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Posted: 19 Oct 2016, 18:40
by John Ruggero
I have decided to wait for the demo version of Dorico.

However, it would be great to hear early impressions from the point of view of engraving.

Is it more flexible than Finale or less?

Re: Dorico

Posted: 19 Oct 2016, 18:53
by tisimst
John Ruggero wrote:However, it would be great to hear early impressions from the point of view of engraving. Is it more flexible than Finale or less?
I don't know if this answers your question, but here's a quite lengthy review worth reading: ... -a-review/

Re: Dorico

Posted: 19 Oct 2016, 19:14
by jrethorst
The review discusses Insert Mode, where you can add or delete an existing note. The reviewer says it addresses "the call from some users for Sibelius to allow notes to be inserted at some point in existing music, shuffling further to the back everything that follows."

I don't know Sibelius. Does it not let you enter or delete an existing note, if there are notes or whole measures on either side of it?

Re: Dorico

Posted: 19 Oct 2016, 19:55
by jrethorst
A while ago several of us did a comparison of seven engraving programs, all examples of the same one-page score. A thread on it is at:


Would any new Dorico owner like to add an example from his or her new pride and joy?

The current comparison is here: ... ograms.pdf

and the MIDI file:

Thank you.

Re: Dorico

Posted: 19 Oct 2016, 20:44
by jrethorst
The one-page score of the comparison, in XML, is at

Re: Dorico

Posted: 19 Oct 2016, 21:46
by John Ruggero
Thanks tisimst, I had read that excellent article by Alexander Plötz earlier. In fact, several comments in it caused me concern, particularly those about horizontal movement of notes being constrained. I certainly need the ability to space notes as I wish. For that reason, I thought that some initial hands-on impressions from Finale (and other) users might be useful, especially in the area of flexibility.

I second jrethorst's desire to compare the Dorico output with that of other notation products.

Re: Dorico

Posted: 20 Oct 2016, 02:13
by jrethorst
I understand that voltas (1st, 2nd ending horizontal lines above the staff) have not yet been implemented in Dorico. I can certainly add those in the PDF that I hope someone will send me.

Re: Dorico

Posted: 20 Oct 2016, 02:33
by jrethorst
John Ruggero wrote:several comments in it caused me concern, particularly those about horizontal movement of notes being constrained.
I don't know first-hand but understand that Sibelius did not permit horizontal movement of notes until version 8. Does Finale permit it? Is it easy?

I wonder why Dorico would constrain movement . . .

Re: Dorico

Posted: 20 Oct 2016, 12:22
by Knut
I've now spent a day in Dorico, and have gotten some distinct first impressions. I haven't read Alexander's review, but I can certainly say that for those of you who don't have the time or inclination to get to know a program before a lot of pretty basic functionality for any engraver is implemented, I would wait until the demo is released (and possibly quite a bit longer than that) before buying it.

As Daniel has stated, the team has spent most of their time making sure that Dorico yields as good results as possible automatically. The programs capabilities is first and foremost revealed through a lot automatic adjustments that needs to be done manually – or can't be done at all – in other software. The downside to this prioritization, however, is that functionality to tweak the score manually has taken a backseat: There is currently no way to manually adjust horizontal or vertical spacing or reposition notes, to name just a couple of the things Finale accommodates easily. Basic things like flipping ties and slurs have to be done via the properties panel, which is a bit of a hassle if done frequently. Stems can be forced up or down via the context menu, but there is no keyboard command to flip the stem.

In addition to the lack of bar repeats, additional instrument staves, chord symbols, brace adjustment and a lot of other stuff which I'm sure Alexander mentioned in his review, some crucial aspects with regard to object selection is missing; there is no select all, select stave or select voice (layer) commands yet.

The UI, while very different from Finale (thankfully), is very well conceived. My only objection so far is the lack of ability to adjust and save your workspace globally. There are panels and toolbars on all sides of the screen in every mode in Dorico, which leaves very little space for the music on a humble 13" laptop screen. Most of these panels can be hidden, so this isn't a huge problem, but without the ability to save your workspace preferences globally, you need to re-hide all panels in any new project you create.

That's what I've registered so far, and I find it interesting that although it's easy to get enthused by the hype and actual capability of such an advanced, well thought out application, It's weak points make me appreciate the straight forward flexibility of Finale even more, even if some aspects of it can be regarded as 'dumb' or 'unmusical'. I have a lot of regard for the concepts and philosophies behind Dorico, and I'm very much looking forward to seeing what it will become, but truthfully, as a professional engraving tool, it still has a way to go.

Re: Dorico

Posted: 20 Oct 2016, 13:04
by John Ruggero
Knut, thanks so much for your appraisal. When I first heard about the Properties Panel, my heart sank.

Not being an early adopter of almost anything, I will wait for the demo before I buy Dorico. It will be fascinating to see the growth of this new product which may be faster than we anticipate, given the dedication of the development team. And if MM is wise, it will make use of this time to improve Finale and add new capabilities so that those who require a very flexible approach to engraving have that option.