What were you thinking?

In your first paragraph you echo my point… […] But then you tell me that my experience does not necessarily mean anything in the next paragraph.

You got me wrong (read: I expressed myself not good enough): My second paragraph was not meant as a counterargument. It’s more of a summary. We are on the same page here.

I have to admit that from the very beginning I was thinking that (for example) repeat endings were a must-have for pretty everyone writing music. Learning that there are a bunch of people out there that do not conside this a core feature was quite a surprise for me.
But I keep learning :slight_smile:

I know exactly what you mean. For me, as odd it might sound, was percussion stickings. I work in circles where everyone does something with percussionists, and a lot of that requires percussion stickings. I have been blown away by the number of people who would have never even thought of such of thing.


A quick chime-in here.
My story of buying into Dorico is this: I was working on a project (as usual: deadlines, deadlines, deadlines). I was working with my go-to software for 15 years, Sibelius (in this case Version 8). This version of Sibelius has made this project I was working on a huge challenge with random “Sibelius terminates here.” stops, failure to autosave unless you had already given the score a name (!), autosaving with too big time-intervals… yada yada (this is not the Avid bug report line, so I’ll stop here). At a certain point after the third fatal-to-what-I-had-been-writing-all-day crash, I was so unnerved that I called my boss to get a permission to buy Dorico to see if this could in the future do the job better. I was under no illusion that this would happen now, as Daniel and the team had made it totally honest-obvious that some things were missing.

But what I developed was such an enormous distaste with Sibelius and I’m waiting happily, patiently and eagerly for Dorico to be on my needed feature level, especially since most of the missing features are something I have found to be a constant headache on Sib. Example: Ever extracted a part out of a score with maybe chord symbols, boxed description texts, tempo texts, cues, the like, in it, and the occasional volta/1st. 2nd. ending line, and have you actually seen how HIDEOUS the part looks by default, bordering on the ridiculous and unreadable, with said lines and symbols ALL OVER THE PLACE (even IN the staff!)? Has anyone ever had the audacity to write a score, give it a title, and afterwards fill, say, an intro of 8 bars into the beginning of the score? Extract a part, and chances are really high that the title and subtitle appear amidst the music (since they are attached to the original first bar, that’s where they’ll be, regardless of the 8 bars intro…)

Excuse me for my lengthy post, but if a version 8 software cannot get these basics right (I won’t even go into the usual spacing nightmares like accidentals crashing into repeat lines, etc), I’ll happily throw whatever money is asked at those who seem more than trustworthy to deliver the mentioned features flawlessly once they’re implemented. I’ll much rather wait for these features to come out good, than wrestle with appallingly poor implementations. Heck, the lines-as-graphics endings workaround (!) presented somewhere on these forum pages arguably works BETTER than Sibelius’s implementation, since it doesn’t screw up your parts.


As both Finale and Sibelius user that’s the main reason I invested in Dorico, because I’m tired of having to spend so much time fixing things that the software doesn’t do properly by default. While the existing programs have gotten a lot better at this, there are still too many things which need adjustment and tweaking. Even in version 1.0, Dorico already does most things very well and the imminent update will hopefully take care of a number of problems. I have a lot of respect for what the Dorico team has accomplished and it doesn’t bother me at all that some functions haven’t yet been implemented. Better this than half-baked features. In the long run, I’m hoping that Dorico will combine the automation of Sibelius (but better!) with the freedom of Finale.

That will be quite a trick to pull off, but I hope so too.

It’s also important to remember, that Dorico is likely influenced heavily by the not-yet-determined standards of the Music Notation Community Subgroup. Finale and Sibelius both predate the W3C Community group, and did not have interoperability as a primary concern when it came to dealing with data.

When looking at some of the notational and software aspects, it might be easy to implement more features without a concern for how those features are going to interact with an updated SMuFL standard, or with the disparate natures of playback and display (which I would argue need to be inherently separate events, akin to Flash and ActionScript - not the greatest example to draw from, admittedly). However, implementing that work, and then having interoperability go in a different direction would create a lot of rewriting to the code that might otherwise not have to be done in terms of development.

A specific area that comes to mind is that the topic of non-Western notational symbols arose. It would be easy to map those to just some currently unused space and have them implement as a graphics image tied to an audio cue, but that might then have to be done all over again as an implementation is settled upon.

I have not yet purchased Dorico for myself. It doesn’t meet my use cases (at current cost) as a contemporary composer and arranger, but I do keep a close eye on it because I believe it has the potential to improve my workflow provided it does not give Finale or Sibelius time to catch up. If it had undercut the price more in the early stages, even more than the crossgrade, I would jump in, and I inevitably will - eventually. It’s professionally important for me to be familiar with the software I might encounter from a student or in a school.

I would like to say thank you to Daniel Spreadbury and the Dorico team for being so careful with each implementation of a new section. I hope that Clean Code continues to permeate throughout the program so we wind up with a piece of engraving/scoring software that is truly special.

If it had undercut the price more in the early stages, even more than the crossgrade, I would jump in, and I inevitably will - eventually.

Please note that the current crossgrade offer will expire at the end of March 2017.

Thanks Bob

Yes, but a 30-day demo version is expected around the time the first upgrade is released.

I think really that Dorico can become the best score software on the market,and get the best sides of Sibelius,Finale and Notion in one software.But when i start trying to work i stayed very despointed.then after the bad news that i will not get to work with Dorico now,i decided to spend some time to learn the basics and wait to new updates to get start to work.The support its incredible,and everithing that i requested i had recived answere very fast.

I think that if people expect Dorico simply to be a collection of Finale’s, Sibelius’s, and Notion’s best features, they will be disappointed (not to mention, frustrated). Dorico is based on different principles and uses a different approach. The primary similarities Dorico has with the other notation programs is that all attempt to notate music in more convenient ways than by earlier means. Dorico intentionally promotes a different approach to entering and producing a score.

When I say the best of Sibelius,Finale and Notion software is a way of expression that I’m positive about the futures of the software for the future.
At the moment the way it Dorico work “today” a lack of basic things, for me of course, I may not even start the work that I was called to do.
I think so who’s in a forum of those spending your time are people who wants to help the software becomes amazing. Also when people says: still in the 1.0 version so don’t we should wait so many features, this wrong. As user I hope the 1.0 version of a software in 2016 is at least closer in features to a software that are already on version 7, or 8.

There are a lot of features I could use which are not yet present in Dorico 1.0 but have you noticed how many functions this software already has which leave the competition behind? It can only get better…

Thanks Vaughan!
Yes of course!
That’s why I bought it.
Just waiting for update some basic features that I use in my day to day to be able to work with it and stop using my other softwares.
Really anxious for starting to work with it.

Since I made the mistake to write about this topic in another one, I beg your pardon for some more thoughts, even if I have the impression all is said about this already. Again: Thank you, Steinberg, Daniel and the whole team for this wonderful new approach to computer based music engraving!

IMO, how so often both sides are right in their statements. I mostly feel sympathetic with Daniel and the team who have to be the punching ball for those customers who do not understand the really sound different concept and capabilities of Dorico concerning the art of engraving, yet I also really understand the degree of frustration some early, probably inexperienced users have. It certainly comes down to managing the release of Dorico by some company guys…

(My background: I began studying orchestral scores 40 years ago and read my first book about music engraving 25 years ago. Of course I learned ever since and work with “Behind Bars”, yet I do only hands-on jobs with notation and no professional music engraving. My brother is chief editor with Breitkopf&Härtel and we really have a good relationship - (we do have different family names though…) As a professional conductor for 5 years of my life in german opera houses after “winning” the related master equivalent and three different grants I know something about music engraving).

I appreciate the possibility to have a part in the development somehow, and of course the scores are more perfect than anything else in regard to the vast majority of engraving rules. Knowing what to expect after reading Daniels informations, I certainly can live with the lacking features for a limited time. This especially regarding the fact you have to learn a new software first and so long use your accustomed tool for deadlines and productivity.

What bothers me is 1) standard pricing and 2) the akwkard ease of operation and inconsistencies under windows.

  1. first: Many very basic actions are kind of faulty (I use Windows 7 and hate to work with the mouse, since it is not fast and efficient enough). Just one small example (there are others): Hit Alt+r to enter the menu of “Write”. It should be possible when you hold Alt and hit r and when you hit Alt first and r afterwards. It only works when you hold Alt. With the file menu, both options are available. Yes, this is nitpicking, but these things are so basic you do not have to think about them twice. IMO, that’s totally different to the point concerning another approach getting things done with a new software.

  2. second: We speak (write) about 550,- EUR (!) for someone who buys a brand new software and has never used a professional notation software before (otherwise he would crossgrade and better know what to expect, right?). He compares perhaps with MuseScore and will be young and inexperienced with other notation software. Of course he expects a lot because of advertising by Steinberg. He is not so keen to read all lengthy blog entries of Daniel (me personally, I loved them, yet I understand people who would have given up after the first third of some blogs). He buys and does not try first (yes, a fault, but mistakes happen) since he is sure to buy the right product and really wants to get hands on this new product, don’t care for the demo, man :wink:
    E.g. imagine a music student who graduated two years ago, gets no job and wants to try music engraving as a second (first?) source of income and buys Dorico which seems to be better than anything else. As I already said, he worked a lot with MuseScore or so and loves Notation. General income is quite low and 550,- are a lot.
    In this situation, I would be upset, and I would be right in being so - and of course upset people use all the wrong comparisons and words in our political correct world…
    I did not know the concept of “paid early access” before I read this topic, yet this would have been exactly the right approach by Steinberg. (I thought about a kind of crowd funding and cheaper first editions for interested people and more beta testers first, but paid early access is a wonderful concept).
    And here I come back: Just think about lost and angry customers, ranting about Steinberg (and future top engravers perhaps, who knows?) and the Dorico team. Both do not deserve what they probably have to deal with right now, and possibly “only” because a manager with not enough bright ideas saw the accumulating numbers.

So, after this lengthy entry - sorry for this - I go back to some experimenting with Dorico and really look forward to the next updates!!!

I think it’s sad to have to read something like this. First of all why are we talking about a product, and I believe that people who are in these forums are people who have spent their money, and if you were willing to spend their money is why believe in the work of Daniel and the forum does not have how to evaluate the experience and or musicality of each people that write in that. The things that everyone has posted on this forum, in my vision are all very positive, and with the intent to help. Are several types of users from different areas trying to express what each miss in order to reach the expectations of each professional people need. I believe Daniel and Steinberg are not looking for this downside, since they know that the user is the end, and it is not just intended for a type of user only.
Thanks Daniel!

People who shelled out 550 dollars/euros not knowing what they were buying got in on the ground floor of a program with a lot of potential and received a memorable lesson in researching a major purchase before buying. Perhaps they also learned patience as well, since waiting a month would allow them to try out a free demo.

I get a little tired of people painting a picture of an apocryphal poor starving student having to suffer financial and emotional trauma with Dorico. This seems more a case of others using the image to justify their much less serious position than an actual case–although I allow a few might exist. The Dorico Team and Steinberg can only do so much, and they have been more than fair and transparent.

Couldn’t agree more.

comment ridiculous, poor and out of context, and also does not help in absolutely nothing. Looks like a school gang trying to justify the failure of the product made by your friends. Faults that are in many posts, if it were only one person speaking would be arguably.

Ohhh my friend.
I get it, you’re tired!
Take a good vacation.
Its can be good for you!

OK, let’s keep this discussion civil, please. Everybody is entitled to express their opinion, but please don’t stray into making personal insults. I will lock this thread if need be, but I would prefer not to.