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Posted on Tue, Oct 13 2020 20:15
by BenJones
Joined on Sun, May 31 2020, Posts 6

Hello friends,

as a newbie, I need professional advice and help with the search for a notation program with which I can not only enter notes but, in particular, make full use of the performance possibilities of virtual instruments such as VSL, ....

I'm currently testing Dorico Pro, but I have an unpleasant latency when improvising and playing and I don't think it's as great as advertised. The sequencing part and the expression maps are great, of course.

Maybe someone can give me a recommendation on what other notation programs are out there that offer similar great features, especially with regard to virtual instruments. To be honest, I want to use more of a notation program with which I can almost replace my DAW, because actually I only use the sequencing area and midi insert and editing stuff there. 

Thanks for your replies and Greetings. 

Posted on Wed, Oct 28 2020 12:10
by lunar_28664
Joined on Wed, Jun 20 2007, Posts 104

Dorico Pro 3.5 is already the best notation software for getting the most out of VSL and each update only increases the gap. The Expression Maps and Play window give you a great deal of scope for adjusting and automating how the libraries work. I would never return to Sibelius after switching. If you have latency issues, I suggest you post to the Dorico forum with exact details of your setup as it's very likely you'll get a solution. The response from the team is exceptional and there are plenty of users who chip in with useful tips as well.

Posted on Wed, Oct 28 2020 19:02
by Dewdman42
Joined on Tue, Feb 27 2018, Posts 786

I agree about Dorico currently being the best notational for playback, however, two others which are considerably less expensive and worth investigation are Notion and Overture5.   But personally I am trying to migrate to Dorico also.

Posted on Fri, Oct 30 2020 20:14
by lunar_28664
Joined on Wed, Jun 20 2007, Posts 104

I don't think Notion ever claimed to match the big guns on notation features although I realise it has some strengths of its own. Overture I was a fan and user of quite a while back but v. 5, quite apart from taking forever to see the light of day, still appears to be more or less as buggy as when I tried it out. I like the concept and the interface in many ways but it doesn't have a fraction of the features of Dorico.  But no need to take my word for it, simply try it out if you haven't already.

Posted on Sat, Oct 31 2020 01:16
by Dewdman42
Joined on Tue, Feb 27 2018, Posts 786

Notion does not have the greatest typesetting capability, but it has an excellent and under appreciated playback engine, which is what someone asked about.  Its also very easy to use.  There is a hidden playback engine that is not documented very well that makes it possible to do some very advanced things, allegedly.

Overture has slightly better typesetting then Notion and also has some decent playback, but so far, I keep running into bugs with it...so its a work in progress.  

As i already said, I'm the biggest fan of Dorico also, that is where I am focusing my attention now, but it is WAY more expensive then Notion and Overture and also its has some interesting auto-formatting "features" that sometimes cause more problems then they solve.  But its evolving fast and I agree, that is the one to watch.  Still Notion and Overture are worthy contenders for playback purposes and less money.

MuseScore is supposedly going to be adding a VST engine to the next v4.  That would be free!  We'll see how goo they get with playback rules and such though.

Posted on Sat, Oct 31 2020 08:15
by PaoloT
Joined on Tue, Dec 27 2016, Posts 1162

Dorico has a cheaper, less powerful version that might be more in line with some of the competition. The Pro version may be actually overwhelming for some users.

Paolo

Posted on Sat, Oct 31 2020 08:18
by Dewdman42
Joined on Tue, Feb 27 2018, Posts 786

at that point I think I would rather use Notion or Overture myself.

Posted on Sat, Oct 31 2020 09:12
by lunar_28664
Joined on Wed, Jun 20 2007, Posts 104

Overture was the first with full VST playback support to my knowledge and for that reason I was happy to support it for a time. As you say, the bugs and instability are probably the biggest issue these days. And of course Notion was always known for its innovative (at the time) playback features -- just thought it would worth mentioning the relatively weak typesetting for someone considering an all-in-one.

I'd also thought of recommending Dorico Elements to be competitive on price but then you basically can't write anything for full orchestra due to the 12 player limit and playback customisation is reduced. On price -- well to get decent playback you have to invest in decent VST libraries such as VSL so the extra for the notation software might not be the first consideration unless you've already got all the libraries you want. But naturally one must take everything into account.

Posted on Sat, Oct 31 2020 10:09
by GilP
Joined on Thu, Aug 31 2017, Posts 86

Hello,

There's a post about the next Dorico session about Dorico and VSL:

https://www.vsl.co.at/community/posts/t56861-Playback-Templates-for-VSL-SYNCHRON-ized-Special-Editions--Discover-Dorico#post300118

I'm sure it will be interesting to watch :)

Regards,

Gil.

Posted on Sat, Oct 31 2020 11:16
by lunar_28664
Joined on Wed, Jun 20 2007, Posts 104

yes, Gil, and I will enjoy comparing it to my own Expression Maps for this library.

Posted on Sat, Oct 31 2020 19:22
by Dewdman42
Joined on Tue, Feb 27 2018, Posts 786

Originally Posted by: lunar_28664 Go to Quoted Post

Overture was the first with full VST playback support to my knowledge and for that reason I was happy to support it for a time. As you say, the bugs and instability are probably the biggest issue these days.

All true.  The main problem with it is that its developed by a lone-developer...and its rather a large project for such a small team.  Considering its a one-man effort, its quite incredible what all it can do, but nonetheless, it will simply never, in my view, get the polish and effort that Notion and Dorico get...especially Dorico since the old Sibelius team is working very actively on it.  I am actually happy to contribute money to Dorico just to further the cause of seeing it developed......but Steinberg imposes a fairly hefty upgrade schedule...FWIW..so the cost of Dorico is definitely considerably more.

I used Overture4 on a student film scoring project (with live orch), some years ago and got many compliments from other students about how great my scores looked compared to the scores they had done with Sibelius and Finale.  It just produced wonderful looking score without me having to fiddle with much..the default settings were right.  The downside was that during part extraction...I ended up with some part errors in the recording session that I didn't catch...and I feel like I spent more time nudging things around to make it all work also.  But overall, at the time, the thought of trying to learn Finale or Sibelius (neither of which I was knowledgable about) was totally overwhelming and Overture4 was just relatively easy to get going, get the notes in and output really nice looking scores without having to change my layouts or other deep parameters to make it look the best.  For that particular task it was perfect for the job without me having to learn Finale..which positively overwhelmed me at the thought of having to do.

Don is an interesting character.  Sometimes he gets mad if you point out problems, other times he reaches out with personal email to help you out.  Years ago I asked about adding large time sigs with with vertical lines, etc.. for film scoring work and he promptly added a new feature, which is still there today, called "Hollywood Lines" and its a cool feature actually.

Quote:

And of course Notion was always known for its innovative (at the time) playback features -- just thought it would worth mentioning the relatively weak typesetting for someone considering an all-in-one.

Yes well not only does Notion have its built in sounds...which 10-15 years ago were ground breaking perhaps, but today with VST playback....there are better sounds...but nonetheless it has a deep system for configuring playback that most people are not even aware of and hardly anyone has really put to good use.  It has a scripting language that can be used to create playback rules that exceed what can be done with Dorico's expression Maps, for example.  I was hoping Presonus would adopt that into StudioOne5, but they didn't unfortunately.  There is hardly any documentation about Notion's built in scripting language for configuring playback, but its very capable of some advanced things and is a hidden secret in Notion.

You can read a bit about it in a few places, its been a while since I look at it, but here's one link:

https://support.presonus.com/hc/en-us/articles/210049153-Custom-Rules-GUI-for-Notion-5-and-6

I agree though, its typeset is barely good enough for anything other then maybe your local church choir, and maybe not even that.  

Its also VERY easy to enter music and get it formatted the way you want...so its very quick to learn, easy to use, and has a killer hidden playback engine...and syncs with StudioOne, etc..  But...its typeset, forget about it.  If I were going to put pages in front of anyone other then my mom, I would almost certainly export the MusicXML and finish the score work in something else.

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