Take the 2-minute tour ×
Android Enthusiasts Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for enthusiasts and power users of the Android operating system. It's 100% free, no registration required.

As a chorus and opera singer, I frequently download public-domain scores in PDF form. I would like to read them on an Android tablet during rehearsals. I don't have an Android tablet myself yet, but from my experience with an Android phone (small screen) and iPad tablet, I expect the following flaws:

  • Some PDF files containing high-resolution scans of the score take a long time to display. The degree of lag is a function of how the PDF file was made. In some scores it seems like the page starts off blurry and comes into focus. (Observed on iPad)
  • It's difficult to jump to arbitrary points in the score (e.g. director says, "let's skip to page 166", those with books turn easily, I fumble fumble on the device) (Observed on phone and iPad)
  • It's hard to add bookmarks to PDF files to correspond to rehearsal numbers, to speed up jumping to points in the score. (Observed on phone and iPad)
  • There's no way I know of to make annotations on the score during a rehearsal, even an "x" to say "review this later". (Observed on phone and iPad)
  • Other wishes for Android PDF readers, gleaned from about a dozen questions here on Android.SE tagged with

So I'm looking for a good way to read PDF musical scores on Android tablet in rehearsal and performance. I'm looking for characteristics like:

  • Should read ahead in the PDF file, digesting the next couple of pages of the score, so that when I turn to the next page, the page appears instantly -- for all PDF files, even those with high-resolution scanned images.
  • Easy ways to jump to page numbers and rehearsal numbers quickly, while rehearsing.
  • Ways to add bookmarks to scores for rehearsal numbers
  • Some way of annotating the score.
  • Displays each musical staff at least 7mm high
  • Displays the score at least 15cm x 10cm, preferably 20cm x 25cm, and a huge 50cm x 33cm would be even better.
  • I can think of many features which would make the experience even better.

Can any of you recommend a way to use an Android device as a good PDF musical score reader?

Background: I'm dithering about whether to buy an iPad or Android tablet, and music score reading is an important use case for me. Knowing there's a good way to get the job done will influence my choice.

I have found only one other question in Android.SE, Auto scrolling PDF reader?. They ask only about the auto-scrolling feature, which is one I actually don't find so important.

There is a Music.SE site, but they consider questions like this one out of scope.

Update: rephrased into a "How can I do X?" question per Android.SE meta discussion.

share|improve this question
    
Unfortunately this question is off-topic as asking for recommendations is forbidden, read the FAQ, thanks! :) –  t0mm13b Jan 4 '13 at 19:20
2  
Rephrased into a "How can I do X?" question per Android.SE meta discussion. –  Jim DeLaHunt Jan 4 '13 at 20:03
    
The brussels orchestra already does this (using Samsung 10.1 tabs), afaik they have custom apps. Maybe ask them? global.samsungtomorrow.com/?p=20238 –  ce4 Jan 4 '13 at 20:49
    
+1 I've thought about this myself (as an amateur handbell ringer) -- but the ability to mark up the score would be a must-have. –  TomG Jan 5 '13 at 2:26
add comment

2 Answers

Agreed, I think MobileSheets or the Fakebook (my favourite) is the way to go. Quick browsing in music and (almost) no delay when swiping between pages. Some of the other features between these two varies, so YMMV. Fakebook is at http://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.skrivarna.fakebook.android Hope this helps!

share|improve this answer
add comment

I think that MobileSheets http://www.zubersoft.com/mobilesheets/about.html might be useful?

share|improve this answer
2  
Tell me more. What is it about MobileSheets that would make it useful? Have you used it? What works well and poorly? –  Jim DeLaHunt Apr 5 '13 at 1:42
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.