MacBPM Documentation

MacBPM Manager Manual

Counter Window

BPM Catalogues

Creating BPM Catalogues

New bpm catalogues can be created with the 'New -> Catalogue' command of the File menu. The content of a bpm catalogue is shown in windows, the "views" of the catalogue. Within a view, bpm data records are displayed as a list. The underlined column title in the header of the list determines the data field, which is used to sort the data records of the list. Each bpm catalogue has got a main view in which all known bpm entries, that are not filtered out, are displayed. With the 'Find All' button of the 'Find' dialog box, new views, that only contain entries, which satisfy certain search criteria, can be opened. On the contrary to the main view, these windows do not represent an own bpm catalogue, they only show a special selection of data records of the parent bpm catalogue. Each view, except the main view, has got an unique view number, so that views can be distinguished. View numbers are displayed in the window title.

BPM Data Records

Normally, bpm data records consist of a music track's bpm rate, artist, title, version and label. Additionally to this data, you can define the medium and the owner of the song. At last, it is possible to set a permanent mark for the record. But notice, this is only a suggestion how to use the different fields of a data record. You can change the field identifiers as you like (respectively the column titles) by choosing 'Default Column Titles...' of the System menu (e.g. instead of label names you can store timing information). To preserve compatibility between MacBPM documents, it's suggested always to use the bpm, artist and title fields for the intended information.

A new data record can be added to a bpm catalogue by selecting the 'New Entry' menu item of the Catalogue menu. In the 'New Entry' dialog box you can enter the required information for a song. You can use the 'Count BPM' button (the button with the clock), or alternatively the F14-key, to open the bpm counter described in the chapter "MacBPM Counter". After bpms have been determined, they can be automatically inserted into the bpm field of the 'New Entry' dialog box by pressing the OK button of the counter. If bpms should not be truncated to integers, the 'Truncate BPM values' checkbox of the preferences dialog box must not be checked.
To enter quickly data in the fifth data field, with the default title 'label', there is a popup menu with often used input strings. Items can be added, changed or deleted within this menu, by pushing the corresponding button in the preferences dialog box. Alternatively, you can add new items by selecting "Add this" in the popup menu. Items can be removed by selecting the item to delete and pressing 'shift' while releasing the mouse button.

An entry of a bpm catalogue can be edited if the entry is selected in a view of the catalogue and the 'Edit Entry...' item of the Catalogue menu is chosen. It is also possible to double-click a bpm data record.

Counter Window

Media And Owners

Media and owners of songs can only be defined, if the appropriate media and owners are known to the system. They can be declared by using the 'Owner Set...' and 'Medium Set...' commands of the System menu. After choosing one of these menu items, you can edit the present owner or medium list.
You can also define a set of default owners and media in the preferences. These default lists are used to initialize the medium and owner list at MacBPM's startup.
Remember that it's possible to rename the owner and medium fields of a bpm catalogue so that this data fields can be used to store other information.


MacBPM provides an import and an export filter for a bpm catalogue. Only entries that are not filtered out are displayed in the views of the catalogue. The filters are turned on if the 'Use Filters' menu item is checked.
A filter definition consists of a bpm range and substrings for artist, title, version and label. Optionally it is possible to declare a medium, an owner and a mark.
An entry matches to a filter if the bpm rate of the entry lies between the lower and the upper bound of the filter's bpm range, if the substrings of the filter can be found in the corresponding strings (artist, title, version and label) of the entry and if the optional values of the filter are equal to the entry's values.

Searching For Data Records

By choosing the 'Find -> Entry...' menu item of the System menu, MacBPM Manager will present the 'Find' dialog box. A search pattern, which specifies the criteria that are used to find certain entries, can now be declared the same way as a filter is declared. If the 'Find' button is clicked, the first entry of the last view, that matches the search pattern, is highlighted. The last view is the window, that was active before the 'Find' dialog box became the front window. The next entry that matches the search pattern can now be found by selecting the 'Find Again' command of the System menu.
If the 'Find All' button of the 'Find' dialog box was pressed, a new view is opened and all entries that satisfy the search criteria are displayed in this new view.

MacBPM Manager supports multi-file search. Select the corresponding checkbox in the 'Find' dialog box to activate multi-file search. The search path is displayed beneath this checkbox. The 'Options' dialog box for the 'Find' dialog offers the possibility to change the file path. You are also able to enable or disable the search in nested folders. There are two different modes for the 'Find All' command, if multi-file search is turned on:

The 'Options' dialog box also lets you define the way in which pattern strings are compared to data fields of an entry. Depending on your settings, a data field matches a pattern, if the pattern is a substring, a prefix, a postfix or is equal to the data field.

But remember, the easiest and fastest way to find entries in the frontmost bpm catalogue is to type in the first few characters of the data field that is used to sort the bpm catalogue. MacBPM Manager will then show the first entry that matches the input.

Configuring BPM Catalogues

The catalogue name and an additional comment for the catalogue can be entered in the 'Information' dialog box (choose the 'Information...' item of the Catalogue menu and MacBPM Manager will bring up the 'Information' dialog box). If the checkbox 'Catalogue names = filenames' of the preferences is checked, the catalogue name is always set to the corresponding file name.
If you select the 'Save in desktop file' checkbox, MacBPM will store the comment in the desktop file. After opening the file information dialog box within the Finder (select 'Information' in the Finder's File menu) your comment will then always be displayed.

MacBPM Manager allows the definition of an entry preset. This is a default pattern for new bpm data records. The fields of the 'New Entry'-dialog are always initialized to the values of the entry preset.

To change the aligment of columns in catalogue views, or to hide some columns, the 'Column' dialog box has to be used. The settings that are made here, only concern the parent window. They are also used if this window is printed.
To change the width of a column, click the corresponding border line in the header of the table (the line in which the column titles are displayed) and drag this line to the desired position.

Input/Output Of BPM Catalogues

Normally, bpm catalogues are saved in an own format. It is also possible to save a catalogue as a text file, so that catalogues can be exchanged with database programs.

In text files, the fields of data records are seperated by TABs and records are seperated by carriage returns (ascii-code 13). MacBPM assumes that only those fields of a data record are exchanged, that are selected within the 'Text Im-/Export' dialog (that applies to text import and export). Nethertheless, the order of the data fields within a text-data record needs to be equal to the order of the columns within the program. If there is another order in a text file, it may be possible to re-arrange the column order with MacBPM's tool 'Exchange columns' (but remember, this is only possible with columns that are compatible to each other).

If a text file is imported in MacBPM Manager, make sure, that either all media and owners are known, or that the checkboxes 'Accept new media' and 'Accept new owners' of the preferences are checked. Otherwise MacBPM Manager will ignore new media and owners. Remember, the maximum number of owners and media is currently restricted to 127 different entries. If some bpms of a text file are floating point numbers, and MacBPM Manager should not convert them to integers, it is also necessary, that the 'Truncate BPM values' checkbox is not checked.

Printing Views Of A BPM Catalogue

To print the contents of the frontmost catalogue view, choose 'Print...' from the 'File' menu. MacBPM Manager will present the standard Print-dialog for your printer. The File menu also has got a 'Page Setup...' and a 'Print Options...' command, that let you customize the print characteristics, like font, font size, page numbering and other options.



Creating Playlists

New playlists can be created with the 'New -> Playlist' command of the File menu. Playlists are sequences of bpm entries. The entries are numbered automatically by MacBPM Manager, beginning with entry number one. It is possible to add comment lines to the list so that further information can also be stored within a playlist. There are two kinds of comments: free comments and comments bound to a bpm data record (called local comments). If a record has got local comments, there is a small arrow right beside the entry number. Clicking on this arrow makes the local comments invisible or visible. Alternatively you can select the 'Fold' menu item of the Playlist menu. The 'Fold All'/'Unfold All' commands of the Playlist menu let you hide/show the local comments of all entries.

Compiling Playlists

The 'New -> Entry' command of the Playlist menu inserts a new entry into the playlist. If a line is selected, this new entry is inserted before the selected line, otherwise it is appended to the end of the document. After inserting the new entry, MacBPM Manager will present the standard 'New Entry' dialog box.
Free comments are inserted similarly. To put a local comment to an existing entry, the entry has to be selected and the 'Add Comment' command has to be chosen. The new global comment is then inserted as the last global comment of the selected entry. If there is already a local comment (that is visible) you can also use the 'New -> Comment' command after selecting this comment, to insert another local comment before the existing one. Of course, the final arrangement of comments and entries can be done via drag & drop.

Searching In Playlists

Searching for entries in playlists is done like searching for entries in bpm catalogues. To find a certain comment in a playlist choose 'Find -> Comment...' of the System menu to bring the 'Find Comment' dialog box to the front. Now you can enter a search pattern string and a match modus (contains, is, starts with, ends with). Set the 'Multi-File Search' checkbox if you want to search in all MacBPM documents of a specified folder.

Miscellaneous Hints

If something is pasted into a playlist, it is inserted before the first selected line. If there is no selection, it is appended to the former playlist.
The following format is used to exchange text data with MacBPM playlists (EBNF Syntax):
   PLAYLIST     ::= { LINE }
   LINE         ::= FREE_COMMENT | GROUP
                    [MEDIUM] [OWNER] [MARK]
Comments and entries are terminated with carriage returns and the data fields of a data record are seperated by TABs. To declare which data fields are given within a text, open the 'Text Im-/Export' dialog box and choose the desired columns.

All other playlist features correspond to the descriptions in the bpm catalogue chapter.


For both, catalogues and playlists, there is a set of tool functions available. These tools allow modifications of the entries of the frontmost document. The operation is either applied to all entries of the document or only to the selected ones. At the moment, the following utilities are available:


If the 'Offscreen Drawing' checkbox of the preferences dialog is checked, MacBPM will use offscreen graphics for each catalogue view that is opened after the checkbox has been selected. Offscreen drawing needs more memory but hasn't got the problems that direct output has with floating windows and screen borders.

Here's a short description of menu commands, that have not been mentioned before.

The 'BPM Counter...' command of the System menu (you can press the F14-key instead) opens the standard BPM counter, described in the MacBPM Counter section. The timing method that is used, can be determined by radio-buttons within the preferences dialog.

'Edit Entry...' of the Database menu opens an Edit-dialog for each highlighted bpm entry. Currently 'Edit Entry...' only opens a maximum of eight dialogs at the same call of 'Edit Entry...', but generally you are free to have as many Edit-dialogs open, as you like. The 'Edit...' command of the Playlist menu works the same way.

There are several usefull keyboard shortcuts:

  F14          brings the BPM Counter to front
  Return       opens an Edit-dialog for the selected bpm data records
  Ins/Help     opens a 'New Entry' dialog box for a new data record
  Shift+Ins    opens a 'New Entry' dialog box and brings the bpm counter
               to the front (you can start to count bpms at once)
  Option+Ins   opens a 'New Comment' dialog box
  Del          deletes all selected data records, after the user
               confirmed the action
  Backspace    deletes all selected data records, after the user
               confirmed the action
  Shift+Del    deletes the selected records without asking the user for
  Crs-Up/Down  scrolls one line up or down
  PageUp/Down  scrolls one page up or down
  Enter        alternatively to the OK button of the BPM Counter,
               you can use the  key
MacBPM Manager supports drag & drop. After selecting bpm entries or comments (in playlists) and moving them to another window (or to another place within the same playlist), MacBPM Manager will insert the selected contents in the other window if the mouse button has been released. If the shift key is pressed while releasing the mouse button, the data will not be copied but moved to the other window.
To duplicate entries and comments within a playlist, simply select the desired lines, drag them to the right position and press the option key while releasing the mouse button. The selected lines will not be moved but copied.
Pressing the command key while dragging comments, forces MacBPM to store these comments as local comments to the entry where the mouse button has been released.

MacBPM Manager supports stationery documents, that can be used as patterns for other catalogues or playlists. To save a document as a stationery document, simply select the appropriate menu item of the Format popup-menu within the 'Save As' dialog box.