Nearby words

  1. tunbridge ware,
  2. tunbridge wells,
  3. tundish,
  4. tundra,
  5. tundra swan,
  6. tune in,
  7. tune out,
  8. tune up,
  9. tune, tommy,
  10. tune-up


Origin of tune

1350–1400; Middle English (noun); unexplained variant of tone

Related forms Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for tune out

tune out


(intr, adverb often foll by of) informal to cease to take an interest (in) or pay attention (to)many people had tuned out of politics


/ (tjuːn) /



Word Origin for tune

C14: variant of tone

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for tune out
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with tune out

tune out


Adjust a receiver so as not to receive a signal, as in Let's tune out all this interference. [Early 1900s]


Dissociate oneself from one's surroundings; also, disregard, ignore. For example, The average reader, used to seeing lots of color images, tunes out when confronted with big blocks of text, or Some mothers are expert at tuning out the children's whining and quarreling. [1920s] For an antonym, see tune in.


In addition to the idioms beginning with tune

  • tune in
  • tune out
  • tune up

also see:

  • call the tune
  • carry a tune
  • change one's tune
  • dance to another tune
  • in tune
  • to the tune of
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.