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noation software? DAW Software
Old 24th August 2007
  #1
Gear Addict
 

noation software?

Hello,

What would gearslutz users recommend for notation software? Sibelius or Finale?

thanks
Old 24th August 2007
  #2
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jordanh's Avatar
 

Though it looks nice, I haven't used sibelius. This is because both schools I have attended strictly use finale. I am not sure what this says about each program, but it seems that finale is the educational choice. I am sure sibelius is pretty comparable, however, from what i've seen, Finale is well featured, and once you learn all the shortcuts and everything, it will surely help speed up composing, transposing, and everything...its all at your fingertips.
Old 24th August 2007
  #3
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Full disclosure - I am a Sibelius ambassador.

That being said, I used to be a strict Finale guy. I got into Sibelius because I was transcribing a bunch of old (old) scores for a music history book. The publisher wanted the excerpts sized to very specific dimensions. In Sibelius, it was a matter of simply entering those dimensions into little boxes. In Finale, it felt like advanced physics. I'm still not sure that I did it correctly. That reason alone had me dumping Finale. I haven't looked back. That may have changed in more recent versions, though. I haven't checked (Finale 2003).

In terms of note entry, both are very easy. At first I had a hard time adapting, but now I am comfortable enough with Sibelius that I can compose using it. I pretty much only write percussion music. In Finale, it was convenient to set the cursor to a note, then just punch in the rhythmic values. In Sibelius, I have to set the rhythmic value then punch in the note on the staff. This is less convenient for strict rhythmic entry (i.e. snare drum), but in my opinion better for melodic lines. Read that as my opinion.

Both are good. As far as I know (remember I had Finale 2003), there are a few things about Sibelius that I find more intuitive such as how the expression markings snap to the staff or notes and stay there. That always seemed to be a gripe I had with Finale. As stated, I prefer how Sib handles sizing issues as well as some document layout things.

It did take me longer to get used to formatting measures/ lines in Sib. It's real easy, for example, to do four measures to a line in Finale. Sibelius had me reading the user manual on that. Now, it's second nature but it took a minute. It may have made a difference that I started on Finale first and had a preconceived notion of how I thought it should work (same with note entry).

IMO, buy Sibelius. I know I'm biased, but I work for a school and can get them both at no cost to me. Sib is what I prefer.

Best,

T
Old 24th August 2007
  #4
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by artbeat77 View Post
Full disclosure - I am a Sibelius ambassador.

That being said, I used to be a strict Finale guy. I got into Sibelius because I was transcribing a bunch of old (old) scores for a music history book. The publisher wanted the excerpts sized to very specific dimensions. In Sibelius, it was a matter of simply entering those dimensions into little boxes. In Finale, it felt like advanced physics. I'm still not sure that I did it correctly. That reason alone had me dumping Finale. I haven't looked back. That may have changed in more recent versions, though. I haven't checked (Finale 2003).

In terms of note entry, both are very easy. At first I had a hard time adapting, but now I am comfortable enough with Sibelius that I can compose using it. I pretty much only write percussion music. In Finale, it was convenient to set the cursor to a note, then just punch in the rhythmic values. In Sibelius, I have to set the rhythmic value then punch in the note on the staff. This is less convenient for strict rhythmic entry (i.e. snare drum), but in my opinion better for melodic lines. Read that as my opinion.

Both are good. As far as I know (remember I had Finale 2003), there are a few things about Sibelius that I find more intuitive such as how the expression markings snap to the staff or notes and stay there. That always seemed to be a gripe I had with Finale. As stated, I prefer how Sib handles sizing issues as well as some document layout things.

It did take me longer to get used to formatting measures/ lines in Sib. It's real easy, for example, to do four measures to a line in Finale. Sibelius had me reading the user manual on that. Now, it's second nature but it took a minute. It may have made a difference that I started on Finale first and had a preconceived notion of how I thought it should work (same with note entry).

IMO, buy Sibelius. I know I'm biased, but I work for a school and can get them both at no cost to me. Sib is what I prefer.

Best,

T

that's good to know. i'm writing a music theory book. It seems like they're similar but i always hear that sibelius is easy to use.

thanks
Old 24th August 2007
  #5
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jordanh's Avatar
 

I don't think you would be going wrong either way. Both are speed-oriented and full featured in their own right. Pick one and learn it in and out...enjoy!
Old 24th August 2007
  #6
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henryrobinett's Avatar
I absolutely love Sibelius. But I've never used Finale.
Old 24th August 2007
  #7
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Spec's Avatar
use sibelius every day. i think if you are wanting it for the scoring function for a textbook you will have no issues at all. v. easy to use and nice clean interface.

my only criticism is in terms of using sebilius is using it in conjunction with a sequencer application like cubase. v. cumbersome - at least V.4.0 i am using.

i would prefer to use my own instruments - VSTi - rather than garritan sounds -when composing in seblius. however i find those virtual midi tools like midi ox problematic. always causes issues for me: massive latency and hanging, ports jammed opened/closed etc. so i have resigned myself to using the garrtian sounds - which are ok - for composing and then load my VSTi once i have exported the sebilius midi file to cubase.

spek
Old 24th August 2007
  #8
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I tried both.

Sibelius was way easier to get into so that's what I chose.

k
Old 24th August 2007
  #9
Gear Addict
 

they have demos that can be downloaded. maybe i'll do that.
Old 24th August 2007
  #10
Gear Maniac
 

I have finale 2008 and Sibelius 5. As far as layout goes sibelius is easier to create good looking layouts and exporting the visuals. The reason why I prefer sibelius for my daily work is that I don't have to go thru various different commands to export a graphic. It just was easier to sibelius to Highlight what you want and then tell it to export graphic
Highlighting is easier in 2008 finale mind you but i haven't gotten used to it yet. Still got me looking for the mass mover tool.
Old 5th October 2007
  #11
Gear Nut
 
rebuskyle's Avatar
 

FULL DISCLOSURE>>> I work with NOTION Music....

So I've use Finale and Sibelius and they are both very decent programs...although I don't really care for the interfaces of either program which is why I'd choose NOTION. NOTION's note entry is a bit more intuitive (as far as key-strokes), but as I said the things that makes me like Notion a bit more is the user interface (just easier to look at/work with) and the built-in sound library (you don't have to purchase a sound library for playback).

We've also got a new program called PROGRESSION that is focused around guitar, but you can also write for bass (electric and upright), piano (rhodes and clavinet as well), and drums....

Anyhoo...just figured I'd throw our hat in the ring on this one.

2 cents,
Kyle Poehling
[email protected]
Old 7th October 2007
  #12
Gear Maniac
 

I don't know what the guy up the top was saying about finale being the educator's choice. I'm at music school and we all use sibelius! I've got version 5 and it is awesome, I've used finale but found the workflow cumbersome and too complex. Sibelius is far more conducive to writing music, Finale is good for producing scores. Sibelius 5's new Ideas feature and the ability to write for VST plugins as well make it very cool indeed. I'm writing my final composition project for this year (southern hempisphere) for string quartet and Arturia Moog modeller!
Old 7th October 2007
  #13
Gear Maniac
 

And Kyle, no offence man, but i just checked out your website, the interface for NOTION seemed be uncannily similar to Sibelius on first look...sorry man, not trying to be rude, just calling it as i see it
Old 8th October 2007
  #14
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rebuskyle's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by te-problematique View Post
And Kyle, no offence man, but i just checked out your website, the interface for NOTION seemed be uncannily similar to Sibelius on first look...sorry man, not trying to be rude, just calling it as i see it
no offense taken I wasn't trying to say that we reinvented the wheel with this one, but Notion still looks a bit more inviting than Sibelius 5. I also don't really like the fact that you've got to route everything through kontakt with Sibelius...

They both certainly have their benefits...
If you're interested in seeing something that IS new check out PROGRESSION>
NOTION Progression guitar music software | electric, acoustic, bass guitar, keyboards, drums, multitrack tab

Kyle
[email protected]
Old 8th October 2007
  #15
Gear Maniac
 

I dislike them all.

If you know how to write notation and need total control for printing then use an art program.

I've made a couple books with Corel -
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Old 8th October 2007
  #16
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artbeat77's Avatar
 

Does Corel have a MIDI input? Does it come with sheet music templates?

I'm really asking, not being a jerk.
Old 8th October 2007
  #17
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by artbeat77 View Post
Does Corel have a MIDI input? Does it come with sheet music templates?

I'm really asking, not being a jerk.
Nope

You can't hear what you're making. But if want to publish it as printed material an art program will give you complete control over sizing and style.

As for templates, I made my own. Once the basic staff is created it's only a matter of copy and paste. The notes exist as a font so none of that has to be created. But it's easier to convert them to objects and deal with them that way.

It may seem more labor intensive but it's not. When I did the layout for the scores I was able to carefully plan for page turns and repeats.
Old 8th October 2007
  #18
Gear Guru
 
henryrobinett's Avatar
I guess my question is, why go to all that trouble when a good notation program is around the corner?

Sibelius is soo quick and easy. PLUS, although I didn't used to use it, now the midi playback is essential for me to make sure I'm not missing something or making a mistake. I have found way too many silly mistakes. Now the guys don't have to stop, query, look at me funny.

I use notation ALL THE TIME. I'm always either writing charts for the bands Im in or writing my own music, lessons for students, etc.. It's quick and easy. For me, using an art program for this is too much hassle. To each his own!
Old 8th October 2007
  #19
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by henryrobinett View Post
I guess my question is, why go to all that trouble when a good notation program is around the corner?

Sibelius is soo quick and easy. PLUS, although I didn't used to use it, now the midi playback is essential for me to make sure I'm not missing something or making a mistake. I have found way too many silly mistakes. Now the guys don't have to stop, query, look at me funny.

I use notation ALL THE TIME. I'm always either writing charts for the bands Im in or writing my own music, lessons for students, etc.. It's quick and easy. For me, using an art program for this is too much hassle. To each his own!
That would be the perfect use for a notation program.

I'm only recommending this for a project you're sending off to a printer, not handing out to students or session artists. It may seem like extra effort, and maybe it is, it's a hand set score - but it's subject to your own sense of proportion and style, and not something a program spat back at you.

There must be a fatigue of looking/reading pages of program set notation.
Old 8th October 2007
  #20
Gear Guru
 
henryrobinett's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by twotracker View Post
There must be a fatigue of looking/reading pages of program set notation.
You mean as a reader? I don't know. I have had a couple of musicians bemoan the fact that I no longer write by hand. They liked my manuscript. But too many lame musicians losing parts and having to transpose multiple parts for different guys. One guy would rather play it on alto rather than tenor sax. Hassle going to Kinkos to copy books of music. It's just WAY more convenient to have a notation program!
Old 8th October 2007
  #21
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ElMosca's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by walth View Post
What would gearslutz users recommend for notation software? Sibelius or Finale?
I have both at our school because people usually have a "favorite" program and want to stick with it. Accordingly, I use Sibelius. Not because I found it easier, or more powerful, etc. but because I liked the output better and it was the first one I learned.

Look at the printed output for all contenders and decide on that, because the learning curve will be similar regardless of which you choose.

FWIW, Avid acquired Sibelius not too long ago, so I expect integration with Pro Tools to be announced in the near future (currently, there is none).

Cheers,
++aldo
Old 9th October 2007
  #22
Since 7.3, Pro Tools users have a new 'Send to Sibelius' function on MIDI and instrument tracks that automatically transports the file into Sib with all other data (title, markers etc.

The beginning of the integration, I hope.
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