Today we’ve released Finale v25.3, the third free-of-charge update for all owners of Finale version 25.
As mentioned previously, multiple free-of-charge releases are part of our new continuous development and release initiative. In other words, we plan to share improvements more frequently rather than saving them up in big batches. This release includes new features, bug fixes, and significant investments under-the-hood.
New Feature Highlights
As seen above, the Simple Entry cursor color now reflects the currently selected layer. This provides a little extra visual feedback to prevent you from mistakenly entering notes in the wrong layer.
We’ve also provided more control over how things look on the page. The opening width of short and long crescendo/decrescendo markings are now independent of each other and can be set in the Smart Shape Options dialog box.
It’s now easier to use Unicode musical symbols as accidentals in nonstandard key signatures thanks to an added Symbol button in the Symbol List dialog box.
We’ve made several improvements to MusicXML import and export. In MusicXML Preferences we’ve added “Restrict MusicXML formatting.” This option allows you to import a MusicXML file into a Finale template without overriding formatting options within the Finale file. On the other end of the process, MusicXML Export now supports nonstandard key signatures created with Unicode symbols.
One Mac-specific addition impacts Finder and Spotlight. The metadata used by these apps has been updated to 64-bit. Now you can search through your Finale files by Title, Composer, Copyright, Description, Time Signature, Key Signature, Lyricist, Pages, Page Width, Page Height, Content Creator, Duration, Fonts, Default Music Font, Arranger, Subtitle, Staves, Parts, Instruments, and Tempo.
Want to see all the features that have been added in Finale 25.3 (and earlier versions)? The Finale User Manual lists them in these “New Features” sections for Mac and Windows.
Finale v25.3Bug Fixes
Mac Highlights Include:
- Keyboard Shortcuts: Switching between open windows works automatically when using COMMAND+` (grave accent).
- Printing: Printing custom page sizes no longer crashes Finale.
- Rebeam to Time Signature dialog box: Number of Beats and Beat Duration can now be edited.
The updated Finale User Manual provides a complete list of all Mac Fixes.
Windows Highlights Include:
- File Access: Select Finale files that previously didn’t open on Windows 7 machines now open successfully.
- Finale Authorization: Authorization is now successfully maintained on Windows 10 machines.
The updated Finale User Manual provides a complete list of all Windows Fixes.
We continue to make significant investments under-the-hood, improving Finale infrastructure (or code base) to set the stage for additional improvements in the future. While much of this work may not produce measurable improvements in the way Finale works today, to not mention them would seriously under-represent the work we’re doing on the behalf of Finale users.
- Replacing code Apple no longer supports with modern, forward-looking code. The primary benefit is that Finale will continue to support future Mac operating systems.
- Additional Unicode font work. For example, while users of Finale 25.2 can access Unicode font characters in their music, they can’t use Unicode characters in file paths, percussion MIDI maps, plugins, fretboard and fretboard instrument names, and other similar places. Many of these improvements can be seen in 25.3, and more are in development.
A third area of investment is a little more difficult to talk about. It has to do with “globals.”
Every time you open a Finale document, the document options configured in that piece are loaded from a list of variables with global scope. A more modern software practice is to define these values in classes with a more limited scope. It would seem like an easy thing to tell software to define and access these details somewhere else, right?
In practice, it’s a little more involved, but taking the time to address this today positions Finale well in the future, making it easier to understand, and modify the code into manageable classes. In addition to general performance improvements, this work will help Finale make better use of multi-threaded processors and to someday allow users to make edits while Finale is playing back (for just one multi-threading example).
Ready to install? If you own Finale v25 or v25.1, or 25.2, here’s how to get the update:
- Either follow the update prompt in Finale or:
– Mac: Choose Finale > Check for Update. For Finale 25, click Learn More. About Finale appears. Follow the onscreen instructions and skip to Step 2. For Finale 25.1 and 25.2, click Install Update. The download begins immediately.
– Windows: Choose Help > Check for Update. For Finale 25, click Get update. About Finale appears. Follow the onscreen instructions and skip to Step 2. For Finale 25.1 and 25.2, click Install update. The download begins immediately.
- When prompted, log in to your MakeMusic account under Existing Customers
- Click the Download button
- Close Finale if it’s still running and run the installer from your Downloads folder
Don’t own Finale v25 yet? Try it for free.
Please let us know how the update is working for you via Facebook or Twitter.
Michael Johnson is the vice president of professional notation at MakeMusic. He first joined the company in 1996 as a technical support representative, solving tricky issues with Finale 3.5.2. He earned his music education degree from the University of Dayton and his computer science degree from Metropolitan State University.
Michael lives in Colorado with his spouse, Owen, and their son, Elliot. When he isn’t working in Finale, he enjoys playing the trumpet and bicycling around the Rocky Mountains.