped, and this is a very fragile spot.
However, the Matrix MR600 is a much better quality compared to some models in its category. The adjustable volume control, easy change of tempo and other settings, including the loudspeaker make it a top-notch choice metronome to have this year.
The Cherub is one of the greatest metronomes around. May it have something to do with the cherubim in the skies… Well, a metronome that boasts a wide temp range of 40 to 208 beat per minute isn’t something you can just undermine. The Cherub Metronome WSM is truly a remarkable design with the top-quality metal mechanism.
At a weight size of 1.1 pounds, the Cherub Metronome WSM-330 showcases its portability and user-friendly design that makes it one of the most reliable help tools for musicians to learn faster and up their game. This piece is very loud, but once you have started playing and you are hearing every beat of what you playing, you wouldn’t mind the loudness.
The Cherub Metronome WSM-330 features a traditional demonstration of powerful beat using woodblock chip sound. The unique design also includes a bell with 5 off/on position. With tempo tolerance of 1%, the Cherub WSM-330 is the metronome you can set to have no downbeat bell but just a click-click sound all the way.
No batteries are needed for this model to work.
KLIQ is yet another 3-in-1 metronome device that combines a metronome, a tuner, and tone generator to become a reliable pocket-sized design. The metronome features a carrying pouch which enables the user to easily carry the device to any practical class or show.
The tuner function is one of excellence. It is highly accurate and can cover a range of A0 to C8. It also includes different types of tuning mode, pitch calibration and transposition settings. No matter which instrument you find yourself playing, KLIQ MetroPitch is sure going to help you in attaining the proper tune and tone.
The KLIQ Metronome features a wide range of beats—30 to 250—per minutes, which includes tap tempo and some other unique beats and different patterns. KLIQ is handy in improving timing in rich and wonderful musical styles. The design is one of the simplest to use. Just dial in your preferred tempo easily and quickly and you are good to go.
Another good thing about this metronome is that you can select your pitch in a swift moment by using the tone generator. 3 years warranty protection against defects or faults, makes the KLIQ MetroPitch metronome one of the best in the market.
Here is another top metronome from a reliable company—Korg. The Korg MA1BL Visual Counting Metronome is one of the best digital metronome in the market. It has a superb inventive beat counting display that renders a vivid number of remaining beats, current beats, and the total number of beats available.
The Korg MA1BL has a wide tempo range which measures from 30 to 252 BPM. It offers the ability to set the tempo range in three awesome ways including a Tap Tempo button. The device features 8 patterns and 9 beats which enable you to enjoy a diversity of rhythmic styles and patterns, as well as the full octave of C4 to B4 of reference tuning pitches.
Korg MA1BL also comes with memory backup support that helps in saving your settings so you don’t get to do it over again. It can turn itself off automatically, help in preserving the life of your battery. Lastly, the MA1BL has a headphone jack with adjustable volume, plus a fold out leg to ease your viewing point. credit: cmuse.org
Depending on what you are looking for, there is always a metronome out there waiting to become the loyal servant, timekeeper and motivator you have been looking for–that tool that will give you a reason to play, practice and play repeatedly.
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