Please forgive this rant. But frustration has got the better of me.
I have decided to revert to D3.5. Why?..
D4.1 is (often) ridiculously slow. Though the biggest problem is that its behaviour is unpredictable (and I have neither the time nor the patience to unpack what is going on systematically).
What I have learnt is that, if the start up is slow, then using the program will be slow. So it’s best to abort and try again.
Here are some symptoms (non exhaustive):
At start up: Loading D4.1 is definitely slower than D3.5. D3.5 would whizz though the start up steps, whereas on D4.1 (sometimes) I see each step, such as “Initializing UI”, for many seconds. The frustration is that it is sometimes, not always!
Sometimes I get the Steinberg Licence Activation window appearing for a while (which I have learnt to ignore). Other times it can hang at “waiting for Audio Engine” (I’ve learned to End Task Dorico and any instance of VstAudioEngine and try again… but honestly this should not be necessary).
New with D4.1 I get hang ups with the Hub. Try to create a new project from a template and the wheel of death (sometimes) appears. Not a crash, but a hang. Again, this is intermittent, but seems to be independent of a PC restart or what other programs are running.
Loading an existing project (qualitatively) takes longer in D4.1 (I don’t know what tools to use to benchmark this). Load a second project (don’t activate) and Windows often shows the Application Unresponsive window. Which will sort itself out in the end…
Once loaded (and on a bad day) , the simple note entry operations take way too long (in comparison to D3.5).
This is not a problem of project size. I’m dealing with small projects: Usually just strings, chamber groups or small orchestras. 3 or 4 flows, perhaps 500 bars in total. No heavy VST demands (Halion or NP, though I do have many other VSTs on my system, they are never used for Dorico projects).
And no condensing. Though if I do start playing with condensing, or using moderately esoteric options (like big time signatures) – things rapidly slow down…
I know that I have a relatively modest spec PC (Win10, 4-core Ryzen5, 30Gb), but it copes perfectly well with D3.5 and other resource intensive programs (such as Resolve, Blender, or even Cubase)
I recently had cause to use Sibelius again (for a collaborative project) and for the basic note entry I’m sorry to report it was a joyful experience, solely because the response was instant!
What really concerns me is that these observations are inconsistent. Sometimes, D4.1 behaves well. More often though, it does not. By comparison D3.5, on my PC, is reliable and relatively quick. Hence my reluctant decision to downgrade.