Not everyone has perfect pitch, not even millions of selling vocal artists! Luckily they have an auto tuner to smooth out those off-key notes. The good news is that you have access to this almost magical technology. These are some of the best apps to automatically tune your (already beautiful) voice at home.
We’ve picked some of the best auto tune apps out there and an author with a terrible singing voice to test them. Some offer pitch correction in the free app version, while others require a purchase or subscription to unlock that feature. Let’s see if these apps can withstand the vocal torture we subject them to and let you sing songs that can get you a spot The voice†
What is automatic tuning?
“Auto-Tune” is a specific software product created by Antares Audio to perform advanced speech processing. However, like ‘Hoover’, the name has become a generic term for all devices and software that produce similar sound effects.
When used as intended, pitch correction software (which is the correct generic term) is intended to polish slightly off notes recorded by an artist. But when most people think of “auto-tune,” they think of the new way the software was used to alter the vocals of artists like Cher, Kanye West, and T-Pain. Rather than hide the fact that auto-tune had been used, the effect was pushed way up to radically change the sound of the human voice in real time or after recording.
Auto tuning vs. voice changers
Before we go to the list of apps, keep in mind that these apps can create an automatic voice effect or just correct your voice.
Since many readers are also looking for a voice modulator or vocoder app that will make their voices sound “auto-tuned” rather than a true pitch corrector, we’ll include both types of apps in our list below.
Auto Tuning Mobile Apps
With these apps, you can use pitch correction or apply an auto-tune effect to your voice right on your smartphone or tablet.
Starmaker: sing karaoke songs (Google Play Store † iOS†
Starmaker is not an auto-tuned voice recording app. Instead, it’s a karaoke app that lets you sing along to your favorite songs and then edit them in the audio editor before posting to social media or creating your ringtone.
Part of that editing involves pitch correction so it doesn’t sound like you can’t carry a tune in a bucket. However, the pitch correction applies to all your vocals and is not automatic. It’s all about getting you to hit the notes, but you still need some vocal talent. You can listen to an example here.
The app has millions of licensed backtracks, synced rolling lyrics, and video filters to go along with vocal adjustments. When you’re ready and brave enough, you can post a video of your twirling performance on social media. You can even sing live if you want to play on hard mode.
AutoRap by Smule (Google Play Store † iOS†
Let’s say you always wanted to be a rapper like Dre or Eminem, but didn’t have the talent. In that case, AutoRap can help you create original raps or just make covers of your favorite songs, thanks to its innovative rap mode and music video function.
AutoRap does pitch correction and automatic beat matching whether you’re freestyling or sticking to the script. So really, you just have to speak into the microphone and let the software make something musical out of it. You can hear an example here.
The app comes with over 5000 beats used by famous rap artists. They also offer AutoRap Originals and you can access beats uploaded by the AutoRap community.
Unfortunately, most of these features are locked behind a subscription paywall. You can try two songs for free to see if you like the results, but if you want more you’ll have to pay, and there’s no free trial either!
Tune me in (Google Play†
Designed as a mobile hip-hop and R&B studio, Tune Me includes over 500 free beats so you can be the next mumbling rap star.
As the name suggests, the main feature of this app is its pitch correction technology. It calls it “Auto-Pitch” and lets you adjust the power from subtle correction to total auto-tune vocals. You can listen to an example here.
The app automatically syncs your vocals to the beat aside from pitch correction. So if you miss both rhythm and pitch, this is the app for you.
A paid “Pro” version of the app adds multi-track recording, removes ads, and includes more vocal effects.
Voloco Auto Vocal Tune Studio (Google Play † iOS†
Voloco is one of the most popular auto tune apps out there. It’s essentially a vocal recording studio in your pocket. The app automatically removes background noise and automatically applies pitch correction, so you always sing in tune.
The idea is to create professional sounding karaoke tracks, and as such an extensive library of beats is included with the software. It automatically detects the key of the specified beats and tunes your voice accordingly. You can also use professional audio effects such as audio compression, EQ adjustment, and reverb. While the app doesn’t allow fine-grained control of the pitch correction function, you can choose between several presets to get the sound you want. You can listen to an example here.
Perhaps the most stunning feature of this app is its ability to remove vocals from existing songs. So if you’ve already recorded something, you can correct it without having to re-record tracks! This also means you can create your own karaoke tracks. Once you’re happy with the final product, simply export it as an AAC or WAV file for easy playback on almost any device.
Desktop Auto-Tune Apps
These applications run on desktop operating systems and are usually intended for professional use rather than being suitable for beginners like the singing apps mentioned above. However, don’t be put off if your dream is to make professional music. You will eventually have to learn pitch correction tools without the training wheels.
Antares Auto-Tune Artist ($299)
Nothing beats the original, and Antares Auto-Tune is the plugin that started it all. Auto-Tune Artist is an alternate version of Auto-Tune Pro. The Artist version of the software is designed for live performances and offers the lowest latency of the various Auto-Tune packages.
It is an expensive software package, but it is reasonable compared to what most professional audio software costs. You will also find a marked difference in the quality of Auto-Tune compared to the apps you find on a mobile phone.
Auto-Tune Artists offers a free trial to see for yourself if it’s worth the money. It provides the full spectrum of pitch correction usage scenarios. You can get that classic intentional autotune sound or subtly correct an artist’s pitch on stage without anyone knowing. The “Humanize” function is specially designed to leave those human imperfections in lingering tones, so that the performance still retains its emotional impact.
sound stage (From $9.99 per month)
Soundtrap is a music creation platform similar to: Garage band that lets you record vocals and instruments in multi-track arrangements to create professional songs.
There are apps for multiple platforms, including the iPhone Soundtrap Capture App, which you can use to capture audio wherever you are. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be a version of the recording app for Android devices. Soundtrap seems like a better-than-average music production app, though it’s better suited to amateur musicians on a budget.
There’s a free tier of the software that will let you do most of the essential multi-track recording work you could want, but the reason Soundtrap is on this list is to include the real-deal Antares Auto-Tune software in the paid subscription level.
Yes, even the $9.99 per month subscription includes Antares Auto-Tune integrated into Soundtrap. If you just spit-take at seeing the price for that software above, you’ll understand what a great deal this is for this reason alone, and you’re getting a whole music production suite in the deal.
Tune up and rock out
These apps made our voices heard, if not big, at least tasty for the karaoke crowd. If you use the correct pitch correction and put in a little effort to get close to the actual note, we think you’ll be happy with the results, especially if your main goal is to share content on social networks.
If you want to improve your singing voice instead of using pitch correction to hit the notes, consider something like Yousician or one of the many human voice coaches who can help you via Skype or Zoom for a fee. You can always use auto-tune to improve your singing skills, but the better your original vocals are, the better the results!