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In July, Avid split off its consumer-focused brands, including M-Audio, and sold them to inMusic. Avid also announced that it was closing the Sibelius offices in Finsbury Park, London, where the notation software was developed and maintained.
Since then, users have been speculating about the future of an app many have large investments of time and money in.
Users have valid reasons to be concerned.
Avid has released Sibelius 7, an update to its popular notation software, with full MusicXML interchange support, a professional-quality sample library and a new task-oriented user interface.
Here’s what’s new in Sibelius 7:
- New and exclusive professional-quality sound library ? Unique to Sibelius, the new professional-quality sound library delivers stunning musical realism to scores during playback. It includes the Avid Orchestra, a specially recorded full symphony orchestra, a collection of rock and pop sounds from the Avid virtual instrument team, a 27-stop church organ from leading virtual organ creator Hauptwerk, and a selection of sounds from Sample Logic Rumble and Fanfare featuring 14-time world champion Drum and Bugle Corps, The Blue Devils.
- Completely redesigned task-oriented user interface ? Optimized for single-display systems, the new user interface employs a rich graphical toolbar and dockable panels that don?t obscure the working area, putting all of the software?s features at the user?s fingertips. The redesigned mixer also allows finer control of playback than ever before, delivering more balanced mixes.
- Full MusicXML interchange ? Complete MusicXML import and now export makes sharing files with hundreds of music applications, including Finale, easier than ever.
- 64-bit performance ? Sibelius 7 is the world?s first native 64-bit notation software, and has been completely rewritten to take advantage of the performance of today?s incredibly fast 64-bit hardware and operating systems.
- Powerful text, graphic and sharing options ? Publisher-quality typography and graphics import/export capability delivers finished scores with professional-quality text and graphics. Publish and export demanding layouts and text-heavy scores with advanced finishing options, including direct PDF and EPS export. Also sync with or import notation from Pro Tools, or export scores as Scorch files, then share or publish them on the web or via Avid Scorch for iPad.
Sibelius 7 is available now, for Windows and Mac, for US $599. Upgrade and student pricing is also available.
Avid today introduced Scorch – a new app that turns your iPad into an interactive music stand, score library, and sheet music store.
- Use your iPad mobile device as an interactive substitute for a music stand and sheet music library
- View and modify your own Sibelius or Sibelius First scores and lead sheets?plus premium content from a variety of publishers
- Learn songs or adapt them to your instrument by transposing a score, changing instruments, or converting to and from guitar tab
- Display individual parts to remove distraction and focus solely on your instrument
- See the whole score?or individual parts?played on the Keyboard display
- Hear your score by playing it back with sampled instrument sounds
- Mix your score to suit your needs
- Easily turn pages in Music Stand mode
- In-app purchases through your iTunes account
Note: Avid Scorch lets you modify how your music is displayed, such as hiding parts or transposition, but is not designed for actual music editing.
Avid Scorch retails for $4.99 in the App Store.
MakeMusic has introduced Finale 2011, a major update to its notation software for Windows and Mac.
Heres what’s new in Finale 2011:
- Improved Lyric Entry and Spacing ? Lyrics are more easily entered, instantly appear exactly as they?ll print out, and are automatically spaced with engraver precision.
- Easier Staff Layout ? New Staff Layout capabilities make it simple and intuitive to hide, move, and edit staves, groups, and brackets. Work in any order you wish, and never lose a note.
- Garritan sounds ? Finale now includes more than 375 world-class instrument sounds from the makers of Garritan Personal Orchestra. Free new sounds include bass trombone, brass section, children?s choir ahs, flute section, electronic drum kit and more.
- Music Education Worksheets ? Finale now includes more than 800 ready-made, customizable music education worksheets and flashcards. New this year are jazz improvisation worksheets and more than 100 titles of classroom repertoire.
- New Fonts ? Hundreds of new font characters are included for percussion, mallet and handbell graphics.
- Finale AlphaNotes? Font ? Created for use with beginning music students, the Finale AlphaNotes font places note names or solfège syllables inside noteheads.
- Expanded Percussion Playback ? Last year we simplified the process of getting notes on percussion staves to look ? and playback ? exactly the way you want them to. This year Finale 2011 makes it easy to switch between pitched and non-pitched percussion anywhere in your score.
- Updated Aria Player ? The Garritan Aria Player simplifies the process of changing MIDI channel assignments. Updated for Finale 2011, the Garritan Aria Player has an integrated Ambience reverb and the ability to save Ensembles.
- Instant Capo Chords ? Automatically add capo chords to your music with the freedom to control whether they replace or appear in addition to non-capo chords.
- Improved Pickup measures and more ? Pick-up measures automatically insert the correct rests when you start your score, improved file support for multiple-user environments, and a new Quick Reference Guide that shows you how to complete common tasks quickly and easily in Finale.
Finale 2011 is available now for $600. Upgrades start at $119.95. See the site for details.