Free music fonts

Music notation symbols, fonts, font sources and font creation, SmuFL.
jrethorst
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Free music fonts

Post by jrethorst » 23 Oct 2016, 04:12

The Elbsound Music Font Package is a free package with 21 music fonts for Finale. The fonts are 100% compatible with Finale's Maestro font and are available for free under the SIL OFL or GNU GPL license.
To use the fonts simply select "Document->Set Default Music File" in Finale and ... done.

The original fonts used are:
Bravura, Beethoven, Cadence, Emmentaler, Euterpe, FreeSerif, Gootville, Gutenberg, LV-GoldenAge, Haydn, Improviso, JazzyBasic, LilyBoulez, Leipzig, LilyJazz, Profondo, Paganini, Ross, Scorlatti, Sebastiano, Unifont Upper.
It's also possible to use the fonts in Sibelius through the "Maestro" style.

The package is at https://elbsound.studio/elbsoundmusicfontpackage.php

Thank you, Jan!

(Jan's the same genius who did the 150-font comparison tool.)
John Rethorst

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OCTO
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Re: Free music fonts

Post by OCTO » 23 Oct 2016, 05:48

jan wrote:The Elbsound Music Font Package is a free package with 21 music fonts for Finale. The fonts are 100% compatible with Finale's Maestro font and are available for free under the SIL OFL or GNU GPL license.
To use the fonts simply select "Document->Set Default Music File" in Finale and ... done..
What version shall we use?
If I share my Finale documents on OS X with a user on Windows, shall we both use OTF?
Or what combination is better?

Also, why have you created OTF and TTF versions, what is the difference?

Also:
Jan, the FAN files included have the space symbol extremely high, that makes some trouble with dynamcis for instance "ppp dolce" if the space is used from the music font.
Also, some fonts have overlapping, which create white spots in the symbols.

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jan
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Re: Free music fonts

Post by jan » 23 Oct 2016, 18:02

Hi Octo,

thanks for your hints.
Here are my comments.

>If I share my Finale documents on OS X with a user on Windows, shall we both use OTF?
Good question! I should add it to the troubleshooting section.
If you want to go cross-platform with the fonts, you should follow section 5) of the FAQ,
i.e. "Installation on older Finale version on Windows".
That means you must install the Mac fonts on Windows and also add the font names to
the MacSymbolFonts.txt list on your PC. The Mac fonts are cross-platform compatible, while the Windows fonts are not.

The problem is Finale's confirmed 129-159 bug (that I described on the MakeMusic forum in the 21 new fonts thread) which makes it impossible to have compatible unicode fonts on Finale MacOS and Windows.
So if you want to have cross-platform compatibility with any font on Windows/Mac, they must be either unicode only or
standard 32-255 symbols only. By adding the name to MacSymbolFonts.txt you make it 32-255 only.
MakeMusic promised to fix the bug quickly. When the bug is fixed, only one version of fonts is needed for both MacOS and Windows (the current Windows fonts).

BUT:
if you use the Windows fonts on Windows and the MacOS fonts on MacOS, the Finale documents can still be exchanged between MacOS and Windows.
You should only make sure that on Windows only the symbol 32-255 were used, as only these symbols are available in the MacOS fonts / font annotation files..

>Also, why have you created OTF and TTF versions, what is the difference?
The fonts glyphs are identical - but one is OTF and one is TTF.
For differences between OTF/TTF see wikipedia or search google.
OTF looks better on Windows screens (but identical in print), on MacOS there is no difference on the screen (that's why I supplied TTF only for MacOS).
But TTF is usually much better supported by 3rd party software, sometimes even the PDF printer works better with TTF or even refuses OTF. I work with TTF in all my projects.

>the FAN files included have the space symbol extremely high
Which font do you mean ? And are you referring to usage in "text expressions" ?
I have justet tested 3 fonts on Windows with pppp dolce (and music font space, with GotvlFIN, HayFIN, ImprvFIN), but couldn't reproduce it.

>Some fonts have overlapping, which create white spots in the symbols.
That's indeed a known problem, but I spotted it only once (EuterpeFIN: 16th noteflag down).
Did you notice more symbols with white spots ?
This cannot be fixed automatically (remeber these fonts were created completely automatically).
FontForge script doesn't have an automatic correction function for overlapping symbols.
(BTW, JzBscFIN/JazzyBasic is designed by default with overlapping white spots)
The only fix that I could implement is to use the symbol from one of the fallback fonts (Bravura, Musica, Symbola).
But that makes the flag designs incompatible.

Would be great if you could send other reports directly to my email address or add it to a thread where I am participating.
It was just a coincidence that I found John Rethorst's thread.

Jan

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OCTO
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Re: Free music fonts

Post by OCTO » 24 Oct 2016, 03:10

jan wrote:Hi Octo,

thanks for your hints.
Here are my comments.
Thanks for that.
I have some knowledge about OTF and TTF difference, however how it impacts just Finale is primary to me to know.
Any further development in font compatibility for Finale across OSes would be good, since many work in team with different OSes. Keep us updated!

Regarding FAN for space symbol here is an example, as you can see, a huge box is created, if one use opaque background than it will be so large (existing scores with replaced fonts might have problems):
shot.png
shot.png (35.84 KiB) Viewed 4009 times
FAN for space should be approximately:
shot 2.png
shot 2.png (69.02 KiB) Viewed 4009 times
Which result in:
shot 3.png
shot 3.png (31.52 KiB) Viewed 4009 times

About overlapping:

I have found in many fonts, sometimes very small like connections pp, in jazz font f symbol. I think opening each FontForge file and applying "remove overlap" should fix it. Eventually check "correct directions".
Just so that you might upload a new version of fonts for the public.

Thanks for your wonderful work (and work of the font creators!).

jrethorst
Posts: 96
Joined: 09 Apr 2016, 18:48

Re: Free music fonts

Post by jrethorst » 24 Oct 2016, 03:45

jan wrote:It was just a coincidence that I found John Rethorst's thread.
Sorry Jan -- guess I should have cc'd you somehow, or emailed you I was posting here. IAC thanks for the great fonts.
John Rethorst

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jan
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Re: Free music fonts

Post by jan » 24 Oct 2016, 09:18

Thanks, Octo, for the clarifications.

>I have some knowledge about OTF and TTF difference, however how it impacts just Finale is primary to me to know.
The only impact I know is that my PDF printer (Foxit PDF) sometimes refuses to print document with OTF fonts in Finale.
And OTF looks much (!) smoother on a Windows screen in Finale, but not on MacOS, not in PDF and not in print (or at least not that I can tell).

For the space symbols I will do the following (and AFAIK it will only affect the special case of using an opaque background with expressions):
I will measure the relation between the dynamic "p" symbol of Maestro and "Space" from Maestro and will transform these metrics to the space of the new font. So if it's a condensed font (with a condensed p), it will also get a condensed space.
This should solve it in all fonts.

For the white spots I found one bug, but only for the 16th note stem down which I mentioned in EuterpeFIN. It was not the "RemoveOverlap()" which is indeed already included: a Paste() was used where a PasteInto() was needed making the RemoveOverlap() not work which I didn't know.

Could you please post a screenshot of an overlapping with white spots that you noticed that should not be in (other than the one in EuterpeFIN) ?
I have now looked at all the ppp/fff dynamics in the "All Symbols"-PDF on Windows and didn't notice any white spots caused from overlapping. Are you on MacOS or Windows ? And where do you see the white spots ? In Finale, on print or in a PDF ?

Some minor irregularities or inconsistencies in the distances/overlapping between the dynamics can't be fixed fully automatically.
Those have something to do with kerning issues which need a manual approach. For example "f" sometimes has a different kerning than it would be required to imitate the "ff", so the "ffff" which is usually created automatically from four "f"s sometimes doesn't match the "ff" look 100%.
A kerning approach is partially implemented, otherwise most of the dynamic symbols would look out of place, but not for every possible combination of dynamic symbols. For example "mp" and "mf" in Unifont UpperFIN overlap, or "pppp" in JzBscFin is slightly too condensed compared to "ppp": a composite symbol ("p"+"p"+"p"+"p") compared to a predefined symbol ("ppp").
There are for example fonts (e.g. Classica) which have a predefined "sf", an "fz" and an "f". But you need different (manual) kernings when you want to create a "sf"+"fz" or a "sf"+"f", because the symbols' metrics were not made consistent in the font.

Jan

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OCTO
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Re: Free music fonts

Post by OCTO » 24 Oct 2016, 09:42

Thanks.
jan wrote:Could you please post a screenshot of an overlapping with white spots
I noticed these overlapping spots on Windows, I think OTF version. Since I don't use regularly Win, I will report it once I find it.

We can open another thread for this: Jan, would you like to create a textual music font, eventually based on Free Serif?
The regular Times is to thin, and the bold is yet to bold. Some kind of emboldening of thin elements in Times would be great to have for the optical effect in music reading. Both the Roman (Regular) and Italic font is needed.

I have tried with Muzitex, but I failed since I cannot create it well for OSX and Win, I face always some problems.
Read more here:
https://notat.io/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=21
https://notat.io/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=82

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jan
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Re: Free music fonts

Post by jan » 24 Oct 2016, 11:23

Hi Octo,

I was just testing the "space height opacity problem" that you mention.
Could you tell me how you made it work with Maestro because I get the same opacity problem already in Maestro (which explains why it's partially the same in my fonts) ?

Maybe it's a difference between MacOS and Windows (I only tested on Windows) ?

This is what I get on Windows with Maestro and Times New Roman (i.e. the default fonts) when creating an opaque expression with "Enforce Minimum Width" set and height/width=0. "f" and two spaces are from "Maestro", "sub." is from "Times New Roman".
opaque.jpg
opaque.jpg (122.56 KiB) Viewed 3984 times
If I remove the "Space" from Maestro (between f and sub.), it's still the same:
opaque2.jpg
opaque2.jpg (40.21 KiB) Viewed 3984 times
It's the "f"-height in Maestro which already leads to the opacity problem:
opaque3.jpg
opaque3.jpg (106.24 KiB) Viewed 3984 times
It seems to me that this is a Finale bug/feature. The opacity area in text expressions doesn't use the reduced boundaries of the FAN, but the default height of the font. So it's not a height problem of the "Space" symbol, but a height problem of the font.
And the only option to solve this would be to reduce the default height of the font to the same distance that Maestro has from its ymax/ymin to the maximum boundaries of the dynamics (i.e. the "f" for ymax, and the "p" for ymin). But if I do so, some symbols might be cut off in Finale, because their ymax is above the font's ymax, so this is no solution.
Example of symbol cropping because wrong font height:
opaque4.jpg
opaque4.jpg (112.57 KiB) Viewed 3979 times
Or am I missing something ?

Jan

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Re: Free music fonts

Post by OCTO » 24 Oct 2016, 11:56

The problem is in the space, as far as I could fix it.
PERHAPS Finale remembers the old "Enforce Minimum Width". When I fixed the space red box in FAN, it resulted OK.

I use OS X, Yosemite, Finale 2014.5.

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Re: Free music fonts

Post by OCTO » 24 Oct 2016, 12:03

Interesting, that happens really with Maestro too.
But here are the frames of non-fixed Maestro space, and fixed maestro space.
shot 13.jpg
shot 13.jpg (24.34 KiB) Viewed 3974 times
shot 14.jpg
shot 14.jpg (17.23 KiB) Viewed 3974 times
The problem appears when already attached blank background is changed with a new font that has a very high space FAN.

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