10 Best Guitar Apps of 2015 for the iPhone and iPad
Technology makes it easier than ever to learn and play guitar, especially with a wide variety of apps tailored to teaching you both the basics and more advanced techniques. Not all apps are worth the investment, though, some offer little more than a simple tutorial. Those apps are great for beginners, but experienced players looking to enhance their skills or step up their game will inevitably want more: like these apps have to offer.
1. Guitar Lessons by Guitar Tricks®
If you’re struggling to learn guitar and looking for a fast and easy way to reach your goals, stop right now and download Guitar Lessons by Guitar Tricks®. Whether you’re an absolute beginner or an advanced player, you’ll get results fast with over 11,000 step-by-step, high-definition lessons, teaching top techniques for every genre across every skill level. Plus, you’ll learn and master your favorite songs with a massive library of over 600 lessons for major hits by artists like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and B.B. King. You can’t go wrong with award-winning curriculum like theirs – the advantages of being the innovators of online video guitar lessons!
Publisher: Guitar Tricks Inc.
UPDATE: this app is now available on the Android Tablet.
2. Tab Toolkit
Compatible with the iPod, iPad and iPhone, Tab Toolkit is an excellent tool for guitar players who rely solely on tablature files for both transcribing and composing music. You can upload your personal sheet music from programs such as Power Tab or Guitar Pro, or choose to upload a PDF of your favorite songs, along with those you want to learn. With its multi-track playback, you'll feel like you're playing right along with the band, while the A/B looping function helps you nail those challenging sections. With tab files from Power Tab and Guitar Pro, you have the option of displaying a fretboard to see exact finger placements—and it even features a lefty option that reverses the fretboard! It's worth noting that Tab Toolkit works along with 128 other instruments, so it's not just for guitars.
Publisher: Agile Partners
If you've ever wanted to grab a few buddies and hang out in the garage, jamming to your favorite tunes this app is for you. While the app lets you choose from several built-in instruments, you can also plug your guitar in and immediately have access to tons of amps or stompbox effects. The newer versions of GarageBand have an Inter-App feature that lets you record sounds and music right within the app itself. Best of all? With the Jam Session feature you can collaborate with your buddies, even if they're halfway across the world—everything is synced including the tempo and key. GarageBand gives you access to a full recording studio, whether you're at home or relaxing on the beach—all for free.
4. Guitar Jam Tracks
If you want to learn guitar or just finesse your skills, Guitar Jam Tracks gives you the tools to do it. You'll learn the most common styles and all of the major and minor scales along with finger placement. The scale charts are available in all keys and are easy to read with a zoom feature. The app comes with 5 styles, but if you need more you can add them in the app itself. A dynamic learning tool, every beginner guitarist should download this one.
Publisher: Ninebuzz Software LLC
5. AmpKit and AmpKit+
If you're looking for an amp that's easily portable and fits in your suitcase or carry on, you'll love AmpKit. Easy to use, just plug your guitar or bass into your device using a digital interface and you'll immediately have access to all of the amp channels and sound effects you dreamed of. AmpKit is free but you can choose to upgrade to AmpKit+ for access to more gear or you can buy the amps, sound effects, mics and pedals through the Gear Store within the app itself.
Publisher: Agile Partners
Cost: Free or $19.99 for AmpKit+
6. Amplitube 3
An all-in-one recording studio app, Amplitude has been around for years with excellent reviews. Its current version Amplitude 3 is an upgrade from the original with more features including realistic sounding amp effects and the ability to use a programmable drummer to create drum sections in your songs. It includes several stompbox effects, amps, microphones and speaker cabinets so that you can create virtually any type of music you want without having to use multiple apps. Amplitude includes an in-store app for purchasing additional gear, but you can definitely work with what's given and enjoy hours of fun.
Publisher: IK Multimedia
7. AnyTune Pro +
Slow down your music, without losing its pristine quality with Anytune. Excellent for learning to play along with a song, this app allows you to pick out single notes or slow entire sections down and gradually pick up the speed as you become comfortable with the piece. There's nothing worse than gearing up to play a song to realize your guitar is out of tune. Anytune solves this problem as well, quickly and efficiently, so you can feel like a pro, even if you're just starting out. It works seamlessly with iTunes and you can even upload your own music to play.
Publisher: Anystone Technologies, Inc.
8. Jam Up Pro XT
With JamUp Pro XT, you have a dynamic multi-processor right at your fingertips. The app gives you nearly 90 effects with a plethora of guitar or bass amps to choose from. It also features a built-in tuner and MIDI support. With its pitch and time control as well as its recording function, you have everything you need to set up your own recording studio without the need for all of that costly equipment. Even if you're just a casual player who likes to have impromptu jam sessions, this app is beneficial just for the tools that it offers.
Publisher: Positive Grid Inc.
Stompbox is a great app for guitar players who love investing in pedals but hate how quickly the costs add up. With the Stompbox app, which costs less than one effects pedal, you connect your guitar directly to your iPad or iPhone with an adequate adapter. Then you get to choose from several effects including reverb, phaser, tremolo and chorus to name a select few. The best thing is while foot pedals are limited in terms of how much control you have over them, you'll gain far more control over them with this app. The app includes a Metronome so feel free to upload your MP3s or simply play freestyle. MIDI support gives you full control over patches, volume and various pedals for a fully interactive app.
10. Digitech Stomp Shop
The Digitech Stomp Shop is an app that is designed for use with the company's iStomp. The iStomp appears like your ordinary pedal on the outside, but is anything but. Plug it into your guitar, then your device–an iPad or iPhone—and prepare to be blown away. You'll download all of the stompbox effects to your iStomp, but then there's absolutely no need to remain tethered to your device. All of the effects that you download are stored and processed internally, giving you access to all of them at a single touch of a button. The best part is before downloading any of the effects, you get a full 5 minutes to play around with it, because who wants an effect that they're never going to use?
The iStomp itself comes with 10 preconfigured pedals, but on the Stomp Shop you'll get to download as many as you like and even assign custom colors so you'll recognize them when playing onstage or in low light.
Publisher: Harman Professional, Inc.
So there you have it, 10 of the best guitar apps of 2015 for your iPhone or iPad, designed to enhance your playing and your skills. Each of the apps comes with somewhat of a learning curve, but once you put them to use, you'll wonder how you ever did without them.