Five best metronome apps

Five Best Metronome Apps

Picking the best metronome app can be a little difficult since the only way to test out an app is to buy it. Most only cost a few dollars, but that can add up pretty quickly given the number of apps that are available.

Earlier this week I asked which metronome apps you thought were the best, and you nominated 20 of your favorites. Based on the number of nominations I received, here are your top five:

Metronome Plus

Metronome Plus (iOS – $1.99) is a simple, elegant, and easy to use metronome app. It’s accurate and loud, includes a tapping feature to gauge tempo, and allows for some customization of meters and customizations. It also has multitasking capabilities, so you could read sheet music on your iPad, while keeping the metronome going in the background. But most of all, Metronome Plus is easy to use, and has a beautifully uncluttered interface. It’s about as intuitive and visually attractive a metronome app as you’ll find.

 

Tempo/Tempo Advance

Tempo (iOS – $1.99 & Android – $.99) and its more full-featured sibling Tempo Advance (iOS only – $2.99) is another popular metronome app. Offers the usual range of features, from a variety of time signatures and compound meters to saving of custom rhythm presents and the ability to keep the metronome going even when your device is locked or running another app. The Advance version adds additional customization options and nice little touches like the ability to control the volume of the app independently of the phone’s volume.

 

Time Guru

Time Guru (iOS – $2.99 & Android – $1.99) is a unique metronome app developed by guitarist Avi Bortnick. It does all the things you’d expect a metronome to do, but it’s killer feature is that the app gives you the ability to selectively – or randomly –  mute the sound. This can be very revealing, and let you know if you have a tendency to rush or drag. It could also help you develop a stronger internal sense of time, rather than becoming reliant on a continuous external beat.

 

Dr. Betotte

Dr. Betotte (iOS – $9.99) is the most expensive of the top five, and the most Dr. Beat-like of the bunch. Most musicians will probably never use half of what it’s capable of, but it does all sorts of weird funky rhythms and allows you to save all of these settings for future practice sessions (unlike apps like Polynome, which won’t save your settings). It also has a cool feature where you can program it to slowly increase the tempo over time, which can come in handy when you want to start working a tricky passage slowly, and gradually get it up to full speed without having to fiddle with the metronome settings in between reps.

 

Metronomics

Metronomics (iOS – $2.99) is not the most attractive metronome in the world, but it has a unique beat randomization feature (which looks and sounds cool, but I can’t for the life of me figure out how/why I’d use this – what am I missing here?). You can save your rhythm settings, and even send/receive them with other Metronomics-using friends. This app also has an “Independence” setting which allows you to mute the sound for a certain number of bars. This is similar to Time Guru’s random muting, just without the randomness.

 

The winner!

Metronome Plus was the resounding winner, with 79% of the votes.

Honorable mention goes to Polynome (iOS – $1.99), and Mobile Metronome (Android – free) also gets a nod.

Have something to say about one of the finalists? Want to make a case for your favorite, even if it didn’t make the top five? Make your case down below.

What's the Best Metronome App?

  • Metronome Plus (79%, 41 Votes)
  • Tempo/Tempo Advance (12%, 6 Votes)
  • Time Guru (6%, 3 Votes)
  • Dr. Betotte (4%, 2 Votes)
  • Metronomics (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 52

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Comments

  1. says

    Metron by Sintraworks is the best if you are working on a multimeter, lots of tempo changes. You can customize your score into it- including accels and rits. I find it amazing for learning challenging works. A life saver really. I own 4 or 5 metronome apps and it’s by far the one I use the most.

  2. Ben Fox says

    I just started using TimeGuru and am a big fan – thanks for running this poll! Do you have any plans to do a similar survey on the best tuners (or tuner apps)?

  3. Andrew Caulder says

    How about android metronome’s? the best one I’ve found is Visual Metronome (MA APPS one as there is two) animating needle is a great reference for me.

  4. says

    I use both Dr Betotte and Metronomics for different types of applied practicing. Dr Betotte is great for working with younger students to get them to start to subdivide beats, while the random-beat feature in Metronomics seems to make it easier for more advanced students to learn to internalize their time feel as opposed to relying on a constant, steady click.

  5. jan says

    Hi, I am looking at getting one for my yoga/breath workshop, to count breaths, any suggestions, please. Dont need anything fancy …thanks

  6. Kajer says

    Thanks Daniel.

    I checked it out and actually does what I want from a metronome + it gives grooves instead of just a tic tac tac tac etc etc.

    Since i play a lot of jazz the feature to adjust swingrate works perfect with the swingride.

    First i had trouble setting the tempo but after working with it was actually pretty dynamic to use both the turning knob and the +/- buttons.

    Maybe the colors could be better, though i like the white theme.

  7. says

    Good post! these apps are awesome and helpful. it will help a lot of student who will study musical instruments and develop their timing when reading a music sheets.

  8. Dana says

    Hi!
    As a fitness instructor, I’m looking for a metronome app that can “listen” to music and relay the tempo, or bpm. Do you know of any apps that have this feature?

    Thanks a bunch!
    -Dana

    • says

      Hi Dana,

      It sounds like you are looking for a “tap tempo” type function, where you tap the beat of the song, and the metronome tells you the bpm. There may be a free app that does this, but Metronome Plus has this feature, as well as Tempo, if I’m not mistaken.

  9. Matt Miner says

    I am looking for an android metronome that will pick up the tempo from music in the room and tell me what the meter is. So a member of the band can play a bit of a song and I can get the tempo from it. Any of those mentioned do that? Thanks.

    • says

      Hi Matt,

      I’m not aware of any metronome with this function (though that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist), but some do have a “tap” function, where the app will tell you the tempo if you tap along with the beat.

  10. Susan says

    I enjoy Metronomics quite a bit–I think of it as a cross between a metronome and a drum machine. The sounds are a bit cheesy, and the bass drum is nearly inaudible on my iPhone. However, hook up the phone or iPad to external speakers, and you have a programmable mini-drumbox.

  11. Simon says

    Thanks for the article. I use Tempo Advance and I am happy with its functions. I am looking for a way to move to the next saved song in a playlist without having to touch the screen of my phone (so I can keep drumming).
    Do any of these apps support remote (bluetooth) page turning devices such as AirTurn or PageFlip Cicada?
    Thank you :]

  12. Jesper Thorlund says

    Great article. Hi, if you are looking for an inexpensive, easy to use pace setter / metronome app for your fitness training or yoga workshops, please check out Runner Drummer on the App Store.
    This iPhone app plays professionally recorded dance drum sounds (bass drum, high hat, snare drum and cowbell) on your iPhone with exceptionally accurate audible beat timing.
    You only need to tap a tempo button for desired tempo in beats per minute (BPM) and start running.
    This app makes it really simple and fun to keep desired cadence (walking, jogging or temporun).

    Check out Runner Drummer –>
    https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/runner-drummer/id691110763?mt=8

  13. Howey says

    Thanks for the recommendation. Time Guru has transformed me from someone with poor rhythm into someone feeling a beat in everything around me. Been using it over the year, and most likely to accompany me for the rest of my music life.

  14. says

    Hi, great article!

    Since this was first written we’ve released a new metronome app aimed at improving rhythm recognition and sight reading skills. It allows you to input any rhythm, in any time signature, and hear it played back in a loop against a metronome click track. Very useful as a practice aid for any level of musician.

    Please check it out.

    http://www.rhythmcalculatorapp.com

  15. jay alsman says

    for those looking for an app that will listen and give you back a BPM, ” LiveBPM ” is available for both ios and android. I was skeptical being a drummer and playing a lot of odd time signatures, and busy fusion/jazz,… but I honestly was very impressed at how well the app works. it analyzes what it hears in real-time, so it’s excellent for practicing and seeing if you’re staying around the same tempo. if it appears to be giving you a tempo that is half or double what it should be, adjust the slider on the left side.

  16. says

    In some ways, I still like my old Dr. Beat DB-66 better than the Tempo app on my iPhone because of the ability to control the subdivision volume levels. Do you know any for the iPhone which have this ability?

  17. Bill says

    Thanks. This was very useful. Does anyone know of a metronome app that works by feel rather than (or in addition to) sound? I would like to hold it while singing but not have to hear or see it.

  18. stub says

    Just saw this. I’m glad to see Dr. Betotte for iOS. I’ve used that before and liked the options it had.

    I should mention that what sets Metronomics apart from ALL other metronome apps is its ability to generate a wide array of rhythms. You can setup patterns with a setting. Each pattern has its own sound, and you can set the pattern to be any ratio of steps to beats (x steps in y beats), you can set the probability that the pattern will tap, you can also set a “sequence” to turn individual steps of a pattern on/off. FURTHERMORE, you can offset each pattern by any number of steps (the offset can have its own step/beat ratio!). There very few limitations to this powerhouse metronome. It is a must for the rhythmically forward thinking.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] You or your student don’t have access to a metronome or cannot afford one? Don’t worry because there are many free and low-cost metronome apps available for your smart phones and tablets. Although it is preferable to have a physical one – particularly for children – these apps do a fine job. I currently have the “Steinway Metronome,” which I have had no problem using.  A highly rated one for Android devices is called “Mobile Metronome,” which is a free (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=gabriel.metronome&hl=en). Others include “Metronome Plus” (available for iOS devices for $1.99), and “Tempo Advance” (available for iOS and Android devices for $.99-$1.99) (http://www.bulletproofmusician.com/five-best-metronome-apps/). [...]

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