feature of the week

Metronome Basics

| feature of the week

Today we take a moment to discuss that trusty timekeeper, the metronome. Although there are many versions out there for you to try, both physical and digital, we built one right into forScore so you don’t have to leave your music to use one. It’s accurate (trust us—we went through a lot of takes to find the impeccable iteration you see today) and there’s a lot more to it than you may notice at a glance, but for now we’ll stick with the basics.

The metronome’s most important value is the BPM, or Beats Per Minute. This value is shown in the top right-hand corner of the screen, and you can change it one of three different ways: tap the BPM value in the corner to type in a new one, slide the circular dial around, or tap twice in the center of the panel to set it by the timing of your taps. The BPM value is saved automatically for each item in your library, so you only need to set it once and it’ll adjust as needed.

In the top right-hand corner of the screen, you’ll find the time signature. Tap here to change it by picking from a few common values or by typing in a new one (use the “/” key in the keypad to move from the top of the time signature to bottom). This is also saved automatically per score or bookmark, so you just need to set it once for each of your scores.

And, of course, right at the bottom of the screen, you can use the segmented control to turn the metronome’s various modes on and off. The “audible” mode uses sounds to guide you, with a “tick” upbeat and a “tock” downbeat. The “visible” mode flashes a black border around the page so you can see the timing instead. Use “both” to play sounds and flash the border simultaneously.

That’s just the start, though, so be sure to check back next week and onward as we continue this series and explore forScore’s modestly monochromatic metronome.