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Topic: Help choosing a sequencer..

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  1. #1
    Senior Member musicmad's Avatar
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    Help choosing a sequencer..

    Hi,
    could any of you sequencer wizards out there point me in the right direction. i'm looking to purchase either sonar or cubase for a sequencer, i'm new to digital music and sequencers so wouldn't want anything to exhausting on the learning curve. i'm a one man band will be working mainly with a digital piano, VSTs plugins, orchestral libraries etc.. but am looking to produce pro music for commercial sale, any tips guys..

    Musicmad

  2. #2
    Senior Member bigears's Avatar
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    Re: Help choosing a sequencer..

    Hi, I am using Sonar 7 Producer's Edition and don't have any experience with Cubase to be able to compare the two. There is a website called the Digital Music Doctor where there are comparions of all the major programs.
    Also there are learning tutorials there for all the programs. Here are links to some demos of the tutorials for Sonar:
    http://www.digitalmusicdoctor.com/so.../Web_Menu.html

    and for Cubase:
    http://www.digitalmusicdoctor.com/cu.../Web_Menu.html

    I sure someone here will weigh in soon. John

  3. #3
    Senior Member musicmad's Avatar
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    Re: Help choosing a sequencer..

    Hi bigears, thanks for this excellent link, this was a great help, thanks man

    Musicmad

  4. #4

    Re: Help choosing a sequencer..

    Here's a bit older thread talking about sequencers, maybe you find some help there too.

    http://www.northernsounds.com/forum/...ight=sequencer

  5. #5

    Re: Help choosing a sequencer..


    My question: Which scoring program, Finale; Sibelius; or ? would import Midi files from DP most efficiently on a Mac, and which is the easiest to tweak and has the shortest learning curve?

    Thanks in advance,

    Ern
    I have used Finale since 1994. It has a little bit of a learning curve, but as with most programs these days, it also has an enthusiastic user group who could help with questions. Since you are using it strictly for engraving, you can ignore all the gripes that come up about problems with Human Playback, etc. It really is quite a remarkable program once you learn it.

    Importing quantized midi files is a fairly simple process. Since you already have a workflow that allows for the time to enter articulations, dynamics, and expression marks, using Finale's midi import feature should work well for you.

    I can't (and won't) speak negatively about Sibelius. I currently own a copy of version 5 that's just sitting on my hard drive since I don't find it intuitive because I am so indoctrinated to the ways of Finale! However, it is a gorgeous program to look at, and I am told that it continues to grow in its flexibility for customized notation schemes (something it was roundly criticized for in its earlier incarnations). I have plans to set aside some time in the near future and really dig in to the program to learn it so that I can make a side-by-side comparison for my own purposes.

    My work flow since 1994 has been to compose straight into Finale, and I do want a notation program that has the ability to playback my arrangements with a reasonable degree of accuracy without having to import it into a sequencer program. Finale is still a processor hog (even on an Intel Core 2 duo) and though Human Playback has come a long way, it still is not as intuitive as I would like. I have heard that Sib 5 is better than Finale on both of those points, so I want to explore that. (Plus Sib 5 lets you use any AU plug-in , not just those made by NI.)

    I must stress again that Finale is NOT a processor hog when it comes to simple engraving, only when trying to play back using AU's.

    My final recommendation would be Finale. It has a long standing record of quality, and when you buy it with only the idea of using it as a notation program, it succeeds famously.

    Take care...
    Brad Pearson
    THG Music
    Spokane WA

    MacBook Pro (2.33 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo), 3 gig RAM, OS 10.6.5, Finale 2011b, GPO4 & CMB2

  6. #6

    Re: Help choosing a sequencer..

    I think Overture is far easiest to learn, but I don't know about the importing side. You can try a demo of it, it's definately worth trying, since it's very powerful notation program and cheaper than the others.

    Don't let the webpage fool you (it's not too pretty).

    www.geniesoft.com

  7. #7

    Re: Help choosing a sequencer..

    Now does Finale allow you to "import a midi file" "and" fully edit it?

  8. #8

    Re: Help choosing a sequencer..

    Quote Originally Posted by memyselfandus View Post
    Now does Finale allow you to "import a midi file" "and" fully edit it?
    If by your question you mean "can I import a midi file and edit it so that it is readable as a notation file", then, yes is the answer.

    If by your question you mean "can I import a midi file and edit data for playback", then I would give a reserved "yes" but say that the best program for editing midi data will be a sequencer program.
    Brad Pearson
    THG Music
    Spokane WA

    MacBook Pro (2.33 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo), 3 gig RAM, OS 10.6.5, Finale 2011b, GPO4 & CMB2

  9. #9

    Re: Help choosing a sequencer..

    I think you need to consider what your requirements are. I use Cubase and have used one version or another for years. You can enter notes from score, from piano roll or by playing. Oddly enough, I'm afraid that piano roll is by far the quickest and easiest, unless you can play exactly what you want straight in.

    I find writing score very time consuming with having to place the note, set the length, set the volume etc; using piano roll you just draw the line.

    I have found some sequencers very tedious to use.

    If you can decide exactly how you want to work then you can decide which sequencer to use.

  10. #10

    Re: Help choosing a sequencer..

    Quote Originally Posted by buckshead View Post
    ... I'm afraid that piano roll is by far the quickest and easiest, unless you can play exactly what you want straight in...
    I have to agree with you. Even after playing parts in, the piano roll is a quick, easy and intuitive way to "tidy up" any MIDI based performance.

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