Notation Express XL is available for Sibelius and Dorico


At NYC Music Services we’re very excited to release Notation Express XL for Sibelius and Dorico. Notation Express XL is a fully customized profile for the Elgato Stream Deck XL console that puts powerful features at your fingertips by pushing a button on the expansive 8×4 grid.

In May, Elgato announced the Stream Deck XL, a larger version of its popular 15-key Stream Deck console, for which Notation Express for Sibelius and Notation Express for Dorico were designed. Right away we began fielding inquiries about making an “XL” version of Notation Express to suit the Stream Deck XL. Finally we can say it’s been asked and answered!

Notation Express XL takes advantage of the larger grid by reducing the number of subfolders necessary to navigate to functions, which means your favorite buttons can all be in one place. But that’s just the tip of the notational iceberg. XL adds lots of new, exclusive features, including key and time signatures for the first time.

It’s as if the Elgato designers had the 31 standard key signatures in mind when they created the Stream Deck XL.

If you’re an English speaker, typing characters with diacritics can be a chore, especially on Windows. Notation Express XL has a whole grid with those for easy input, plus some other commonly used “special” characters.

The Notes screen has been re-imagined so that it’s got more features at your disposal during note input, and comes with directional arrows so you can navigate on the Stream Deck XL without heading back to the computer keyboard. The Sibelius and Dorico screens are similar but slightly different.

Notes screen on Notation Express XL for Sibelius
Notes screen on Notation Express XL for Dorico

Jazz articulations are in Notation Express XL for the first time (shown is the Dorico setup).

Noteheads come to Notation Express XL Dorico; they were already in Notation Express for Sibelius.

There’s so much more that’s new in Notation Express XL, like:

  • Many more articulations in Dorico
  • More notes: Double-sharp, double-flat, cue-size toggle, slur on/off toggle, slide left and right
  • Access to the three custom articulation slots in Sibelius
  • Crescendo from / Diminuendo to niente
  • Add a sub. suffix directly to any selected dynamic
  • Transposing score toggle
  • More techniques
  • Dorico: Write/Engrave buttons on most screens (by popular request!)
  • Sibelius: Music characters for text input in to tempo marks, etc.
  • Program your own time signature button
  • More space to rearrange your favorite icons and copy them to the home or other screen
  • One-button access to product references and help forums

Check out the video above for a whirlwind tour of some of the highlights.

As before, I’ve got expert Dorico user Leo Nicholson to thank for devising the Dorico version of Notation Express XL, which includes some advanced scripting wizardry in the Dorico key command file, among other brilliant ideas.

Notation Express XL for Sibelius or Dorico is available from NYC Music Services for $39 and requires the Elgato Stream Deck XL console, sold separately from Amazon and other retailers. A $49 bundle for Notation Express and Notation Express XL is also available.

If you’ve already purchased Notation Express and wish to get Notation Express XL, contact NYC Music Services by sending a message through the contact form at the bottom of the Notation Express product page, and you’ll get instructions for a crossgrade (please be patient as it’s a manual process). Include the e-mail address you used for your original purchase.

This means that if you have the original Stream Deck, you can run the two side-by-side for some awesome power. Notation Express and Notation Express XL rely on the same set of shortcuts, although if you already have Notation Express, you’ll want to update to get the latest installer, which updates the .sfs (Sibelius) or .json (Dorico) files under the hood to ensure compatibility.

If you have Notation Express and Notation Express XL, this panoply of buttons is also possible, if you own a Stream Deck, a Stream Deck XL, and have a subscription to the Stream Deck Mobile app for iOS, all of which must be purchased separately, of course!



  1. Peter Hamlin

    This is very cool!

    Just a quick comment — re “typing characters with diacritics can be a chore, especially on Windows.”

    On Windows, international characters are SUPER easy. Just install the international keyboard (which you do in language settings). Type one of several diacriticals (~, ‘, “, etc.), then the letter, so you get ñ, é, è, ö, etc., with only two easy-to-remember keystrokes.

    1. Philip Rothman

      Hi Peter! Thanks for that tip! As an only-sometimes Windows user (mostly Mac), I was still using the old 4-digit code method on the keypad. This is better!

      1. Peter Hamlin

        I forgot to mention alt-shift-c for © — three keystrokes still easy to remember.

  2. Carlo van der Put

    Hi Philip,
    I’m interested in the Notation Express XL ; I do already have Notation Express…



    1. Philip Rothman

      Hi Carlo! You have mail.

  3. Mike Philcox

    I use Notation Express via my iPad and anticipate getting the StreamDeck XL when I can afford it. I am wondering: if I upgrade my Notation Express app to Notation Express XL, will I be able to use the wider variety of buttons/controls using my iPad?

    1. Philip Rothman

      Hi Mike. No, unfortunately this is not currently supported by Elgato. For the time being, only an array of large 5 x 3 buttons will appear on the iPad. However, they have told me that they will “probably” support the XL layout on the iPad at some point in the future. But it is really up to them. It would be great if they would support the 8 x 4 grid on the iPad, since it seems like a natural fit.

      1. Mike Philcox

        Thanks for your fast reply. Hopefully, Elgato will follow up on this and make StreamDeck XL fully compatible on the iPad.

  4. Boris Hellmers-Spethmann

    Dear Team, I would like to congratulate you on the Notation Express. I am running B-Note music publishers in Germany. I found your product video so convincing that I ordered the XL deck and your software immediately. I am a Dorico 3 for some weeks after long Sibelius years. The software is wonderful, but many important little features are not intuitive to use. With the Notation Express this is so much easier: Suddenly the software speaks in the language “notation” with me. This is even better than Sibelius’s well thought-out keypad concept. In writing and in engraving mode I would estimate doubling the operating speed. Thanks for that! Just one more thing: Maybe you could offer versions for international keyboard layouts? I have changed several shortkeys myself, but maybe not everyone will succeed.

    1. Philip Rothman

      Hi Boris. Thanks so much for your nice remarks and for sharing your experience with Notation Express! I am so glad it’s working for you. I do recognize that we have a number of international users. For the time being, the only official version is in English and that is simply due to the limitations we have on testing each version and the time involved. There are actually 8(!) versions of Notation Express – Sibelius & Dorico, each for Mac & PC, and each “original” and XL, so adding full support for another language would double that amount. In the future I would, at least, like to take some more “unofficial” versions that non-English users have modified and submitted and make them available to registered users.

  5. Mark Scheibe

    Dear Team, I’m happy to work with Notation Express and Sibelius on a Stream Deck XL and I’m thrilled because of so many helpful features that have the potential to boost my workflow. There is one issue that bothers me heavily, though: the undo function doesn’t work anymore for more than one step. Is there something that I have overseen to make this work properly again? Thanks for your help, greetings from Venice,

    1. Philip Rothman

      Hi Mark: Thanks for your nice comments! The Undo problem that you’re experiencing does not sound like it’s related to anything that would be affected by Notation Express. I’ll contact you offline to troubleshoot further.

  6. David Rubenstein

    I see that Notation Express and Notation Exrpress XL are not recommended for earlier versions of Sibelius. My question, though, is will it work with Sibelius 6? Perhaps with some modifications?

    1. Philip Rothman

      Hi David. I’m afraid I really can’t recommend the experience of using it with Sibelius 6. The shortcut profile won’t work, and there are a number of other limitations both having to do with the Stream Deck desktop app and Sibelius 6 (which was released 13 years ago and is no longer supported even by Avid).

      If you do decide to try it, it would be completely unsupported. The good news is, you’ll get all the buttons and icons popping up in the correct place on the Stream Deck, but that’s about it. The installer for Sibelius wouldn’t do anything for you and it would then be up to you to make it work with Sibelius 6.

  7. Peter Hamlin

    I finally came around to buying an Elgato Stream Deck XL. Not cheap, but I was blown away by the build quality of the device and how beautiful it is to use. It’s great to have all those buttons, but it’s also compact enough not to hog too much space on my work desk. Definitely worth the money.

    Notation Express is a revelation! It’s a beautifully designed and elegant tool.

    I’m also finding the Stream Deck super useful with Nuendo which is a wonderful program but (to me, anyway) a keyboard shortcut nightmare.

    Thanks for an amazingly useful notation tool!

    1. Philip Rothman

      Hi Peter, I’m so happy to hear it! Enjoy!

  8. Edward Azote Leis

    I recently bought a stream deck XL and found out about your compatibility with musescore, ive noticed in the web store both the Sibelius and Dorico Pro profiles are available for purchase how ever the musescore one is still unavailable despite the newest version being available, any up dates on roughly when this product will be back on the market?

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