Ear Training for Guitar

How do you make the fundamentals of learning guitar fun? As it first appears because of the cartoon format one may say "looks fun for kids". The truth is all of us have kid in us. So don't let the light hearted humor and colorful animation fool you. Behind this light heartedness is an amazing collection of very effective teaching tools. -Peter Pupping
Professor of music & recording artist

Ear Training Tips and Tricks

The first type of ear training a guitar student should work on is interval ear training. That means telling the difference between two notes. First of all familiarize yourself with the basic intervals. Play the intervals on your guitar, sing them, internalize them. When you are working on ear training get poetic. Describe what you hear. Is the interval happy or sad? Does it make you feel unrest, longing, boredom? Or relate the interval to a song you already know. A minor second is used in the movie "Jaws." A perfect fourth starts "Here Comes the Bride." A major 6th starts the old traditional "My Bonnie." Make a list of what an interval reminds you of. Then when you hear an interval that sounds like "Here Comes the Bride" you can say, "Hey! that must be a perfect fourth."

Ear Tester also works on ear training for triads and seven chords. For these use a similar approach. Play them, sing them, and describe them poetically. Then play ear tester and drill them over and over and over...

The Game

Ear Tester: Online Ear Training for Guitar

Ear training with Ear Tester is very simple. First pick what type of ear training you want to do:

Ear Tester: Opening Page

Then you will hear an example played. Simply click on the the circle that corresponds to what you hear and that's it. If you should miss one, a "Show Answer" button will appear to help. Ear training at its most pure!


Ear Tester: Online Ear Training for Guitar Settings

The Settings page allow for extensive customization. You can include more or less choices. For example say you need to brush up on hearing the difference between minor(major 7) chords and 7#5 chords in third position, go to settings. For a greater ear training challenge try deselecting the "Play Separate" check box. You will then only hear the examples played with all notes together. This is challenging ear training!


Points are awarded depending on the settings you choose and the type of ear training (intervals, triads, sevens). In general the harder you have it set the more points you will get. Also notice the "% correct" field. If you have a higher percentage of correct answers you will get more points per correct answer.

Points are taken away for each incorrect answer, and your "% correct" decreases. Should your percentage correct get too low for your liking, click on "Clear Score" to start fresh.

Submit Score

If you have a really high score, click the "submit score" button. If it ranks in the top 5 it will be shown on the "hi scores" page.

High Scores

Lists the top five scores. (See Submit Score section on how to get your score listed)

Enjoy, happy ear training!

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Great game. There's lots of ear tester games available but they always have cheezy midi sounds which don't really translate to what you hear in songs and require a nice soudn card to get even close. This game has ACTUAL RECORDINGS from a guitar and it's competely customizable. Comepletely! Stephen, San Francisco, Jan 2008

Great game- very helpful. I would like it if fixed do were added as an option. Thanks for your hard work and innovation! Mary Ann Carr, San Diego, Jan 2008

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