How to display ASCII guitar chords on iPhone?
January 11, 2010 3:21 PM   Subscribe

What's the best way to display my collection of ASCII guitar chords and tablature on my iPhone?

I have a bunch of guitar music, just lyrics, chords, and some tablature, in ASCII in a directory on Dropbox. I'm wondering if there's an app that would be particularly good for displaying these so I can play along with them.

Good features would be, for example, turn off the backlight dimming/phone locking, auto-scroll at the 'correct' pace (although I'm not sure how I would figure that out), some convenient way of viewing wider lines of tablature, etc.

I'm not particularly interested in converting these into a more sophisticated format, although I guess I could if it's easy enough to do.

Right now I just use the Dropbox app to view these, which works OK, but the lines get truncated, etc.
posted by dixie flatline to Technology (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I don't have a suggestion for you, unfortunately, but this is something I'm interested in also. In fact, when the iPhone App Store first went online I was thinking of all sorts of ideas for apps to develop (were I a programmer) and I thought a guitar tab tool would be ideal. I already use my iPhone for recording, tuning, chords, metronome, etc, so why not tab storage/playback? Sadly I can't code my way out of a cardboard box so it won't be from me.

Unfortunately I'm not aware of any options at the moment. However, perhaps there's an answer in the JavaScript-enabled web browser. Some tab sites like display their tabs with an auto-scroll function (presumably JavaScript) which you can speed up & slow down as you wish. I haven't tested this on my iPhone, but it could work. If not, you might be able to put a little page together yourself to do this with a bit of hacking & Googling.
posted by sprocket87 at 12:30 PM on January 12, 2010

You might want to investigate "TabToolKit" -- it is geared for fancier tab files (and is expensive at $10) but it supposedly supports text files as well.
posted by shakobe at 8:01 PM on January 13, 2010

I love TabToolkit and have gone to the trouble of putting most of my guitar exercises (and some songs) into Guitar Pro just to have files to view with it. Haven't tried it with text files yet.

Also, you can put lyrics (i.e. any text) into songs in iTunes and the iPhone will display them. This isn't good enough for ASCII tablature but I use it for a list of chords followed by lyrics for the sing-along type songs.
posted by mmoncur at 3:42 AM on January 14, 2010

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