Notation Composer - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

Notation Composer

Publisher's Description

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All User Reviews
  • All versions:

    3.6 stars

    out of 5 votes

    • 5 star: 1
    • 4 star: 3
    • 3 star: 0
    • 2 star: 0
    • 1 star: 1
  • Current version:

    4.5 stars

    out of 2 votes

    • 5 star: 1
    • 4 star: 1
    • 3 star: 0
    • 2 star: 0
    • 1 star: 0
  • My rating:

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1-2 of 2

  • 4.0 stars

    "Powerful and Reasonably Priced MIDI-Only Software"

    June 23, 2012  |   By OldAmigaHead

    Version: Notation Composer 2.6.3

    Pros

    - Fully functional 30-day trial
    - For the MIDI purist who doesn't need .WAV file capability
    - Feature-rich control over every aspect of your creativity
    - Reasonably priced
    - Attractive to those with a traditional music education and background. Forget about murky piano-roll interfaces with strange menu commands. Even Beethoven could use it!
    -

    Cons

    - .MID files should be under the SAVE AS menu instead of EXPORT. The only option is to work within the proprietary file format and then once you're satisfied, EXPORT as a .MID file.
    - MIDI setup is easy, but it takes some time to figure out instrument assignments, bank changes, velocity, and so forth.
    - Lacks a definable quantise function. In other words, if you define 1/16th notes, anything shorter than that will be quantized to that value. As it is, the program faithfully records exactly what you play, glitches and all, which is great for human-sounding performances.
    - Notes won't stretch over more than one measure, requiring the user to manually drag them out to the desired length. Since I didn't see any complaints about this on the company's forum, I suspect this has to do with my particular setup.

    Summary

    Forget about those negative reviews from folks who probably work for the competition. After downloading many trial-ware versions of expensive packages, I finally decided on NOTATION COMPOSER. Let's face it: Pro-Logic, Cubase, and all the other "heavy lifters" try too hard to jam-pack everything into a single package. Even after following on-line videos, I found them tedious and overwhelming. If you're looking for a MIDI-only sequencer, most of what's available are stripped of any useful editing features. NOTATION COMPOSER is a package rich with features for the MIDI musician. If you've got a traditional music background, you'll appreciate the on-screen notation. It looks just like sheet music. No piano-roll here, with strange menu commands. Even the keyboard short cuts are intuitive, and once you learn them, it makes composing a breeze. If you don't need audio track recording, NOTATION COMPOSER is worth the price. I'd like to see .MID files under a SAVE AS menu as opposed to EXPORT MIDI. I shy away from proprietary formats, but this is only a minor issue. Figuring out the MIDI device setup is easier than other programs I've used, but it still takes some time to learn how to manage channels, instruments, and so forth. Whether you're mucking around with a computer soundcard or controlling an extensive MIDI setup, NC easily accommodates them both. NOTATION COMPOSER could benefit from a quantize feature that allows live recording to be locked into a specified note duration. In other words, if you define 1/16th notes anything shorter than that will be quantized to that value. As it is, the program faithfully records exactly what you play, glitches and all. On the other hand, it sometimes won't correctly record notes that stretch over 2 or more measures. This is easily fixed by dragging out the note, and I suspect that this may have to do with my particular setup. Be prepared keeping the help file open while you're learning NC. The program offers a wealth of features not seen in even the most expensive software suites. Once you start memorizing the intuitive keyboard shortcuts, recording becomes a breeze. I've been a MIDI musician ever since MIDI came out, and NC is perhaps one of the best efforts I've seen.

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  • 5.0 stars

    "This program does everything, it has a ton of features"

    December 18, 2010  |   By guzaman1

    Version: Notation Composer 2.6.3

    Pros

    I can change key's for different instruments. I can change the music to a base clef for the cello. All of this with a few clicks of a mouse button. It's easy to write your own music, just click the mouse on the staff or hook up a midi keyboard.

    Cons

    It takes a bit to learn. I suppose because this program has so many features.

    Summary

    Great product for the money! Download a midi file and take it apart. I did Christmas music for our youth choir. I downloaded the midi files from the internet and changed the key to the range I wanted as well as key changes for each of the instruments. The program divides the midi file into many parts so it's easy to teach any of the lines- Soprano, Alto, Tenor, or Base. Or to assign different lines to a particular instrument. Flute on Alto line, Trumpet on Melody, as an example. Just let the creativity go with this program. You can even set each line to playback,on the computer, just about any instrument. I've only just begun to use this program, and I am impressed! Oh yeah, there is also a free "Notation Player" that your choir or students can download to open your music so they can see, hear, and practice at home.

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Notation Composer