A couple of years ago, David was sent a Roadie 2 Automatic Guitar Tuner and reviewed it on The New Music Industry Show (live on Facebook, separate from the podcast). Yes, it has taken us that long to get around to editing and sharing this video with you.
We want to thank Band Industries for sending us the tuner, which David had the opportunity to write about on Music Industry How To as well.
We are aware that the Roadie 3 is available now, and David has not had the opportunity to try it. So, his opinion on the Roadie 2 does not reflect on what is surely an improvement on what is a promising but imperfect product.
- 00:00 – The Roadie 2 Automatic Guitar Tuner
- 00:13 – It looks like space age technology
- 00:50 – It has every tuning built in
- 01:28 – The tuner isn’t entirely reliable
- 01:44 – The Roadie seems to have some trouble with the bass strings
- 02:48 – Mysterious error messages
- 03:37 – USB charging is convenient
- 04:01 – It’s a cool product, but it’s not road worthy yet
- 04:41 – Closing thoughts
It’s the Roadie 2 automatic guitar tuner. This thing is pretty cool.
So, I’m going to start with the pros. What’s good about the Roadie 2 guitar tuner?
The Tuner Has Curbside Appeal
The first thing is that it looks like space age technology. All you do is take the tuner, put it on the tuning pegs, play the string, and the Roadie will tune your guitar automatically.
People will see you with the tuner and go:
“Oh, that’s cool!”
“I’ve seen that before!”
That’s the curbside appeal of this product.
It Has a Solid Digital Display & Many Built-in Tunings
It’s also simple. It has a digital display. You can select from a multitude of instruments – acoustic guitar or electric guitar. Then you can choose from various common tunings – pretty much everything you can think of.
So, it looks cool, it’s simple, the features are great.
Unfortunately, it’s Unreliable
Here’s what’s wrong with it. And there are definitely a few shortcomings.
I would not depend on this tuner if I was on tour. I would want a backup tuner, and I would want it to be a different product. I would not want it to be a Roadie 2.
Here are a couple of ways in which the Roadie has failed me.
It Doesn’t Tune Bass Strings Reliably
The first is this. It seems to have trouble with bass strings – especially E and A. With the higher strings, it works perfectly. I just put it on the tuning pegs, I’ll play the string, and it will automatically rotate, and bring the strings in tune. It works great with the D, G, B, and E strings.
But it doesn’t work quite right for the E string (sixth) and sometimes the A string. Sometimes I’m endlessly playing the string, trying to get it tuned up, and it will not tune. In fact, it will keep rotating back and forth, one way or the other, not sure what note it’s trying to tune itself to. That’s a serious product defect so far as I’m concerned.
So, if I didn’t have a backup tuner, floor tuner, pedal tuner, standard electronic chromatic tuner, or clip-on tuner with me, I would not depend on this tuner alone.
Error Messages are the Worst
And here’s another thing. It will sometimes display an error on the screen as you’re tuning. There’s the part that lights up, when the Roadie is on, it will be blue. It will turn green when the string is fully in tune, and it will turn red if there’s an error.
One time, I had it turn red and get stuck. Like blue screen of death on Windows. It froze. The tuner froze and I couldn’t do anything about it. I tried pressing the power button, I tried pressing and holding the power button for longer periods. It did not work. The only thing I could do was place the tuner in the case, let it run out of battery and recharge it.
USB Charging is Convenient
Now, it’s cool that it charges via USB. We all tend to have USB devices, and either you have a wall adapter, or a laptop, or some other device that connects via USB and you can easily charge the Roadie. So, that’s another pro.
But it’s the two cons are what had me going, “it’s so cool, it’s a great idea, but it’s not perfect yet.”
For the Roadie to be road worthy, you’re going to need to make a better product. I’m going to be anxiously awaiting the Roadie 3. I don’t know what others are saying out there, but the Roadie 2 is not perfect. It still needs a bit of work.
Cool product, cool idea, what’s good about it is good, but there’s some room for improvement.
You can get the latest Roadie product here.