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Finale or Sibelius


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jazzman99
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 10:47 am    Post subject: Finale or Sibelius Reply with quote

I wasn't really sure where to post this, but which do you guys prefer, and why?
It's about time that I get software for college, and Musescore isn't on the list. I've heard that many people love Finale, but I've also heard that many people hate it. Same for Sibelius.
Thanks guys!
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Don Herman rev2
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 11:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Finale. Had it for many, many years and it is/was by far the most widely used notation program back then. Everyone I was working with used Finale. When Sibelius came out with a new much more friendly user interface, Finale took some hits, and rightly so. It was very user-hostile and Sibelius caused a lot of folk to switch. Since then the interface has gotten much, much better although any powerful program has a learning curve. Finale also expanded their import/export features and kooked up with Garritan to offer much better sounds (though I don't really take advantage of them personally). That said I have little experience with Sibelius and none recent (within the past few years). I have friends who stayed with Finale, some switched but have come back to Finale, and some stuck with Sibelius.

We have some composers/arrangers on TH that will likely have more in-depth experience and contacts.

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loweredsixth
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 11:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Finale has a MUCH steeper learning curve than Sibelius. I've been using it for about 13 years, so now that I know how to use all of its features I have no reason to even consider switching programs. If I was just starting out though, I may choose Sibelius, or after their next big release maybe Dorico.
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Crazy Finn
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 12:05 pm    Post subject: Re: Finale or Sibelius Reply with quote

jazzman99 wrote:
I wasn't really sure where to post this, but which do you guys prefer, and why?
It's about time that I get software for college, and Musescore isn't on the list. I've heard that many people love Finale, but I've also heard that many people hate it. Same for Sibelius.
Thanks guys!

Frankly, I doubt many people love Finale. I think many people use it, some of those same people hate it (despite using it) and many simply tolerate it. I doubt it inspires affection.

I've been using Finale since version 3.5. It was truly terrible then, about as unfriendly as a hungry hyena. It's fine if you know how to do whatever you're trying to do. If you have to try to tweak something that you haven't done before, well.... good luck to you.

I knew some people that did support for them before they got bought and moved. Talk about a thankless job, even in that thankless and frustrating area...
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lakejw
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been using Sibelius for ~14 years, starting with version 3, and recently upgraded to version 8, which will be their last "issued" version. They're moving to a subscription-based model, which requires a $20 monthly access fee to use the license and receive software updates.

Pretty sad. I love Sibelius - I've got my processes down very quick, learned virtually everything you can do on the engraving side of things. But I doubt I will ever be paying that monthly fee.

So, unfortunately, my recommendation to someone just starting out would be to look elsewhere.
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zaferis
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Finale. yes, it has (had) a steep learning curve - that's always been one of the knocks - BUT it does everything and much improved over the years. And really, It's not THAT hard to learn. Mostly, there are so many options that is difficult at times to find the specific little "knit-noid" thing you want to do.

Now it also links well with "SmartMusic" which is an awesome programs for students - both for school bands and individual use. I use my kids account all the time to play solos, jazz improve, and more.

And unfortunately, Sibelius is changing.. not sure where it will end up.
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homebilly
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

just change the measure numbers to below the measures and not above and I'll be happy with either

just look at old hand copied Nestico tunes and you'll see the artwork
of real copyists at work..

sadly that art in now dead!

rant over
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lakejw
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 2:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

zaferis wrote:
And unfortunately, Sibelius is changing.. not sure where it will end up.


The funny thing is, the software has barely changed over the last 5-6 versions. It's only the licensing that has me worried about the future.
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dstdenis
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 2:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've used a few of the less expensive versions of Finale and was able to produce what I needed. I never found it as intuitive as other music scoring software, but I was always able to find what I needed by typing a question into a browser, like "how do I [whatever my question is] in finale?" For example, I might type "how do I add a stave in finale?" or whatever. The answer always came right up and I didn't stay stumped for long.

Too bad Musescore isn't on the list. I've been using that lately and I like it.
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homebilly
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 2:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i've used Finale since the beginning back circa 1992 or 93

i had a crack with no manual and spent many an hour figuring it out......
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mm55
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 3:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been using Sibelius for almost twenty years, beginning with version 1.4, and upgrading over the years, now at 7.5. Several years ago, the Sibelius product was sold to Avid, who initially abandoned it, and fired the software engineers who had worked on it for years.

More recently, they're "revived" it as subscription product, and if you don't subscribe, you don't get the bug fixes to the bugs that you've bought (and there are plenty), and you'll have to pay for customer service. They've hired some new software engineers, scattered around in several different counties, who obviously don't know the product well, and every release since version 8 has been reviled by the user community, for the new bugs and the utter lack of any suitable testing. Every release has broken something that used to work, and you have to keep up your subscription to get the fixes, (if they're ever available). They just pump out minor revisions that haven't really been tested, probably because they have some bean allotment to fulfill.

Two decades ago, I compared Finale with Sibelius, and chose Sibelius. I used to recommend Sibelius to others. I can't recommend it to anyone any more.

I'm not very familiar with Finale, but the Sibelius team that Avid fired (when Avid originally tossed Sibelius in the dumpster) is now developing a new product called Dorico; not yet available as far as I know. I'll be checking out Finale and looking forward to Dorico.

If you can find a retail copy of Sibelius 7.5 (which you can no longer buy from Avid), it might worth it if it's a really cheap price. But stay away from any version 8 or later, and don't expect any customer support from Avid for 7.5. I think they'll help you with problems installing 7.5, but then you're on your own.
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zaferis
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 3:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

homebilly wrote:
just change the measure numbers to below the measures and not above and I'll be happy with either


adjustable/controlable in Finale


one of my peeves, don't trash the program (Finale or Sibelius) because you don't know how to use it.
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TrumpetMD
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 4:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dstdenis wrote:
Too bad Musescore isn't on the list. I've been using that lately and I like it.


I used Finale for many years. It got the job done, has a rich set of features. But it wasn't always intuitive, and not always worth the struggle. Also for my needs, I wasn't sure it was worth the price.

I realize the OP isn't able to consider MuseScore. But let me echo dstdenis's comments for those who can. I've been using MuseScore for more than 5 years. The long-awaited version 2 upgrade is excellent. And the price (it's free) can't be beat.

Mike
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reedman1
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 5:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have used Sibelius for a long time. Before that, I used Finale, Composer's Mosaic, and the unhappily defunct Igor. Sibelius is pretty efficient to use, and has solved a lot of the problems of note and lyrics entry in a satisfying way. But the previous posters are correct - Avid has not treated Sibelius well, and are now onto an annoying and expensive rent-ware model. Currently, I'm using Notion, from Presonus. It's nowhere near as efficient as Sibelius, and it's got some shortcomings and bugs, but I really like it. One big difference between Notion and Sibelius: Notion has much better playback. One more: they only charge you once (per version), and the price is reasonable. I will be interested in seeing Dorico when it comes out. Now, about your notation program needs: you will need to output scores in MusicXML so that teachers with other software can read them, and you may need to print them. Sibelius is good on printing; Notion less so. I don't know how good Finale is at present. Whatever you choose will be good; I don't think there's an honest best notation software right now.
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Paul Tomashefsky
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2016 7:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Neither . . . . I have used Overture music notation since 1996 and it is very user friendly


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StupidBrassObsession
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 19, 2016 12:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use Finale for 3-6 hours most days.

Honestly, it doesn't matter that much which you use (unless you are after a job doing copy for a publisher which means using their choice anyway), what matters is how well you can use it.

Don't get caught up in the software debate. Pick one and stick with it. With Finale, when you run into something you can't work out, don't assume there isn't a way, because normally there is. The help forum is...helpful...
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homebilly
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 19, 2016 7:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

zaferis wrote:
homebilly wrote:
just change the measure numbers to below the measures and not above and I'll be happy with either


adjustable/controlable in Finale


one of my peeves, don't trash the program (Finale or Sibelius) because you don't know how to use it.



uh, i absolutely DO know how to use it!

i was trashing the users first then the programs for having it set that was as the default. Have they NEVER read a correctly copied part???
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jazzman99
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2016 2:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks guys! I've used Musescore for the last few years, so I'm pretty bummed it wasn't on the list. I didn't know about Sibelius being bought out and going on a monthly regiment, thanks for that update. Looks like it's Finale for me.
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Fuzzy Dunlop
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2016 6:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any of you guys have a problem with PDFs on Sibelius 7? Specifically, the thickness of the staff lines. There is an issue specific to Sib 7 where the staff line thickness is uneven (one or two very thick dark lines and the rest are very thin or gray/fuzzy). Makes reading PDFs on an iPad very difficult.

I don't think I ever have this issue with printed parts, just the way PDFs exported from Sibelius 7 are drawn. It also seems to go away if I zoom way in on a PDF, but of course then I can only see a very small portion of the part.

Anyone else experience this?

Here is a thread that seems to address this issue, though no real solution is ever discovered: Sib. 7.0: Staves have inconsistant line thickness

I've been so frustrated by this that I have considered switching to Finale.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2016 8:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The problem with switching is the cost of either one is so much you hate to throw away the money.
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