Staff Pad Interface

Forget Score. Forget the new ‘London Centre’ thing. In fact, screw every other suggestion re. notation and call this guy.

It’s rough around the edges, but it’s basically what I’ve been waiting for my entire life trying to compose with computers. It actually -works-. I can write music as fast as with pen/paper. It’s no toy.

The only thing it’s lacking (and this is where Cubase comes in) it has the same crappy sound library deal as every other notation app.

You make an interface that pipes its output into a Cubase format that understands NOTE EXPRESSION and bypasses the limitations of midi entirely? You’ve got the best mousetrap in the world. Hands down.

I’d pay a $1,000 just for that add-on. Anybody who writes music would.

Ahhhh suntower you beat me on it !!!

I was about to post the same request, something like this “Can we dream of this in Cubase Score” … !

This is a DREAM for every musician (who writes).

Don’t believe me just watch :

I hope they’ll think about implementing this interface into Cubase. Imagine writing your music on a 24" touch screen monitor by hand.

Wow! (in fact, the word that sprang to mind begins with a “F” :stuck_out_tongue: )

I’m happy enough with the 13" Surface. Just sitting in a chair and WRITING music is the most amazing thing.

The key thing to a Cubase Interface… NOTE EXPRESSION. That’s the one thing Cubase has that no one else does. And it lays there unused.

Imagine writing REAL, PLAYABLE string/horn/wind parts: divisis, articulations, turns, mordents IN STANDARD NOTATION and having it properly rendered?

The entire focus of ‘MIDI Mockups’ for the past 20 years has been: do whatever it takes to get it to -sound- lifelike… regardless of how the notation looks. In fact, one has to write the same piece AT LEAST twice… First for the mock=up, then basically redo for notation. I work MUCH harder now than BEFORE DAWs just to give people a mockup.

This turns it 180.

Anyone who supports this gets my business instantly… no matter how wedded I’ve been to Cubase for 15 years. I’m just SICK of writing music 2 times.

So the only thing you would like is Note Expression in Score Editor ?!
It would be a good idea of course.
I’m personally more focused on touch interface only and writing notes with a pen directly on the computer display the way StaffPad does.

What are you asking for exactly ?
An additional Cubase application add-on for Surface ? That would be great too, especially when you’re away from your computer, in a chair like you, outside in a park, on the beach …

But first I would like to have this same interface on my computer inside Cubase. Having the entire orchestra score displayed on the monitor while writing the notes this way is much more serious.


This is so obvious, I get upset even having to explain.

  1. I do NOT want a ‘touch’ UI. That implies -finger- gestures a la iPad. The very reason the guy created Staff Pad for WINDOWS SURFACE PRO is because it is the only tablet (so far) that has resolution like a true PEN… ie. that graphic designers use. That’s the big deal. Without that level of resolution, any notation app is just a toy.

  2. The only reason for a Cubase interface is because Cubase supports EXPRESSION, specifically NOTE expression. Without Note Expression, I frankly wouldn’t need Cubase… I could use -any- DAW with MusicXML/MIDI input and suffer equally. What makes Cubase the best candidate is NOTE EXPRESSION… it is the only API (so far) that allows for rendering sound from real-world notation.

  3. Of course, this also means that SAMPLE LIB DEVS need to get on board with Note Expression. Good luck with that.

But a turnkey solution: Staff Pad -> Cubase -> Note Expression-aware Orchestral Lib.

That would change -everything-.

I’m done. It’ll never happen, of course. But I got excited for a minute there over what is possible.


I never talked about fingers but PEN.
And I know these guys made StaffPad for Surface because it’s a professional tool and not a tablet for kids like the other one :wink:

Note Expression is a Key Editor feature only at this time. I don’t work in Key Editor when I “write” my music, so as long as Note Expression is not available in the Score Editor I’m not interested in. I don’t write twice as you said. I’ve programmed my own sample library to work with Expressions and work directly in Score Editor, in a way that I rarely have to get out of there to tweak the notes in the Key Editor to get the right sound ! But this is another story :wink:

What I’d need right now is StaffPad in Cubase ! :smiley: at least for its use of pen and its amazing writing technique !
or as you said, a way for StaffPad on Surface to communicate with Cubase Score Editor.
Let’s dream…

No… what is needed is to be able to write -any- idiomatic notation in the score (divisi, chords, etc.) and have this magical interface translate it into the proper NoteExpression data.

The whole idea is to write notation as it is played by humans and have it piped into a Cubase track and interpret it -exactly- the same way. ie. a track that can play polyphonically independent musical gestures. And that’s Note Expression. It’s NOT MIDI. This is the one competitive advantage Cubase has.

+1. Looks excellent. And Cubase coupled with this and note-expression-capable libraries would be fantastic. Even for a backward notation-phobe like me.

Not really useful for a regular orchestra. Not very common to see 2 clarinets on the same staff playing different articulations. But why not ?

it’s MIDI anyway. But you know it.
I think Expression (maps) in score is simply brilliant, but it needs serious improvements, as a I mentioned on my other thread in this forum section.

What I mean is : what is important is to be able to execute every possible expression in the staff only but WRITING the expressions with WORDS visible in the final score, not by drawing additional curves as for Note Expression.
That’s what I’m trying to achieve with Score Editor and Expression Maps. This way, even in Edit Mode, my score looks like final, not draft.

That’s why I think Expression Maps need improvements with “live editable values”, progressive values etc … think of : “con vib.”, “accent”, “cresc.” etc … first you put the expression with its initial preset and then you can modify some parameters if needed by double clicking or right clicking on it. Maybe Steinberg can add these to Score with Note Expression, but it doesn’t necessarily need to be applied to a single note but to the whole staff.

Hoping developers at Steinberg are still working on improving the current Score Editor. Or do they focus on the upcoming new scoring program ? But I really hope the new program will be integrated into Cubase, and even better, that it will have the StaffPad interface !!! :wink: even if there are not any pen touch screen monitors in the market excepted Wacom Cintiq 24HD. A Surface app would be great too.

Had a chance to use it. It really works.

I started reading this thread (this product is brilliant, BTW) in the Feature Request forum…which I thought, as Suntower framed it:

You make an interface that pipes its output into a Cubase format that understands NOTE EXPRESSION and bypasses the limitations of midi entirely? You’ve got the best mousetrap in the world. Hands down.

I’d pay a $1,000 just for that add-on. Anybody who writes music would.

…was the correct venue for the thread. Why someone at Steinberg decided this subject was Lounge Fodder™ is beyond me.

Thanks for bring this product to my attention, Suntower. It is a groundbreaking technology for composers.

Feature Request -is- the proper place for my post.

StaffPad on its own is not all that useful to me. What I have needed since I started with DAWs is a -seamless- connection between notation and the rendered product. I’ve been stuck in a feedback loop for 15 years thinking that someone would develop a better way to output Cubase data to a notation program. But I had it backwards…

StaffPad is how I -think- about music. I write the music and then use a program like Cubase to render it.

The thing I need is for the DAW to ‘understand’ idiomatic stuff like marcato, chords, divisis, doits, etc. And that’s where NoteExpression comes in. Cubase is the only DAW that has what it takes to properly interpret notation.

But rather than seeing my request as a sincere compliment (as well as a real need) they decided to get it out of the way. It’s another patronising indicator of what SB thinks of their customers (or at least -this- customer’s) requests.

It does look like an amazing app, I wouldn’t have seen it if it wasn’t moved to the lounge :wink:.
I see your point though.