Best tool for printing a score to PDF?

I’ve been using PDFLite to “print” scores to a PDF file. However, as you can see in the attached, the results are a bit funky - especially the variation in the thickness of the staff lines. Does anyone use something else that produces better results?

CutePDF CutePDF :: Product :: CutePDF Writer

Thanks. When I used this I got exactly the same funky staff lines as PDFLite. So I tried printing a page from the PDF score which I’d never done before (when I wanted a hard-copy I just printed from Cubase). It printed fine (as did PDFLite). So I guess the ugliness is coming from Adobe Reader and not either PDF print programs.

OSX lets you save pretty much anything to .pdf from the print menu (“print to pdf”). Doesn’t Windows do something like that?

I guess it must be some sort of page layout issue then.

Hi Raino, all,

after having tried all the pdf creators listed (PDF-Lite, Cute PDF, Tiny PDF etc) I found that PDF-Creator works best.
You can also install the bigger package PDF Architect. This allows you to merge multiple PDF files but:
MAKE SURE YOU DOWNLOAD THE 0.5.xxxx VERSION. If you install the 2.xx version, it will only work for a trial period and then will ask you to buy the software - whereas version 0.5.xxxx is still legal freeware.
I’m using PDFArchitect Version

As PDF Creator I’m using version 1.7.3. Version 2.x will come with advertisments.

1.7.3 is available here:

PDFCreator installs as a printer.
PDF Architect is an extra program for manipulating pdf files. For me it is very helpful since I’m creating song-medleys in Cubase and I can work them through one by one and at the end I can merge the pdf prints of the scores in the right order.
I have not had any clues with printing any sort of pdf. I’m printing a lot of scores out of Cubase and it works without the effects you show in your message.



it must be a display issue only in Acrobat. That doesn’t affect printing.
Try this in Acrobat Reader :
Edit>Preferences>Page Display and in Rendering section, uncheck “Enhance thin lines”.

Yeah, that did the trick. The lines look a little grayed-out, but at least they are consistent. Now that I know it is only a display issue and not a problem with the actual file, it’s less of a concern.

Nope. I suspect it is because MS has a file format XPS that is their failed attempt at an alternative to PDF. Printing to XPS is in the print menu, but who’d ever need/want to? And yet they will let you save Word docs as PDF - so they aren’t even consistant.

I have been using Bullzip PDF Printer for around 10 years. It was the only print-to-PDF utility I
found which didn’t produce an unreadable mess with scores. Once installed, you bring up your Cubase score in Page Mode, select Print then choose Bullzip PDF Printer from your list of printers.
The graphics are subtly different from the Cubase version, but Titles, clefs, keys, notes, dynamics, lyrics, text and all the rest appear in the right places and are close enough to the originals to cause no problems. The installer is digitally signed. A licence for a home user is free. I just tried it with Cubase 11 and it still works fine. You get a PDF of the complete score with the correct number of pages, ready to go. Saves faffing about with multiple image files. I have lost count of the number of times I’ve used it. I don’t know whether it would work with Dorico fonts, though.