Performous: A Challenging and Fun Karaoke Software for Linux

I found another cool and fun karaoke software for Linux that I would like to share to everyone. It is called Performous and it's so far one of the best karaoke program that I've tried.

Performous (formerly known as UltraStar-NG) started as a clone of SingStar, a PlayStation music video game. However, recent versions of Performous has become a lot different than SingStar in terms of features like its scrolling notes and precise singing pitch display as a wave drawn on screen in addition to the lyrics. These will allow the players to sing without interruptions and to easily correct their singing pitch to hit the notes precisely.

What I really like most about Performous is its scoring system that makes it even more fun. As explained on its project website, the game records your voice via the microphone and it will undergo real-time FFT analysis. --This analysis reveals which frequency bands contain audio (peaks). Further test is used to find out the exact audio frequencies inside each band, and to combine base frequencies and their harmonics into single tones. Finally, some temporal (over time) filtering is applied to the detected tones to smooth out the output.

Performous Practice Mode

Regular notes (light-blue color) and Freestyle notes (with "FREESTYLE" text) are 1x points, while Golden notes (gold color) are 2x points.

The perfect score is 10000 but they say it's unreachable. --Maybe I'll reach that (hehe). Typical scores are in the range of 2000-9000.

The singing octave is not important, because as long as you get the right note in any octave, you will get full points. Singing near the correct note likewise gives some points, but the amount of points per second decreases as you get farther from the right tone. Singing within the right semitone consistently gives full points, so you may actually be off by a quartertone and still get the points.

If you are still looking for karaoke software for Linux, I highly recommend that you try Performous. --You can get it HERE.

I easily installed Performous via Software Center on Ubuntu 9.10 Karmic Koala and downloaded a few songs HERE. I then extracted the songs to /usr/share/games/ultrastar/songs.

So here I was singing the Free Software Song :-)


  1. my fiance is a music major at UNC Charlotte, she will love this!

  2. We have really fun parties with this app =) Cheaper than buying a PlayStation with Singstar, AND you get more songs!! =)

  3. Performous 0.4.0 just released, adds band game features. See