A Great Loss

Bill Duncan, who put together the great Finale Productivity package, has passed away. He was a great guy. I had numerous email exchanges with him, and he was very informed on the notation practices in L.A.

I’m sad. His great stuff will live on in my Finale work. His over-sized time signatures, rehearsal font, and jazz articulations. Thankfully, he was able to complete his wonderful engraver’s jazz articulation font before his death.

Bill, I’ll miss you. Thanks for the great fonts, Finale insights, and general music preparation techniques.

Brother HL-5250DN & HL5240 Printers

Way back in the day, like 1996, I bought a kick ass laser printer. A networkable (10BaseT), 16ppm, 1200dpi, postscript Lexmark Optra R+. I love the printer. It weighed as much as a VW Bug, and would cause the lights to dim when I turned it on. It printed nice, fast, clean music and text. Over the years, it had developed some issues, which I fixed (the boot that grabs the paper wore away, and I replaced it with some cork. Worked fine). However, the toner for the printer is over $200. I have no clue how many toners I have went through. One or two a year. But, you can get a new printer nowadays for that much, and they do so much more. And the toner cartridges are around $70.

So, with a little sadness, I decided to toss the Optra R+ and get a new, $199 Brother HL-5250DN and a HL-5240 for the studio to replace my previous Brother 1440. Wow. That is all I have to say….

First, they are small. They turn themselves off when not in use. Second, they both have Postscript. Which means nice slurs on music and whatnot. You have to look for it to see it. Both printers look identical. But, the DN version has a built in Ethernet port, and duplex (prints on both sides of the page). On a PC, it’s kind of hidden in the print settings (Advanced, and like 2 tabs in or something). On a mac, you have to make sure you run a Java application to set the duplexing on or off. The print driver totally lacks that feature. Shame on Brother for this!

Not much more to say about these printers. A great value. Print quality is amazing. Flawless, and the consumables (IE: toner) is cheap (around $70). If you are looking for a laser to do 8 1/2×11 sheets for music or whatever, either of these would be excellent!

Band In A Box 2007

There are a couple of programs I always update when a new version comes out. Finale, Digital Performer, anything from Apple, and, of course, Band in a Box. Yes campers, a new version of Band in a Box is out for PC. 2007. The Mac version, sadly, is still languishing in limbo at version 12. Though there was a message from PG Music about this in their forums and they said a new Mac version was “A high priority”. Yeah.

Moving on. Band in a Box (BinaB) is an incredible program and a great musical tool. It has been for years. The new 2007 version has some interesting features, and well, does leave me wondering about the future of the program…

First off, when you have a program such as BinaB, it has had just about everything one could want since, um, 2004’s version. Version 2007 is billed as having 50 new features. Let’s list them: Continue reading Band In A Box 2007