Step And A Half: Melody Training
At Easy Ear Training, we’re hugely excited about the potential for technology to revolutionise ear training, and we think training apps on smartphones are leading the way. Our newest app release, Step and a Half, is a game which teaches you to understand melodies so that you can play them by ear, write them down, or bring the music you hear in your head out on your instrument.

About Step and a Half

I posted some information about Step and a Half earlier this week – but there’s lots more to tell you! If you missed that post, you can catch up here or watch this video we made to show you the ropes:

The video walks you through the basic idea of Step and a Half, gives you a glimpse of the many levels available to learn with, shows you how the game lets you learn from your mistakes, and introduces the Custom Stage you can use to train exactly what you want to.

Customise training to suit you

As shown in the video, the Custom Stage offers several options to create a level of your own:

  • Scale
    Choose Major, Melodic Minor, Harmonic Minor, Minor Pentatonic, Major Pentatonic, or (for an atonal challenge) try Chromatic!
  • Number of intervals
    Use 1 to 6 intervals in the melody – that’s up to 7 notes.
  • Time Limit
    Set it as low as 15 seconds to test your ability to transcribe under pressure. Or choose a leisurely 90 seconds to give you time to listen carefully and figure out more challenging tunes.
  • Tempo
    Take things slow at 30BPM (one note every 2 seconds) or crank it up to 120BPM and try to catch the intervals as they fly by at two per second!
  • Intervals Used
    You can select exactly the set of intervals you want to train with. If you’re continually confusing a pair of intervals, try training just with those for a while. The more intervals you include, the harder your decisions will be, but the more powerful you’ll be making your new aural abilities.
A serious challenge in Custom Mode - This one's gonna be tough to beat!

A serious challenge in Custom Mode - This one's gonna be tough to beat!

Share your accomplishments

Share your achievements with friends!

Share your achievements with friends!

It can be a real triumph when you manage to figure out a tune you didn’t think you could, you get a hard one right first time, or you squeeze in a right answer just before the time runs out… At moments like those you want to tell someone immediately! Step and a Half gives you the option to share your key achievements with friends – just hit ‘Share’ when your score comes up to get a webpage you can send to friends – on Twitter, Facebook, by email, you name it! Check out the example to the right.

A new challenge every time

One key thing to note about Step and a Half is that every melody played has been composed on the spot, by the app – that means that even if you play the same level over and over, you’ll get a new challenge every time!

Try it out!

If you’re working on your relative pitch, and have an iPhone, iPod or iPad, Step and a Half could really help with your training. Step and a Half is available from today, through the iTunes App Store – and for this first week only, at a massively reduced price: We’ve dropped the price of Step and a Half and our first best-selling app, RelativePitch, to just half their usual prices!

So what are you waiting for? Go give it a try – and remember to let us know what you think!

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