Steinberg’s Dorico for iPad promises to bring top-quality music notation and composition software to your Apple tablet

With its touchscreen interface, the iPad seems like a natural fit for music notation software, and Steinberg clearly agrees. The company has just released Dorico for iPad, a mobile version of the rapidly rising scoring app that was released for PC and Mac in 2016.

The iPad version promises the same “beautiful interface” as the desktop one, but has been “reimagined” to take advantage of the touch interface. You can input notes via the onscreen piano, or connect a MIDI keyboard and do it that way - either in step- or real-time.

Adding clefs, key signatures, time signatures, dynamics, tempos and more is said to be simple, and if you have a Bluetooth QWERTY keyboard, you can use all your favourite desktop key commands, too. Finished scores are said to be of the same ‘publication-quality’ as those created in the Mac/PC version.

Dorico also includes sequencer-style MIDI editing via piano roll, velocity and continuous controller editors, plus an all-new Key Editor for detailed work. This can be shown alongside the standard notation if you wish.

A library of instrumental sounds and effects is included so that you can hear what your score sounds like, and there’s support for AUv3 instruments and effects, too. Projects are completely compatible with the desktop version of Dorico, which is great for pros who need to work on the move.

The good news is that the core version of Dorico for iPad can be downloaded for free from the Apple App Store. This enables you to use almost all of its features to create two-player projects, while signing in with a Steinberg ID means you can score for four players.

An in-app purchase adds support for up to 12 players and gives you the Engrave mode, which enables you to tweak the graphical appearance of the score. This costs $4 a month or $40 a year.

Find out more on the Steinberg website.

Ben Rogerson

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it. 

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