DORICO still does not incorporate real time input! I can not believe it!!

My name is Paco Viciana, I am a Catalan composer and pianist (

I started to introduce my musical ideas inside the computer with FINALE 3.0, in the distant 1993 and later, in 2004 I was delighted to SIBELIUS 3 and I converted all my works quickly to this promising music editing software.

Since then I have used SIBELIUS to introduce music to the computer.

I saw with sadness the maneuver of AVID of 2012, the American company that bought SIBELIUS in 2006, of deciding to dismiss the creator team to date, located in London, and moving its offices to the USA.

Then I used the SIBELIUS version 6, and in this version I have stayed until today, since versions 7 and 8 have not convinced me. AVID does not cover the expectations generated by SIBELIUS until 2011.

But the digital industry forces us to change our hardware at the end, and this past December I have incorporated a new iMac in my studio of musical creation. So far I have used without problems a MacPro of 2007!

I have followed very closely the evolution of the team that emerged from London in 2012, led by Daniel Spreadbury, and hired by the company STEINBERG of Germany, of which I am a user with CUBASE. I have been subscriber to their newsletters called “Making Notes” while creating this promising new software that should be made its place among the creators and producers of the musical world. I’m talking about DORICO.

That is why the first thing I have done, once I have renewed the computer, has been to crossfade from SIBELIUS to DORICO at the end of this past February 2018. Trusting blindly in his team, I have not tested the program with the demo they offer, and this has been my mistake.

Let me explain: from the beginning I use to introduce music on the computer in 95% of the input format in real time with metronome, the FINALE 3.0 of 1993 and SIBELIUS 3 of 2004 already incorporated it. And I think that this system is what most of my professional colleagues use.

But to my perplexity, DORICO does not incorporate it yet!! And I find it incomprehensible that at this point, software that tries to make a place in the digital music publishing industry, does not incorporate this basic functionality from zero. I have sinned naïve. I recognize my mistake when buying the software without testing it before, and the truth, the rest of the features I see in DORICO are very positive, such as the structure approach in modules, or the freedom to create music without compass, among others. But for me it is absolutely essential to input notes in real time, it is much more practical, faster and adds features now impossible to renounce, as I feel as the new music enters the harmony and counterpoint of the other staves of the work I am creating .

Now I’m a DORICO user, and that’s why I have no choice but to ask the creator team to incorporate the entry in real time as soon as possible, since unfortunately I will have to go back and continue using SIBELIUS until they incorporate this functionality. For many virtues that DORICO offers me at this point.

I would be grateful if you could inform me of the plan you have to incorporate this functionality, and thus start using it. Meanwhile, DORICO will have to collect dust on my shelf.

With all my respect and congratulations for the immense work done in DORICO to date.


Dear Paco,

I can understand your deception, but as you point it out yourself, you should have tested the software before. This subject has already been treated on the forum and, even if you’re not the only one begging for that kind of note entry, it is not the fastest nor the most used method. Just one method among others.
What you can easily do is go on using Sibelius 6 for note entry (or any other software that allows you to enter the notes the way you wish), then export that file in XML and take benefit of Dorico for EVERYTHING ELSE : entering dynamics, slurs, using its very advanced AI for almost everything, musical and text layout… Use your tools where they perform at best, instead of trying to make them work the way they’re not designed to !
I recall the team is not reluctant at adding other methods for note input, so I’d be quite confident that, when the time comes (when more urgent stuff is done), your expectations will be fulfilled.

“Let me explain: from the beginning I use to introduce music on the computer in 95% of the input format in real time with metronome, the FINALE 3.0 of 1993 and SIBELIUS 3 of 2004 already incorporated it. And I think that this system is what most of my professional colleagues use.”

The lack of posts regarding this subject on this forum would indicate that you’re incorrect in assuming that most of your professional colleagues use this system.

If it was a dealbreaker for “most”, then Dorico would not have an active user-base. It does.

In years of scoring piano music, I’ve never found Sibelius’s flexitime input to be up to scratch, even with tweaked “renotate” settings, and by the time I’ve fixed things the way I want them I might as well have just input everything the traditional way (with one hand on a MIDI keyboard and the other on the number keypad).

If you actually spend some time getting to grips with note input in Dorico (and by all means use the number keypad rather than the top row of numbers) you might be pleasantly surprised by the speed you can work at.

For single lines, I’ve been inputing against a metronome (on my phone…). It’s great for speeding me up…!

Hi Paco,

I can understand your concern regarding the lack of this feature at the moment, but it will almost certainly be added in the future. The Dorico team have been releasing updates regularly, and each time they add new features, they are far superior to anything that anyone else is doing. We can assume that when this feature is added, it will work beautifully. Dorico can save you time in so many other areas, and really make your life as a composer so much easier, so I encourage you to embrace it. Recording into a sequencer and transferring the file into Dorico via a MIDI file or XML could potentially work better than direct input into other notation programs anyway, so maybe give that a try.

As suggested, for realtime input I would use a real sequencer first, such as Cubase. Not even sibelius since quantize and precise note edition is way faster in cubase.
There are so many things on the engraving side that must be done, I can’t imagine it will be implemented in Dorico shortly.
Meanwhile, I’m surprised that flexitime was used by someone! I used Sibelius since v3 and I was always deceived by this fuctionality.

I would suggest that you give a try at the engraving soft that Dorico is. When the features you want will be implemented, you will be ready to use a unique and very powerful engraving software!

Both Notation Composer and Overture 5 currently feature real time transcription light years ahead of Sibelius and Finale. NC even features floating/logical splitpoint. Both programs offer comprehensive MusicXML export which makes them good «preprocessors» for Dorico, which of course is superior notationwise. It’s a good solution while we wait for Dorico to implement this natively.

Thanks all for your suggestions, we hope that soon DORICO will implement this important functionality for me, and I am sure that when they do it, they will overcome its predecessors, meanwhile, I will continue to familiarize myself with it. Thank you again.

But it is not an indication that such concerns are not important to a large number of users or prospective buyers.

When it became crystal clear that some important playback and composition features were not likely to be implemented any time soon, comments on that subject, which used to be common, dried up. I suspect this is because some like me have simply ceased regular activity on this forum and ceased using Dorico until it incorporates enough of these features.

The responses to composers and non-engravers became so disheartening that it squelched my willingness to endure them. You can only beat your head against a stone wall so long. Many engravers took the attitude that their concerns ought to not only take first priority but also were pretty much the only legitimate concerns for what was to them simply a “notation” program. Non-engraving features, to them, should be the province of DAW programs. And events seem to have indicated that, while this attitude is not necessarily shared by the developers, it has, along with development challenges, shaped the course of things so far.

I only add this so that others realize that a lack of activity on some subject does not indicate a lack of concern or interest. It might only indicate an abeyance of interest, or even a giving-up for now attitude.


I wholeheartedly agree that the lack of activity on some subjects doesn’t mean that that’s not important for a lot of musicians.
It’s simple that we don’t want to repeat us again and again. If it would help to bring up certain concerns all the time I had done it. But would this be a good manner? I don’t think so.

Dear ReRei and DaddyO,

I understand that it is not especially useful to repeat the same requests all the time, and it makes this forum way more readable. After all, the only rule here is to search before posting, in order to avoid these repeated subjects…
But DaddyO, I am quite surprised that you feel like banging your head against a wall or disheartened — I think there is a real interest here in every point of view — as long as it is explained in good manners and respectfully. That is why I think it is pleasant to read it regularly.

I fear I agree with DaddyO. There really isn’t much point to posting in order to be told either 1) the feature is not needed because real composers don’t use it [implying you’re not a real composer if you ask] or 2) Look at where Finale or Sibelius was 20 years ago [which is a rationalization, not a solution.] I seldom post here because I need to use Sibelius for most of my projects today. I tried to move to Dorico, knowing its limitations; I even have two licenses (due to Steinberg’s dated licensing policy.) That sad fact is, for what I want out of my notation program, Dorico is too incomplete, and seems likely to be incomplete for at least another 1-2 years in terms of my feature needs (features which are readily available in the two other major packages.) Beautiful engraving is not enough for my needs as a composer. There is little point to posting my concerns here about it.

Any such post is met with a desired need to protect Dorico as some savior product, not with serious concern for the need expressed.

I wish it were so, Marc. No one has been more respectful and mannerly than me, and I am a reasonable guy.

Well, I did not imply you were not… and I feel sorry that you felt this way. I think the real richness of the forum comes from the very different points of view that we meet here, that make us grow up, some as developers, and some (like me) as musicians…

Wait for Dorico 2.

Re-reading my early post I see how it could’ve been interpreted as unsympathetic.

Frequent users of this board will have noticed that the one and only thing that really winds me up is posters that don’t search. The OP duplicates various other threads on this topic - there aren’t many, but there are some - and he/she/they could have saved a lot of words by adding something to the bottom of an existing thread along the lines of “any news on this feature?”.

As to the whole DAW/notation/composition question, we can’t predict exactly what Steinberg’s priorities are for Dorico’s future development, but (regardless of Dorico’s marketing spiel) the crossgrade deals for Dorico are with Finale/Sibelius/Notion, exclusively. Take from that what you will.

The search functionality on this forum isn’t exactly state of the art, so I feel a lot of novice users must be excused for starting new threads…

Two questions:

1/ I am grateful to the moderators of this Steinberg’s forum who have not censored my original post, despite being a complaint, and although the topic has already been proposed. This demonstrates his credibility and his willingness to improve his musical software programs. Chapeau!

I’m very happy to talk about the real-time input in DORICO’s forum, as many times as necessary, until programmers add it to the program.

If the music creators or the users of DORICO again question the issue must be because the program still does not incorporate it, and because it must be important for some of us.

They will not be the users of the forum that will censure my opinions and worries about what to speak or not in the forum about DORICO when they have not done Steinberg’s own moderators.

2/ An opinion: questioning the qualities of a music creator for the tools used to create music makes me laugh, I say it to those who believe that the way to achieve good music is what matters, and if so, use pencil and gum again as I did for many years before I start to use my first music software. I am already 53 years old with more than 30 years of profession as a musical creator and with more than 280 works of very different styles on my back to worry about having to show something. What matters most to me is to make the most wonderful music that the world has ever seen, with all possible humility.

I greatly appreciate the friendly and polite tone of the posts of this thread in the forum, everyone thinks, this is good, as long as we do not lack respect for anyone.

Forgive me for my poor english.

Greetings and long live good music and DORICO.

Just so you’re aware, this really has been discussed before:
and if you read that thread you’ll see that it IS on the developers’ list of things to implement in future.

Thanks pianoleo, I have seen this thread before, great and waiting.