ChordLab Mac OS X


The Preferences window in ChordLab is available via toolbar, application menu and hot key (cmd-,).


General Preferences


The General tab covers some of the more common settings in ChordLab.



ChordLab offers a very wide selection of clefs. The first 4 clefs (treble, bass, alto and tenor) are single staff. The last two (grand staff and TAB) are double staff systems.


Chord Notation

ChordLab can display chords in the so-called American style which basically abbreviates chord names or the European style which is based on graphic symbols for the 4 base triads. For a complete reference please view Appendix A of this documentation.



There are two vistual instruments available to show note locations and act as interactive sound board - the guitar and the piano. The guitar instrument has a variety of tuning options that are available from the tunings window.



This setting pertains only to the guitar instrument and allows to switch between left-handed and right-handed display.


Use Syllables

Note names in ChordLab can be based on the alphabet (C, D, E, ...) or on tone syllables (Do, Re, Mi, ...). The default is letter based naming.


Sound Preferences


The instruments in ChordLab can use individual sound bank settings. There are around 250 sounds to pick from. Buttons with a speaker icon to the right side of the popup menus are used to preview the selected sound. The volume sliders below are used to set the velocity.


Use Built-In Samples

ChordLab features a full set of sampled acoustic sounds in addition to the synthesizer. These built-in sounds may be preferrable as they sound a little more realistic when compared to the synthesizer sounds. Ticking the box disables the synth and has ChordLab using these samples.


MIDI Preferences


The only ui element in MIDI preferences is a popup menu listing all currently registered MIDI devices. The selection made here determines the input device for ChordLab. An midi device can be used to play sounds in ChordLab and to provide inpuy for the Chord Finder feature.


Advanced Preferences


The Advanced tab covers some of the more specialized settings in ChordLab.


Auto Play

When checked most adjustments in ChordLab result in the current chord being played by the program.



When checked chord are being played in arpeggiated fashion - that is broken up into single notes that are played one after the other.


Show All Notes

Typically ChordLab displays only chord tones in either of the virtual instruments. Additionally it will only display chord tones that can be fingered. With the Show All Notes option checked the program displays all chord tones regardless of fingering or octave. However, where note belonging to the current chord are displayed in full color, other chord tones are show semi-transparent.


Show Tooltips

While tooltips are a great way to get to know a new program they can also become tedious once an application's interface is more familiar. Use this option to hide or show tooltips.


Reset Ratings

ChordLab allows to rate any of the available chords. Pressing the Reset Ratings button reverts all ratings back to 0 stars.