We know that slow practice is good for us. We also know that like it or not, the metronome is going to play a role in our slow work at some point or another.
And whether we love practicing with a metronome or hate it with a vengeance, we all own one. Heck, I have four, including my very first metronome – an old black box with a light on top that has to be plugged in (?!) to function.
Yet nowadays, smartphones are beginning to replace our Dr. Beats, Walkman cassette recorders, and chromatic tuners. We can even carry around our entire sheet music library on an iPad – and needn’t stress out about finding a good page turner.
But with so many apps to choose from, how are we supposed to know which ones are worth paying for and which ones fall short?
This is the first in a series that aims to identify the top must-have apps for musicians.
Here’s the plan:
- I’ll put out a post seeking nominations for the best app in a specific category
- Nominate your favorite app in the comments – and tell us what makes it stand apart from the rest
- On Wednesday, I’ll report back with the top recommendations and give you a chance to vote on which one is best
So…what’s the best metronome app?
There are more than a few dozen metronome apps currently available to smartphone users. They all do the regular metronome thing, but there are many other factors to consider, from cost to user-friendliness to features like background support and mixed meters.
So, which metronome app (either iOS or Android) is your favorite?
Let us know which one you think is the best in the comments below – just leave it at the top of your comment like VOTE: APP NAME HERE. And don’t forget to tell us what makes it stand out from the alternatives.
VOTE: Dr. Betotte
Essentially reproduces the function of my Dr Beat including replication of the sounds of several DB flavors and a number of extra functions. I don’t use half of what it does, frankly. Even emulates the backlit look of newer models. I use it on iPhone and don’t know if it is available for Android.
VOTE: Metron by SintraWorks. Amazing app for learning multimeter scores with tempo changes. You can customize the app to the score you are practicing.
I vote for Frozen Ape’s Tempo Metronome due to its background capabilities, flexible meters, and sound choices.
Great layout, super easy to use.
VOTE: Steady-Tick Metronome for BlackBerry PlayBook by Christopher Morran Sanford. Free! Minimalist, emulates antique mechanism. Slide the weight up or down, flick the wand to start and stop it with your finger. Nice woodgrain graphic.
Metronome+ is the best metronome by far–great sound sets, practical layout, easy to use and effective.
Vote: Tap Metronome by Dan Soper
– you can start with your tempo by tapping and app will show you your tempo, cool tool for a teacher to start with any new piece to students.
– the rest of features are pretty standard compare to other apps.
VOTE: mobile metronome (android)
It has a clear and easy layout, and does all the functions needed and its easy to change the sound.
VOTE: Time trainer by justinguitar
VOTE: Visual Metronome
Large flashing numbers, loud sound and many different sounds too.
My new favorite is Tonal Energy Tuner and Metronome. I like it because it is 2 in one and it is efficient and fun to use. 🙂
VOTE = Metronome+
Best visual motion for the metronome and the cleanest UI for selecting subdivisions and time signatures.
I enjoy the metronome Tempo Advance for iOS, but haven’t had the opportunity to try many others, so I’m looking forward to the results from this!
VOTE: Metronome+, elegant and intuitive!
Vote: metronome +
Intuitive, loud, ACCURATE!!!
Metronome+ without a doubt!
Another vote for Frozen Ape’s tempo. It’s accurate, easy to use, and has a ton of features that get updated all the time. Metronome+ is way too simple compared to tempo, and that actually makes it harder to use.
Metronome+ by far!
VOTE: Metronome+ by Joseph LeBlanc
Definitely, the best metronome app ever in iTunes App Store. It works great for me and my students to play and teach percussions.
I know it’s not a real metronome, but ireal b is an excellent way to work on tempo AND chord changes. I love it.
Has a tap feature and many different possible beat patterns. Only problem I have is that it isn’t quite as loud as I need for some loud practicing.
I usually use a wooden metronome. I like its sound better than any of the apps.
Vote: Time Guru
Does everything you want it to: tap tempo, programmable (and saveable) odd time signatures, lots of different tones. BUT, the coolest part is the Random Mute feature, where you can tell it to randomly silence the metronome from 0 to 100% of the beats (0 meaning it clicks on every beat, like a normal metronome and 100% where it never clicks). At 20% it silences one out of five clicks, 50% silences half, etc. It forces you to internalize the tempo and play in time even when the metronome isn’t making sound. Great for jazz and rock players.
I really, really need an app that let’s me use the metronome function and a timer function at the same time. Any suggestions?
VOTE: Time Guru
Can set any mixed meter using quarter notes, 8th notes, 8th note triples, or 16th notes as the pulse.
Polymetric metronome that you can program with accent patterns and different meters.
VOTE: The best free one is called “The Elegant Metrenome”
A good one that no-one has mentioned, which is really more of a drum machine than a metronome, is TablaTanpura. It uses North Indian talas, allowing selection of some unusual meters.
VOTE: Metronome +
Clean, simple, intuitive design. Who’s says it’s hard to use??
iTick for the Iphone; it’s free, basic and works well for simple practicing. Essentially like a standard, old school metronome.
I’m on android. Metronome Beats by Andy Stone works great for me. Plenty of features and manages a clean, intuitive interface. My other android must haves are Pitch Lab for tuning and Easy Voice Recorder for (duh..) recording. Not sure which of these, if any, are available on the iphone.
TimeGuru. On both iOS and Android. It has a novel UI for entering chains of meters/rhythms. You can also have it randomly silence clicks (you can control the frequency of the silencing).
Best layout. Super clean and easy to use. Rock steady tempo, lots of meters, great sounds.
Tempo Advance for iOS
VOTE: Dr. Betotte – iOS
It’s simple, clean and it has some very useful features that I’ve only seen on this one e.g. increasing tempo over time or bars. Timer – to set how long you’d like to practice at a certain tempo. Programmable rhythms and sound, etc, etc and yet it’s very easy to use. And it’s rock steady.
Been using it on the mac, iPhone & iPad. 5/5
VOTE: Polynome – iOS
It’s a different kind of beast but a must have for polyrthmic/meter nerds. Super easy to program your e.g. 21:9 :-D! Terrible sounds though and you can not save your rhythms, but then again. there is no other like this one.
VOTE: Mobile Metronome (Android)
1) The first beat in each measure has a unique sound
2) You can tap the tempo on the screen and it’ll figure out how many BPM that is.
3) It reliably works every time (another app I had didn’t respond to the first few screen taps)
Been using “Clockwork” by Bitworks. Loud, customizable, all necessary features. I’ve tried a lot of them; as a pianist this one fits my needs the best.
VOTE:APP NAME HERE-… I am enjoying ” itabla pro” – it is for learning the various drum rythms of east Indian music- all the different time signatures/cycles as well as adjustable drone accompaniments…just fantastic adjustable speeds and it shows the beats with their “bols” ( names)
It has increased my pleasure and ability immensely, and is used by many to accomany while performing- in lieu of finding a drummer and 2tanpura players …