Seiko Quartz Metronome
I've never been afraid to admit the things I am not good at, and I am a terrible musician. In order to remedy this, as I really love playing guitar and have a decent collection of beautiful instruments, I hired a music teacher. After playing with me for about 5 minutes his advice was "Buy a metronome." I was instructed to simply play scales in time to the metronome at varying speeds.
This Seiko metronome is portable, affordable and dead simple to use. The big 1970's looking dial on the front sets beats per minute. There is a volume dial on the side. Turn it on, and off, with a switch. Each 9V battery has lasts me several years.
This metronome also has the ability to sound an A for you, so you can tune up. This trumps a previous method of calling McCabe's Guitars and asking for an A over the phone. Honestly, I now use a strobe tuner app on my phone for this.
I'm really a terrible musician but I can now keep a beat while I play scales. Maybe someday I'll be consistent through an entire song.
Seiko SQ50-V Quartz Metronome