The latest version of Steinberg’s composition and music software is now available for Windows, macOS and iPad OS platforms. Dorico 5 introduces a range of powerful new features designed to make playback more expressive and realistic, along with a helpful selection of new workflow and customisation options.
Stage & Space Templates
New Stage and Space Templates features provide a quick and simple way of auditioning different virtual player positions and rooms. They are said to be particularly effective when working with sample libraries that utilise close miking techniques and rely on detailed mixing to produce the desired stereo image for an ensemble.
Stage Templates use a simple visual interface that displays each instrument channel as a dot on a virtual stage. Users are able to move each dot around freely whilst the software automatically translates the movements into panning and reverb data. Multiple configuration templates can be saved and quickly compared against each other to experiment with different sounds.
Space Templates then offer a similar functionality, this time concentrating on the virtual space created by convolution reverbs. Different reverb presets, configurations and routing settings can be quickly saved and recalled, making it easy to audition contrasting room sounds.
A range of playback-focused features have also been introduced, including a new Pitch Contour Emphasis function which aims to add more realistic shape to programmed melodic phrases by modelling the dynamics of human musicians. Expression Maps have gained new capabilities such as a per-switch delay option, whilst a new Scrub Playback mode provides a quick and easy way of checking specific points within a composition.
Dorico also now includes Groove Agent SE, Steinberg’s creative drum software which comes loaded with a sampled drum kit and over 400 patterns, and also offers a quick and intuitive way to build realistic rhythm section parts thanks to new MIDI trigger regions.
Version 5 also introduces a number of other improvements, with users now able to create multiple markings and notations at once across multiple instruments, even at different positions for each instrument.
The immediacy of clicking and dragging notes in the piano roll has been extended to the notation view, and new live editing features make it possible to edit and copy music using only the mouse. There are also a whole host of new customisation options, and a new Instrument Editor window which allows users to save definitions that determine how music is written for each of the software’s 600 default instruments.
SE, iPad & Elements
The update also significantly expands the capabilities of the entry-level and mid-range products in the Dorico range, with the free Dorico SE and Dorico for iPad versions now allowing users to write for ensembles of up to eight players instead of two. Dorico Elements can now be used for ensembles of any size, having previously been limited to 24 players, and also benefits from the addition of the Playback Options feature from Dorico Pro, an expanded Engrave mode with staff and note spacing tools, and a range of new customisation options for text and music fonts.
Dorico 5 is supported on PCs running Windows 10 or 11, and Macs running macOS 10.15 and higher. 12GB of disk space is required, and Steinberg list a minimum RAM requirement of 8GB, with 16GB recommended. For Windows, a 64-bit Intel or AMD multi-core processor is required, with an Intel i5 or faster recommended, whilst Mac users will require a mid 2013 model or later.
Pricing & Availability
Dorico 5 is available now, with pricing as follows:
- Dorico 5 Elements: $99.99£85 including VAT / €99.99
- Dorico 5 Pro: $579.99£497 including VAT / €579
Discounted updates, upgrades, crossgrades and educational versions are available via the Steinberg website, and customers who have activated Dorico Elements 4 or Pro 4 or earlier versions since 1 April 2023 are eligible for a free grace period update to the latest equivalent version.
Dorico SE 5 is available as a free download from the Steinberg website, and Dorico for iPad is available for free from the Apple App Store.