Bypass guitar theory and play in 84 different scales straightaway. Expand your range of styles with no extra learning or effort. Play all the right chords and notes to get the characteristic sound of your favourite style. Play along to any music - major, minor and modal.

A ground-breaking yet simple musical reference tool for any guitarist of any level - and great fun to use. Easily compose your own music and solo along to your favourite track - all without the need to learn numerous scales and chords. Think of it as a chord book and scale library compressed into one handy little app but with no music theory or scales to learn - apart from the hopefully familiar minor pentatonic scale (position 1 only). You can get up and running almost immediately, and in no time will find that you can turn on the radio and pick up your guitar and be strumming and soloing along to whichever song is playing. Use it to jam with friends or solo to any YouTube backing track.

Most songs are written in the Major key (aka Ionian mode) or the Minor key (aka the Aeolian mode), but the The Mode Decoder will also show you how to play in all of the 7 guitar modes: Ionian, Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian, Mixolydian, Aolian and even Locrian!

How it works - chords:
Place your root note into the appropriate mode window and simply read off the chords which all sound great together. The chords which sound best for each mode are automatically highlighted for whichever mode you are playing in, but any of the displayed 37 chords can be played and will be in harmony. Click on the chord name to see a simple pop-up diagram of how to play it, and which fret to place it, then click the ‘play’ button to hear a sound clip of the chord being played.

How it works - soloing:
Back on the main screen, once you have set your note in the appropriate mode window, click the soloing engine button and the Mode Decoder will reveal 3 locations within the first 12 frets on your guitar where the minor pentatonic scale can be played. The Mode Decoder will also show up to another 3 locations past the 12th fret so you can therefore potentially play in up to six locations on the guitar neck, in all 84 scales, and always be able to find the best notes. The minor pentatonic scale is shown as a default, but by clicking buttons the Mode Decoder will display the location of the ‘best notes’ - the root note, the character, (aka ‘target’ notes), which, when played make the mode sound its most characteristic, and the other notes which make up the full 7 note scale. As this is a visual system, you won’t need to learn the notes on the fretboard, individual modal scales or any extra music theory. The more you use this app, the more you will find that one shape will fit all the music that you want to play.

What’s New

Version 1.05

Added additional useful chord shapes for all minor 7th and dominant 7th chords - with root note on the A string as well as on the E string.

Ratings and Reviews

Prakith ,

Love this app

I have been using the physical version for almost a year now and love it!

I've been a guitarist for over 30 years and am self-taught. I can play most anything, but I've always been lost when it comes to understanding modes. This system changed that for me. After all this time, I finally GET IT!

Now that the app is on my iPad, flipping modes is even easier. Awesome!


49 MB
Requires iOS 5.1.1 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.
Age Rating
Rated 4+
© Sion Morris


  • Family Sharing

    With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.

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