BBC Graphics Viewer Help

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beebview [ --modemodenum ] [ [ --save ] file ]


BBC Graphics Viewer is a utility for viewing and converting graphics files originally created on BBC Micro or Master Computers.


Although when the image files are originally transferred from the BBC they do not have an extension, BBC Graphics Viewer is designed with the assumption in mind that the files have been renamed to have an extension of .bbg. If you have not renamed your image files, you will still be able to open them, but you may find it to be more convenient if you do.

To open a BBC graphics file, you can either use browse to it using the File > Open dialog, or you can double click on the file, and choose beebview as the program that you would like to use to open .bbg files.

Depending on the format of the file, you may need to change the display mode and colour mappings.  LdPic format files contain information about the correct mode and colours, but the memory dump files do not.

To set the correct mode and logical colour mappings for a memory dump image, simply select a mode from the Mode menu, and then use the Cycle Colour menu until the correct colours are displayed.

Graphics Modes

The following BBC modes are supported (Mode 1 is the default):

Mode 0

640 x 256, 2 colours.  Finest detail, used by Wapping Editor.

Mode 1

320 x 256, 4 colours.  Most commonly used mode, also used by Quest Paint.

Mode 2

160 x 256, 16 colours.  Most colours, but coarsest detail.

Mode 4

320 x 256, 2 colours.  Less commonly used, required less memory.

Mode 5

160 x 256, 4 colours.  Less commonly used, required less memory.

Command Line Options

BBC Graphics Viewer supports the following command line options:


Force starting in graphics mode modenum.


Save the image specified on the command line as a bitmap and then quit. The bitmap is given the same name as the input file, but with the extension .bmp instead.

Example Usage

beebview "image one.bbg"

Open image one.bbg.

beebview --mode0 "image one.bbg"

Open image one.bbg in Mode 0.

beebview --save "image two.bbg"

Convert image two.bbg to a bitmap.