Notation software

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VML
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Notation software

Post by VML » Wed Nov 08, 2006 10:44 am

Please could all you composers you tell me what music notation writing software you use. I have been using NoteWorthy but would like to upgrade, and we are getting a Mac and NWC is not compatible.
Thanks
V.

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Gwyn
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Post by Gwyn » Wed Nov 08, 2006 4:13 pm

Hello there. I'm a convert to Sibelius from Finale.

What are your engraving needs, VML?

Sibelius, I've found, is more intuitive. It copes with most if not all engraving needs and desires. Finale is somewhat less intuitive, and in my experience is on a steeper learning curve. Serious engravers find that Finale is more readily fine-tuneable at levels I'll never need to access. Others will disagree to some degree or another.

They're both available as demo versions.

There was a good comaparison between Sibelius & Finale in a preious edition of M&L

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Post by Alan » Wed Nov 08, 2006 8:47 pm

I agree with Gwyn. It's a choice between Sibelius and Finale. The former does win out in the ease-of-use stakes. There are various 'cut-down' versions of both programs, so do look on their respective websites to compare features and prices - and do your best to get education pricing, as neither is cheap. Do download and try the demos before committing yourself.

There are less expensive programs, but I have seen and used none that are as musical to use or whose output is as beautiful.

(And welcome to the world of Apple - you'll love it. Sorry, Windows users.)

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VML
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Post by VML » Wed Nov 08, 2006 10:23 pm

Thanks Gwyn and Alan.
I'll follow your advice. I thought there might be other well used programmes out ther that I haven't heard of. I know Sibelius is the best, but whether I can stretch the budget...... :)
I'll certainly try them both though.

V

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Post by mcb » Wed Nov 08, 2006 11:36 pm

Sibelius is very good but shockingly expensive, and the same goes for Finale. If the budget is an important concern, it's worth checking out Lime, which is a fairly powerful musical notation package created at an American university. It's harder to learn to use than Sibelius, by a long way, but the results can be pretty good. The good thing about it is the price - the downloadable 'demo' version is in fact the full working version, and all they do is ask you nicely to stump up the princely sum of $65 if you decide to keep using it.

Might be worth a look.

M.

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Post by PaulW » Thu Nov 09, 2006 3:49 pm

Sibelius and Finale maybe considered expensive, but don't forget though that you do qualify for the academic/religious licence - for Finale at least - which makes it a lot cheaper than the full licence price. Does Sibelius run a similar scheme, does anyone know?

Also, anyone use(d) Igor?

Download the demos and have a play before making your decision because for all that we say about how easy/hard it is to use a piece of software, you might just find that for you one feels better to use than the other. Just like to add that I don't find Finale hard to use at all - but that may be because I've used it since quite an early version… I find it pretty intuitive, but that might say more about me than about Finale!

Ultimately it depends what you want to use the software for. Do you need to send files to your friends, for example? In which case, buy whatever they have! Is it for producing a weekly music sheet for the congregation which is thrown away after the hour it is in use? If so, then it probably doesn't matter what you use. If you're producing files to go into a printed publication (such as Music and Liturgy), then you need a program that gives fine control over what is produced, else it simply looks terrible.

Similarly what you use for word processing should be determined by the final requirement: you might just about get away with MS-Word for a weekly music sheet for the assembly, but for printing you need to go to InDesign or Quark, because these give you the control that you need to place items on the page. And for these products too, there is just as polarised a debate over which is the better as there is for Finale and Sibelius. The price of these is an order of magnitude greater than you'd pay for MS-Word, but if that's the job you're doing then get the right tools and pay accordingly :roll:
Paul
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Post by mcb » Thu Nov 09, 2006 4:20 pm

PaulW wrote:Does Sibelius run a similar scheme, does anyone know?

In the US but not the UK; at least that's how it was in January 2000 when I had this exchange with them:
I wrote:I'd be interested to know whether I'm eligible for the educational price for Sibelius (for Macintosh). I'm choirmaster at St. John's Cathedral, Salford, so the query is whether your discount also applies to churches and charities (since we're both of those).

If appropriate, I'd also be glad if you'd let me know what the discounted price is.

Thanks!

Sibelius wrote:Unfortunately we only do educational discounts - for full-time students, educational institutions, and teachers ordering through their educational institutions. If you feel that any of these would be applicable, please contact us with details.

If I can be of any further assistance, please do not hesitate to get in touch.
Kind regards

I wrote:Thanks for your reply, which is disappointing and rather puzzling. Sibelius is advertised on the web at a discount to churches in the US ($279, or about £180? at http://www.christiancomputer.com). What have you got against churches in the UK?!

Sibelius wrote:Prices and discounts do differ internationally and each have been calculated according to the local market. If you feel that your church should be eligible for a discount please put something in writing to this effect, and forward it to Justin Baron, Head of UK Sales & Marketing.

Kind regards

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VML
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Post by VML » Thu Nov 09, 2006 7:11 pm

The way the education discount works with Sibelius excludes me as a private music teacher, and since a teacher has to be attached to 'an educational institution' and I am only attached to a county as a supply teacher, I don't count for that either.
Thanks Paul and mcb, I knew there must be some other options.

Another thread raised the issue of plainsong/ psalm notation in Sibelius, with no time sig. Has that been resolved?

Just looked: It has, thanks,


V

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Post by dunstan » Sat Nov 11, 2006 8:29 am

Never found anything that produces more beautiful output than lilypond and for free. But, as an IT professional and a former programmer, even I find it tough to use.

As a "mid price" solution, have you looked at mozart?
It's not a generation gap, it's a taste gap.

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Post by VML » Wed Nov 15, 2006 11:18 am

I've found a supplier who takes my county teacher registration for ed discount for Sibelius and at least one other supplier gives ed. discount rate for churches. Worth a look!

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Czech Characters

Post by sidvicius » Fri Nov 17, 2006 6:40 pm

To do that you'll probably need to activate your 'extended roman' keyboard Nick; it's a little more fiddly than a standard ALT+number code.

Go here and click on 'by language>A-D' to work it out. The notes suggest that it works fine with PC or Mac operating systems - I think you said you were a Mac user.

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Re: Notation software

Post by nathanjowett » Fri Dec 31, 2010 11:44 pm

If it helps, I've just come across a FREE version of a notation software called musescore, I've not properly used it yet but it looks very good and there's loads of help on their website to show you how to use it. Might be worth a look for those who like me refuse to pay ridiculous prices for software.

:)

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Re: Notation software

Post by docmattc » Fri Dec 31, 2010 11:56 pm

Welcome to the forum Nathan!

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Re: Notation software

Post by alan29 » Sat Jan 01, 2011 1:14 pm

I use Sibelius too, its fine most of the time. But an absolute pig when you want to do anything that involves setting text under a reciting note. Anyone who works in church music will hit that problem repeatedly. Maybe they have corrected it in more recent versions.

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Re: Notation software

Post by Nick Baty » Sat Jan 01, 2011 1:22 pm

Use crtl+space between each word.
Then drag the whole phrase into position.
If the bar isn't long enough, create a dummy bar or three after the one your using – make intervening barlines invisible and remove rests with the back space!

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