Hands-on Review: Onboard Research recharges the tuner
(John Gorbe | Posted 2011-02-23)
I have used Intellitouch tuners from Onboard Research for approximately 8 years and every new model they produce gets better and feature fresh designs and features for any level of musician. What makes the Intellitouch family of tuners unique is that they sense vibrations through the instrument rather than relying on sound. They have models available for all instruments whether you play a string, brass or woodwind instrument - Onboard Research has you covered.
Like the rest of the Intellitouch line, Onboard's new PT-40 combines vibration-based tuning with a lithium-ion rechargeable battery. It is automatic, chromatic, and displays the measured pitch on a large, backlit display for easy tuning. The PT40 tuner ignores background noise - it feels the instrument's vibration instead of using sound. The tuner works on electric and acoustic guitars, basses, violins, banjos, mandolins and more.
The company includes a USB charging cable, which charged the PT-40 extremely fast. The unit was delivered to me with about half a charge and after about 30 minutes of charging on my laptop it has lasted for a week so far! There is also a low-battery indicator on the screen, and its status is still full.
Like many of the tuners in this line the PT-40 features a 6-arrow segment display, multicolor backlight and a well-designed clamp to clip on any instrument. The arrow display is very easy to use: 3 arrows on each side of the note indicate whether you're flat or sharp. The backlight is perfect for live use – if the display is red, you’re not in tune…if the display is green, you’re in tune. The clamp is a very versatile ball-and-joint type so you can swivel the tuner in any direction for a clear view. The clamp features rubber contacts so it’s safe to use on your instrument and it's strong enough to hold in place until you want to take it off. One-touch operation makes the PT-40 as simple as it can be. Hold the button down for 2 seconds to turn it on and repeat to turn it off. The A-Ref can be calibrated from 430Hz-450Hz by double tapping the button while the unit is on and pressing the button once for each increment you want to advance the frequency.
The PT-40 will see daily use on my guitar as I find it to be accurate, attractive, easy to use and containing a long battery life.
The PT-40 has a retail price of $49.95 USD.
Learn more about the Intellitouch family of tuners here:
The Onboard Research Company was founded in 1996 in Carrollton, Texas, and has been making innovative products for musicians with great success. After launching the original Intellitouch PT-1 they have caught the attention of many musicians in the industry, including. Jimmy Bruno, Wolf Marshall, Mimi Fox, Michael Manring, Martin Taylor, John Pizzarelli, Andy Summers and Adrian Legg to name a few.