kudos and initial thoughts

GQBGQB
edited 6:16PM in Symphony Pro
Very fun being in on the ground floor of a new tool and way of working.
This weekend I flew from SF to Detroit and back, leaving 2 5-hour stretches to learn Symphony Pro.
My project was to transcribe a pretty complex jazz solo on my iPad using Capo and Symphony Pro.
I completed 30 bars perfectly, and got faster as I got better with the tools.

Here are a couple of initial thoughts.

1) You need to properly leverage iOS's app switching to maintain state. Every time I bounced from Capo to SP with a short snippet of notes in my head, returning to SP always goes to the beginning of the piece with controls set differently than I had left them, e.g. insert tool always defaults to on, resulting in unwanted insertions when I hit the keyboard immediately to confirm my transcription.
Returning to SP via double-click of the home button should always take me to the position/state I left.

2) DropBox integration.

3) building chords by touch totally eluded me. I can't seem to figure out how you intend for notes to be added to a chord by touch. I ended up having to always use the keyboard to enter chords which was not always accurate.

4) multiple endings, to allow repeat signs when only the last bar or 2 differs, along with jumps, DS al Coda, etc.
(although I'd be thrilled to hear that this omission is actually user error on my part.)

I'll be watching with interest as you add the features that you no doubt have in mind.

Great job so far!

Comments

  • GQBGQB
    edited February 2011
    PS...
    I can't count the number of musicians who stopped in the aisle to ask me about using my iPad for this kind of work. They were blown away at the thought of being able to do this.
  • Thanks for the feedback. We're working on several big improvements for 1.3 including iTunes import/export and MusicXML import. We're planning on supporting DropBox integration, but that won't make it in time for this next release.

    I completely agree about the maintaining state issue. We'll be sure to fix this.

    To create chords with the keyboard closed it helps to first zoom in all the way with the pinch gesture on the score. Then make sure you are in Insert Mode (pencil icon) and tap above or below an existing note in the active voice. Once the note is placed you can change it's pitch with the arrows on the bottom left. This method works if you have a stylus, but if you don't have one there's another method. Just tap and hold over any measure to bring up a guide that shows where you note would be added. Drag your finger over an existing note with this guide open and it'll turn from blue to red to indicate that this note is being added to an existing note or chord.

    There's basic support for alternate endings right now. Just tap on the gear icon, then tap on the measure you want to assign an ending number to. Select "Bar-lines" in the menu that pops up and you can assign it from there.

    Codas, D.S. al Fine, and other such notation aren't supported yet.

    That's great to hear about all the interest you were getting too.
  • I am loving this app! i am an oboist, and I mostly use notation software to transpose orchestra and chamber music parts. I am currently inputting The Niagara Falls Suite oboe part in one line of treble, since the original is almost illegible handwriting. The only problem I have encountered so far is I can't find an option for multi-measure rests. In orchestra parts, a musician will often have 20 or 30 bars of rests, notated with a number. When I input the measure of rests individually, adding a manual number above, there seems to be a limit of around 40 bars per page, which only takes up half a page if 20 of them are rests. It is still much more legible than the part I was given, but if it's not too difficult to add, a multi-measure rest tool would be great. Is there a way around only having half a page of music up to 40 bars before a page break to the next page of music? I just started using the software, so I might be missing something. I may just use one measure of rest to represent the 20, label it manually with the number of rests, and turn off the measure numbers option. Since I will not be using the midi playback for anything, I think this would be okay. Any other experience with this problem?

    I love being able to input music with my iPad now. I have been wanting to try keyboard input, and now I don't need to buy a separate midi keyboard for my desktop computer. And I appreciate the English horn track--hard to find on less expensive software. Thanks for your hard work developing this useful app!
  • Ross wrote:
    To create chords with the keyboard closed it helps to first zoom in all the way with the pinch gesture on the score. Then make sure you are in Insert Mode (pencil icon) and tap above or below an existing note in the active voice. Once the note is placed you can change it's pitch with the arrows on the bottom left. This method works if you have a stylus, but if you don't have one there's another method. Just tap and hold over any measure to bring up a guide that shows where you note would be added. Drag your finger over an existing note with this guide open and it'll turn from blue to red to indicate that this note is being added to an existing note or chord.

    There's basic support for alternate endings right now. Just tap on the gear icon, then tap on the measure you want to assign an ending number to. Select "Bar-lines" in the menu that pops up and you can assign it from there.
    This is good stuff! It would be really nice if these instructions (and more) were included in the built-in help. As-is, the help/user manual is extremely sparse. Any chance of an enhanced help/user guide in 1.3?

    Also, what's the target date for 1.3?
  • The first part is briefly mentioned in 'Editing' under 'With the Keyboard Closed', and the second part about the guide is on the 'Other' page under 'Fine Edit'. The manual will likely stay as is for 1.3, but I agree that it could be clearer in some parts.

    1.3 should be out in about two weeks.
  • Hi Ross,

    I've been with this iPad app from day 1and the only thing I'm having trouble with is Chord Notation. I'm using text boxes with just the chord name in, but when I reopen a file most of the chords have lost their place and have moved to the first page. I've noticed when I rotate the iPad some staves changes from say 5 bars to 4. I've tried individual text boxes for each chord and one text box per stave, but it doesn't seem to make any difference.

    Also can you tell me what the "Equal" & "Just" options do in the "Inotation" tab in settings. I thought it may either make a stave have a set number of bars, or spread the notes in a bar in a certain way, but to be honest I can't see what difference it makes.

    I'm still loving the App, and I think all of us appreciate your hard work, I know I do.

    Regards

    Dave
  • GQB wrote:
    Very fun being in on the ground floor of a new tool and way of working.
    This weekend I flew from SF to Detroit and back, leaving 2 5-hour stretches to learn Symphony Pro.
    My project was to transcribe a pretty complex jazz solo on my iPad using Capo and Symphony Pro.
    I completed 30 bars perfectly, and got faster as I got better with the tools.

    Here are a couple of initial thoughts.

    1) You need to properly leverage iOS's app switching to maintain state. Every time I bounced from Capo to SP with a short snippet of notes in my head, returning to SP always goes to the beginning of the piece with controls set differently than I had left them, e.g. insert tool always defaults to on, resulting in unwanted insertions when I hit the keyboard immediately to confirm my transcription.
    Returning to SP via double-click of the home button should always take me to the position/state I left.

    Hello,

    I'm a sax player, ans I'm also using SP to transcribe the tunes we play with my band. Thus, I use the iPod or Slow Notes to listen to the original music, and then type it with SP's keyboard and wonderful interface.

    Do you think that an integrated "listen in slow motion & write" within SP instead of switching between two apps could be conceivable?

    Kind regards,
    Jonathan
  • Toldcodger wrote:
    Also can you tell me what the "Equal" & "Just" options do in the "Inotation" tab in settings. I thought it may either make a stave have a set number of bars, or spread the notes in a bar in a certain way, but to be honest I can't see what difference it makes.

    When you switch between Equal and Just it slightly modifies how the frequencies of each pitch in a scale are spaced out. Equal chooses to space each pitch out evenly, but Just tweaks these spacings to produce more consonant sounding chords. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BhZpvGSPx6w.
    tatane79 wrote:
    Do you think that an integrated "listen in slow motion & write" within SP instead of switching between two apps could be conceivable

    I'm not going to completely rule it out, but I think it's out of the scope of this app for now.
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