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I would like a software that I will be able to write music sheets/scores.

Nothing really fancy, just to be able to write all kinds of notations.

I would prefer a free one for Windows.

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3 Answers 3

up vote 6 down vote accepted

MuseScore is an easy-to-use sheet music writer. The best thing is that you can export to PDF, PNG, WAV and other formats!

It works on Mac, Windows and Linux.

Here is a C Major scale I made for the piano:

enter image description here

If you look at the top of the image, you can see all the different notes you can use (and this is in the Piano music mode).

One more thing: It's free!!

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It quite depends on the complexity of whatever you're writing and whether you want WYSIWYG and things like MIDI keyboard input. In my experience, people who create music require both, those who are just typesetting are usually happy with the computer keyboard option - it tends to be faster than point 'n click.

AFAIK, the most popular commercial solution is Finale (both WYSIWYG and MIDI options), but it's really expensive.

My personal favourite is the Lilypond scripting language (think LaTeX for sheet music) with the Frescobaldi GUI (cross platform). There's a bit of a learning curve, but the documentation is excellent and it's fantastically flexible. Also, it's open source/free.

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Note that Finale actually has a wide range of solutions - yes, the top of the line is quite expensive ($600), but they've got a basic package and an iPad app that are both free, and two mid-level packages that run approximately $50 and $120, respectively. Plus, they frequently offer upgrade sales that let you move up to a higher edition by basically paying the difference in price from your previous edition. –  GalacticCowboy May 27 at 18:21
    
I would argue that Sibelius is more popular (and better) than Finale. –  TylerH May 27 at 18:47

Wikipedia has a Comparison of scorewriters where you can compare features of lots of such programmes. You can compare output formats, whether they support tab notation etc.

I tried a few, and I like Denemo (an interface to Lilypond, which user3326 mentioned):

  • It's free
  • It is available for various systems, including Windows
  • Every musical notation you could need is available
  • The outputs are very flexible - eg you can write a score for various instruments, and then just show one part, or one movement.
  • It's easy to use (to me anyway)
  • It seems to be in quite active development
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Welcome to Software Recommendations! This post does not contain enough information to be considered a high quality answer (currently, it's a "good comment", if I might say so – no pun intended). Please read our discussion on what makes an answer high quality to see if you can incorporate some of these improvements into your answer, otherwise it might be removed. –  Izzy May 27 at 19:41
    
@Izzy - Unfortunately I can't comment on questions. It's a shame that barrier is so high. –  ammonite May 28 at 9:39
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It's not that high (requires 50 rep, you've just made 10 by my +1 now). And see, it works: it encouraged you to make a good answer, instead of just leaving a comment :) –  Izzy May 28 at 9:45
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Ah, yes I guess that makes sense. Thanks :) –  ammonite May 28 at 17:28

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