For Apple iPhone
There are plenty of metronomes on the app store, and for replacing a traditional metronome, these are fine - clicking and ticking away at the edge of your attention span. but when it's critical that you or your students know where you are in the bar, counting out loud is the way to go. Music teachers, composers, dance coaches, choreographers and cheerleaders all know: counting out loud is the way to go.
But counting out loud has its drawbacks - when practicing, counting time by yourself is difficult or impossible if you are concentrating on notes or steps. Having a teacher or coach count time for you is fine, but when they need to call instructions or directions, they need to stop counting, so their instructions need to be in time as well. Plus, it's boring and exhausting to count "one two three four" all day long.
So why not let your phone do the counting for you? Introducing SpeakBeat: the vocal metronome! Fully customizable and programmable, with a variety of voices to choose from, SpeakBeat will count eight all day, never getting tired and never missing a beat.
SpeakBeat allows you to choose one of a set of studio-recorded high quality voices; choose any tempo using a dial or by tapping out a beats-per-minute; set a time signature (including 5/4 and 7/8); sub-beats, starting delay, and a fully-customizable count-in, either counting up ("five-six-seven-eight") or down ("three-two-one").
The SpeakBeat display shows you the count as it progresses, so SpeakBeat can be used as a visual metronome. Again, since traditional metronomes do not show you the count, even in silent mode, SpeakBeat surpasses traditional metronomes. The main SpeakBeat display shows the current count, as well as a start/stop button and a beats-per-minute (bpm) tap button, that you can use to set the tempo simply by tapping the speed you want. The tempo can also be set using the tempo slider, and the full range of tempos is available, from crazy slow to crazy fast.
SpeakBeat has a number of customizable options which are available from the "Options" tab. These options can be modified while SpeakBeat is running, and changes take effect in real time. Each feature is described below, along with a screenshot showing you how each feature is customized.
SpeakBeat comes with a large selection of high-quality studio-recorded voices. including some funny and some serious. A regularly requested feature is to have the option of recording your own voice, and we are working on that for a future release. Specialized granular synthesis algorithms are used to smoothly speed up or slow down the recorded voices, so that they sound smooth and natural at a wide range of tempos. The currently selected voices is indicated on the Options tab. To change voices, tap the "Change" button and pick one of the voices listed. You can preview a voice without changing to it by tapping the preview button on the right-hand side of the list. This pauses the count.
SpeakBeat can count in any time signature from 1/1 to 8/8. Select the beats per bar on the top slider, and select which note gets the beat in the bottom bar. Because counting 4/4 and counting 4/8 both amount to counting "one-two-three-four", the bottom slider of the time signature doesn't have an effect on the count. A commonly requested feature is to have complex time signatures, such as (3,3,2)/8, and this is a feature we are working for a later release.
In music or dance that has quicker steps or notes, sometimes you need to count faster than the tempo. You do this by adding sub-beats to the count. Instead of "one-two-three", you count "one-and-two-and-three-and". SpeakBeat provides three different types of sub-beats, based on how many sub-beats are inserted.
- 0 sub-beats is the basic count with no extra beats
- example: "one-two-three-four"
- 1 sub-beat adds "and" between each beat, doubling the number of beats per minute
- example: "one-and-two-and-three-and-four-and"
- 2 sub-beats adds "and-a" between each beat, useful for triplet counting
- example: "one-and-a-two-and-a-three-and-a-four-and-a"
- 3 sub-beats adds "ee-and-a" between each beat, good for sixteenth notes.
- example: "one-ee-and-a-two-ee-and-a-three-ee-and-a-four-ee-and-a"
If you need to set up the metronome and then get to your podium or onto the dance floor, delay lets you do this. Delay can be combined with a count-down or count-up (see below) to make it easier to synchronize a large group. Select the number of seconds you want to wait before the count begins, and switch the count-in switch to "on". This switch means you don't need to set the delay to "0" to turn it off.
When using a delay, the display shows the time until the count will start, in great big numbers that you can see from far away.
Sometimes, you need to synchronize a group of players or dancers, or your music or dance piece starts in the middle of the bar. The count-in lets you do this. Set the beats to count in, and switch the "count-in" switch to "on". This switch means you don't need to set the count-in to "0" to turn it off. You can also choose the count-in to count up or count down. Count-in can be combined with a delay (see above).
When using a count-in, the display shows the count and also indicates "counting down" or "counting up" so you know when the true count starts.Examples (assuming 8/8 time)
- Beats to count in: 4; count direction: up
- Beats to count in: 3; count direction: down
Keep Playing in Background
This setting lets you run other apps while the beat goes on. If you want the counting to stop when you switch apps, change this to "off".