Getting Started

Welcome

Welcome to the Snowtape Manual. Snowtape is a fun music management application. This part is designed to help you quickly start listening to some music, record radio content and export your recordings.


Conventions

Menu Options

Menu options are accessed through Snowtape’s menu system on the upper edge of the screen. Follow these options as they are written. The example below takes you to the File menu and to the Import URL menu option.

File > Import URL...


Keyboard Shortcuts

Snowtape has lots of keyboard shortcuts that make usage of the application a lot faster for advanced users. The example below shows the shortcut to import a URL using the Command (Cmd) key, the Shift Key and the letter I.

Cmd + Shift + I


Installing Snowtape

Installing Snowtape is quick and easy. Just follow the steps below:

  1. Download the disk image file from the Vemedio Software Downloads page at www.vemedio.com/downloads
  2. Once the download has completed open the disk image file found in your Downloads folder. If you are using Safari as the browser of your choice the disk image has been mounted automatically.
  3. Drag the Snowtape application icon into the Applications folder.
  4. Launch Snowtape!

Once you have installed Snowtape you can unmount the disk image by clicking on the Eject icon next to it or by moving the disk image from your Desktop into the Trash.


System Requirements

Snowtape 2.x requires Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard and an Intel processor, 1 GB of free disk space and an internet connection.


Buying a License

Thank you for considering to buy Snowtape. The trial version of Snowtape lets you listen to music as long as you like. But when it comes to recording Snowtape automatically stops after 15 minutes. Using Airtunes is also limited to 5 minutes before it automatically stops. If you like to unlock those features, please follow these steps:

  1. Choose Snowtape > Purchase License... from the application menu.
  2. Choose one of the following options:

    Single User license if you like to buy a license just for you.

    Family Pack if you like to buy a license for your family members that live in the same household.

    Upgrade if you are eligible of buying one for a discounted price.
  3. Enter your name, your email address and your physical address and choose your payment option.
  4. Follow all confirmation steps.

After that Snowtape gets activated automatically and you don’t have to enter any serial information anymore. We will also send you a serial number for backup purposes in case you like to activate additional copies in the future.


Entering License Information

If you have purchased Snowtape online or at one of our distribution partners you need to enter your license information manually:

  1. Choose Snowtape > Enter License... from the application menu.
  2. Enter your registered name and the serial number you received with your purchase.
  3. Optionally enter your registration information if you’re asked. Giving us this information enables us to store your license information using your name and email address. This way you can ask us in the future about your license if you ever happen to loose it.

Automatic Updates

Snowtape is able to search for free updates automatically. Once an update gets available it will ask you if you like to install this update. You can deactivate search for updates in the preferences you access via the application menu Snowtape > Preferences although leaving this option active is highly recommended.


Organize

Main Window

Once you’ve installed Snowtape and open it for the first time, you will notice that the main window of the application is rather dark and not light as many other Mac OS X windows. This is not by accident and your application is not broken. It’s just that we like dark interfaces and that we think you will like it too once you used it a bit.

Main Window and Online Directory

The main window is comprised of three main areas. You have the Control Area on the top, the Sidebar Area on the left and the main Content Area on the right. Sometimes you also have a Details Area if you choose to show it.


Control Area

The control area is the part where all the music happens. You have the main LED style display which shows what’s currently playing. You have the record-play control button on the left which lets you control playback and recording. Next to it you have the volume control which lets you adjust the application volume. And on the far right you have the search field which enables you to search for stuff in the content area.


Sidebar Area

The Sidebar AreaThe sidebar area is a hierarchical list of items. There are four main groups.

  • Online. Every online item such as the Online Directory lives in that group.
  • Lineups. Lineups is the group that contains all imported radio stations. There are three preconfigured lineups that you can not delete and you can add your own channel lineups and smart channel lineups.
  • Recording Schedules. This group contains all recording schedules you configured. Recording schedules trigger automatic recording on a specific time.
  • Recordings. This group contains all recordings that have been created. There are three pre-configured playlists that you can not delete and you can add your own playlists and smart playlists.

The Trash contains all items that are not needed anymore. You can choose to empty the trash manually or let Snowtape empty the trash once you quit the applications.


Online Directory

Most of Snowtape’s users start with examining the Online Directory. It currently contains over 3500 high quality radio stations and more are included every day. We’re not focused on number of radio stations but rather on their quality. We are only including radio stations that are of high quality and high reliability. With the Online Directory you can browse through radio stations using genre or country classification. The Tune in button starts playback of that radio station immediately. The small button next to the Tune in button gives you more control of want you can do with a radio station, e.g. you can choose to import the radio station into you local library or email the link to a friend. A list of the Top 100 radio stations always gives you 1-click access to the most popular radio stations on the internet.


Importing

There are multiple options for importing radio stations into your library.

  • Importing from the Online Directory. Click on the small button with the triangle facing down next to a radio station and choose “Import Station” from the pop up menu. You can also choose to import the whole “Top 100” category or the “Great for Recording” category by clicking on the small button with the arrow facing down.
  • Importing a URL. Choose the File > Import URL... menu option and enter a URL into the text field. URLs can point to radio streams directly or to playlist files like .pls, .m3u or .xspf files.
  • Importing a File. Choose the File > Import File... menu option and select a file on your hard disk. Files can be in a number of formats like .pls, .m3u or .xspf files.
  • Importing from iTunes. It is possible to import radio stations from iTunes using Drag & Drop. Select a radio station in iTunes and drag the item into the sidebar of Snowtape.

Playback

Snowtape supports a number of stream formats like MP3, AAC+, OGG Vorbis and Windows Media. Any radio station that uses one of these formats should be compatible with Snowtape. However sometimes it’s possible that due to the nature of the transmission medium internet a radio station is not reachable or currently offline. Snowtape is designed to circumvent most of these problems by trying alternatives before it gives you an error dialog.
To start playing a radio station, select one in your library and click on the Play button in the left part of the Control Area or simply press the Spacebar.


Recording

Background RecordingSnowtape is designed to work best with MP3 and AAC+ Shoutcast or Icecast compatible radio streams. Only this technology has the option of sending stream titles which are essential for a lot of Snowtape’s features, e.g. automatic cutting of recordings.
New to Snowtape 2.x is the ability to record in background. This enables you to record from multiple radio stations at the same time. The number of how many radio stations you can stream at the same time greatly depends on the speed of your internet connection and the audio quality of the selected radio stations. This number can be configured in the preferences.
To record from a radio station you are currently listening to, hit the Record button in the left corner of the Control Area or use keyboard shortcut Cmd + R. The recording will start in background. You can control background recordings with the second right most button in the lower left window area. From there you can also choose to stop recording.

TIP: In Focus: Recording


Details

Wether you are browsing radio stations or recordings, you can choose to show a details area that gives you more information of a selected item and lets you edit its properties. Also the Details Area for a radio station gives you a list of alternative streams should you choose to force playback of a certain stream. Show or Hide the Details Area with the small button in the upper right corner of the Content Area.


Drag & Drop

You can drag & drop items from the Content Area into the Sidebar Area e.g. to link recordings into playlists, mark radio stations as favorite, or move an item into the trash. Click on a radio station or recording in the Content Area and hold the mouse button while dragging the item into the Sidebar Area. Move the item over the Sidebar categories to see into which category you can move the item.

Drag and Drop


Search

Search enables you to search items displayed in the Content Area for a keyword and also provides a search mechanism to the Online Directory.


Lists & Smart Lists

In Snowtape 2 you now have the option of creating your own channel lineups and playlists. There are two different types of each:

  • Channel Lineup. A channel lineup is a manually managed list of radio stations. You can e.g. make your own list of favorites.
  • Smart Channel Lineup. A smart channel lineup is a list of radio stations that you get when searching for a particular property of a radio station. E.g. a list of all radio stations that play rock music.
  • Playlist. A playlist is a manually managed list of recordings. Create a playlist with your favorite tracks e.g.
  • Smart Playlist. A smart playlist is a list of recordings that you get when searching for a particular property of a recording, e.g. a list of all recordings containing rock music.

Create a list by choosing the according option from the File menu. Creating a smart list will open a configuration dialog. Enter all conditions an item of a smart list needs to fulfill.


Recording Schedules

You can create recording schedules that automatically record certain programs from a radio station at a certain time or on a repeating schedule. To create a new recording schedule, select the radio station you like to record from and choose the File > New Recording Schedule from Selection menu option or press the Cmd + N keyboard shortcut. If you select a recording schedule from the Sidebar Area the Content Area will display recordings that have been recorded using this schedule. E.g. if you like to record a radio show on a weekly basis, the Content Area will show you all recordings of this show.

TIP: In Focus: Recording

New Recording Schedule


Edit

Snowtape comes with a built-in editor that lets you edit start and end point of a recording as well as create new ones using a selection. Edit a recording by selecting one and clicking on the edit button in the Action Bar at the lower edge of the window or choose the Action > Open Editor with Selection menu option. The editor pops up from the bottom. To close the editor, hit the same button again or choose the Action > Close Editor menu option.

The Editor

Mark-In and Mark-Out

The editor displays the whole recording session on a timeline and a highlighted section which marks the portion of the recording that is the actual song. You can change the start and end point of this section by clicking on the yellow triangles and dragging the mouse to the left or right. Use the slider in the lower right corner of the editor to zoom in your position and to get a higher accuracy for changing marker positions.


New Track

To create a new recording from a selection of a recording session, select the region in question by clicking inside the audio track and drag the mouse to the left or right. You can alter a selection with Shift and Cmd modifiers as you are used to. Press the New Track button on the selected area. Snowtape will try to identify the song automatically and pops up a sheet to enter or edit the new track information. Upon confirmation a new track is created.

TIP: How to extract tracks from a recording?


Export

You can export recordings to a folder on your disk or directly into iTunes using a variety of formats. New to Snowtape 2 is the option to export the source audio data which refrains from re-encoding the music if possible. You can choose between the formats in the Export preferences. Snowtape also writes ID3v2 or iTunes tags into the exported file. To export a recording select one and choose the Action > Export to iTunes or the Action > Export to Folder menu option depending on the settings you made in the preferences or hit Cmd + Shift + S. You can also use the export action in the Action Bar at the lower edge of the window.


Last.fm

Last.fm is a music recommendation service. You use Last.fm by signing up and using a scrobbler, which helps you discover more music based on the songs you play. A scrobble is a little note The scrobbler sends to Last.fm to let them know what song you’re playing. Scrobbling helps to tell you what songs you play most often, which songs you like the most, how much you’ve played an artist over a certain amount of time, which of your friends have similar tastes. To scrobble with Snowtape enter your Last.fm account into the Last.fm preferences and hit the Login button. Snowtape will stay connected until you choose to logout and send notes about what you are currently listening to Last.fm.

Last.fm Preferences


Apple Remote

You can use your Apple Remote that came with your Mac or Apple TV to control playback of Snowtape. To enable controlling Snowtape with the Apple Remote make sure the according setting is checked in the Devices preferences. Select a radio station or recording you want to play and use the remote to change playback or volume.


Airtunes

No matter in which room of your house your Mac is in, you can listen to Snowtape in any other room via Airport Express and Airtunes. To listen to radio via Airport Express follow these steps:

  1. Choose the radio station you want to play.
  2. Select your Airport Express device in the Controls > Speakers menu option.
  3. To control the audio level or to set your computer to mute, choose the Window > Speakers menu option.
  4. To turn off computer sound, uncheck "System Speakers".

What else?

Take a look at the Snowtape Manual reference sections for more on Snowtape powerful features:


How to get back my license information when I lost it?

You can easily get your license code back by following these steps:

  1. Open the "Enter License..." window by selecting the corresponding entry in the "Snowtape" menu.
  2. Click on the "Recover license" link in the "License Lost" field at the bottom of the window.
    license_snow1-en.png
  3. Enter your email address which you used when purchasing Snowtape.
    license_snow2-en.png
  4. Click on the "Recover" button.

You will get an email with your license information immediately.


Testing & Buying

How to do stuff

General

Windows Media (Flip4Mac)


Testing & Buying

Who is qualified for a NFR license?

NFR licenses are available for distributions partners and journalists. To be qualified as a journalist you need to work for a Mac or iPhone related print magazine or have a blog that has significant impact in the internet. Owners of YouTube channels do not qualify.

Where can I find Snowtape 1.x for download?

You can download Snowtape 1.5.7 here.

Why do you want to do this? Let's say you have a PowerPC based Mac or still Mac OS X 10.5 then Snowtape 2 won't work. If you bought a Snowtape 2.x license you can activate Snowtape 1.5.7 with it, too.

How to upgrade from Snowtape 1.x?

There are a couple of small steps you have to follow in order to purchase a discounted upgrade:

  1. Download Snowtape 2 here
  2. Open the Snowtape 2 application
  3. Choose the Snowtape > Purchase Snowtape… from the application menu.
  4. Choose one of three upgrade options:
    • Snowtape 2 - Upgrade: If you want to upgrade from Snowtape 1.x single user license to Snowtape 2.x single user license
    • Snowtape 2 Family Pack - Upgrade: If you want to upgrade from Snowtape 1.x Family Pack to Snowtape 2.x Family Pack
    • Snowtape 2 Family Pack - Crossgrade: If you want to upgrade from Snowtape 1.x single user license to Snowtape 2.x Family Pack

Choose a license

Enter the Snowtape 1.x license information into the form. Enter your name and the license code we sent you in an email when you purchased Snowtape 1.x.

Enter license information

After that enter your address and your payment option and confirm the purchase. Snowtape will also attempt to activate itself using the new license. You will also receive the license information via email.

How to get back my license information when I lost it?

You can easily get your license code back by following these steps:

  1. Open the "Enter License..." window by selecting the corresponding entry in the "Snowtape" menu.
  2. Click on the "Recover license" link in the "License Lost" field at the bottom of the window.
    license_snow1-en.png
  3. Enter your email address which you used when purchasing Snowtape.
    license_snow2-en.png
  4. Click on the "Recover" button.

You will get an email with your license information immediately.

How to uninstall Snowtape?

To uninstall Snowtape you first have to move Snowtape from the Applications folder to the trash. Several other documents must also be deleted from your computer:

  1. the Snowtape Library in the Documents folder of your home directory:
    ~/Documents/Snowtape Library
  2. the Snowtape preferences you'll find in Library/Preferences in your home directory:
    ~/Library/Preferences/com.vemedio.osx.snowtape.plist
  3. the RadioURL Internet Plug-In located in Library/Internet Plug-Ins in your home directory:
    ~/Library/Internet Plug-Ins/RadioURL.bundle
  4. the launch agent configuration file located in Library/LaunchAgents in your home directory: ~/Library/LaunchAgents/com.vemedio.Snowtape.RadioAgent.plist

Then restart your Mac and empty the trash afterwards.

Can I use Snowtape on multiple machines after buying a license?

Yes, the license is valid for every Mac that is in your possession. However you are not allowed to use your license on machines that are not yours, e.g. on a friend's Mac.


How to do stuff

How to extract tracks from a recording?

Snowtape features a very useful editor to cut your recordings and extract new tracks and it also helps you to find song information automatically. Follow theses steps to extract a new track:

  1. Choose a recording from Collection, Last Recorded or Edited and click on the trimmer symbol in the lower bar.

  2. After the timeline comes up you see a red line. This shows you the current playback position in your recording. With the spacebar you can play and pause playback. The first aim is to find the beginning of a track. Press the spacebar and hear the music until you hear the start of a song and press spacebar again to stop it.

  3. Now you are nearly at the begin of the song. For the automatic song identification it is important to find the exact right moment. You can zoom in with the slider in the lower right corner of the timeline. Try to zoom in as much as you need to find the exact right moment of the beginning.

  4. If you‘ve found this moment put the red line on it and press “M” on your keyboard. This creates a yellow guide line at the current playback position.

  5. Now zoom out and play the song until you found the end. You can drag the playback indicator and move it directly to the position where you expect the end to be. Find the end like in step 3 and set a yellow guide line like in step 4.

  6. Zoom out and find a position where you can see the guide lines. In this last step select the area between the guide lines by clicking on the first guide line and dragging the mouse to the second one. Then click on the „New Track“ button.

Snowtape begins to analyse the track and searches for song information. It autofills the form with title, artist and cover if the identification analyses was successful. If it couldn‘t identify the song put in the song information manually. Make sure you always have 30 seconds from the beginning of the song, otherwise the audio fingerprint algorithm won‘t find the correct song information.

TIP: If you created too much guide lines and don‘t know anymore which one to use, press „C“ on your keyboard and start over.

How to deactivate the Snowtape plugin in Safari/Firefox?

  1. Open the "Preferences" window from the "Snowtape" menu.
  2. Uncheck the "Install RadioURL Internet Plugin" box in the "General" section.
    plug_snow1-en.pngg
    Restart your internet browser.

How to import more radio stations at the same time?

With Snowtape 1.5 you have the possibility to search, listen and import radio stations directly from the Snowtape Online Directory. After you have signed in, you can import lists of radio stations right to your "All Stations" category. To do so follow these instructions:

  1. Choose a list with radio stations in Snowtape's Online Directory, e.g. "Top 100"
  2. Click on the small arrow on the right side above the list and choose "Import these Stations" from the pop-up menu
    import_snow1-en.png
  3. A small window will open showing the import progress
  4. You can search now within the listed radio stations by genre and country

Have fun!

How to create a Snowtape Account?

  1. Select the Online Directory in the left menu.
  2. Click on "Add Stations" in the right corner of the main window. A text field for signing in Snowtape Online Directory shows up.
  3. Select "Create New Account".
  4. Enter your email address and real name plus choose an adequate password with the minimum of 6 characters.
  5. Click on „Create Account“.
  6. You will get a confirmation via email with your activation code. Copy this code into the corresponding text field in Snowtape and click on "Activate Account".
  7. Choose a nickname for working with Snowtape's radio directory and click on "Create Nickname".

Finished! You are now signed into the Snowtape Online Directory and can add radio networks, stations and streams.


General

How do I enable Airplay?

Airplay can be enabled by opening OS X System Preferences, selecting 'Sound', and then choosing your Airplay-enabled device from the 'Output' list.

iTunes does not find my exported Music.

Please make sure you enable the option 'Copy files to iTunes Media folder when adding to Library' in the iTunes preferences.

iTunes Preferences

Snowtape exports music files into a temporary location on disc and links it to your iTunes Library. If iTunes does not copy the files over into it's database, they can not be found after importing.

Why does Snowtape 2 quit at startup?

Snowtape 2 needs at least Mac OS X 10.6. Please make sure you have at least Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard installed.

Why does no recording appear in Last Recorded when recording?

You probably activated some filters. Open the Preferences and click on the "Record" tab. Verify that you don't have "Filter duplicates" activated. Clear the Duplicates Cache if necessary.

Why is SnowRemote not available anymore?

Further development of the project has been stopped due to limited engineering time. Also because the app wasn't working with Snowtape 2 anymore and we couldn't find the time to repair and maintain it, we decided to stop it altogether.

What audio formats are currently supported?

The current version supports MP3, AAC/AACplus, OGG and Windows Media audio streams through Flip4Mac. Flip4Mac is a separate purchase.

Does Snowtape support Sirius XM/Pandora?

Unfortunately not. Both services are using formats and streaming technologies that Snowtape does not understand. This may change in the future, but to this moment the implementation is uncertain

Can I record from Last.fm?

Last.fm is streaming in MP3, so theoretically yes. However you need to find the stream URL for the song you like. Information about that can be found in the internet.


Windows Media (Flip4Mac)

There is an audio voiceover that repeats every few seconds when listening to/recording radio stations.

This voiceover occurs because you are using the free version of the Flip4Mac plugin to stream Windows Media audio. To remove this voiceover you need to purchase a copy of Flip4Mac (see above). Alternatively, try to find whether your station broadcasts in other audio formats in addition to Windows Media.

Can Snowtape play Windows Media audio streams?

Snowtape can play Windows Media audio streams with the help of the Flip4Mac plugin. However, you will be required to purchase a copy of Flip4Mac to remove audio watermarks from Windows Media playback. Flip4Mac is not affiliated with Vemedio, and Vemedio is unable to provide support for issues caused by this plugin.

Why can Windows Media radio streams not be streamed over AirPlay?

This bug has been fixed with version 2.0.4. Please update.