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Finale Notepad 2006 Review and Tutorial Page 5

This is page 5 of my Finale Notepad 2006 Review and Tutorial. I'm focusing on my review of the application here.

  1. Here are GIF images of the Finale Notepad 2006 score again; here's the PDF file; and here's the MP3 file.



  2. Here's are GIF files of the same piece created in Finale's production version. I've also made the PDF file and the MP3 file available of Finale 2004 playing the piece. Here I am playing it live.


  3. You can see that the lack of grace notes in Notepad 2006 is a problem. Also, the picked a rather clunky sounding piano for Notepad. One can't create repeats or double lines in Notepad, so you'd have to draw those in by hand, if you needed them. One can't input notes into Notepad using a MIDI keyboard, and one can't adjust measure width manually.

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    In general, with Finale's Notepad, you get what you get. It's free and it's a bit clunky. Personally, I feel that a new user's time might be better served learning to score by hand...however, if the user already knows how to score by hand, then Notepad will be too limiting.

    There are a few situations where the free Finale Notepad might come in handy, and these are the ones I can come up with:

    1. Scoring very simple arrangements for children...children's songs that need to be printed very clearly.
    2. Creating a simple lead sheet
    3. Creating a 4-part score for a church choir, yet that might really lead to general, my guess is that you'd have to add a lot by hand

  4. Time for my "score." As a full-blown notation tool, Finale's notepad gets a 23% from me: that's a flat out F. However, as tool that can actually create a decent lead sheet for free, Notepad gets an 89%, a well-earned B+. Trying to see things from FinaleMusic's perspective, I feel like they've done a good job of giving some functionality, but not giving too much. Otherwise, they'd just be giving their application away. And what they are giving away, does work pretty well, so kudos!

If you've clicked all the way through and read all the way to this point, then I am honored to offer you my eBook called How to Write Your Songs Down. It contains what I wish I'd learned earlier in my career!