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Discussion of converting to Sibelius from Finale.

questions

Postby MysticTuba » Thu Apr 22, 2010 11:30 pm

A few questions about Sibelius useability:

1. If I am entering pitches for a transposing instrument (e.g., clarinet) does the pitch that plays when I enter the note match a) the concert pitch of the line/space I enter it on, or b) the transposed pitch of the line/space I enter it on? In my current engraving program, I have to display the score in concert pitch in order to hear what I am typing in on the correct pitches, and then when I start displaying it in transposed pitch, all the dynamics, slurs, etc., are now spaced wrongly since their spacing corresponds to the concert pitch representation. This causes a HUGE waste of time.

2. My frustration with my current engraving program's manual is that I cannot look up what I need to know unless I already know the term that the program uses to refer to it; if I do a search on what I think the term is, it will come back with a) nothing at all; b) twelve things that have nothing to do with what I want to know; or c) if I'm lucky, something that will allow me to narrow it down enough to eventually find it. This is a HUGE time-waster.

3. In my current engraving program, if I have a note of a pitch followed by a note of the same pitch, and the first note has a line under it indicating "not staccato" the second note does not play, because apparently the programmers made the line's playback "run into" the trigger for the next note, causing it to not play at all if it is the same pitch. Is this a problem with Sibelius? I have to have two different scores with my current program, one for playback and one for printing, which, again, is a HUGE waste of time.

If you have noticed the recurring theme of wasted time, you will understand that in general I'm looking to find out if Sibelius is going to waste my time as much as my current program, even if the time-wasters are different ones than the ones I'm dealing with now. I'm not tremendously picky about how my engraving looks, but I don't want it looking like a five year old did it, either.

Thanks.
MT
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Re: questions

Postby Sebasian » Fri Apr 23, 2010 10:32 am

MysticTuba wrote: does the pitch that plays when I enter the note match a) the concert pitch of the line/space I enter it on, or b) the transposed pitch of the line/space I enter it on?

If you are entering from a MIDI keyboard, Sibelius gives you a selectable option. You can play the written pitch from a transposed part and it will be correctly notated whether the score is shown as Transposed or not. Or you can input the sounding pitch, and again it will be correctly notated.

MysticTuba also wrote:in transposed pitch, all the dynamics, slurs, etc., are now spaced wrongly since their spacing corresponds to the concert pitch representation.

Sibelius rewrites these correctly.
and MysticTuba wrote:. . . I cannot look up what I need to know unless I already know the term that the program uses to refer to it;

Sibelius documentation is good, providing a printed Handbook and more extensive Reference, which is available in (searchable) PDF form as well. No documentation is perfect, and there are occasional problems with different views of the 'correct' terminology, but Sibelius's reference is one of the best I've seen.

MysticTuba finally wrote:. . . . the second note does not play, because apparently the programmers made the line's playback "run into" the trigger for the next note . . .

There are some rare instances where this might happen because of the different way different sound libraries are constructed, though it can be fixed very quickly when it does occur. Sometimes the settings for one playback device need to be a little different to get the most accurate playback, but you can save settings as a 'House Style' document or Playback Configuration for future use.

Sibelius won't save you very much time while you are learning it of course; this is the case with most software. But once you have learned the Sibelius way of doing things it is a very flexible and intuitive way of notating, with excellent editing and playback as well.
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