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  #1  
Old 11-08-2012, 08:00 AM
markallen markallen is offline
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Default Using OnSong with the iPad Mini

Last weekend I took the plunge and purchased an iPad mini (64 gig) as I've wanted to find something smaller than the full size iPad since I found the full size iPad was just too close in size to my existing MacBook Air and wanted something I could hold with one hand. I've been looking for something to hold and organize songbooks and after reading all the reviews of various products decided to give OnSong a try.

Last night I tried the combo for the first time and was quite impressed how easy it was to see when sitting on a music stand about 2-3 feet away. My 50+ year old eyes need bi-focals for reading and I didn't have any problems at all focusing on the screen even though the type was smaller than normal. I think the added contrast with the lighted screen makes up for the difference in type size between the screen and a printed sheet of 8.5x11" paper.

Software installation and setup was a snap and I had no issued at all getting files into OnSong using either Dropbox or iTunes file sharing. I'm looking forward to exploring all this software has to offer.

Cheers,
Mark

Last edited by markallen; 11-08-2012 at 08:43 AM.
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Old 11-08-2012, 08:39 AM
8TrackJoe 8TrackJoe is offline
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I've been using OnSong with a full size iPad for about a year now at church. I've been very pleased with the software. I love being able to swip back and forth, look up songs on the fly, transpose songs and edit directly on it, plus I can put the chords in bold and different colors. I've wondered about how it would work on the iPad mini, so I'm glad you posted on your experience.

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  #3  
Old 11-08-2012, 08:41 AM
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Bob Womack Bob Womack is offline
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Thanks for going where no AGFer has gone before.

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Old 11-08-2012, 08:46 AM
markallen markallen is offline
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Originally Posted by Bob Womack View Post
Thanks for going where no AGFer has gone before.

Bob
Thanks Bob!!

For a while there I thought by trying to do this I may be "Taking one for the team", like Joe, I'm going to use this at church and during rehearsal last night it worked like a champ.
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  #5  
Old 11-08-2012, 09:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fallboard View Post
Last weekend I took the plunge and purchased an iPad mini (64 gig) as I've wanted to find something smaller than the full size iPad since I found the full size iPad was just too close in size to my existing MacBook Air and wanted something I could hold with one hand. I've been looking for something to hold and organize songbooks and after reading all the reviews of various products decided to give OnSong a try.

Last night I tried the combo for the first time and was quite impressed how easy it was to see when sitting on a music stand about 2-3 feet away. My 50+ year old eyes need bi-focals for reading and I didn't have any problems at all focusing on the screen even though the type was smaller than normal. I think the added contrast with the lighted screen makes up for the difference in type size between the screen and a printed sheet of 8.5x11" paper.

Software installation and setup was a snap and I had no issued at all getting files into OnSong using either Dropbox or iTunes file sharing. I'm looking forward to exploring all this software has to offer.

Cheers,
Mark
Hi Mark...
My eyes are 64 years old and the mini is a bit mini for me...I like it for other things, just not my score reading.

I'm glad it works for you, and suspect younger players with strong eyes will find them useful.

The difference between the iPad mini with it's 4:3 screen over a 7'' HD version, is the HD versions when you import a chart only fill the top 2/3 of the page, and the bottom 1/3 is blank (unless you let the text or music run off the right side of the page).

The iPad mini (like the full sized one) is preferable for displaying full sheets of scores/charts.

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  #6  
Old 11-08-2012, 04:52 PM
txstrathack txstrathack is offline
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Default Using OnSong with the iPad Mini

Look into the Mega Mini. Should be just right!
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  #7  
Old 02-09-2013, 09:28 PM
wdlmcg wdlmcg is offline
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Default on song app to control other midi devices.

Can this onsong app control a TC helicon voicetouch live
and a floor unit?
I would like to select a song in onsong, and have my other devices switch
to their settings automatically?
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  #8  
Old 02-12-2013, 05:12 AM
sonicland sonicland is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wdlmcg View Post
Can this onsong app control a TC helicon voicetouch live and a floor unit? I would like to select a song in onsong, and have my other devices switch to their settings automatically?
I could be wrong but I don't believe OnSong has that control. I can tell you SetListMaker does. I have Unreal Book (which I don't use) and I've checked out all the others apps and SLM works for me far better than the others. It works exactly the way I would have made it work and I've come to rely on it. I gig with it regularly, both as a solo acoustic, bass in a classic rock band, and once in awhile solo with backing tracks (which it handles beautifully). I don't need MIDI control but it has it. Check it out.
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  #9  
Old 02-12-2013, 10:48 AM
Steve Berger Steve Berger is offline
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Slight left turn here -

I'm a bit technically challenged in this area and need some help.

I have an iPad 2 and I would like to be able to use it to 'read' the sheet music I have that is in hard copy (for practicing etc)

Would OnSong enable me to do that? I'd appreciate it if someone would explain the process or direct me to an online tutorial.

I'm probably off-base here but I'm thinking I would have to scan the sheet music into my iMac and then email and open up the document on my iPad. If I had OnSong or another software program I'm not certain what that adds and would I need to have Adobe Acrobat to create PDFs?

As you can see I'm over my head here.
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Old 02-12-2013, 11:20 AM
skitoolong skitoolong is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Berger View Post
Slight left turn here -

I'm a bit technically challenged in this area and need some help.

I have an iPad 2 and I would like to be able to use it to 'read' the sheet music I have that is in hard copy (for practicing etc)

Would OnSong enable me to do that? I'd appreciate it if someone would explain the process or direct me to an online tutorial.

I'm probably off-base here but I'm thinking I would have to scan the sheet music into my iMac and then email and open up the document on my iPad. If I had OnSong or another software program I'm not certain what that adds and would I need to have Adobe Acrobat to create PDFs?

As you can see I'm over my head here.

I'm a new onsong user, and yes it can do what you are asking. But the real power of the software comes when you are not reading PDF's. Using a text import and adhering to certain formatting conventions (that most text based chord sheets are written in anyway) Onsong can change keys for you on the fly, as well as other slick things.

But for strictly viewing music, PDF's work fine. You can set them to scroll at the speed you like as well.

For import you can use Itunes, but since I abhor that software I use either an import (from internet) or dropbox.

Mostly I use dropbox. That way I can create a folder in dropbox, drop any pdf, or text file, or whatever format of song I have and open that folder from within Onsong on the ipad and import away.

It's pretty awesome stuff. I followed some of the recommendations here and bought one of those $25 ipad holders that clip onto my music sheet stand, and at this point most of my binders have gone the way of the Dodo.
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  #11  
Old 02-12-2013, 12:04 PM
Steve Berger Steve Berger is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skitoolong View Post
I'm a new onsong user, and yes it can do what you are asking. But the real power of the software comes when you are not reading PDF's. Using a text import and adhering to certain formatting conventions (that most text based chord sheets are written in anyway) Onsong can change keys for you on the fly, as well as other slick things.

But for strictly viewing music, PDF's work fine. You can set them to scroll at the speed you like as well.

For import you can use Itunes, but since I abhor that software I use either an import (from internet) or dropbox.

Mostly I use dropbox. That way I can create a folder in dropbox, drop any pdf, or text file, or whatever format of song I have and open that folder from within Onsong on the ipad and import away.

It's pretty awesome stuff. I followed some of the recommendations here and bought one of those $25 ipad holders that clip onto my music sheet stand, and at this point most of my binders have gone the way of the Dodo.
Hi skitoolong

I appreciate your input. Since I posted I did find some OnSong YouTube videos that were helpful. And I can see it works best with plain text files.

I think my issue is more about getting my fairly extensive catalog of hard copy paper single sheet music and songs in song books into my iPad so they are better organized and more usable (easer to read etc).

If there is an alternative to 'scanning' them into my iMac then I would love to learn about it.
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Last edited by Steve Berger; 02-12-2013 at 12:18 PM.
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  #12  
Old 02-12-2013, 03:12 PM
skitoolong skitoolong is offline
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Originally Posted by Steve Berger View Post
Hi skitoolong

I appreciate your input. Since I posted I did find some OnSong YouTube videos that were helpful. And I can see it works best with plain text files.

I think my issue is more about getting my fairly extensive catalog of hard copy paper single sheet music and songs in song books into my iPad so they are better organized and more usable (easer to read etc).

If there is an alternative to 'scanning' them into my iMac then I would love to learn about it.
I think it depends on how you got them in the first place. Most of the paper I accumulated for my binders was from some online source anyway. So I just went back and found what it was and found the best means to put it on the Ipad. Many of the files which were not the best representation of a text file, I just copied/pasted into a new text file, made any adjustments, dumped it in drop box and away I went.

On some of the others where I had no great digital source, I just put the scans in for now and I'll deal with changing them over time, that is if I feel like it's necessary. For some , it's not because I've written on them, or have drawings, etc. So in those cases the PDF is a good thing.

I dump all manner of documents onto my Ipad for my new found learning journey. From OnSong, I can easily look at chord forms, charts of progressions I am working on, or diagrams I see that are useful.

Heck, I can even link a chord chart to a song on the Ipad from within OnSong and play along (which is my favorite way right now to learn to play up to speed)

The Ipad has made learning much more simplified for me.
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  #13  
Old 02-12-2013, 07:36 PM
showngo2000 showngo2000 is offline
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I rushed OnSong for iPad for about 2 years now. I love all the features that are built in to it. I've went from 5 6" binders to an ipad. I can find the songs faster and read them easier.

I also bought the Airturn bluetooth pedal that allows page turning (and other options) to the app. An outstanding combination for any guitar player!
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  #14  
Old 02-12-2013, 09:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Berger View Post
...I think my issue is more about getting my fairly extensive catalog of hard copy paper single sheet music and songs in song books into my iPad so they are better organized and more usable (easer to read etc).
...If there is an alternative to 'scanning' them into my iMac then I would love to learn about it.
Hi Steve...
If you are converting musical scores, or musical scores with lyrics and chords, then you will have to scan them into the computer, and convert them to pdf. (more on that below)

If you are converting songs where lyrics can be looked up on the internet, and then imported into OnSong or into a word processor and formatted (far faster than formatting them in OnSong), you can drag and drop them when tethered in iTunes directly into OnSong, where you can then import and re-format them according to OnSong's protocols.

It is usually faster to look them up on the internet, copy/paste them into a word processor and reformat them there, then drag-n-drop them into iTunes. There are very specific 'rules' you must follow or OnSong will not recognize the chords, verses, chorus, metadata etc. If you don't adhere to the rules, you will not be able to change keys, or hi-lite chords or text, or reduce the size of metadata (author, copyright etc).

When the formatting is off, it requires reformatting the song in OnSong before you can take advantage of key changes, hi-lite or change font size of chords (versus the text). The rules are straight forward and easy to follow.

An imported song that is improperly formatted takes 5-15 minutes to edit from within OnSong after you know the rules. The learning curve is it takes about 10 charts converted to get really proficient at it. It's still faster to use a word processor and embed (ChordPro style) chords in brackets.

You can just suck songs right into OnSong from Chordie. Sometimes they even work right. If not, then reformatting them is a chore to do on the iPad itself. It doesn't diagnose mistakes, you must figure them out on your own, then fix them.

It can be made easier if you use a bluetooth keyboard, but retyping and reformatting, inserting spaces, hard returns and bracketing chords within OnSong on the iPad is a bit slow.

I've been dialoguing with the support team of OnSong and the features which would make it smoother, and they keep promising me that the things I have asked about are under consideration for version 2...due soon. I don't live well in ''due soon'' land, so until then I continue to format songs manually and use UnRealBook.

OnSong can display pdf files, edit text based pdf files, and straight text based files, and ChordPro embedded text files. OnSong's strength is that it specializes at ChordPro and Text based songs. This is what ties to the key changing features. Yet, you can only display pdf files which are scanned and not created from text based originals.

UnrealBook's strength is displaying, resizing, quick building of lists, and quick switching from song to song on the fly. It is strictly a pdf display app. Simple, straightforward, and you drag-n-drop files into it via iTunes when tethered as well.

Here's an answer to the Adobe Acrobat question…
You have an iMac.

If you didn't realize this, any file on any Mac can be converted to pdf format from any program which prints simply by hitting Command-P (the print command) and at the print dialogue window, choose PDF in the lower left corner. In the Drop-down menu the second item is "Save as PDF" I print mine to the desktop and use them from there.

You never need Adobe Acrobat to convert files to pdf on a Mac unless you are creating forms which need to be filled out.

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Old 02-13-2013, 07:46 AM
Steve Berger Steve Berger is offline
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Hi Larry, Thank you for your very helpful input. Since my original post (and before your response) I had downloaded OnSong and learned first hand some of it's strengths and weaknesses. I also downloaded unrealBook but have not tried it it yet.

In my original post I did not state very clearly the PDF problem I am having. I'll try again and maybe you (or another forumite) can help.

I am aware the iMac can do all the PDF conversions you referenced above.

For whatever reason, when I scan sheet music into my iMac using an HP 7200 All in One and 'either' the HO bundled software 'or' the Image Capture software on the iMac itself (I have Snow Leopard), I haven't been able to combine scanned-in documents into a 'single (1) multi-page PDF formatted document.'

I've never been a fan of the HP 7200 unit or the HP bundled software and the Image Capture software is also fairly lame.

When scanning, I've tried using the 'scan menu' on the HP 7200 itself and alternately the scan menu in the HP software and also the scan menu in Image Capture. So far nothing seems to enable me to make a single multi-page PDF.

So any help would be greatly appreciated. Including what scanner input settings to use and any scanner or all-in-one unit recommendations are welcome too.

For my needs, once I get this PDF problem solved, I believe I will be using unrealBook as my primary app.




Quote:
Originally Posted by ljguitar View Post
Hi Steve...
If you are converting musical scores, or musical scores with lyrics and chords, then you will have to scan them into the computer, and convert them to pdf. (more on that below)

If you are converting songs where lyrics can be looked up on the internet, and then imported into OnSong or into a word processor and formatted (far faster than formatting them in OnSong), you can drag and drop them when tethered in iTunes directly into OnSong, where you can then import and re-format them according to OnSong's protocols.

It is usually faster to look them up on the internet, copy/paste them into a word processor and reformat them there, then drag-n-drop them into iTunes. There are very specific 'rules' you must follow or OnSong will not recognize the chords, verses, chorus, metadata etc. If you don't adhere to the rules, you will not be able to change keys, or hi-lite chords or text, or reduce the size of metadata (author, copyright etc).

When the formatting is off, it requires reformatting the song in OnSong before you can take advantage of key changes, hi-lite or change font size of chords (versus the text). The rules are straight forward and easy to follow.

An imported song that is improperly formatted takes 5-15 minutes to edit from within OnSong after you know the rules. The learning curve is it takes about 10 charts converted to get really proficient at it. It's still faster to use a word processor and embed (ChordPro style) chords in brackets.

You can just suck songs right into OnSong from Chordie. Sometimes they even work right. If not, then reformatting them is a chore to do on the iPad itself. It doesn't diagnose mistakes, you must figure them out on your own, then fix them.

It can be made easier if you use a bluetooth keyboard, but retyping and reformatting, inserting spaces, hard returns and bracketing chords within OnSong on the iPad is a bit slow.

I've been dialoguing with the support team of OnSong and the features which would make it smoother, and they keep promising me that the things I have asked about are under consideration for version 2...due soon. I don't live well in ''due soon'' land, so until then I continue to format songs manually and use UnRealBook.

OnSong can display pdf files, edit text based pdf files, and straight text based files, and ChordPro embedded text files. OnSong's strength is that it specializes at ChordPro and Text based songs. This is what ties to the key changing features. Yet, you can only display pdf files which are scanned and not created from text based originals.

UnrealBook's strength is displaying, resizing, quick building of lists, and quick switching from song to song on the fly. It is strictly a pdf display app. Simple, straightforward, and you drag-n-drop files into it via iTunes when tethered as well.

Here's an answer to the Adobe Acrobat question…
You have an iMac.

If you didn't realize this, any file on any Mac can be converted to pdf format from any program which prints simply by hitting Command-P (the print command) and at the print dialogue window, choose PDF in the lower left corner. In the Drop-down menu the second item is "Save as PDF" I print mine to the desktop and use them from there.

You never need Adobe Acrobat to convert files to pdf on a Mac unless you are creating forms which need to be filled out.

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