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abcm2ps version 6.x.x


abcm2ps is a program which converts music tunes from ABC format to PostScript or SVG. Based on abc2ps version 1.2.5 (see Contacts below), it was developped mainly to print barock organ scores which have independant voices played on one or many keyboards and a pedal-board (the m of abcm2ps stands for many or multi staves/voices).


The main features of abcm2ps are quite the same as the abc2ps ones, but they are closer to the ABC standard 2.0 (draft IV - 14/8/2003):

Installation and usage

The installation procedure is described in the file INSTALL.

Basically, the program usage is:

abcm2ps [options] file1 [file1_options] file2 [file2_options] ...

where file1, file2, .. are the ABC input files. This will generate a Postscript file (default name: - run abcm2ps -h to know the list of the command line options).


  • options.txt contains the list of the command line options.

  • format.txt contains the list of the format parameters.

  • features.txt lists the differences from the current ABC standard.

Differences with abc2ps

  • the algorithms relative to voice and staff handling are different and may give better or worse results depending on the tunes.

  • abcm2ps does not print the list of tunes and has different filtering functions. On the command line:

    • -o is implicit
    • -e accepts only one parameter.
    • -C, -R, -S, -T don't exist anymore. If you want such filtering, you should to use some external script or program instead.
  • There is no interactive mode ('-i').

  • The scale is global (it was restricted to the music part in abc2ps).

  • The characters \\ don't do a line break.

  • In landscape format, the values of pagewidth and pageheight are internally exchanged, so there is no need to set them explicitely.

  • The format staffwidth is obsolete. Use pagewidth instead.

  • Look also in the file for other incompatibilities.


Many limits may be changed at compilation time (number of voices, staves, ..).


The primary abcm2ps site is:

Guido Gonzatto maintains Win32 and RedHat binaries and some more documentation at:

abc2ps was developped by Michael Methfessel: msm (at) ihp-ffo (dot) de

To know more about the ABC notation, have a look at:

For any comment: moinejf (at) free (dot) fr


abcm2ps is a command line program which converts ABC to music sheet in PostScript or SVG format. It is an extension of abc2ps which may handle many voices per staff.




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