Why I still use MuseScore 3 for composing/transcribing/arranging
After using MS4 for the gamut of composing, transcribing, playing and exporting, here is my current assessment of its usability for my needs. So much has been crowed about MS4's limited music production prowess that I don't need to repeat it in this critique, except to say that MS4 voices have many holes I'm sure that you are aware of and I am confident that you will concentrate on filling them in. However, I do not believe that music/sound production should be the sole focus, or even the primary focus of your immediate work. After several refinements through the years and with the addition of a few very versatile and important plug-ins, MS3 was a very useful music transcription tool with which I could experiment and compose original music of many parts up to orchestral size or transcribe simple jazz lead sheets with the speed and flexibility to get things done quickly and easily, - and format a very nice, printed and even audible output. MS4 no longer fulfills that need for music transcription software that was the original, primary goal of MuseScore. I have found that the most basic act of single note entry has become a time-consuming and awkward hassle, let alone trying to enter chords in one pass cleanly - which near impossible. (I am not willing to accept the criticism that my cpu's lack of a dozen cores is to blame for the latency. If you hope to create free software for the people of the world, you can’t play the Microsoft “glutware” game. The people of the world just can’t afford to upgrade their equipment that quickly. MS4 just has to be much, much more optimized, smaller and more efficient.) Here are a couple of items I think you should focus on immediately:
1.) Improve the ease of note entry. Bring it back to MS3 standards. Why can’t you de-couple the sophisticated sound production while performing note entry? Just use those complex systems when playing back what’s written? But while entering notes I should have absolutely no latency and I should be able to play polyphonic midi from my keyboard without note entry even active (it’s called composing), something I can no longer do in MS4. For that reason, MS3 is still my primary composition tool. (I sometimes use MS4 for sound production, but only after very carefully using separately named and isolated files for the purpose.)
2.) I find the new MS4 interface slightly improved, but bulky and less versatile for efficient screen use. I should be able to detach and move those tabs anywhere I like. (I use four screens.) I should also be able to size those windows down, too. They’re just too bulky.
3.) Plug-ins are very important to my music composition. I’m pleased to see mirror intervals, retrograde, and even courtesy accidental tools offered. But I also miss, very much, the plug-ins I used for checking against traditional harmonic rules, including finding parallel fifths, octaves, augmented fourths and the like. Please, please provide a complete replacement tool for these functions.
For now, please do nothing new until you bring back what we’ve lost from MS3. After all, since the file format is not compatible, MS4 is just not usable for me until you do.
I hope you find my observations and desires are valuable. I know you’ll get there, and I promise to be patient. And I can’t thank you enough for the work you’ve done creating and improving this amazing tool for artists worldwide. Keep up the great work.