iPhone App Review: Capo

iPhone App Review: Capo

December 21st, 2010 by

I’m no musician by any stretch, but I know a few that are talented enough to learn to play songs simply by listening to them. If you’re someone who likes to learn to play music by listening to the track over and over, you may want to check out the excellent app Capo.

Capo allows you to listen to and manipulate almost any song in your iOS device’s music library (see the App Store description for full compatibility), in order to make it easier to learn. You can slow songs down while retaining the pitch, adjust the pitch manually, set checkpoints that you can jump through freely, and even create an “A-B” set of points in the song to loop through.

How It Works

Upon opening the app you have the song list, from where you can add or delete songs. Tapping “+” brings up a dialog with two choices: to add the song that’s “Now Playing” in your iPod app, or to select from your library.

Once you’ve added a song you move over to the playback screen, where all of the action really happens. At the bottom you can toggle between adjusting pitch and speed, and above the playback controls and timecode you have your markers toolbar. Tapping the blank marker icon places a mark at your current place in the song, while tapping arrows jumps you to the next or previous marked point. Tapping the A and B markers creates a set of loop points, so that you can hear one specific area of the song played over and over again.

Pros And Cons

Capo is an excellent app that does everything right. The developers limited it to doing one job and doing it well. Everything from the simple concept, to the interface, and even the beautiful icon make this a gorgeous app that is a pleasure to use. Just the ability to slow songs down without affecting pitch is useful on its own, and fun even for someone like me that is not a musician.

Capo is also a universal app, though be sure to check out the App Store description for the latest iOS minimum requirements. At the time of this writing the iPad version requires iOS 4.2, while the app runs perfectly on my iPhone using 4.1.

The only drawback I have with the app is the current price. I have no idea whether or not $19.99 is a fair price for functionality like this, so that’s something the musicians in the audience will have to answer for themselves.


Pricing aside, Capo is a fantastic app that takes full advantage of the iOS hardware and provides a great user experience.

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