FAQ

  1. General
  2. Installation
  3. Using beaTunes
  4. Technical

General

  1. Is the free trial somehow limited?
  2. I own a beaTunes 2.x license - why should I update to beaTunes 3?
  3. beaTunes claims that there is a newer version available. What now?
  4. I paid for a license, but never received the key. What happened?
  5. I lost my license key. Can you mail it to me again?
  6. My version of beaTunes is expired. What now?
  7. Something does not work. Where can I get support?
  8. I like beaTunes. How can I make sure it's still around in a year?
  9. Where can I find out more about BPM detection?
  10. What BPM is suitable for what kind of fitness workout?

Is the free trial somehow limited?

Yes. In two ways: time and functionality.

The trial version will expire after 2 weeks.

You can use the inspection feature to find issues, but you cannot apply any solutions.

Also, beaTunes will only identify up to 10 songs in each session.

All limitations are lifted once you purchased a license.

I own a beaTunes 2.x license - why should I update to beaTunes 3?

I've put a lot of work into beaTunes 3 and really believe it's worth buying an upgrade.
It's prettier, easier to use, can do more, and is more accurate. To give you an idea what's different, here's a short list:

Doesn't that sound like a good deal?
You can get the upgrade license here.

beaTunes claims that there is a newer version available. What now?

Just download the new version and replace the old one. Your 1.w.x license will cover all updates that have the same major version number, i.e. all 1.y.z versions. The same is true for updates from 2.w.x to 2.y.z or 3.a.b to 3.c.d.
However, to update from 1.x to 2.x or 2.x to 3.x you will have to purchase an upgrade.
Wonder why you should update? Here's why.

I paid for a license, but never received the key. What happened?

Our license key email probably got caught in your spam filter. So before you contact us, please make sure to check your spam/junk folder for email from either the tagtraum.com or the beatunes.com domain.

If you cannot find it in your spam folder, try our lost key form.

If the form fails, too, please contact us.

Note, that if our emails to you are filtered out by your spam filter, we have no way of communicating with you. This means that if you contacted us via email and we answered, you might never receive our answer due to your spam filter.

I lost my license key. Can you mail it to me again?

Please use our lost key form.

If you are unable to get to your key using the form, please contact us.

My version of beaTunes is expired. What now?

If you are using a trial version:

Buy a license.

The license key will be emailed to you. Then start beaTunes and enter the license information into the registration dialog. Should it not pop up automatically, go to the Help menu and select Register... then enter the license information.

If you are using an Early Access version, check this website for a new Early Access version or the final release.

Something does not work. Where can I get support?

If you cannot find a solution in this FAQ or the news section, please contact us here

In your support request, please state the versions of beaTunes, iTunes, and OS X/Windows you are using. Furthermore, please let us know how many songs are in your library and what hardware you are running.

I like beaTunes. How can I make sure it's still around in a year?

Buy it!
Tell your friends to buy it.
Tweet it.
Like it.
Digg it.
Rate and review beaTunes on MacUpdate, Freshmeat, Softpedia (osx|win), Tucows (osx|win), Download.com (osx|win), etc.
Blog about it.
Bookmark it.
Spread the word.

Where can I find out more about BPM detection?

Marcelino Martins has a good overview page about BPM Detection.

What BPM is suitable for what kind of fitness workout?

This highly depends on your workout and your goals. However, there are a number of sites and resources dedicated to working out to music, specifically with an iPod:
Making the iPod's BPM work for your BMI
Cardio May Be a Waste of Time Without This Knowledge
The Mystery of BPM and Workout/Run Mixes explained

Installation

  1. Do I need iTunes to run beaTunes?
  2. Where can I get the right Java™ version?

Do I need iTunes to run beaTunes?

No. Since beaTunes 3 you only need QuickTime, but not iTunes. On OSX, QuickTime is always installed as part of the operating system. On Windows, QuickTime comes with iTunes. If you don't have iTunes installed, you can download QuickTime from here.

Where can I get the right Java™ version?

On Mac, beaTunes requires Java 6. Please make sure you are using the latest version and also have the latest Java Update installed, by running the Software Update process from the Apple menu. On some older models Java 6 may not be available.

On Windows, beaTunes comes bundled with the correct JRE so you don't have to worry about it.

Using beaTunes

  1. How can I make beaTunes analyze protected tracks?
  2. Every time I switch from another application to beaTunes, I see the blue spinning ball and beaTunes is slow. What's happening?
  3. What is the 'mood' good for?
  4. What is the 'color' good for?
  5. What is the 'key' good for?
  6. How accurate is the key detection?
  7. Why should I analyze the language of my songs' lyrics?
  8. How can I tag songs and why should I?
  9. How can I cancel the analysis of one or more songs?
  10. How can I cancel the analysis of all songs?
  11. The BPM estimated by beaTunes is twice/half as fast as the actual BPM. Why is that and how can I fix this?
  12. How can I update to a new version of beaTunes?
  13. Do I have to analyze all songs in my music library in one session?
  14. Why aren't the BPMs showing up in Rane Serato Scratch Live?
  15. How can I lookup titles and artists for tracks that have no information associated with them?
  16. I have multiple iTunes libraries. How can I work with beaTunes?

How can I make beaTunes analyze protected tracks?

There is no easy way to achieve this. DRM protected tracks cannot be analyzed. The reason is obvious: If beaTunes could easily access the raw audio data for analysis, it could just as easily create an unprotected copy. Until 2009 most songs purchased from the iTunes Store were DRM protected.

As a DRM-free alternative to the iTunes Store you might want to check out Amazon's MP3 store.

Every time I switch from another application to beaTunes, I see the blue spinning ball and beaTunes is slow. What's happening?

Whenever you switch from another application to beaTunes, beaTunes synchronizes with iTunes to catch up on external changes to the iTunes Music Library. With large libraries, this can be a little annoying. Since in many cases there are either no or only insignificant changes, you can turn this feature off. Just go to Preferences > General and uncheck Synchronize with iTunes on window activation.
You can still synchronize with iTunes manually by selecting File > Synchronize or Shift-Command-Y on Mac and Shift-Control-Y on Windows.

What is the 'mood' good for?

beaTunes allows you to tag your songs with a color coded mood. Note that this is different from the beaTunes 'color' as it is clearly defined, which color stands for which mood. To set the mood, select on one or multiple songs and open the Get Info context dialog. In its last tab you can click into a colored square to select a mood (for more info see here).

Of course you can use moods when configuring match rules, so that you can easily find songs with similar mood in your collection.

What is the 'color' good for?

The song 'color' determined by beaTunes is a measure of how a song sounds in relationship to the other songs in your library. I.e. blue songs sound more similar to each other than to red songs.

What is the 'key' good for?

Knowing the key a song is in, can help you picking songs that match harmonically. This is in essence the basis for a DJ technique called harmonic mixing. Songs in the same key, relative, dominant or subdominant keys usually mix well, while others often sound dissonant. When creating Matchlists with beaTunes, the Matching Key rule takes exactly these relationships into account when calculating the match quality, helping you to create harmonious mixes.

Additionally to the musical key names, beaTunes displays their names in Open Key Notation, a numeric mapping of the regular key names, suitable for recognizing matching keys more quickly.

How accurate is the key detection?

Key detection is still not exact science. Typically, there's simply too much noise in the audio signal to get a 100% correct detection. That said, when compared with competing products, beaTunes 3 does very well.

Why should I analyze the language of my songs' lyrics?

Well, of course you don't have to. But if your collection is a mixture of say Spanish and English songs, maybe you'd like to be able to sort them by language. It would make it a whole lot easier to create mix-tapes in just one language.

The built-in language analysis works on two levels: First it looks at the lyrics you may have stored in iTunes. If you haven't done that, you might want to look them up using the Google Lyrics button on the Lyrics pane of the Get Info dialog. Second, if you feel that that is too much work, you can select the fallback option. That means, that beaTunes will analyze the titles (not the lyrics) of all tracks in an album and guess the language of a song.

Additionally, there is also an inspection that tells you when an artist has songs in different languages or some with a language and others with none.

How can I tag songs and why should I?

beaTunes allows you to assign tags to individual songs. This does not only help to improve the match process, but can also be very convenient, when searching for a particular song or group of songs.

In order to assign a tag, just select a song and click on its tag column (slow click). A dialog will pop up, showing an input field for your tags and a tag cloud of already used tags. Using the tag cloud for entering the new tags helps keeping your library consistent.
You can also tag songs through the Get Info dialog or import tags with the beaTunes Last.FM plugin. The plugin can be easily installed through the beaTunes plugin preferences pane.

How can I cancel the analysis of one or more songs?

Go to the Task Queue and select the songs that you want to cancel the analysis of. Control-Click (Mac) or Right-Click (Windows) and choose Cancel Task.

How can I cancel the analysis of all songs?

Go to the Tools menu and and select Clear Task Queue.

The BPM estimated by beaTunes is twice/half as fast as the actual BPM. Why is that and how can I fix this?

To most BPM analyzers (incl. beaTunes) a song that has a BPM of 120 looks very much like a song that has a BPM of 60 or even 30. Therefore you need to specify the approximate range of BPM you expect, when you start the analysis. However, sometimes this is hard - especially when you analyze hundreds of songs. Therefore beaTunes offers several ways to correct the measured BPM.

Select the song that has the wrong BPM. Click on the BPM column of that song. The BPM field becomes editable. Enter the correct value.

You can also select the song, Control-Click (Mac) or Right-Click (Windows) and select 'Tap Beat' from the context menu. This allows you to tap the beat and have beaTunes store the result.

If you know that some songs are actually twice or half as fast, select the songs you want to change, then select 'Double BPM' or 'Halve BPM' from the 'Edit' menu.

Alternatively you can also select the song in the library view and click 'Analyze Song'. In the analysis options dialog choose an appropriate BPM range.

How can I update to a new version of beaTunes?

On Mac, just replace your old beaTunes app. If OS X asks you whether you want to replace the old application, say yes.

On Windows, first stop beaTunes, then simply run the installer—old versions will be removed.

Do I have to analyze all songs in my music library in one session?

No. You can shutdown beaTunes at any time and resume analysis simply by starting beaTunes again.

Why aren't the BPMs showing up in Rane Serato Scratch Live?

If the BPM are showing up in iTunes, rescan the id3 tags in the setup part of Serato. Then, again in Serato, click the little arrow that points left directly under the search bar in the main screen. It will drop a menu that will enable you to select BPM's as one of your options.

You can get more answers to Serato questions at the Serato Scratch Live Forum.

How can I lookup titles and artists for tracks that have no information associated with them?

If you ripped a lot of songs while you were offline or simply before CDDB was used, your tracks may have meaningless titles like 01-Track.mp3. beaTunes lets you fix this.

Analyze these songs with the Import metadata from online resources option (Internet connection required). Choose carefully how the new data should be imported, to make sure that you don't accidentally loose any of your existing data.

If you don't trust the automatic process you can choose Don't import song info, just look up ID. After completion of the analysis, open the Get Info dialog on one of the tracks. beaTunes will now try to obtain information about the song and underline any existing data that it thinks is wrong. Depending on your OS, Right- or Control-click on the underlined item and beaTunes will suggest one or more alternatives.

To find out even more about a particular song using MusicBrainz, Amazon or discogs, you may also want to use the Open in... feature. Right- or Control-Click on a song and choose Open in.... Then select one of the options and a corresponding page will open in your browser.

Please note that MusicBrainz is a non-profit effort. It depends on individuals like yourself to provide high quality data. Consider contributing by volunteering as an editor.

I have multiple iTunes libraries. How can I work with beaTunes?

Typically beaTunes autodetects the library you are currently working with. It will prompt you to configure the libary you are using, should it not find the right iTunes (Music) Library.xml file. To do so, open the beaTunes Preferences dialog and go to the General tab. There you find a browse button [...], which allows you to choose your iTunes Library file.

Technical

  1. I encountered a Java OutOfMemoryError. What now?
  2. How can I add my own analysis code? Is there a plugin API?
  3. Why isn't beaTunes using QuickTime to access protected audio files?
  4. Analysis takes a long time. Is this because beaTunes is written in Java?

I encountered a Java OutOfMemoryError. What now?

You can find information about this issue here

How can I add my own analysis code? Is there a plugin API?

beaTunes is written in a way that makes it possible to easily add custom components, inspections and background themes. Some more info can be found in the beaTunes plugin API section. Please contact me via the support forum with any questions you might have.

Why isn't beaTunes using QuickTime to access protected audio files?

beaTunes is using QuickTime/CoreAudio/MediaFoundation. Unfortunately QuickTime only allows the playback of protected files, but not transcoding. This means that QuickTime does not allow the extraction of the raw audio data, which is needed for analysis. In fact, not even the playback of protected movie files necessarily works.
If QuickTime allowed the extraction of the raw audio data, getting around the protection would be trivial.

Analysis takes a long time. Is this because beaTunes is written in Java?

If beaTunes was written in assembler, analysis would probably be faster. Chances are, that beaTunes would also crash much more often. Contrary to common perception the speed of Java has caught up quite a bit compared to early versions from more than ten years ago. Pretty much every recent benchmark that compares Java with C or C++ has concluded that Java is typically 2-3 times slower than C and in many cases as fast as C++ or faster. This means that nowadays mainly the code quality determines whether a C implementation is faster than a Java implementation.
So the answer is no. In fact the first step of the analysis is the decoding of the compressed audio file (mp3, aac, etc) into raw audio data. During this step beaTunes uses native libraries. Additionally, there are some other analysis steps like FFT that are done natively to take advantage of special hardware capabilities.