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Topic: Can anyone compare and contrast Finale and Sibelius for me?

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  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Mar 2002
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    Question Can anyone compare and contrast Finale and Sibelius for me?

    I will be updating soon (currently have Finale 2003) and I was wondering if I should get Sibelius 3 or Finale 2005. Any suggestions? Thanks in advance.

  2. #2

    Re: Can anyone compare and contrast Finale and Sibelius for me?

    For what it's worth...
    I'd suggest sticking with the Finale software... I actually use it as my sequencer with GS3- and believe it or not, with the use of its expression tool, I squeeze very musical MIDI performances out of it along with presentation-ready scores. <using invisible expression markings>

    I'm not sure what other software/OS you are using, but I know that there has been recent reports of conflicts between Sibelius and Gigastudio 3... so if you use or plan on using GS3, you might be better off with Finale 05 for now.

    Sibelius works very well and makes for great scores, but the end result printed page is comparable to Finale... why learn a new notation software when you can stick with what you know and get the same result?

    ps- I'm not sure if the upgrade is even worth it. 03 -> 05 offers the "Human Playback" tool, but I don't even use that. I'd just buy a new Sample Library.
    Jason DeWater aka Lickety-Split
    Very busy, yet always unproductive.
    Some of my music is here:
    http://www.audiostreet.net/jasondewater

  3. #3

    Re: Can anyone compare and contrast Finale and Sibelius for me?

    I found Sibelius to be easier to learn though perhaps lacking some of the customizations possible with Finale. It is hard to say which is better but in my opinion what matters most is which is more native to your way of working. I have found that when extracting parts in Sibelius there is some clean up you have to do in each extracted part. I'm not sure if this is also the case with Finale.

    Also, note both Sibelius and Finale have the latest version available for demo from their respective sites so you can see which one works best for you.

  4. #4

    Re: Can anyone compare and contrast Finale and Sibelius for me?

    TEMPS,

    I think it depends on what you like or dislike about Finale, or what you feel is missing. If Sibelius fixes the things that you don't like about Finale, go for it. If Sibelius doesn't fix those things, stick with Finale.

    -JF

  5. #5
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    Smile Re: Can anyone compare and contrast Finale and Sibelius for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by karimelm
    I found Sibelius to be easier to learn though perhaps lacking some of the customizations possible with Finale. It is hard to say which is better but in my opinion what matters most is which is more native to your way of working. I have found that when extracting parts in Sibelius there is some clean up you have to do in each extracted part. I'm not sure if this is also the case with Finale.

    Also, note both Sibelius and Finale have the latest version available for demo from their respective sites so you can see which one works best for you.
    I end up having to clean up my parts in Finale quite a bit. However, I don't think that there is really a way around that and it does a great job at extracting the parts to a decent level.

    Unless Sibelius is leaps and bound ahead of Finale, I would stick with what you know.

    Cheers,

    Christiaan

  6. #6
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    Re: Can anyone compare and contrast Finale and Sibelius for me?

    Since Sibelius 3 upgraded to be compatible Mac OS X it appears that it may be slightly better than Finale - and this is coming from a longtime finale user.

    In Finale you can get 4 voices per staff, with two independent voices per layer. Sibelius has 4 voices. Finale can have 1-100 staff lines - Sibelius is unlimited in the amount of staff lines. Sibelius also has 25 types of clef, covering standard notation, avant garde music, early music, percussion and guitar tab whereas Finale has roughly ten types. It also appears that note resolution is higher in Sibelius 3: 512th to double whole notes (Finale is 128th to double whole notes.)

    I like Finale because its what I know and many of the improvements in Sibelius I may never use. However if I was shopping I would definitely give Sibelius 3 a close look.

    Hope this helps.

  7. #7

    Re: Can anyone compare and contrast Finale and Sibelius for me?

    I have both and have used both for a while. Siballeus is beter at taking MIDI performances and playing them back exactly as you played them. I find it clumsy when editing parts and moving sections. Finale is very clean and percise at all the above that Siballeus does not do. However, Finale does not pick up the subtle MIDI peformance that Siballeus. I have used Dolet to go between the two but something is always lost. All XP comments. Correct me if I am wrong and if you got any better ideas..GOD...please let me know!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Charlie

  8. #8

    Re: Can anyone compare and contrast Finale and Sibelius for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by karimelm
    I have found that when extracting parts in Sibelius there is some clean up you have to do in each extracted part. I'm not sure if this is also the case with Finale.

    I don't think that one can get around having to fix up some things when extracting parts. So with Finale, you still have to tweak the appearance of some of the slurs, hairpins and placement of rehearsal letters, among other things. It all depends upon how determined one is to make the appearance look professional.

    Human playback is a nice feature, but understandably requires a lot of computer CPU usage and RAM and may overload some computers. The soft synths are nice as well, but nothing like sound samples.

    I do think that there are a few extra features in 2005 that make it worth purchasing over 2003. You should be able to get it at the upgrade price.

    David

  9. #9
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    Re: Can anyone compare and contrast Finale and Sibelius for me?

    Thanks for all the helpful comments. I'm reasonably satisfied with Finale, I just didn't know if I was missing anything major in Sibelius (I don't know anyone who has it). I'll try the demo but I think I'm leaning toward Finale 2005.

    David (ChamberMusic),

    Do you use the Human Playback tool a great deal? Do you think it's useful enough to justify the $140.00 upgrade price?

  10. #10

    Re: Can anyone compare and contrast Finale and Sibelius for me?

    By the way, you can order Free Demo CD from Sibelius which has lots of video file in it. Its good to see lots of useful features in the video file.
    Koray Ustuner

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