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Topic: A notation horror story

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  1. #1

    A notation horror story

    Since a couple of weeks I've been busy at an easy pace with some Notation program with LSO sounds. Let us name it: Xnote. First captured by the demo version and the ease of workflow I ordered this together with an update for Sonar (bundled package: Elite). Much later I bought some additional sounds.

    Every day - a modest amount of hours, to keep things relaxing -, I worked on a project, in fact copying notes from a printout of an older work, notated with my very first notation program Mozart which has no decent playback facilities.

    Now, after almost one month of struggling with the ins and outs of Xnote, which has some great advertisments and marketing department, I must come to the conclusion that in spite of the long life (I reckon it saw daylight three years ago) this Xnote will be the source of many deseases, like headache, migraine, stress, sleeplessness (and not only in Seattle), domestic problems, broken glasses, smashed in windows and finally the local police to calm down everything.

    To list


    • no mordents
    • no inverted mordents,
    • no turns in either direction
    • no <> with or without a dynamic at the beginning, middle and end
    • changing keys gives a list just the half of the circle of fifth
    • no blockwise filling rests
    • no automatic movement to next bar/measure when inputting
    • no breaks with pause (system breaks are different stuff)
    • no hidden bars/measures
    • system depth not consistent at print time
    • spacing staffs is fixed, no manual intervention possible to space the staffs
    • input of articulations often not a single key (e.g. hitting 6 three times for "attack" is rather stupid when you must do it on a block of selected notes)
    • note lengths determined by letters instead of arguments of two (W=whole, H=half, Q=quarter, etc...)
    • no small(er) note heads, except for grace notes
    • no beaming system where you can determine which type of beaming you want
    • no keyboard input of compound triplets/multiplets, e.g. triplet of eights where the middle is divided into two sixteenths
    • no multiple voice input with keyboard when both voices are playing the same melody (so you want inputting only one note for both/all voices)
    • accidentals aren't following the key and extend their scope to all subsequent notes unless you hit escape, so a sharp on one note will give a sharp on all following notes
    • inputting notes with a keyboard doesn't follow the key, so you can have a g-flat in a piece with key D-major
    • no tremolo lines between two different notes, which are often used in orchestral pieces to shorten the layout
    • slurs for independed voices on one staff aren't possible, it is always a slur for the first voice (I tricked it to get it done)
    • enharmonic correction doesn't work correctly when you have more voices playing the same note. Only the one for voice 1 (most upper) will change, the other ones must be done by dragging with the mouse
    • cross-stave beams aren't possible, often used in piano sequences
    • midi output of a grandstaff is limited to only one midi track, instead of two (right hand AND left hand)
    • midi output of multiple voices is just one combined midi track, I would expect two for two voices, three for three voices.....
    • copying from voice one to voice two isn't possible
    • no tempo setting within a bar, only at the beginning (even Mozart has a tempo change at either beat!!!)
    • no splitting voices when you do a "part output" to print

    and I can go on and on with playback features (.e.g. the trill on a VST piano doesn't work; I had to write them down), the mixer, adding multiple ARIA players, changing instruments, ....... it all looked so promising.

    Conclusion, this Xnote can be used for crossgrade to Finale and that is what I am intend to do as soon as possible......... Some of you may remember my "problems" about the demo version of Finale. I surrender!!!!

    Just recovering from a very, very deep notated depression,

    Raymond - singing like a woodpecker

  2. #2

    Re: A notation horror story

    Hello Raymond,

    So sorry to hear of your disappointment there with your notation program. Just as reassurance, I've been using Finale for many, many years and have always got on well with it and been very happy with it. Presently I have Finale 2010 with GPO4, JABB3 and COMB.

    This is not to pretend that there have not been hiccups and, at times, the inevitable learning curve, especially when I first started with it. Also, I should mention, that although some people are able to achieve the performance they want using just Finale, personally, I find that I need to take my Finale score into Sonar to really craft the performance I aspire to.

    Anyway, if you do make the move there are plenty of us Finale users here to help with any questions you have and I'm always pleased to help where I can.

    Cheer up and good luck with your decision.
    Michael
    Patience is a virtue, sensitivity is a gift

  3. #3

    Re: A notation horror story

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael_uk View Post
    ....... Cheer up and good luck with your decision.
    Don't worry, I am not deep down under in depression. It has been a very fruitful couple of weeks. I discovered some serious errors in my score, so I had the opportunity to correct them.

    .. and I needed some reassurance...... as with St.Paul: investigate everything and behold the good things (or words in your language, you know better than me).......

    Raymond - forget that woodpecker thing, just listen to the real singing birds.

  4. #4

    Re: A notation horror story

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymond62 View Post
    "forget that woodpecker thing, just listen to the real singing birds."
    Finale is definitely a singing bird. You might find it slow going at first but you will rewarded with the most flexible professional notation program I have ever used - and I've used a few (including BY HAND).
    In theory there is no difference between theory and practice, but in practice there is.

    http://reberclark.blogspot.com http://reberclark.bandcamp.com http://www.youtube.com/reberclark

  5. #5

    Re: A notation horror story

    Finale works exceptionally with with Aria and GPO4 as well as JABB

  6. #6

    Re: A notation horror story

    Quote Originally Posted by reberclark View Post
    Finale is definitely a singing bird. You might find it slow going at first but you will rewarded with the most flexible professional notation program I have ever used - and I've used a few (including BY HAND).
    You don't know how flexible my hands are ....LOL

    Raymond

  7. #7
    Senior Member Tom_Davis's Avatar
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    Re: A notation horror story

    Because of cost (before I sold a few pieces) and what looked like endless problems by other more digitally oriented people, I stayed away from Finale for years. Two years ago I purchased it and recently upgraded. I believe you will be happy with it from day one.

  8. #8

    Re: A notation horror story

    Another FINALE fan...I have used this platform since its earliest times (before it went by last year's date ). If you can imagine it, you can get it to print that way on your page. In the final estimation, that is what a NOTATION program should do. The playback features are an added bonus, but do not forget, FINALE was first, and still is primarily, a NOTATION program. I think you will be pleased.

  9. #9

    Re: A notation horror story

    Quote Originally Posted by RobertTewes View Post
    ............. In the final estimation, that is what a NOTATION program should do. The playback features are an added bonus, but do not forget, FINALE was first, and still is primarily, a NOTATION program. I think you will be pleased.
    Late night I discovered that the MIDI export failed in giving me:

    • trills written as a bunch of notes;
    • tremolo's written as a group;
    • glissando's expanded to notes.


    I am not so very keen about the playback facilities of a Notation program as long as the MIDI output, which I will import in Sonar, is just the exact representation of the written score. OK, one or two things may not be possible, like unmeasured tremolo's or so, but for the rest it should be useable without too many alterations/corrections.

    Sorry guys, having bothered you with my "personal horror experience", this is one program that "took the shine out of" (is this the expression?).

    Raymond - enjoying the "talks" of a blackbird right now.

  10. #10

    Re: A notation horror story

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymond62 View Post
    Late night I discovered that the MIDI export failed in giving me:

    • trills written as a bunch of notes;
    • tremolo's written as a group;
    • glissando's expanded to notes.


    I am not so very keen about the playback facilities of a Notation program as long as the MIDI output, which I will import in Sonar, is just the exact representation of the written score. OK, one or two things may not be possible, like unmeasured tremolo's or so, but for the rest it should be useable without too many alterations/corrections.
    Maybe im not understanding, but if Notion use sample librarys articulations, and your library have as an articulation a glissando, it will use only a midi note to trigger the glissando. And if you export, supposing you are going to use the same library in Sonar, it´s supposed it will still use only a single note to trigger that?
    Marcelo Colina

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