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#1152906 - 03/17/06 11:50 AM Software for writing music
kwoksmusic Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/12/05
Posts: 169
Loc: California
Hi! Firstly, I'm not a composer, although I've written a few things and had fun doing it. But I conduct and often have to rewrite music or modify them.

I am looking for your recommendations on software for writing music with. It has to be serviceable and also within reasonable price range, and can do transpositions. I don't have midi interface, or should I get one so I can play on a keyboard, and have it automatically convert into notes on paper?? Your recommendations appreciated.

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#1152907 - 03/17/06 02:21 PM Re: Software for writing music
8ude Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 2050
The two big names that get thrown around a lot are Finale and Sibelius - both will do what you want. I am more familiar with the Finale family of products, and I know they offer a pretty wide variety of products in various price ranges. I assume Sibelius has a similar range. The full versions of both of these products are quite powerful, but from what you said you wanted to do, it's probably overkill to buy the full versions.

As for your other question, I'd recommend getting a MIDI interface - it gives you a lot more flexibility if you can hook your keyboard up to your PC. Incidentally, I'm looking for a decent MIDI interface myself? Any suggestions out there? One option I heard of is to use a MIDI-to-USB cable and just hook into a USB port. Has anyone had any experience with that type of hookup?
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What you are is an accident of birth. What I am, I am through my own efforts. There have been a thousand princes and there will be a thousand more. There is one Beethoven.

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#1152908 - 03/17/06 02:23 PM Re: Software for writing music
8ude Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 2050
http://www.finalemusic.com/finale/features/default.aspx

If you go here and click on the comparison link on the bottom right, you can get a pretty good idea of what products they offer, organized by price and features.

PrintMusic or Allegro might work well for you.
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What you are is an accident of birth. What I am, I am through my own efforts. There have been a thousand princes and there will be a thousand more. There is one Beethoven.

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#1152909 - 03/18/06 07:32 PM Re: Software for writing music
kwoksmusic Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/12/05
Posts: 169
Loc: California
OK - I just found out my uni uses Finale but I didn't take a class in it. Is it very difficult to self learn? I am fairly computer literate but is it very different from navigating other software?

Thx for your suggestions.

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#1152910 - 03/19/06 01:47 AM Re: Software for writing music
8ude Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 2050
I'm most familiar with an old version of it. I used Finale 3.0 quite successfully for a while and I found it to be very intuitive. My old PC died somewhat recently, though, and took Finale with it, so I too am in the market for new software. I ordered Finale 2006 and it should show up Tuesday, so I guess I'll find out how user friendly the new version is soon enough...
_________________________
What you are is an accident of birth. What I am, I am through my own efforts. There have been a thousand princes and there will be a thousand more. There is one Beethoven.

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#1152911 - 04/03/06 12:51 PM Re: Software for writing music
Monica K. Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012


Registered: 08/10/05
Posts: 17815
Loc: Lexington, Kentucky
There was an interesting article in the New York Times today about using "GarageBand" to compose music:

NYT article on composing software

Looked pretty fun.
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#1152912 - 04/20/06 12:02 PM Re: Software for writing music
tenuki Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/06
Posts: 669
Loc: Seattle, Wa
finale has a FREE composition notpad you can download and use indefinately to see if you like their products.

garage band is mac only, but yes, it is awesome at sketching stuff very quickly. I dont' think it can work with musical staff/sheet music like Logic Audio or Finale can though.
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