Avid has released version 6 of Sibelius ($599) music-notation software, which offers many new capabilities. The most impressive new feature, called Magnetic Layout, is designed to significantly reduce score preparation time. Other highlights of version 6 include improved collaboration and classroom management tools, and better integration with Digidesign Pro Tools and other digital audio workstations.
According to the manufacturer, Magnetic Layout cuts the writing and scoring time in half and accurately positions objects on the score where musicians expect to find them. The software automatically spaces and lays out scores, for a professional look. This tool sets Sibelius 6 apart from previous versions that required users to align individual score objects manually.
Sibelius 6 also allows you to track changes and monitor student progress by saving, manipulating and comparing revisions of a piece within a single file. Keyboard and Fretboard windows provide a visual approach to the music education process (follow lighted key and finger positions as a score plays back) and allow you to input music directly from an onscreen piano keyboard or guitar fretboard. Classroom Control offers a simple window for common classroom-management tasks, providing a streamlined way for educators to share files across the network and facilitate daily classroom instruction. Additional features include ReWire support and integration with Pro Tools or other DAWs running on the same computer.
Educational pricing and upgrade options are available. For demo versions and more information, please visit www.sibelius.com.