Can I scan sheet music to transpose, edit, arrange, play back or make a recording from it?

Product Information > Notation (Music Printing)

Just as you can scan and edit text, it is possible to scan and edit music!  Both Photoscore and SmartScore are designed to scan and recognize music.

Once the music has been recognized, you can play it back, edit, transpose or arrange it.  It can also be saved as a MIDI or MusicXML file for further editing in other notation software.  Both Photoscore & SmartScore can make a recording of the music as an MP3 or WAV file.

Photoscore will allow you to do basic editing, including transposing the music.  SmartScore has more features such as advanced editing and playback capabilities.  With some versions of SmartScore, you have the ability to add your own music from a MIDI keyboard.

As with humans, the software does make mistakes, although the accuracy is between 90-99% for both programs.  We recommend that you download demos of both programs to see which works best with the music you plan on scanning.  You should scan in greyscale and around 300 dpi.  Scanning at higher resolutions makes recognition more difficult and usually has worse results.

What Can Music Scanning Do For Me?

Music Educators:

  • Problems with your instrumentation? Transpose the bassoon part for the tenor sax quickly and easily!
  • Missing parts for your ensemble? Simply scan in the score and extract the part you need!
  • Need an easier key? Scan and transpose!
  • Wish you could afford a full-time accompanist? Scan your music in and save as MIDI file – you can then play the music at any tempo, in any key while stopping and starting wherever you like. You can even mute or solo parts for teaching!

Arrangers:

  • Stop wasting time re-entering music! Just scan the music in and start arranging right away!

Church musicians:

  • Too high or too low? Scan and transpose – then print out the new parts for your choir.
  • Need a hymn for Alto Sax, Clarinet, Tuba and Piccolo (or anything else for that matter!) – by tomorrow? Scan, arrange and transpose - in just a few minutes you’ll have the parts that you need!
  • Can’t find an accompanist all of the time? Scan your music in and save as MIDI file – you can then play the music at any tempo, in any key while stopping and starting wherever you like. You can even mute or solo parts for teaching!

Home users:

  • Trouble learning new music? Scan it in a listen to the computer play it for you. Slow it down and then speed it up as you watch the notes go by or as you play along!

Instrumentalists & Vocalists

  • Music out of your range? Scan and transpose – in just a few minutes you can have music in your range!
  • Wrong key? Want to play a string quartet in your brass quintet? Transposing becomes as easy as scanning the music in, choosing the key and printing out the parts that you need!

What Do I Need?

None of the programs below require expensive scanners. Almost any flatbed scanner will work - just remember to scan using the settings provided in the instructions with the software! If you don’t have a scanner, you can purchase them for less than $100.

You can download demo versions to see which works best for your needs:


Add Feedback