Tuesday, 24 September 2013

About 'Shruti Tuner' Android App


This program is developed to help people, to tune their instruments to Indian Classical Music (हिंदुस्तानी शास्त्रीय संगीत) scale. As of today, all of the tuners available in the market are suitable for Western scale or European scale. This is the FIRST tuner which is specifically made for Indian Classical Music Scale.

This program will be useful while tuning as well as while playing instrument. It shows the note which you are playing. It is designed to show 'Shrutis' / Microtones which is considered as a 'heart' of the Indian Classical Music. It will be useful while singing also.

This software has been tested with Indian flute (बासरी), Veena, Tanpura and electronic keyboard. It worked well with all of them, so it shall work with any other instrument as well.


  • It takes the audio data from the default audio device (Mic). Please note that the accuracy of this application completely depends upon the quality of the Microphone used in your android device. It works with great accuracy with microphones having minimal distortion in audio signal.
  • It detects the pitch and filters out the noise from it.
  • The meter view will show the note being played. The blue color hand in the meter will point to the note which is being played.

     Below the meter view you can see:

  • The name of the note or Shruti, currently being played.
  • Frequency of a note being played.
  • Equivalent or nearest western note being played.
  • Frequency of 'Sa' or base note. (This can be changed from settings option. More information below.)
  • Distance: It is the difference between, the note which is being played and the nearest note to it. This is useful while tuning. Negative difference means, the note which you are playing is above the actual note. Positive difference means, the note which is detected is below the actual note. Ideally, the difference should be zero. You can then tune your instrument accordingly.


Option to set the 'Sa' or the base frequency:

In Indian Classical Music, any pitch can be considered as a starting point of octave (सा note). But after that all notes (स्वर) should be in proportion to the 'Sa' / base note. So, to start with tuning your instrument, you need to set the frequency of 'Sa' note.

As all other notes are dependent on this, please make sure that you set it correctly.

There are two options to set 'Sa'.
  • Standard:  You can tune the 'Sa' to standard frequencies like C, C#, D, D# etc.
  • Manual This option is useful if your do not want to set instrument's 'Sa' to the standard frequency. To set 'Sa' frequency manually, you need to play the 'Sa' note on your instrument and check its frequency. The frequency of a note being played is shown below the meter view. Please note that frequency and provide the same in the text-box given under 'Manual' option. After setting the frequency manually, if you play the same note, the hand in the meter view will point to the 'Sa' note. So it becomes your 'Sa' note and then you can tune other notes based on this note.This is also useful when you want to try modulation (मूर्छना) and check which note is being played.


Notes in meter view can be seen in Indian script ("देवनागरी") or in English. Please note that, to view notes in Indian script, your device should support rendering of complex scripts. Almost all of the Android ICS and higher versions supports it. For GingerBread and older versions, it depends on the OEM of your device.


To understand the tuning process, you should first know that in Indian Classical Music, any pitch can be considered as a starting point of the octave ('Sa'). After that all notes (swaras) are in proportion to the 'Sa'. They are not equally divided over the octave, unlike western musical scale. So, when people tune their instruments according to harmonium or piano, we find that these instruments are slightly out of tune. There are lot of books & websites which gives details about Indian Classical Music. You can refer to them for further details.

Tuning any music instrument just by hearing, is difficult. It is even more difficult, for
'microtonalmusic scale like Indian Classical Music, where the difference between some successive microtone frequencies is just 1.25%. Only masters (पंडित) can detect such differences, just by hearing. There ears are very well trained for it. But still, as everyone's hearing perception is different, it may not be perfect always. Generally, performers use Tanpura / Tambora as a reference and compare the notes being played with it. This is a common practice among singers and instrumentalist of Indian Classical Music. But it requires years of experience & practice to tune according to tanpura. For beginners, just a mystery!

The 'Shruti Tuner' app, makes tuning easy for everyone!.


I tried my best to make this app prefect & usable. If you think that something needs to be added or removed or improved in this app, just let me know. You can contact on ShrutiTuner@gmail.com.


Thanks to my Guruji, Pandit V. G. Karnad, who has given me an insight into the great world of Indian Classical Music. He inspired me to develop this software.

Thanks to Dr. Vidyadhar Oke, who personally cleared my doubts about 'Shrutis' & frequencies. This application is based on his research work on 22 Shrutis.

I would like to thank my friends Deepak Sherveghar, Naval Patel and Anant Kulkarni for their help & suggestions.


You can download 'Shruti Tuner' from Google play using this link.

Shruti Tuner, Copyright (C) 2013, Prashant Punde.