At the end, they are both tough cookies. So, why I give 4 starts to Finale? It has two features that Sibelius lacks. First of all, Finale comes with a sample Garritan Library which is a gorgeous VST soft synthesizer for orchestral sounds. A synthesizer in computer music jargon is a hardware or software piece that converts musical information into actual sounds. For example I send you a Do, Re, Fa, this soft or this loud, at such volume, during so much time, using this instrument like violin.
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Synth, convert this data into the corresponding musical rendition. The input is music data, the output is the actual music. Garritan is one of the best instrument libraries collection of orchestral or popular instruments available at an affordable price. Ugly MIDI music sometimes is the result of a bad sounds library. The best ones try to erase the dividing line between mechanical sounds and live performances.
IN MIDI the resulting music, specially with orchestral works, is usually as good as the quality of the used synthesizer. The second feature that Sibelius lacks is an amazing technical support. If there is something that you don't understand about Sibelius after, I believe, 90 days, good luck, or you pay for a service subscription.
Finale is a different class of tech support that should be a feature of any software.
If you are stuck, you can call toll free or you can use the web site and create a issue. They answer in 24 hours and work trough your problem until is resolved. Granted, the version that I have, Finale has still many issues, just as Sibelius do, but with such an excellent tech support, I am willing to wait for, perhaps, Finale , knowing that in the mean time, I will not get stuck. This is just what the doctor ordered for my next project.
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Incidentally, Garritan and Finale works beautifully together, since they are part of the MakeMusic group. Garritan libraries also work with Cakewalk Sonar, which is my favorite sequencer. I bought the boxed version of this software. That was in case I wanted to return it, but after three weeks of use, to take it away from me, you'd have to tear it away from my cold dead hands.
Having worked with lesser, midi packages over the years, I was skeptical. So far, I haven't found anything, as a musician, that I want to do that Fanale can't do.
Foolishly jumping right in without reading the instructions, I found myself on an egg hunt, and a bit frustrated by the results I was getting. Then I discovered that the real secret to Finale, besides learning the vocabulary and all the buttons do, is to read the excellent instructions on how to use the "Human Playback" sections of the manual. Human Playback is how you can get virtually any effect you might like.
If you choose "jazz" style in the Human Playback section, the software will even interpret and play a string of eighth notes the way a jazz player would, rather than as a straight classical player. Incredible, but true. Example: I like Dixieland Jazz.
I wanted a full-measure trombone glissando to open an arrangement. At first, I got no gliss at all. Then I read and turned on human playback, and, guess what? There was the glissando, but.
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So, I checked out all the buttons in the Human Playback section, and there it was. Delay the glissando was checked, which started the gliss halfway through the measure. I unchecked it, and there was my full-note gliss. I also had problems with the hairpins and other dynamics until I read the Human Playback sections. Now I find myself yelling at the 1st violins for not playing it the way I wrote it. Seriously, if you're a musician who can read and write, I believe this to be the most powerful notation software in the world for the price.
Just be prepared to read through the extremely extensive help menus available. Doing that up front will save you a lot of time and frustration. I view Finale as a lifetime of musical composition and pleasure, right here in my home office. If you can afford it, go for it! Oh, yeah, their customer support is great, too! Technically dated software. My wife is music director at our church, so this software has become crucial for preparing each week's musical program.
Think of Finale as "Photoshop for Sheet Music" and you will get the idea--there is quite a bit to learn to increase productivity, but the quality of the output is superb. I love being able to quickly throw together new arrangements, and print versions in different keys with a minimal of effort, to try them out with singers. I recently purchased a small Korg USB keyboard at Guitar Center to assist in entering music, and this has made a great improvement in speed.
Consider an inexpensive USB midi keyboard like this if you enter lots of music. Technically, the application is dated, and I hope that Finale does deliver their promised bit version soon, hopefully without charging a huge upgrade fee for it. Nevertheless, the application has one job to do and it does it very very well. I love this software. It is very sophisticated, much more useful than I anticipated. The only frustration I had is that it cannot playback in pizzicato. I do, however, understand why this is a shortcoming.
What of Finale 's more tangible changes? These boil down into three main areas: notation improvements, interface enhancements and better support around the program in the form of sound libraries and support material. These are typically used to notate atonal pieces for which the concept of key is moot, and there are some individual instruments such as French Horn which have often been notated without key signature. Many of the new notation capabilities in Finale centre around key signatures.
They're delivered through the typical Finale mix of beautifully clear and utterly bewildering dialogue boxes! Whilst we're talking sharps and flats, there's much better handling of accidentals in music that has multiple voices on one staff. Now Finale is smart enough to compare notes across voices or 'layers', to use the application's terminology , and do away with any redundant signs.
Finale has always sported tool palettes in numbers and dimensions which could make some graphics applications feel inadequate. For they've received some attention. Now they're always visible. At the notation coalface itself, more Smart Shapes such as 'hairpin' crescendos and decrescendos, trills, brackets and lines now snap and attach to beats in the same way as chords and expressions already did. The same goes for some of the 'special' notations such as beam angle and stem-length tweaks.
These can also now differ between score and parts. Some of these new section sounds come direct from Instant Orchestra. Music can be entered in a variety of ways: using the computer keyboard alone in real time or via a command line window; using user-determined combinations of mouse clicks, computer keyboard, and MIDI piano keyboard; or by MIDI keyboard alone.
It also includes a function for optically recognising printed music from a scan, similar to OCRring text. From Finale onward, the program included MicNotator, a module able to notate melodic pitches played on a single-pitch acoustic instrument via a microphone connected to the computer. Finale can import and export MIDI files, and it can play back music using a large range of audio samples, notably from the Garritan library. A feature called 'Human playback' aims to create a less mechanical feel, by incorporating playing styles into the playback, including ornaments, ritardandos and accelerandos.
Finale can export audio files as. Finale also introduced FinaleScript, a scripting language for the automation of tasks such as transcribing music for other instruments to use. It is used by prominent composers such as Brian Ferneyhough ,   large publishers such as Alfred Music , the Hal Leonard Corporation ,  and smaller, specialist publishers such as G. In , MakeMusic signed an exclusive distribution agreement with Alfred Music , a music publishing company with a focus on materials for music education.
Under this agreement, Alfred Music is now the sole distributor of Finale and Garritan products in several markets, including North America. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For the final movement of a piece, see Finale music. This article includes a list of references , but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. Please help to improve this article by introducing more precise citations. July Learn how and when to remove this template message. Version List of languages. Berklee Press, 1st ed. San Francisco: Backbeat Books. Finale uses an approach frequently encountered in computer graphics programs, which is a combination of a tool palette and menu interfaces to access all of the commands for creating a document.
Finale Power. New York: Penolope Press. Releases Finale Finale's 20th anniversary is celebrated with major workflow improvements". Archived from the original Press release on October 4, Business Wire.
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