PROS / This program is designed specifically for music notation.
CONS / It does not include guitar tablature or percussion notation.
VERDICT / This is a good product at a very low price.
Editor's note: A newer version of this product is available. The manufacturer lists the new version as offering the following features: percussion notation; chord names; multiple tool palettes; Windows 7 and WIndows 10 compatibility. We will evaluate, rank and review the new version of this product when we next update the Music Notation Software reviews.
NoteWorthy Composer is an affordable music notation software program that has all the features an average user will need to notate music. For the price, just about anyone can dabble in music composition. However, we would have liked to see additional features like guitar tabulation and automatic note placement.
This program is relatively easy for both novices and experts to use. The integrated virtual piano that appears at the bottom of the main screen makes it easy for anybody to start creating music as soon as the program is opened. You can enter notes using the mouse by pointing and clicking on the appropriate line. You can also use the computer keyboard to enter notes.
This program lets you enter an infinite number of notes in a measure, which can make for some interesting-sounding songs. Most notation software prevents you from entering notes that exceed a measure’s time signature. To some, especially experts, this can be a beneficial feature enabling them to break or bend the rules in the name of art and creativity. But this could be a hindrance to inexperienced composers, and some might find it annoying. There are many keyboard shortcuts associated with most of the features. We found experimenting with the notes and instruments to be entertaining and easy.
This program has an import wizard that helps you import MIDI files. The wizard helps you specify settings, such as chord size and note durations, before the file is imported. NoteWorthy only allows you to import and export MIDI files. You can print copies of the songs you create to start a collection of sheet music though, if you would like.
This program is solely for the purpose of sheet music notation. It doesn't let you import or export WAV files to make a complete studio recording. It also does not have the ability to notate percussion or guitar tablature like the best music notation software that we’ve reviewed.
The software offers keyboard shortcuts and symbol palettes to access the editing features. It is one of the cheaper products on the market; however, for a few extra bucks we would like to see additional features like a mixer and piano roll editor. These features are fairly common in other programs we tested and can be very useful.
NoteWorthy includes a built-in help manual, a FAQs section on the manufacturer’s website and an active member community. The developer also offers an email address you can use to send questions.
We found that NoteWorthy Composer takes some getting used to, and beginners unfamiliar with this type of software may have some difficulty finding the location of all the features and their corresponding shortcuts. However, the interface is nonthreatening and fun. For the price, this program is great for amateur songwriters and hobbyists.