© 1999-2004 Matthias Bürcher




This is a calculator with integrated time code functions. It works with time code values in all common formats, as well as Keykode and feet and meter lengths of film. The calculator uses inverse polish notation (IPN), which is well known to users of HP calculators.


Version 1.1.1: Requires Macintosh OS X 10.1 or later.
Version 1.0 is still available: Any Macintosh 68020 or newer or Power Macintosh, system 7.1 or later.


You can use the keyboard or the buttons to enter Time Code. Just type the numbers; the colons for the Time Code are entered automatically.

The general rule is to key in the first value, then press ENTER, then the second value, then the operation.

(For all examples shown here, "number" means a frame value format, "tc" means any other format (Time Code, Keykode, etc.)

If you enter a decimal point when a Time Code format is selected, the value is interpreted as a number of frames.

In the Keykode, feet:frames and format, the decimal point serves as a separator (don't use + or :).

Adding time code

tc1 ENTER tc2 +

Subtracting time code

tc1 ENTER tc2 -

Multiplying time code

tc ENTER number *


number ENTER tc *

If the first value is tc, the second value is interpreted as number.

Dividing time code

tc ENTER number /


tc1 ENTER tc2 /

The first line returns a tc, the second a number.

Time code menu

Available are 23.97, 24, 25, 29.97 DF and NDF and 30 DF, Keykode for 35 and 16mm (the number part) and lengths in feet:frames and Entering a decimal point while in Time Code format automatically changes the current value to frame count. The frame count may be in integers or fractional numbers. Seconds are duration based on speed (with default speed 24 for frames and the film formats). The menu serves also as a translation between the formats, based on frame count. If you need to make frame rate conversion based on time, pass from a format to seconds and to a format again.

Note: The formats 23.97, 30 and seconds were added with version 1.1.

About the x,y,z,t registers

All calculations shown above are done between the x and the y register and then put into the x register.

Using the registers, you can either make sequential calculations like

sout ENTER sin - rin +

to calculate the fourth edit point or you can nest values like

number ENTER tc1 ENTER tc2 - *

to perform the formula value*(tc1-tc2).

You can also store a value in the t register by pushing ENTER three times, so you can reuse it for calculations indefinitely.

Register operations

Enter (enter or return)

Fixes the value of the x register.


Clears the last keystroke, if Enter not has been performed. After Enter, it clears the x register.

Cl x (C)

Clears the x register

AC (shift C)

Clears all registers


Changes the sign. Works only for numbers, as Time Code and Keykode are always positive.

point (.)

Transforms the current number into a frame value, even if Time Code is chosen in the Time Code menu.

percent (%)

number % is equal to number * 100 / , without shifting the registers. You can easily add a percentage value with number ENTER % + .

You can easily add a percentage value with

number ENTER perc % +

x< >y (Y)

swaps the x and the y register.

last x (X)

Recalls the last erased x value. A kind of undo.

R > (R)

Rolls the registers up.

(shift R)

Rolls the registers down


Enters the current time code and starts playing it. Speeds are -1 for J, stop for K and +1 for L. Subsequent J and L speed up. Slow speed is possible with holding K and playing J or L. To jog, hit J or L while holding K.


0 < = Time Code < 24:00:00:00

-99999999 < = number < = 99999999

Numerical values are formatted to 8 characters including decimal point and sign, but internal precision is double (8 byte).

0 < = keycode < 10000+00

0 < = meter < 100000

0 < = feeet < 100000


5.8.4 version 1.1.1: Fixed bugs in Panther (MacOS 10.3). Removed File menu. Moved Help in a drawer.
9.9.3 version 1.1 for OS X. Added formats 23.97, 30 and seconds.
14.11.0 Fixed bug with drop frame calcultations. Keypressing now does press the buttons, too.
July 1999 First publication as beta release on

This program has been made with REALbasic, the leading Basic Development Tool for Macintosh Applications