I am very happy running an older version of Sibelius for my score setting. I made it to version 6, have used 7 on occasion, but see no real need to go any further, for the iteration that I have is more than enough for me.

The sounds may be better on the flashier, newer generations, and the interface may be better (although I have found that it is swings and roundabouts), but I know Sib 6, understand how it works, and have little desire to go through the learning experience once more, having worked my way up from the very first version. I sometimes still instinctively press the space key to begin playback, which went the way of the dinosaurs a long time ago.

I am also reluctant to put any money into Avid, the company that bought Sibelius and then promptly sacked their development team in the UK. It probably makes no difference to them at all (Avid, that is), but those actions make a difference to me.

Anyway, my trusty laptop keeled over last weekend, and all my tinkering with the innards of the command line could not save it, so I have upgraded to a “new” one, a refurb, as always. Thus it was that I needed to register Sibelius 6 on my new machine, but the registration website no longer exists. So I arrived at the Avid website, and one of those round-the-houses iterations of hell where clicking on the link for registering “legacy versions” of Sibelius took you to another page, where clicking the link to submit the request took you back to the former page.

It seemed that the only way out of this digital equivalent of the M25 was to pay £19.99 for the privilege of being able to call phone support, which I resolutely refused to do. Thankfully I found a dusty corner of the old Sibelius site which still registers older copies of their software, so, after a fair bit of searching it was done. Sibelius 1, Avid 0. Again.