Logic Pro 9 Logic or Sibelius?

Hi, I'm slightly new to all this, so please don't crucify me!

I'm on the verge of buying Logic Studio for my 13 inch MacBook Pro. I've used Logic Pro before on a different computer and accept that it's very very good even if I didn't quite have much clue about how it works. I am very familiar with Sibelius notation software having used versions 3, 4, and 5, and considering buying 6 as well as Logic.

Can anyone give me some insight as to which I should be looking at buying if not both. I'm not too clued up about MT much but more classically trained. However, am looking at getting into a more commercial composing industry and figure that Logic is a good place to start. Bearing in mind that I prefer (at the moment anyway) to notate scores on Sib., but can't do much in a studio with pre-recorded sounds that I can do with live sounds through Logic, could anyone give me a helping hand...?!

Pete Thomas

Staff member
I find that if you get to grips with Logic score, Sibelius would be superfluous.

It's actually very annoying to use both apps especially if you start in Logic then score in Sibelius then find you need to do more work on it in Logic

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Sibelius is dedicated notation software. It's much more powerfull than Logic in that. However, Logic is better suited for arranging/recording/mixing using actual sounds (not their "paper" representation).
I'd personally use Sibelius if I need to publish something in print. And I'd choose Logic for everything else.

Pete Thomas

Staff member
OK cheers Pete - but do you think that the notation software in Logic is as good as that of Sibelius? I'd guess at no though I could be wrong...
I find it good enough for most of my professional needs, e.g. scoring for sessions. Not so good for early music or very contemporary stuff, but I haven't yet come across a session I couldn't use it for.

I'm hoping Apple will go just that extra little step as it's nearly extremely good IMO. I've been told there are some features on it that are better than Sibelius, but as (I don't use Sibelius I can't comment.
Think of Sibelius as a graphics program.

If your goal is to publish "proper" printed notation for other musicians, then Sibelius could have some advantages depending on what you're doing, although many people use Logic to do just this.

Some folks do all their composing in Logic, and then export the final MIDI file to Sibelius to make it look better for the printer. But in some cases, they are doing that because they know Sibelius much better than Logic's score section, not because Logic can't do certain things.

Having said that, if you're the kind of composer who just writes it all out on paper like in the before time, and simply wants to do that on a computer, Sibelius might be just right. It would like somebody who wrote in longhand or used a typewriter now using a word processor.
yep, I'm trying more to create a good piece of music than have amazing presentation. I assume therefore that Logic fits the bill better.

Recording-wise, does Logic have a good set of recorded live instrument samples if I can't get hold of a live musician?

Pete Thomas

Staff member
Yes and yes.

Even then, the presentation can be very good, just a few annoying things that we are all waiting for (slurs that move when you transpose a part, global symbols). These would save a bit of time, but you can make parts good enough for session musicians and orchestras.

These negatives to me far outweigh the hassle of using Sibelius.
Hi Jamie, I think you you should trust the advice of these helpful geniouses, but I want to point out one major problem with most Music software: there is a new standard for exchanging songs[pieces ] called Music xml, and in it's initial form wasn't much better than a normal MIDI file, i.e. no formatting of the graphics the score and parts don't retain their correct look, only the audio is left in the original form. Sibelius probably, like Finale, uses version 2 music xml, which includes all score graphics. This is only important if you need to move a project from one Computer to another, I use public domain sheet music in pdf and can export it from SmartScoreX in almost any format, I even bought Cubase 5 because their Dutch web store said it would work, to my great surprise it was an old version of music xml[ 1.1] that is in Cubase 5.5 and so nothing can be moved there unless all has been bounced[ recorded to audio files]or left in MIDI format. I can say after struggling with Cubase I finally realized how good Logic, and its' score editor really is. it helps to have Thomas Prischls' book-"Logic Notation Guide" only available from his web-site[ google the names] and if that doesn't give the clue on how to get something done in Logics' score the guys here are extremely good and friendly.Check out Pete Thomas' web-site for the "combi-remapper", a fantastic improvement and cheap thanks to Pete.
brilliant - thanks guys. I'll go and purchase Logic now and leave Sibelius for the past.

1 quick other thing regarding price... Apple store selling for 400 GBP and amazon doing it for 240.

Also, should I be worried that Sibelius 6 is up at 470 GBP? Overpricing I hope.

Where did you guys buy it from?

Jamie, one more comment from the peanut gallery. I use both programs, but rarely on the same project (that's my issue, not the programs). It has more to do with how I am think about a particular piece. Sometimes my brain is all wrapped up in voice leading, theory and counterpoint. In those cases, I can write it out reasonably quickly in Sibelius. At other times, I want to just record what I am playing and add some parts/edit/mix ect. Logic is great for that. I enjoy the luxury of both. This is helpful as I am not a big fan of Logic's notation. So, my view is to decide on how you want to make music and let the software follow your instincts.