Freehand MusicPad Pro Plus Version 4.0 Electronic Sheet Music Display

Some of the less obvious features:

Video output. You can feed this to a projector or external monitor which can be a big help if you are teacher or have multiple people working from the same sheet.

  • Footpedal. You can change pages via a footpedal (no more messing with pages).
  • Displays in portrait or landscape mode. Allows you to show two pages.
  • Jump to repeats. Automatically jumps to repeats, again eliminating paper shuffling.
  • Quiet. No paper shuffling which can be handy when recording. (we're not sure if it has a fan but it is not mentioned so we suspect it doesn't).

It's worth noting issues people have had with this device:

  • Converting files can be slow. Apparently, you have to convert the files one at a time. If you have a lot of pieces that you need to import, this can be a long and tedious process. One reviewer returned his and just uses a laptop on a music stand. If the display of a laptop is big enough for you this is certainly a good direction to investigate. The touch screen is a nice advantage for the MusicPad Pro.
  • Sometimes converted fiels are not readable. Not sure why this is but is probably a software but that will eventually be fixed.
  • Battery life is limited. Reports of battries dying after less than a year. This may not be a deal breaker if you always use a power supply in critical situations anyway.
  • If it dies, you're dead in the water. We haven't heard any reports of these dying but like any tool, if you can't survive without it, you'll probably want two. This is true of most musical instruments but even more so with electronic devices since they are generally less reliable than traditional instruments. You can spill coffee on sheet music and loose a page or two but if your laptop or the MusicPad dies, it may be totally unuseable. We still love this thing but be warned.

Like many new technologies, the conversion from the old can be tedious (converting CDs to MP3s, etc..) but ultimately results in something revolutionary. This could be one of those technologies. We're keeping an eye on this one.

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