Please note: if an earlier link doesn't work, it may have changed following an update! Check the Category Labels in the side-bar on the right! There you can find animator drafts for sixteen complete Disney features and eighty-six shorts,
as well as Action Analysis Classes and many other vintage animation documents!

Friday, March 06, 2009

Beatronome Update

When I made my little Beatronome, a beat-metronome--to tap or play beats as used in animation--for the PC, I used a method to beep the PC speaker, which seems to disagree with certain computers. That is why I have added the possibility to have the program generate regular computer sounds through the sound card. To do this, one has to (re)install the program using the executable in this 1.8 MB ZIP file. PC ONLY!
Right-click and choose "Save As..." etc.

Beatronome Screen Capture

The Beatronome is free of charge, adware free and virus-checked.
I hope more people will try using it, and through that get a better understanding of timing for animated pictures. What I REALLY hope is that users will post their findings when they check the timing of films - and maybe find something curious...



Anonymous dan says...

I just downloaded, even though I'm not animation director. It's very useful for just studying animation.

Friday, March 6, 2009 at 7:38:00 AM PST  
Anonymous sunny kharbanda says...

Thanks! This is a great little tool. Since most classic cartoons are only available from DVD or tape transfers today, it's hard to figure out their timing by stepping through and counting frames. Your beatronome will make timing analysis much easier.

Friday, March 6, 2009 at 7:38:00 AM PST  
Anonymous Andy J. Latham says...

Thanks a lot for this update Hans, it works perfectly now! I'm looking forward to using it :)

Friday, March 6, 2009 at 10:27:00 AM PST  
Anonymous Andy J. Latham says...

Hi agian Hans. I have a question about beats used in animation. I know that in the 'golden age' cartoons were timed to beats so that the music would easily fit when It was recorded. I also understand that the movements of the characters were set to the beat too. I can see this easily in Looney Tunes cartoons.

I just wondered if there are any modern examples of this? Is it a technique used in more modern Disney movies, or even Pixar movies? I'd be interested to investigate this myself if you don't have the answer.

I have been told sometimes that variation in timing is good in animation. I think it is sometimes called 'texture'. Does this not conflict with the idea of using a beat, or can the two co-exist?

Thanks :)

Friday, March 6, 2009 at 11:19:00 AM PST  
Anonymous Andy J. Latham says...

Thanks for that reply Hans. I suppose if you just listen to a piece of classical music, you hear lots of texture, while the music clearly sticks to a beat, by definition. These music principles being used in animation is still new to me and it's a fascinating subject.

Many animators play musical instruments, myself included. It is said that this shows the strong relationship between the two media and the instinctive rhythm that is needed for animating well. I wonder if good timing in animation follows a beat, whether intentionally planned that way or not. Maybe good animators just automatically do this without thinking about it, even where music isn't used.

Friday, March 6, 2009 at 1:54:00 PM PST  
Anonymous Keith Lango says...

Ahh, I really like the update. My computer was one of those that didn't play nice with the previous version of the Beatronome. I'm using it along with Crystal Metronome to work out some personal work. I'm doing a musically driven test animation to work out the kinks on a new CG character rig (always a necessary step). My plan after that is to move on to doing a short film fully worked out with beats, an exercise I'm very much looking forward to. I'll try and share results when i have them.

Friday, March 6, 2009 at 6:41:00 PM PST  
Anonymous paul says...

Hi Mr. Perk, I'm Paul Christoforos, you may not know me but how are you today?

Furthermore, I just wanna say thank you for this wonderful program that I'm using. You know, with this Beatronome, I can animate in any frame rate I wish and it makes timing study and analysis a breeze now that most animation is on Betamax, VHS, Laserdisc, DVD, Blu-Ray, or whatever.

Your animation fan and student,


Thursday, April 25, 2013 at 1:41:00 PM PDT  
Anonymous Rodney Baker says...

Hans, I just rediscovered this Beatronome.
There are surely a lot of different digital metronome solutions out there but yours is still fantastic and highly useful. I love how that beats per minute (generated via tap key) can be transferred to the Metronome.

I rediscovered the Beatronome because I was looking up reference on Albert Malotte as part of my cyclic study where I (attempt to) learn more about the relationship of music and animation. I dare say that after quite a few cycles through some of the information seems to be sinking in.

The impetus for this cycle was actually reading the chapter on Sound in 'Disney's The Illusion of Life'. I had looked through that before but had missed so much. Actually reading it (with a hint of understanding what I was reading) has layered in new appreciation for the craft.

Saturday, January 6, 2018 at 6:52:00 AM PST  
Anonymous Hans Perk says...

Hi, Rodney - I am glad you still can get my little program to work! It's been quite a while since I made it. I must say, I was a bit surprised how few reactions I received about it, but then, I didn't react to the reactions I DID receive, either. Thanks to EVERYONE who tried it and left a message! I hope some day to have time to update it...

Monday, January 22, 2018 at 10:36:00 AM PST  

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