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Opening and importing files

From: Finale 2012 Essential Training

Video: Opening and importing files

In upcoming videos, we'll begin to learn the Finale interface. At first, we'll work from pre-existing files, so you'll need to know how to open Finale files. Also, if you want to use files created in other notation or music production programs, you'll need to know how to import MIDI and MusicXML files. So, pre-existing Finale files can be opened in a number of ways. First, if you've just opened Finale, you can open a variety of files from the Launch Window. So we can click the Open button, and navigate to the folder that holds the files, or if this window is closed, you can do the same thing by going to the File menu in Finale, and clicking Open.

Opening and importing files

In upcoming videos, we'll begin to learn the Finale interface. At first, we'll work from pre-existing files, so you'll need to know how to open Finale files. Also, if you want to use files created in other notation or music production programs, you'll need to know how to import MIDI and MusicXML files. So, pre-existing Finale files can be opened in a number of ways. First, if you've just opened Finale, you can open a variety of files from the Launch Window. So we can click the Open button, and navigate to the folder that holds the files, or if this window is closed, you can do the same thing by going to the File menu in Finale, and clicking Open.

Now, if the file was opened recently, it might be here on the most Recent files. So I am going to go Open, and then let's go to the Desktop here; that's where the exercise files are at. I'll click that folder, and then we are in chapter 2, and there is the subfolder that holds the files for this video. So let's choose the .mus file, and just note that that's the extension for any Finale score file. So let's go ahead and click Open. After you make changes to the file, you're going to want to update it.

So let's go back to the File menu, and you can either choose Save, or Save As. If you choose Save, you're going to save it with the same name. Now, if you want to update it with a different name, you would choose Save As, and then in this Save As dialog box, you can add, like, a version two at the end of that. I am going to save that to the Desktop, and we'll click Save. Now, if you also work with a music production program, like Pro tools, or Logic Studio, you may want or need to move your work back and forth between Finale and the production program.

One way this can be done is using a standard MIDI file. So let's go back to the File menu, and let's close the file we are looking at, and then let's go right back to the File menu again, and let's go to Open, and again, let's navigate down to our exercise files folder. And here again, we see this .mid file; now this is a standard MIDI file. Those can be opened by Finale, so let's choose that, and click Open. This time it's going to ask us a few questions before it does anything.

Now, most of these default settings have worked for me. The one place I would suggest you look is in the Quant Settings. That stands for quantization, and that's how Finale kind of cleans up the file as it brings it in. Now, notation files are actually simpler than the way we actually perform the music, and this Quantization Settings dialog helps us to clean up those files. So, as you import this music, you are going to want to tell Finale what's the Smallest Note Value that's played in this. Was it a sixteenth note, or an eighth note, or an eighth note triplet? And then, in addition to that, you can also indicate whether there's no triplets, and the word Tuplet in Finale refers to all types of triplets.

And if it doesn't, you would choose No Tuplets. If there is mixed rhythms, go ahead and choose that. I would also suggest you click this More Settings button, and in here, I would make sure that Minimize Rest is checked. And then, if there is MIDI data in that file that you want to bring in, like the Velocities, which represent how hard the keys on the piano were hit, I would go ahead and make sure that that's checked. So let's click OK, and OK, and when we've got all these parameters set, we'll say OK one last time, and Finale starts to analyze that MIDI file, and turn it into a notation file.

So it opens up, and if you remember from the last version that we were looking at, which was an actual score of the same thing, it looks like we got the notes for the most part. We're missing a lot of stuff. It didn't even bring in the Clarinet part transposed, and we didn't get any dynamics, or articulations, or anything else like that. This is kind of a raw data that we can work with, and oftentimes, when I import a MIDI file, the next thing I'll do is actually create a score in Finale, and then copy the data from this score that's actually good, and paste that into the other file.

So, while MIDI files are useful, there is actually a newer thing we can do. So I am gong to click File, and Close, and let's click Don't Save. In recent years, there's been an effort to create an open format that allows data to be more easily exchanged between music notation programs. And this is MusicXML, which is an XML based music notation format, and it's currently the best option, and able to transfer much more data than a standard MIDI file. So let's go back to the File menu, and let's choose MusicXML > Import, and once again, we'll need to navigate down to that folder, and it looks like we're already there, and let's choose this Woodwind Quartet.xml file.

I'll click Open, and it will take a second for Finale to analyze this again, and open it as a score file. And now when we look at this, we see, well, this looks a lot like the original file. We've got all the notes, we've got the transpositions, and we've got dynamics, and we've got crescendos, and articulations. So we are much closer to a finished score then we were with the MIDI file. So now that you know how to open, save, and import files, we're ready to learn how to enter notes into a Finale score.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Finale 2012 Essential Training
Finale 2012 Essential Training

67 video lessons · 4506 viewers

Rick Schmunk
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 1m 35s
    1. Welcome
      1m 1s
    2. Using the exercise files
      34s
  2. 18m 45s
    1. PC installation
      4m 43s
    2. MIDI system setup (PC)
      4m 26s
    3. Mac installation
      3m 12s
    4. MIDI system setup (Mac)
      6m 24s
  3. 24m 22s
    1. The Setup Wizard
      6m 13s
    2. Using score templates
      5m 2s
    3. The default document (Mac)
      4m 17s
    4. The default document (PC)
      3m 36s
    5. Opening and importing files
      5m 14s
  4. 6m 19s
    1. Finale window overview
      2m 44s
    2. Navigating scores
      3m 35s
  5. 54m 34s
    1. Note entry and editing using a mouse
      5m 6s
    2. Note entry and editing using a computer keyboard
      5m 28s
    3. Adding ties, note accidentals, and key changes
      4m 23s
    4. Selecting, copying and pasting, and transposing
      5m 52s
    5. Speedy note entry
      4m 31s
    6. Measure basics and music spacing
      5m 10s
    7. Adding lyrics
      8m 0s
    8. Adding chord symbols
      5m 13s
    9. Formatting and aligning chords
      4m 14s
    10. Formatting a lead sheet
      6m 37s
  6. 44m 8s
    1. Simple entry using a MIDI keyboard
      4m 55s
    2. Entering triplets and tuplets
      4m 30s
    3. Advanced entering of tuplets
      8m 6s
    4. Changing key signatures, time signatures, and clefs
      4m 46s
    5. Working with measure attributes
      2m 45s
    6. Adding ties, grace notes, and Simple Entry commands
      4m 31s
    7. Working with repeats
      5m 11s
    8. Customizing expressions
      5m 29s
    9. Smart Shapes
      3m 55s
  7. 22m 22s
    1. Layer basics
      7m 8s
    2. Click-assigning layers
      3m 30s
    3. Formatting and aligning lyrics
      6m 38s
    4. Text basics
      5m 6s
  8. 36m 48s
    1. Playback basics
      7m 27s
    2. Selecting instrument sounds
      8m 17s
    3. HyperScribe setup
      9m 21s
    4. HyperScribe entry
      6m 13s
    5. Importing audio
      5m 30s
  9. 1h 0m
    1. Staves
      6m 2s
    2. Articulations
      4m 10s
    3. Creating metatools for articulations and expressions
      5m 19s
    4. Adding expressions and articulations in Simple Entry
      4m 9s
    5. Customizing expressions
      4m 47s
    6. Formatting articulations, expressions, and Smart Shapes
      9m 22s
    7. Formatting staff and system spacing
      6m 19s
    8. Formatting measure numbers and rehearsal letters
      6m 34s
    9. Linked parts
      9m 28s
    10. Printing scores and parts
      4m 29s
  10. 48m 44s
    1. Percussion setup
      6m 22s
    2. Drum set parts
      8m 51s
    3. Scores and expressions
      5m 55s
    4. Copying and pasting articulations and expressions
      4m 16s
    5. Using SmartFind and Paint
      2m 23s
    6. Importing and editing libraries
      9m 16s
    7. Applying and creating staff styles
      7m 2s
    8. Changing instruments
      4m 39s
  11. 19m 23s
    1. Special tools
      9m 56s
    2. Plug-ins
      9m 27s
  12. 20m 1s
    1. Editing and creating fretboard diagrams
      6m 35s
    2. Tab staves
      7m 34s
    3. Guitar Smart Shapes
      5m 52s
  13. 14m 14s
    1. Exporting graphics
      7m 2s
    2. Exporting files
      7m 12s
  14. 1m 43s
    1. What's next?
      1m 43s

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