Music Software

Overview Music software is some of the most popular software on the Internet today. It includes software that allows you to listen to, record, and edit music files. Some music software also allows you to change the format of digital music files on your PC. For music fans, there are software packages that include a CD ripper, MP3 player, and MP3 encoding software. For musicians and music students, there is software available for ear-training, notation, computer-aided music, and MIDI sequencing. The Internet serves as a great resource for music lovers and musicians alike, providing a large amount of music software, as well as music file sharing, forums, and links sites of interest. 

General Information There are many music resource sites where you can find music software downloads and general information. While some music resource sites specialize in one type of software, MP3 music files and players for example, other sites attempt to encompass all types of music software. The MTLC music software Web page is one such place. It offers a list of products for each type of music software that is mentioned on their site. Additionally, this site offers overviews of music resources, product reviews, and links to music software companies’ Web sites. Another Web page with a broad range of music software information is www.hitsquad.com/smm. This Web page offers short descriptions and links to the newest music software items on the market today. You can visit the Harmony Central Website if you are looking specifically for music software available for the Mac platform and the Windows platform. This site contains frequently updated music news articles as well as resources for learning, creating, and recording music.

Audio Editing Software Creating, mixing, and editing music is the job of audio editing software. Some audio editing software offers simple, easy-to-use tools, while professional audio editing software contains more precise controls and powerful features such as sound effects, plug-ins, and compatibility with other music software and hardware. Visit www.partnersinrhyme.com to browse the long list of shareware audio editing software. Another site, www.sonicspot.com, offers reviews and downloads, and also provides a list of “preferred” software for specific audio editing tasks. If you would like to view the features of the professional audio editing software Sound Forge, visit the Sonic Foundry Web site

MP3 Players The popularity of the MP3 format for digital music files has exploded over the last couple of years. Internet users can share their MP3 files with other users thanks to the proliferation of P2P (peer-to-peer) file-sharing Web sites. Additionally, many MP3 players can be found online for download, including both free and commercial versions. These players can play, record, and store MP3 files. Some players feature additional functionality such as Web radio access and music shopping systems. The Windows operating system usually includes the Windows Media Player, but other products, such as Music Match (www.musicmatch.com) or WinAmp (www.winamp.com),can be downloaded free of charge. 

CD Ripper and MP3 Encoding Software If you are interested in making MP3 files from your own audio CDs or WAV files, then CD ripper and MP3 encoding software are the tools of choice. Visit any of the following Web sites to view the three major commercial CD ripper and MP3 encoding programs: www.audiograbber.com-us.net, www.real.com or www.nch.com/au. Are you looking for CD ripper and MP3 encoder software for Linux operating systems? If so, visit www.mp3-converter.com/linux to read about and download various MP3 Encoder Software applications. 

Ear Training Software People interested in using their PC to learn music elements by sound and hearing training should look into ear training software. At the Michigan State University ear training software site (www.msu.edu/user/spangle9), you’ll find a long list (50+ items) of ear training software links, descriptions, reviews, and even user feedback. Additionally, you can visit a commercial ear training software maker such as MiBAC (www.mibac.com/Pages/ML.html) to read about their version of ear training software. 

Notation Software Music notation software is essentially a word processor for music. It allows you to create, print, and hear music scores. Visit any of the following three Web sites for information about the specific features included in their versions of music notation software: www.codamusic.com/coda, www.mozart.co.uk, or www.sibelius.com.

Computer-Aided Music Software Do you need a little help composing some music? If so, you might want to look at computer-aided music software. Check out www.hitsquad.com for the latest software, features, effects, and updates. Visit either CakeWalk (www.cakewalk.com) or PG Music (www.pgmusic.com) to read about these popular commercial music-generating programs. 

MIDI Sequencing Software This type of music software allows users to record music using standard MIDI equipment. The MIDI information that is recorded can then be edited and stored on a PC. You can also control any digital MIDI instrument using this type of software. Visit www.synthzone.com/midiseq.htm to view descriptions of MIDI sequencing software, complete with links to the manufacturers. You might also want to visit www.audiomelody.com to download a free MIDI sequencer for Windows.