Hi all,

I currently use Ableton live to record music, even though I am somewhat still a beginner at it.  It doesn't have the ability to record notation though.  I am trying to figure what might be the best notation software to use for the purpose of being able to hand out the notation to band members.  Basically, I want to record in Ableton and then use a notation software to document the notes and chords to hand out so others can use it.

I would appreciate if anybody has any input.  

I started to create a comparison matrix of some of the notation software I found online - http://www.choosle.com/app#DYK5.Q0MhgE-VvRbA1QNB.edit    but didn't get that far.

If anybody has any suggestions, the comparison matrix is also editable to add factors or other notation software options.

I am also wondering if anybody knows if there is a good way to convert wav or mp3 to a midi file?

Anyway, thanks and I would appreciate anybody's help

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Replies

  • That's for sure! Basically, the software has yet to be invented that allows a person to produce printed music without that person having an extensive knowledge of notation. Who would trust it to be accurate? Even when I have played a part into a sequencer, checked it back, quantised it to the correct note values and exported it as a midi file- when I import it into Finale there are still errors!!


    Andrew Gleibman said:

    Yes, many instruments now have MIDI outputs for inserting into a computer, so (I think) it is impractical to convert audio to MIDI; it is better to aply MIDI-featured instruments.

    You should know, however, that MIDI generally is not a human-readable format: it is a computer-readable format. Converting it to a conventional human-readable score is not a trivial task.

    which is the best score/notating software to use?
    Hi all, I currently use Ableton live to record music, even though I am somewhat still a beginner at it.  It doesn't have the ability to record notati…
  • I've heard good things about Finale although I use Sibelius and love it. It can do just about anything and the newer versions even have a feature to record an audio file once the score is notated.

  • It has to be Finale or Sibelius.

    The arguments over which is better rage on and on - and have occupied so many threads.

    Most discussions tend to conclude that Finale can do more, but Sibelius is more user-friendly.

  • I have to agree with Adrian.  I've not used Sibelius, but I have used Notion, which is very user friendly, and it produces a half decent audio recording (for a notation package, nothing like a decent sequencer like Cubase, Logic etc).  However, Finale was, I think, the first notation package on the market and was designed by musicians as opposed to software programmers, and is/was used for professional engravers.  But it takes a long time to get to grips with it.  Thankfully, after a lot of trial and error, I've managed to overcome it and I love the programme.  I've not got to grips with using it's audio production facilities, but I'm not interested in doing that anyway.  Sibelius came on to the market a few years later in Europe (I believe Finale originated in the US), and most musical institutions in the UK use it.

    Unfortunately, Finale (and Sibelius, I believe) are trying to expand their custom base by spending more time on its audio production, rather than tightening up their notation user 'friendliness'.

    But I have to admit that I bought Finale because it was £100 cheaper, but I'm glad now that I did (I wasn't at first), because I know how to use it properly (strictly as a notation package), and it's so expansive to the extent that you could have a piece of manuscript paper, a sharp pencil and an eraser.  But be prepared for a long learning curve.

  • I just purchased Notion 3 and I'm very happy with it.  You can run Notion 3 as a slave to Ableton and other software sequencers, too. (http://www.notionmusic.com)

    I think there are indeed wav to midi converters (Logic has one built in, and Melodyne does the same thing in principal, too) but they don't always translate audio to midi correctly especially when you have more than one note playing at the same time in the audio file.

  • finale and sibelius is what you are looking for.

    personally I use finale, because that is what I got used to, and learning a new program all over again is such a pain. But I think the scores printed out of sibelius are much superior to those from finale. 

    A note of warning, sibelius and finale do not have a native interchangable file type, ie finale files are not read by sibelius and vice versa. The only thing you can do to pass scores from one another is use either midi or music xml. Both of those usually fail miserably, or leave you with a messy page and a good staying up late to correct. but works eventually.

    I think both can write tabs or notes, can notate for drums, feature multiple voices and music symbols (f, p etc, articullations, legato slurs, you name it). Still, sibelius has a smarter system for placing those around your score, leaving you with less things to worry about.

    You can notate only by using the staff (enter notes) or using a midi instrument-there is no piano roll, so be sure your mand members are familiar with that kind of writing music. 

    As said already, wav>midi does not exist, at least not free, and Im sure not without a handfull of bugs. But if you are playing something in order to later transcribe and document it it means it most propably is not a jamming session, so you can just go on and write that part on yourscore. no playing involved. 

    another solution,instead of melodyne,  is using midi instruments, a keyboard and a drumpad. I think nowdays you could find some kind of guitar>midi device, but I dont know if it works well and if all guitars are compatible with it. This way will most likely cost you  a 50$ for a small midi keyboard (korg has a new midi devices series, check them out), I'd say 60$ or more for a very cheap drum pad, and god knows how much for the guitar adapter-if there is one after all. 

    You can always export midi from live, but as I said, both finale and sibelius screw up a lot with midi files, especially more complex ones. for just a melody line it would propably work ok.

  • I am going to pitch in and mention Logic. At @£400 (and a 4gb RAM Mac to run it on) it is not the cheapest option by but by far the best value and a pretty solid notation system out the box + more sounds than you can wave a stick at for putting your compositions together as well as all the other benefits of an industry standard production tool.

  • I wouldn't agree that the scores printed out by Sibelius are that much superior to Finale at all.  I'm extremely happy with the style of print, and much prefer it to the scores printed by Notion (which I believe are similar to Sibelius.

    I've posted the second movement of my symphony in PDF form, directly from Finale.  It might be as well to let people decide for themselves.  Maybe there is someone out there that has a similar piece written by Sibelius that it can be compared with.


    SpyrusTheVirus(Spiros Makris) said:

    finale and sibelius is what you are looking for.

    personally I use finale, because that is what I got used to, and learning a new program all over again is such a pain. But I think the scores printed out of sibelius are much superior to those from finale. 

    A note of warning, sibelius and finale do not have a native interchangable file type, ie finale files are not read by sibelius and vice versa. The only thing you can do to pass scores from one another is use either midi or music xml. Both of those usually fail miserably, or leave you with a messy page and a good staying up late to correct. but works eventually.

    I think both can write tabs or notes, can notate for drums, feature multiple voices and music symbols (f, p etc, articullations, legato slurs, you name it). Still, sibelius has a smarter system for placing those around your score, leaving you with less things to worry about.

    You can notate only by using the staff (enter notes) or using a midi instrument-there is no piano roll, so be sure your mand members are familiar with that kind of writing music. 

    As said already, wav>midi does not exist, at least not free, and Im sure not without a handfull of bugs. But if you are playing something in order to later transcribe and document it it means it most propably is not a jamming session, so you can just go on and write that part on yourscore. no playing involved. 

    another solution,instead of melodyne,  is using midi instruments, a keyboard and a drumpad. I think nowdays you could find some kind of guitar>midi device, but I dont know if it works well and if all guitars are compatible with it. This way will most likely cost you  a 50$ for a small midi keyboard (korg has a new midi devices series, check them out), I'd say 60$ or more for a very cheap drum pad, and god knows how much for the guitar adapter-if there is one after all. 

    You can always export midi from live, but as I said, both finale and sibelius screw up a lot with midi files, especially more complex ones. for just a melody line it would propably work ok.

    Symphony No 1 - II. Adagio Passionato.pdf

    which is the best score/notating software to use?
    Hi all, I currently use Ableton live to record music, even though I am somewhat still a beginner at it.  It doesn't have the ability to record notati…
  • A lot of people have mentioned a lot of programs. I am a fan of Musescore http://musescore.org/ this is what I use and a lot of my friends use. Some of them have been Sibelius fans for years but once they started using Musescore they never went back, it is amazing and its free. I would check it out. Its an open source and there is even a musescore community posting section where people post their musical compositions.

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