Before you even start practicing with this tool, you may be interested in what the perfect pitch is.
Perfect pitch, also called absolute pitch, is a human ability which includes several levels:
The most basic level is pitch awareness. You may have had the following experience. You know a musical piece which is written, let's say, in the key of C-major. You listened to it a lot of times. And then later you hear it in another key, maybe in E-major. And right away you feel - something has changed, it's not the same piece anymore! This pitch awareness is a very good sign, actually - it means that with practice you will be able to achieve the next level.
When you achieve this level, you will be able to identify musical notes played on one musical instrument without having a reference note. This level requires a lot of practice for most people.
A higher level of perfect pitch will allow you to identify musical notes on different instruments.
The highest level is called tonal memory, or "aural recall". It's when you can sing a musical note, again without having a reference note.
Sometimes these levels overlap. For example, after certain amount of practice you may learn to identify one or two notes on several instruments. Or maybe you will learn to sing correctly one particular note before you fully develop the ability to identify all 12 notes of the chromatic scale.
This online perfect pitch trainer is designed to help you develop your ear no matter on which level you are right now.
Tips for developing perfect pitch
1. The right environment
Doing exercises to develop perfect pitch can be compared to meditation.
This practice is very personal experience. You need to listen deeply into each sound, connect with it, let it come into your ears. So the right environment is crucial.
Ideally, you should find a place where nothing will distract you. In this place you will feel at ease with your body relaxed and comfortable.
2. Practice always with the same instrument
We recommend starting with just one instrument. If you play yourself, pick the instrument which resembles most closely the sound of your own instrument. For example, if you play piano start by checking all piano sounds from our collection of virtual instruments and choose the one that you like most.
If you are a vocalist, pick the instrument which sound you are most familiar with.
3. High-quality headphones
The sound quality of our virtual instruments is high - 256 kbps. Don't ruin your experience with cheap 2-dollar earphones. Use high-quality equipment and enjoy every moment of your practice!
4. Use middle range
Some exercises require you to sing a note. If you are a beginner, we recommend selecting the interval that would match your singing range. This online perfect pitch trainer easily allows you to do that.
Once you get used to the notes that you can sing, you can gradually expand your practicing interval.
5. Practice every day
Your ear training session doesn't need to be very long. 15-20 minutes a day is usually enough for most people.
6. Make sure you are in the right state
Remember how we compared the practice with meditation? Your state is also extremely important!
Before you begin your ear training session, take a moment, sit comfortably, reconnect with your body, make sure you feel good and relaxed.
Pay attention to your breathing for a minute or two. Extending the exhale has a relaxing effect on the body. You may want to use this little trick to prepare yourself for the exercises.
Exercises for development of perfect pitch
The basic idea behind developing perfect pitch is that each of 12 chromatic notes has its own "flavor", its own "color", so to speak. This flavor, or color for the note "A", for example, is the same in all the octaves. We can say that the lower notes have "darker" flavor/color, the higher notes are "lighter".
Here are some exercises that you can do to develop the ability to sense these flavors/colors and eventually develop perfect pitch:
1. Relaxed listening
Start with 2 notes in 2 octaves. Some experts, such as David Lucas Burge, recommend starting with the notes F# and D#. The flavors/colors of these notes are usually easier to identify for an untrained ear.
You can either click the notes on the virtual keyboard or set the activity to "practice", select the allowed notes and let the program generate the notes for you randomly.
Remember all the tips that we discussed in the previous section. In order to sense the flavor/color of the note, you need to listen deeply in a relaxed manner.
2. Test your sense of perfect pitch
Once you get used to your 2 notes, set the activity to "test" and check whether you can identify 20 notes in a row.
If you can do it without any problem, add another note, for example, A. Or expand the practicing range to 3 octaves.
3. Pitch matching
Up until now you didn't sing anything, you just listened. Another important exercise for perfect pitch development is pitch matching. It will help you develop your tonal memory.
Start with several notes within your singing range. Again you can either click the notes on the virtual keyboard or set the activity to "practice" and let the program generate notes for you.
Your goal is to reproduce the pitch of the note as closely as possible. Use a tuner to make sure you are singing each note correctly. Obviously, you will need headphones, so the tuner would pick up only your voice, and not the sound of the virtual instrument.
If you are serious about singing, we highly recommend the book The Singing Athlete by Andrew Byrne.
Once you are comfortable with singing a single note, start practicing with 2 notes played harmonically (simultaneously). Select the exercise "2 white keys: major and minor thirds". After listening to the notes, first sing the bottom note, then the top note. Again check yourself with a tuner!