The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #53780   Message #831397
Posted By: JohnInKansas
21-Nov-02 - 04:01 AM
Thread Name: Tech: Finale or Sibelius?
Subject: RE: Tech: Finale or Sibelius?
M Ted - ???

All of the programs that I see permit manual entry of the "dots" from the computer keyboard, and most of them have several other alternatives (picking the notes from an onscreen keyboard, or "mousing" them to the score are the most common). So far as I have seen, none of them require you to have a MIDI instrument.

With the exception of the one "freebie" from Coda, they all allow you to "save as midi" and will all "read" midi files to produce "dots." Even if you "lose the program," if you've saved a .mid, any of the other programs will open the .mid. You may lose some formatting, and you'll lose notations and lyrics, but the route via .mid at least makes the notes reasonably portable.

That's why the absence of .mid in the freebie is unacceptable (for me), and why I'd recommend that people consider it a "tryout" program. Most will want something better eventually, probably soon, unless they decide they just plain don't like messing with programs of this sort.

There is a basic divide between the programs based on producing the .mid, with the score as an "add-on," and programs designed to produce scores, with the .mid as a "fall-out." The distinction is rapidly becoming blurred, as programs from both categories improve their ability to do the other.

If your program is strongly midi-biased, it may be easier to "create" in midi and then take the dots you get, but in most cases a .mid that actually sounds good doesn't make good dots. Conversely, the program that's based on scoring will make it easier to "create" in score, and you take the .mid that plays the "written notes" - which will generally sound like mechanical sh*t, but will allow you to "verify" the score, and pass it on to people who don't read the maggots.

Both Finale and Sibelius are, in my evaluation of them, "score based" programs. The Cakewalk house is the most obvious example of the "midi based" family. You work with what you've got, to do what you want to do (or to give the customer what he/she wants).