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SMPTE Time Code Manipulation Library

Project description


Python Module for manipulating SMPTE timecode. Supports 23.98, 24, 25, 29.97,
30, 50, 59.94, 60 frame rates and milliseconds (1000 fps).

This library is a fork of the original PyTimeCode python library. You should
not use the two library together (PyTimeCode is not maintained and has known

The math behind the drop frame calculation is based on the
`blog post of David Heidelberger`_ .

.. _`blog post of David Heidelberger`:

Simple math operations like, addition, subtraction, multiplication or division
with an integer value or with a timecode is possible. Math operations between
timecodes with different frame rates are supported. So::

from timecode import Timecode

tc1 = Timecode('29.97', '00:00:00:00')
tc2 = Timecode('24', '00:00:00:10')
tc3 = tc1 + tc2
assert tc3.framerate == '29.97'
assert tc3.frames == 12
assert tc3 == '00:00:00:11'

Creating a Timecode instance with a start timecode of '00:00:00:00' will
result a timecode object where the total number of frames is 1. So::

tc4 = Timecode('24', '00:00:00:00')
assert tc4.frames == 1

Use the ``frame_number`` attribute if you want to get a 0 based frame number::

assert tc4.frame_number == 0

Frame rates 29.97 and 59.94 are always drop frame, and all the others are non
drop frame.

The SMPTE standard limits the timecode with 24 hours. Even though, Timecode
instance will show the current timecode inline with the SMPTE standard, it will
keep counting the total frames without clipping it.

Please report any bugs to the `GitHub`_ page.

.. _`GitHub`:

Copyright 2014 Joshua Banton and PyTimeCode developers.



* **New:** Support for passing "binary coded decimal" (BCD) integer to
timecode argument as it's stored in certain formats like OpenEXR and DPX.
Useful for parsing timecode from metadata through OpenImageIO for instance.
Example: ``Timecode(24, 421729315) -> 19:23:14:23``


* **Update:** To prevent confusion, passing 0 for ``start_seconds`` argument
will raise a ValueError now in ``Timecode.__init__` method.


* **New:** Added support for passing rational frame rate. 24000/1001 for 23.97

* **New:** Added tests for new functionality. Fractional seconds and
rational frame rates.

* **New:** added __ge__ and __le__ methods for better comparison between two

* **New:** Added support for fractional seconds in the frame field as used in
ffmpeg's duration for instance.

* **Important:** When passing fractional second style timecode, the
Timecode.frs will return a float representing the fraction of a second. This
is a major change for people expecting int values


* **Update:** Version bump for PyPI.


* **Fix:** Fixed a test that was testing overloaded operators.


* **New:** Frame delimiter is now set to ":" for Non Drop Frame, ";" for Drop
Frame and "." for millisecond based time codes.
If ``Timecode.__init__()`` start_timecode is passed a string with the wrong
delimiter it will be converted automatically.

* **Update:** All tests involving Drop Frame and millisecond time codes are now
set to use the new delimiter.

* **New:** ``Timecode.tc_to_string()`` method added to present the correctly
formatted time code.

* **New:** ``Timecode.ms_frame`` boolean attribute added.

* **New:** ``Timecode.__init__()`` now supports strings, ints and floats for
the framerate argument.


* **New:** Renamed the library to ``timecode``.


* **New:** Rewritten the whole library from scratch.

* **New:** Most important change is the licencing. There was now license
defined in the previous implementation. The library is now licensed under MIT

* **Update:** Timecode.__init__() arguments has been changed, removed the
unnecessary ``drop_frame``, ``iter_returns`` arguments.

Drop frame can be interpreted from the ``framerate`` argument and
``iter_returns`` is unnecessary cause any iteration on the object will return
another ``Timecode`` instance.

If you want to get a string representation use ``Timecode.__str__()`` or
``str(Timecode)`` or ``Timecode.__repr__()`` or ``\`Timecode\``` or
``'%s' % Timecode`` any other thing that will convert it to a string.

If you want to get an integer use ``Timecode.frames`` or
``Timecode.frame_count`` depending on what you want to get out of it.

So setting the ``iter_returns`` to something and nailing the output was

* **Update:** Updated the drop frame calculation to a much better one, which
is based on to the blog post of David Heidelberger at

* **New:** Added ``Timecode.__eq__()`` so it is now possible to check the
equality of two timecode instances or a timecode and a string or a timecode
and an integer (which will check the total frame count).

* **Update:** ``Timecode.tc_to_frames()`` now needs a timecode as a string
and will return an integer value which is the number of frames in that

* **Update:** ``Timecode.frames_to_tc()`` now needs an integer frame count
and returns 4 integers for hours, minutes, seconds and frames.

* **Update:** ``Timecode.hrs``, ``Timecode.mins``, ``Timecode.secs`` and
``Timecode.frs`` attributes are now properties. Because it was so rare to
check the individual hours, minutes, seconds or frame values, their values
are calculated with ``Timecode.frames_to_tc()`` method. But in future they
can still be converted to attributes and their value will be updated each
time the ``Timecode.frames`` attribute is changed (so add a ``_frames``
attribute and make ``frames`` a property with a getter and setter, and update
the hrs, mins, secs and frs in setter etc.).

* **Update:** Removed ``Timecode.calc_drop_frame()`` method. The drop frame
calculation is neatly done inside ``Timecode.frames_to_tc()`` and
``Timecode.tc_to_frames()`` methods.

* **Update:** Updated ``Timecode.parse_timecode()`` method to a much simpler

* **Update:** Removed ``Timecode.__return_item__()`` method. It is not
necessary to return an item in that way anymore.

* **Update:** Removed ``Timecode.make_timecode()`` method. It was another
unnecessary method, so it is removed. Now using simple python string
templates for string representations.

* **New:** Added ``timecode.__version__`` string, and set the value to

* **Update:** Removed ``Timecode.set_int_framerate()`` method. Setting the
framerate will automatically set the ``Timecode.int_framerate`` attribute.

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