PreSonus has been busy, busy, busy! Not only did they release a new DAW for iPad called Presonus Capture, to use in conjunction with StudioOne but now Notion for the desktop has been updated to version 5!
Notion is PreSonus’s notation app that is truly cross platform – they have a version for Mac, Windows and iPad! Notion is probably your best choice for an all around music notation program because of that reason along with a few other details. Finale and Sibelius both have apps for the iPad that allow you to view notation files on the iPad but those iPad apps do not allow you to create and edit those notation files. IF you have Sibelius or Finale you should absolutely own those iPad apps though! For Sibelius users you should download Scorch. Finale users should download Finale SongBook. They are both free and add an amazing level of access to those music notation files on your iPad!
Back to Notion V5….
HUGE BONUS THAT IS ONLY GOING TO CONTINUE TO GET BETTER:
You can go visit the Notion website to read everything but let me tell you why I believe this is a huge move for PreSonus/Notion. One of the new capabilities in Notion is that is is gaining some of the functionalities of StudioOne along with the look of StudioOne. What does that mean? That means that this nice notation app is gaining full-fledged DAW capabilities! New mixer, new plug-inslike Compressor/Limiter/EQ and by using Re-Wire you can even run a music notation file in Notion right alongside a recording project in StudioOne!
Do not underestimate the importance of this integration!
Another item that caught my eye is that Notion allows you to perform you Notion files live – adjusting tempo and volume to stay with the live performance simply by tapping along on a MIDI keyboard. PLUS Notion allows you to import audio files as a part of the project too! Of course one of the big new features is the ability to work with movies now. Sibelius of course has been able to work with video for quite a while now.
The price of Notion has gone up to $150, it used to be $100. If you have version’s 3 or 4 you can upgrade for $50. Now that $150 is the FULL price not an upgrade!
Compare that to the cost of Sibelius full price being $599 with upgrades costing from $50-$100 depending on which version you are running.
Compared to the cost of Finale full price being $600 with an upgrade costing you $140.
Just which version do you think students are going to be able to afford? Now, to be fair Finale does offer several slimed down versions of Final for $50-$120 and Sibelius offers a slimmed down version for $120. Both of those apps also offer educational pricing too.
One more reason to like Notion – simple and straightforward and affordable!
These apps are going to cost you some hard drive space on your computer!
Notion – around 8GB
Sibelius – around 36GB
Finale – around 2.5GB
CHOICES: There used to be two main choices for music notation – Sibelius or Finale. Now we have a bunch of options! Some apps run on desktop as well as on iPad. Then we have some other options that are iPad only now. Here’s the run-down.
Notion – Desktop and iPad version – $
Sibelius – Desktop version with Scorch (an iPad viewer) – $$
Finale – Desktop version with Finale SongBook (an iPad viewer) – $$$
NoteFlight – works on desktop or iPad through a web browser – FREE!
MuseScore – Desktop version (FREE) with an iPad viewer $
SymphonyPro – iPad app $
Tabular – iPad app $
NotateMe – iPad app $ (Handwritten music PLUS amazing music scanning plugin – $)
SmartScore NoteReader – iPad app music scanning app (read about it here on Chris Russell’s website - http://techinmusiced.wordpress.com/2014/07/18/smartscore-notereader-is-available-how-does-it-compare/
Sonja – iPad app free
If you only own an iPad and want a music notation app – Get Notion IF YOU HAVE SPACE – or SymphonyPro. You can NOT go wrong with either app!
If you want a great music notation app and you own an iPad plus you want to be able to work on notation files from the laptop as well as the iPad…. get Notion.
If you already own Sibelius and are as worried as I am about the future of Sibelius… (Heck, I haven’t even upgraded to version 7 yet let alone 7.5!) Notion is still going to be a great addition to having Sibelius. Especially since all three apps are Music XML compatible so you can transfer files back and forth easily!
Finale users are not worried a bit about the future of Sibelius but again Notion just might be a nice addition, especially the iPad version of Notion!