EOL 7: software review (Signell)

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Finale 2001
music notation software

Finale 2001
for Macintosh, Windows 95/98/NT.
Coda Music Technology (2000)


I drove a 2001 model auto rental a few weeks ago. Couldn't find any difference between it and my 1999 model of the same line at home. Aside from redesigned rear lights and probably some bells and whistles I didn't use, I didn't see any reason to upgrade.

You might want to upgrade Finale every year if you need certain new features. The Coda website lays out all the new features. But otherwise, I don't see any danger in slipping into  dreaded “legacy” status, stuck with an orphan program that won't work any more, with no support from the vendor if you don't upgrade.

Some new features:

  • transcribing music via microphone from an acoustical instrument

  • publishing music directly to Internet

Some good old standby features:

  • Automatic, elegant slurs

  • Free, unlimited tech support

Less expensive software

Coda also sells progressively stripped-down music notation programs (Allegro, PrintMusic, Notepad), ranging in price from US$199.95 to US$19.95. Depending on your needs, a more economical model may do just fine.

Previous reviews

Signell 2000 reviewed Finale 98, comparing positive and negative considerations.

Signell 1991 reviewed eleven music notation programs, among them Finale. Discussion there of criteria for selecting music notation software still holds mostly true .

Finale 2002 has been released but not yet received for review in EOL.

Karl Signell

3 September, 2001

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