[Pasted from another thread specifically about Sibelius]
When I saw this, months later, I went to have a look at it, specifically spent a few hours working a piece through a trial copy of Elements 2, on MacOS. I'm not in a position to make a detailed report, not only because I haven't spent a lot of time but also because I have never used Sibelius, really only used Lime, a little Lilypond and long ago Deluxe Music on the Amiga.
So ... well, Dorico Elements 2 works, and the 2 Gb of playback instruments that come with it are pretty good (my main reason for interest.) I liked the graphic interface for manual note editing - point and click on the staff, it seems pretty well done.
It really made me appreciate Lime's flexibility when I went to clean up a part so it would be ready to print. I'm kind of particular about where the system breaks happen, and here you don't really control that. I searched the forum, so I don't think I'm just missing something - there's a way to break the system, but no way to join the tail to the next system, so no real manual control of line breaks. I was able to make the part come out OK because it happens that all the breaks fall on 8 bar lines this time, and I could reformat around my manual system breaks and it worked out, but this is the kind of interface we're dealing with here: if they have time, they'll try to create an operation that will satisfy you, but not by just making a more flexible sort of user interface to start with.
The main real trouble I had was the instrument assignments. Voices ("players") set up initially had their instruments properly configured, voices added later didn't, for example. I have a bass drum part, which was inexplicably silent, and on the forum I found someone with the same problem in 2017. They explained that bass drum just wouldn't work, that's all. Maybe you could download a patch and it would do something ... sorry, it shouldn't be this way, but we haven't had time. Now maybe they've had time, and it's a different issue, or maybe not. Hard to say, obviously in 2017 you had to ask to find out about the lack of support for bass drum, and I didn't ask again in 2019.
Lime by the way started out as a university studio project. It's commercial, in that it isn't free - I forget, I think I paid $60. There isn't a forum so far as I know, and the software is utterly lacking in the fancy trappings of something like Dorico, but it supports a lot of weirdd notation features that would be popular in academic circles, as well as about anything you'd see in normal printed music. The one exception I can think of is the bar repeat feature - Lime has the symbol, but not the sense of what it means. (Dorico seems to have the concept at least, but my try at it just gave me the repeated notes and the bar repeat symbol printed together, which isn't right, haven't tried to fix it.) One Lime feature that I just now learned about is support for a scrolling magnified display system for partially sighted users, produced by Dancing Dots.
Dorico is written by the guys who originally created Sibelius and left when they were bought by Avid. They are now at Steinberg. What I hear from composers is that while it does not yet have all the bells and whistles of Sibelius or Finale, it's already a great notation app. I emailed them to ask about microtonal notation, using both sharps and flats in the key signature and stuff like that. Got an email back promptly with a screenshot and explanation. Very cool. I plan to switch from Sibelius as soon as a major new Dorico version is out.
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