Open Access

Particle Filtering Applied to Musical Tempo Tracking

EURASIP Journal on Advances in Signal Processing20042004:927847

Received: 30 May 2003

Published: 7 November 2004


This paper explores the use of particle filters for beat tracking in musical audio examples. The aim is to estimate the time-varying tempo process and to find the time locations of beats, as defined by human perception. Two alternative algorithms are presented, one which performs Rao-Blackwellisation to produce an almost deterministic formulation while the second is a formulation which models tempo as a Brownian motion process. The algorithms have been tested on a large and varied database of examples and results are comparable with the current state of the art. The deterministic algorithm gives the better performance of the two algorithms.

Keywords and phrases

beattrackingparticle filtersmusic

Authors’ Affiliations

Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
QinetiQ, Malvern, UK


© Hainsworth and Macleod 2004