Review: Notion 5 – Inspires You to Create

Music notation has changed drastically with the arrival of the computer age. Before the computer there had been no difference in notation since the days of Mozart. With the advent of music notation software musicians can notate quicker, more accurately and a deep understanding of music theory is no longer needed.

The options for notation software are endless. Shopping for an application can be daunting. Notion from PreSonus Audio Electronics now takes all of the guess work out finding a quality application. Notion has a very clean intuitive user interface. Navigating the application is easy and most users will be up and running within minutes of installing the application.

Where this application shines is the playback. Other notation applications use Windows midi. They sound like a children’s toy keyboard on playback. Notion uses orchestral samples recorded by the London Symphony Orchestra. The bass and drums samples are supplied by the super-talented Wooten brothers, Victor and Futureman. While the guitar samples were recorded by neo-classical phenom Neil Zaza. All of the textures are rich and realistic. Any composer will tell you, when your compositions sound great you are inspired to create more.

Making Notion even cooler is the iOS iPad application. I can flesh out a composition and transfer it to my Windows PC or mac for further editing. This cross platform functionality not only allows me to share music across my computers but to also share lead sheets with members of my band.

When creating music in Notion the user has many options. Manually entering notes is very easy with a very simple point and click interface. The user also has the option to input via midi. Notion is compatible with any midi keyboard or in my case midi guitar. Notion gives me the ability to enter music stepwise or in real-time. Once my composition is entered I can clean it up or add additional parts. Simply put – if you can play it, you can write it. No advanced knowledge of notation or music theory is needed.

With a street price of $149.95 Notion is a quarter of the price of its main competitor. This is great seeing Notion is a complete solution and doesn’t nickel and dime the user into buying additional modules. You can find more information on Notion on PreSonus Audio Electronics’ website of check out the YouTube video below.