Roadie Rage

Some might argue an automatic guitar tuner is the height of laziness and a slippery slope to Idiocracy... but they clearly haven't used the Roadie 2.

Stuff Magazine | March 2019 | www.stuff.co.za
Product review republished with the author's permission

 

 

The tech-loving experts at Stuff Magazine got their hands dirty with the Roadie 2 and Roadie Bass automatic guitar tuners and this is what they had to say:

 

The guitar accessory we didn't know we needed until we tried it.

 

We'd all love to have a longhaired, tattooed human waiting to hand us a pre-tuned spare axe... but sadly roadies are the preserve of actual touring musicians, not bedroom 'Wonderwall' strummers like us. Thankfully, there's a new gadget that can help us get tuned or change strings in a hurry, even if it can't lug our amp, too.


As the name suggests, this is the second version of Roadie's automatic, pocket-sized guitar tuner. Though calling it merely a 'guitar tuner' doesn't do it justice - the Roadie 2 will tune acoustic, classical or electric guitars (6- to 12-string varieties), all sizes of ukulele, mandolins, banjos and pretty much any other stringed instrument with machine heads.

Rated for 150 string tunes per charge, using the Roadie 2 is as simple as turning it on, selecting your instrument and desired tuning via the built-in LCD, rotary dial, and select button, and popping the teeth over the appropriate string's tuning peg. A combination of algorithms, machine precision and a vibration sensor turn the peg at up to 60RPM to get you perfectly in tune, fast.


A built-in torch means you can even use it in the dark, or when the smoke machine is working overtime, and as you'd expect, there's an app for the Roadie, which we found less fiddly than the physical controls on the device itself. Also, the app let us programme custom tunings, including one for our Greek bouzouki. We suspect a real-world roadie wouldn't want to touch our bouzouki, let alone tune it.

 

Wind me up

The Roadie 2's secret talent is how easy it makes restringing . Say goodbye to precariously balancing your guitar on your lap wishing you were an octopus.

 

Bass face

Got a bass? You'll need the bigger torque-ier Roadie Bass, but the good news it can do everything the Roadie 2 can, albeit it at a slower speed 45RPM.

 

A brilliant gadget that leaves more time to shred.

 

 

The Roadie 2 is so much handier and cooler than we expected at first glance. Plus, it's sure to get your bandmates talking. It's fantastic if you've got a wide range of instruments to tune or want to be able to switch between tunings on the fly. Aside from the odd occasion it picked up a stray vibration and acted temporarily possessed, we absolutely loved the Roadie 2; it's not essential, but once you've used one, you'll wonder how you managed without it.