Boss TU-3 Chromatic Tuner Review (2021)

Boss TU-3 Chromatic Tuner Thumbnail

In this review we will be checking out the Boss TU-3 Chromatic Tuner! Tone Start will be covering everything you need to know about the pedal before you go out and buy it. We will be checking out its features, sound, performance, durability, and provide you with our overall opinion on the pedal.

BACKGROUND

If you have any experience or knowledge about guitar pedals then you would have most-likely heard about BOSS. BOSS are responsible for manufacturing a wide-range of effects pedals for both the guitar and bass. The company was founded back in 1973, and is a division of the Japanese manufacturer Roland Corporation. Many popular artists are affiliated with BOSS products, including big names such as Steve Vai, Eric Johnson and John 5.

SPECIFICATIONS*

Tuning range:

C0(16.35Hz)~C8(4186Hz)

Reference pitch:

A4=436–445 Hz (1Hz step)

Precision:

±1 cent

Power supply:

1x 9V battery / AC adaptor

Current draw:

30-95 mA

Accessories:

- Owner's manual

- Leaflet

- Dry battery/9V type

Dimensions:

4 x 3 x 6 inches

Weight:

2 lbs

*(Listed according to the information provided at BOSS's official website)

CONTROLS

MODE BUTTON: toggles between 8 different tuning modes (chromatic, chromatic flat, guitar, guitar flat, bass, bass flat)

STREAM/CENT BUTTON: toggles the meter's display pattern (stream/cent)

FOOTSWITCH: enables/disables the effect

RESOURCES

FEATURES

The BOSS TU-3 Chromatic Tuner is the successor of the incredibly popular BOSS TU-2. BOSS have gone and taken the TU-3 to the next level with this new instalment of the TU series.

The TU-3 features three 1/4" jack ports indicated by input, output and bypass. The instrument you want to tune connects directly into the input jack situated on the right side of the pedal. Both the output and bypass jacks are located on the left side of the pedal and connect directly to your amp or other device.

There are two different modes that you can select from: chromatic or guitar/bass. As mentioned above you can toggle from 8 different modes depending on your situation. The TU-3 can indicate the current notes for both 7-string guitars and 6-string basses. The 'accu-pitch sign' function provides verification of when the correct note is achieved. In addition, the TU-3 responds very fast while you are tuning your instrument, which is always a massive plus.

As with all other BOSS pedals the BOSS TU-3 includes a built-in buffer. This means your guitar signal is kept strong, and the frequencies remain preserved. An active electronic circuit is the mechanism that allows the buggering to be performed by the pedal.

There should be no signal-loss caused by the TU-3 due to its true bypass mode, which is a feature I definitely look for when checking out different chromatic tuner pedals. The last thing I want is for my pedal to interfere with the original signal of my guitar.

The accuracy of the TU-3 is significantly greater than the previous version. The 21-segment LED meter located at the front of the pedal makes it much easier to tune your guitar. The lights are also bright enough to be easily visible during broad daylight. This can be activated by its clever 'high-brightness mode'.

Can the Boss TU-3 be used to tune a bass guitar? BOSS specifically state that 6-string basses are supported by the TU-3. The pedal even includes a 'bass mode' for the sole-purpose of tuning your bass guitar.

How do the two outputs of the Boss TU-3 work (output/bypass)? Using the 'bypass' jack will allow you to hear the sound of your guitar while you tune. If you use the 'output' jack your signal will always remain muted while the pedal is on.

Is a power supply included with the Boss TU-3? No, a power supply is not included with the pedal. But it may be purchased separately.

NOTE - The input jack (1/4") should be unplugged from the pedal when it's not in use as the battery will continue to drain.

DURABILITY

Many people have spoken about the amazing durability of the TU-3. One individual even drove several nails into his unit to test how durable the pedal actually is. There's not really much more to say other than that I could see the TU-3 lasting for a very long time. Perfect for use both on and off the stage.

FINAL VERDICT

The BOSS TU-3 Chromatic Tuner has definitely made big improvements over the previous TU-2 model. The TU-3 was undeniably built to last, and features everything you could want from a chromatic tuner pedal. I would definitely recommend this pedal to both beginners and pros alike.

Agree or disagree with our review? Let us know what you think in the comments below!

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