Finale Blog: The Way You Look Tonight


The above, my esteemed blog readers, is Finale 1.0, from 1988. Folks trying to sell other music notation software would like you to remember Finale 1.0 when comparing benefits with their 2011 offerings.

While even the earliest versions of Finale were extremely flexible and capable of producing incredible results, they were admittedly more than a little cryptic at times. Can you name the tool icons pictured above? Whoever can correctly identify the most – before the end of April – wins a Finale t-shirt. But here’s the catch: it’s a closed book test – you can only use your memory – and you’re on your honor! (In the event of a tie, we’ll randomly select a winner.)

Finale has come a long way since 1988. In regard to tools specifically, there are fewer tools, the need to switch tools has been greatly reduced, and the tool icons are quite a bit more intuitive.

Here’s what Finale 2011’s tool palette looks like on my Windows laptop:

While this looks like home to most of you, did you know you can easily change the look of your tool palette? You can customize the appearance of Finale by choosing from several palette styles, including one, “Traditional,” that mimics the “vintage” look of Finale 1.0.

Here’s where you go to do so:

Windows: Edit > Program Options > Palettes and Backgrounds
Macintosh:  Finale 2011 > Preferences > Program Options > Palettes and Backgrounds

Enter our contest, share a Finale story, or ask a Finale question by clicking on “Comments” below.

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