Sampled Instrument Player with static and monolithic design. All instruments are built-in.
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Program version 0.0.1


Tembro (which is Esperanto for musical “Timbre”) is a virtual software instrument based on samples. All instruments are permanently built-in, there is no option to load your own files. New instruments are only added with new releases, old ones are never removed.

That makes Tembro reliable, predictable, portable and compatible. All projects and all users have the same “instrument” with the same instrument sounds, numbering system, midi controls etc.

Only “soft” settings, such as filters, can be changed dynamically and will be saved in your project.

At the moment this software is in its ALPHA phase. You need to manually download instrument files from . Do not unpack the .tar files! Download them to a location of your choice set the sample file location from within Tembros Edit menu. Then restart the program.

This README is just a short introduction. Consult the manual (see below) for more information.

Contact and Information

Installation and Starting


Release Version

If the latest release is not available through your package manger you can build it yourself: Download the latest code release on and extract it.

Git Version

It is possible to clone a git repository.

git clone


  • Glibc
  • Python 3.6 (maybe earlier)
  • PyQt5 for Python 3
  • DejaVu Sans Sarif TTF (Font) (recommended, but not technically necessary)

Build Dependencies

  • Bash
  • GCC (development is done on 8.2, but most likely you can use a much earlier version)


  • Jack Audio Connection Kit must be running
  • Agordejo / New Session Manager (“NSM”)


./configure --prefix=/usr/local
sudo make install


There are multiple ways to run Tembro which should give you the flexibility to configure your system as you want.

We make no distinction if you installed Tembro yourself or through the distributions package-manager.

The differences are: With or without Agordejo, with or without sound, installed or from the source dir.

Starting Tembro through Agordejo after you installed tembro system-wide is the recommended and only supported way. Start agordejo and load or create a new session. Then use the program launcher to add tembro. It should appear with an icon in the list and open its GUI.

Installed without Agordejo

If you start tembro directly it will present you with a dialog to choose your session directory.

You can also start tembro from a terminal (or create a starter script).

tembro --save DIRECTORY

Uses the given directory to save. The dir will be created or loaded from if already present. Use the applications file menu to save (Ctrl+s).

You can use this to load and save the files from an existing NSM session. If you create a new directory you can copy it manually to an NSM session directory, but that requires renaming the directory to append the unique ID provided by NSM.

Sending SIGUSR1 to the program in this mode will trigger a save.

Closing through your window manager in this mode will actually quit the application without a prompt to save changes.

From source directory

You can run Tembro after extracting the release archive or cloning from git, without installation.


“Calfbox” is the name of our internal realtime midi/audio python module.

  • It is bundled with the application for a normal install.
  • Or you could run ./configure and make calfbox without subsequent install, which creates a sitepackages directory in the source dir. You can then run ./tembro directly from the source.
  • A third option is ./tembro --mute which runs without sound at all and does not need calfbox.

From source directory with NSM

The developer uses this way to develop and use the software, so it will always be as stable as the compiled version. But it is a bit less performant than building and installing it.

After extracting the release archive create a symlink from tembro into your PATH. e.g. /usr/bin or ~/bin, if that exists on your system.

If you compiled without installing you can also symlink to ./tembro.bin

From source dir without NSM

Use ./tembro --save (see above). If you compiled without installing you can also run ./tembro.bin

No NSM, no Make, No Sound

Combining the above options you can start the program directly after unpacking or cloning from git:

./tembro --save /tmp --mute

Or even shorter:

./tembro -s /tmp -m

This is the minimal run mode which is only useful for testing and development. But if you only want to look at the GUI and are not in the mood to install anything -including dependencies-, go ahead.