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With every new Finale release, many new productivity enhancements are added to Finale, so it's easy to miss a few of them. Although these are all explained in the manuals, here are a couple of very important productivity enhancements in the latest releases of Finale:

  • Since Finale 2005, you can use FinaleScript to create sequences that access any menu commands in Finale.
  • Since Finale 2005, you can use shortcut keys to zoom in and out, navigate screens right/left in Scroll View, and to fit window.
  • Since Finale 2005, you can record any continous data in Hyperscribe.
  • Since Finale 2004, you can find out which note an articulation is connected to by holding down Ctrl[Win] Option[Mac] while clicking on an articulation handle. You can also now find out which measure(s) a smart shape or staff expression is connected to using the same technique.
  • Since Finale 2004, you can optionally display Hidden Notes in grey. The grey level can be adjusted in the Program Options.
  • Since Finale 2004, you can use both the computer keyboard and MIDI keyboard for input in Simple Entry. You can also use Simple Entry to add elements like articulations and clefs.
  • Since Finale 2003a, you can create both crescendo and diminuendo using only one of the hairpin tools. Drag in the oposite direction to create the other type of hairpin. Same technique also applies to the lines with hooks.
  • Since Finale 2003, you can set groups to use a certain kind of Group Optimization.
  • Since Finale 2003, you can find out which note a note expression is connected to by holding down Ctrl[Win] Option[Mac] while clicking on a note expression handle.
  • Since Finale 2003, you can let the Staff Attributes control things like stem directions and lengths, beams or no beams and augmentation dots. You might find this useful when using Staff Styles.
  • Since Finale 2002b, you can create any type of smart shape by using smart shape metatools.
  • Since Finale 2002, you can align and resize hairpins (crescendi and diminuendi) to conform to the same position. Select multiple hairpins within the same staff (=horizontally) or measure (=vertically), display the contextual menu and select Align Horizontally or Align Vertically.
  • Since Finale 2002, the Speedy Entry keys can "look back" at the previous measure if the current measure is empty. When you move to a new measure, just use the Speedy modifier keys as you would normally do, and it'll affect the previous measure's last entry.
  • Since Finale 2002, you can reprogram keys on your MIDI keyboard to act like some of the Speedy commands. Use the Speedy/Speedy Options... dialog box to define the functionality you need.
  • Since Finale 2002, if you accidentaly click a note at the wrong pitch in Simple Entry, just drag the note to the place where you want it.
  • Since Finale 2001, you can use any font/character/size for individual accidentals with the Accidental Mover Tool (in the Special Tools).
  • Since Finale 2001, you can play a 3-note cluster on the MIDI keyboard in Speedy Entry to create a rest.
  • Since Finale 2001, you can use shorcut keys to select layers.
  • Since Finale 2000, you can drag-enclose multiple notes in the Articulation Tool while holding down a metatool key (or the Delete/Clear key) to create (or delete) articulations on each of these notes.
  • Since Finale 2000, there are some metatools available for the SmartShape tool ('S', '<', '>'). Hold any of these keys down while creating a new smart shape.
  • In all Finale versions, the Edit Frame dialog is available while holding down Ctrl[Win] Option[Mac] while clicking at a measure in Speedy or Simple Entry (in Fin2002 and later, this is only available in Speedy Entry). Remember that the Speedy frame must be closed before clicking on the measure. Although this dialog box is very technical, it might be needed for operations such as:

- Accurately position horizontally-displaced notes.
- Create 256th-notes, 512ths, even 1024ths.
- Beam together voice-2 notes launched from different voice-1 notes.
- Hide the ledger lines for a single note.
- Nest or un-nest tuplets in voices one and two.