If you’re a guitarist, and if you hope to learn and play popular music, you need to get your hands on the fantastic Tascam CDGT2 Guitar Trainer.  The CDGT2 is a magnificent piece of machinery crafted to help give you the best, and biggest, confidence boost in your young and maturing playing performance.

What the Tascam CDGT2 Guitar Trainer does is this:  It slows down music on a CD so you can better hear complex guitar passages and dissect them for learning and playing.

The CDGT2 is gifted in that while it can slow down the musical pitch, it does not lose the key — so while everything is slower, it all still remains “in tune” so when you play along, you are not out of tune with the music. 

Priced on the street at around $120.00USD, you won’t be able to hire a better guitar teacher than the Tascam CDGT2.  Here are some of the key features of this tiny beast:

  • Portable CD guitar trainer (More compact than previous CD-GT1MKII)
  • CD-DA/CD-R/CD-RW disc playback
  • 10 second anti-shock memory
  • Comprehensive 128 x 64 dot matrix LCD display with graphical user interface
  • Album title/Track title indication by CD-Text
  • Elapsed Time/Remain Time display with bar meter
  • +16 to -50% pitch control in 1% steps
  • VSA (Variable Speed Audition, pitch control without affecting key)
  • Key control: +/-6 semi-tone, in semi-tone steps with +/-50 cents fine tune
  • Single play and continuous play
  • Single Loop, All Loop, and Seamless IN-OUT Loop
  • Flash Back function (Instant review up to 5 seconds prior playback)
  • Guitar Canceller with selectable canceling pan point / selectable frequency range
  • 10 effect banks for user preset
  • Chromatic tuner with calibration (435 to 445Hz)
  • 3 octaves tone oscillator
  • Metronome (BPM: 40 to 220, Beat: 2 to 6)
  • 1/4-inch Guitar input
  • Guitar/Mic input volume
  • Guitar/Mic input level meter indicator on LCD display
  • CD level meter indicator
  • Foot switch connector
  • 5 selectable functions by foot switch (Flash Back, Rewind, FF, Bank, Effect on/off)
  • 1/8-inch stereo line output
  • 1/8-inch stereo headphone output
  • Headphone volume
  • MONO monitor for CD (L+R, L, R)
  • Split monitor (Left ch: CD, Right ch: Input or vice versa)
  • Battery operation
  • Optional power supply PS-P520

The fact you can use the Tascam CDGT2 to tune your guitar as well is a pretty fun addition for practice life on the road and being able to plug your guitar directly into the CDGT2 to play along with the music is a thrill you never get used to finding.

You can use headphones to quietly practice or you can plug in your computer speakers for room-filling sound.

I love the ability to selectively loop one particular bit of music and the Tascam will play it over and over and over and over again for you automatically for hours at a time for as long as you like.  That embeds the music and the rhythm in your ears and binds it all to your body.

You can also get an MP3 player version of the device — the smaller “Tascam MPGT1 Portable MP3 Guitar Trainer” — but I prefer the CD version because all my Play Along guitar TAB books come with a CD and I don’t have to worry about making MP3 conversions for use on the MPGT1.  I prefer to pop and play.

The Tascam CDGT2 is a secret weapon many professional guitarists use to
learn new songs and I admit that after just a couple of weeks of using
the machine, I have learned three, brand new, songs!  I’ve shortened my
learning curve by 66% — because I can slow down the difficult riffs to a
speed I can relate to and imitate and then gradually bump up my playing
ability by incrementally speeding up the Tascam CDGT2 until we’re once
again pitch-perfect and up to speed.

After a 20-year break, I’ve been playing the guitar again for almost a year now — and I only
wish I had the Tascam CDGT2 by my side two decades ago — for I am
certain I never would’ve stopped playing back then because I would have
been so much better so much faster


  1. Both sound really nice but I think I’d prefer the one with mp3 as the majority of my existing music is in mp3 format only and it would be easier to rip a few play along books than to try to get my music onto CD 🙂

  2. A lot of people prefer the MP3 player, Gordon! Good point! All of my music is in some “better sounding” proprietary iTunes format and not MP3. That was my fault long ago for going for deeper sound over cleaner convenience.
    I wonder how long it would take to convert 12,000 iTunes songs into MP3?

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