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The 10 Best Free Music Transcription Software and Apps

free music transcription software

Would you like to discover the best music transcription software? You’ve come to the right place!

Finding sheet music for certain songs or arrangements on the Internet can be tedious. And it’s even more complex to transcribe them yourself.

Fortunately, as technology continues to advance, a number of software programs and applications have emerged that specialize in transcribing musical notes. These tools enable us, in just a few minutes, to obtain a transcription of a given song that would have taken us hours or even days to transcribe ourselves.

In this article, we present the 10 best applications for recognizing and transcribing songs into musical notes. They’ll all come in handy and save you a lot of time.

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pianoconvert logo


Transcribe your YouTube links and audio files of piano pieces into PDF, MIDI and MusicXML scores.

PianoConvert is the most accurate software for recognizing and transcribing piano pieces into musical notes. Simply import a YouTube link or an audio file (MP3, WAV, …) of a piano piece into the software, and download the transcription result in PDF, MIDI and MusicXML formats.

Based on advanced artificial intelligence algorithms, PianoConvert offers the best piano transcription on the market, with an accuracy rate of around 97%.

It’s also relatively quick to transcribe music. In just 2-3 minutes, you’ll have your song transcribed in all 3 formats. All you have to do is download the 3 files to your device.

What’s more, the musical note transcription is relatively exhaustive, taking into account :

  • Notes
  • Tempo (BPM)
  • Bars
  • Treble and bass clefs (automatic separation of left and right hand notes)

The software lets you transcribe the first 30 seconds of any piano song, free of charge. To convert the whole song, you can choose between 4 offers:

  • Single transcript (1 transcript): €3.99
  • Package Pianist (3 transcriptions): €8.90 (€2.99 / transcription)
  • Package Virtuoso (10 transcriptions) : 19,90€ (1,99€ / transcription)
  • Package Maestro (50 transcriptions): €49.50 (€0.99 / transcription)

Finally, it’s important to note that PianoConvert is an app accessible directly online, from your web browser. So there’s no need to install or update the software – everything is managed in the cloud.

In short, if you want to transcribe piano-only pieces, we highly recommend this software, which will save you a considerable amount of time thanks to the accuracy of its output.

Introducing PianoConvert music transcription software.

pianoconvert presentation
pianoconvert music transcription app
scorecloud logo


Transcribe multi-instrument pieces into scores

ScoreCloud is a software application dedicated to the automatic transcription of multi-instrument music pieces.

Although this application is much less accurate than PianoConvert for solo piano, it can nevertheless handle pieces comprising several instruments at the same time.

In addition to note recognition, the software offers other functions such as score editing, file sharing with other users and audio recording.

Note that, unlike PianoConvert, here you won’t be able to directly import a YouTube link to transcribe the song. Instead, you’ll need to obtain the audio file from the YouTube video before importing it into the software.

ScoreCloud is available for download on Windows and Mac OS and is priced from €4.99/month to €19.99/month, depending on the features you wish to use and the volume of transcriptions you wish to perform.

Introducing ScoreCloud music note recognition software.

scorecloud free music transcription software
anthemscore logo


Convert audio to sheet music

AnthemScore is a software program that converts audio into sheet music. It is used to automatically create a score from a piece of music, which can be useful for those seeking to understand how a piece is played.

The tool works as follows: you upload an audio file to the software, and it uses an artificial intelligence algorithm to “listen” to the music and transcribe each note individually. It is capable of processing several instruments at the same time, although it can be more accurate with one instrument at a time.

AnthemScore can also slow down music without changing the pitch, which can be useful for those learning a difficult piece. The application is capable of producing scores for different instruments, and can export scores in various formats, including MIDI and MusicXML.

It is a software application that needs to be downloaded to your device in order to run. AnthemScore offers a 30-day free trial, at the end of which you’ll have to pay a license fee ranging from €32 to €107, depending on the features you wish to benefit from and the volumes of data you wish to transcribe.

Video presentation of AnthemScore music transcription software.

anthemscore app transcribe musical pieces
audioscore sibelius logo

AudioScore (Sibelius)

Musical note recognition and transcription

Sibelius is one of the oldest programs in this ranking, and its first version was launched in 1993.

While the application is best known for its music notation functions and streamlined graphical interface, it is interesting to note that an extension to the software, called AudioScore, has recently been released for the musical transcription of audio into musical notes.

AudioScore is relatively efficient at transcription and supports a variety of instruments. It is not uncommon, however, for the result to contain a number of errors, particularly on more complex multi-instrument pieces. In such cases, you’ll need to manually correct any musical transcription errors.

Once the transcription has been created in AudioScore, you can export it in MIDI or MusicXML format and open it in music notation software such as Sibelius, where you can refine and arrange the score.

Subscriptions range from €9 to €11 per month, depending on the duration of your subscription.

Introducing the AudioScore music transcription app from Sibelius.

sibelius audioscore musical note recognition
transcribe logo


Help with manual transcription of music tracks

Transcribe! is a program designed to help musicians decipher recorded music. Unlike the other applications in this ranking, it is not, strictly speaking, automatic music recognition software. Transcribe! doesn’t transcribe music for you, but it does offer a range of features that can help you do it yourself. That’s why we’ve included it in this ranking.

Here are just a few of the transcription aids it offers:

  • Tempo slowdown: slow down the music without changing the pitch. This can be very useful when trying to understand a fast or complicated sequence.
  • Pitch change: change the pitch without changing the tempo. This can be useful if you’re trying to play a song that’s out of your vocal range.
  • Spectral analysis: spectrometric visualizations of the music, which can help isolate different voices or instruments in a room.
  • Markers and loops: you can mark precise points in the music and create loops around specific sections, which can be useful if you’re working on a particularly difficult section.

Transcribe! is therefore a very practical program for music transcription. Nevertheless, it is important to note that it is more a tool for experienced musicians who already have an excellent grounding in all the theoretical aspects of music.

transcribe app musical notes
melody scanner logo

Melody Scanner

Transcribing songs into sheet music

Melody Scanner is a music recognition application capable of converting audio and MIDI files into musical notes and scores. It can be used to transcribe music, either by playing it on an instrument directly in the application, or by importing an audio or MIDI file. Like PianoConvert, it is also possible to select YouTube videos (although the list of videos is not exhaustive) and convert them directly into scores.

When importing your audio files, the platform asks you a series of questions such as the instrument used, the portion you wish to transcribe, and much more. Transcription quality is relatively good, and you can edit the score to correct any errors before exporting it in several formats.

Melody Scanner offers a free version on which you can transcribe up to one minute of audio. If you’d like to extend the transcription time, you’ll need to upgrade to a Premium subscription ranging from €6.99/month to €47.99/year.

Video presentation of the Melody Scanner software, dedicated to the recognition and transcription of musical notes into sheet music.

melody scanner music transcription software
soundslice logo


Transcribe songs to score and edit results

Best known for its music notation, Soundslice is no less an innovative music transcription platform.

It allows you to import an audio file or record a live audio portion (with many instruments, including voice) and render it in score form, thanks to note recognition. Transcription is relatively quick and accurate.

In addition, Soundslice has many other features that facilitate the notation and editing of transcribed musical notes. The application also includes a strong social dimension, with functions for sharing with other members and access to a community of musicians. It’s the perfect opportunity to discuss your transcriptions and glean tips for perfecting your results.

Although the basic software package is free, you’ll soon come up against its limitations. Soundslice offers paying packages ranging from $5/month to $20/month.

Video presentation of the Soundslice app.

soundslice music transcription program
frettable logo


Automatic transcription of musical notes into scores and tabs

Frettable is a software program that uses artificial intelligence to convert live or recorded music into sheet music or tablature. It focuses particularly on plucked string instruments such as the guitar and ukulele, but can also be used for other instruments.

The resulting transcription is relatively close to the original audio, but it can make significant errors in polyphonic transcription and multi-instrument playback. It is also not as good as other programs, such as PianoConvert, when it comes to piano. So be sure to check the result before printing and sharing your transcribed score.

In addition to sheet music, Frettable also lets you download high-quality tablatures. So if you’re looking to transcribe guitar audios into tablature, this should be the application for you.

Frettable is available on a subscription basis, from $0.99/month to $9.99/month.

Video presentation of the Frettable musical note recognition app

frettable software
musescore logo


Transcribing a MIDI file into a PDF score

Musescore is the world’s most popular music notation software. Over a million songs have already been shared by hundreds of thousands of musicians from the Musescore community.

But the platform is also widely used for its numerous music file conversion functions. While it doesn’t offer a function for transcribing audio (MP3, WAV, FLAT, …) into MIDI files or scores, it can nevertheless convert a large number of formats (MIDI, PDF, MusicXML, …) into other formats. For example, Musescore can be used to convert a MIDI file into a PDF score, or a PDF score into a MIDI file. The application’s algorithms are well designed to recognize key elements of a musical composition, such as BPM, treble and bass clefs, bars and much more.

We therefore recommend that you use Musescore for these specific cases of conversion (MIDI to PDF or PDF to MIDI), as it will be the best to do so efficiently. However, if you’re looking to transcribe an MP3 or WAV file with Musescore, this won’t be possible. We suggest that you first use another program in this category and, once you’ve obtained the MIDI file, import it into Musescore to convert it into a PDF score.

The application offers a number of Premium packages, from $6.99/month to $25.99/month.

Video presentation of Musescore music software

musescore musical free app
guitar2tabs logo


Transcribing guitar tunes into tablature

Guitar2Tabs is an online application for transcribing guitar tunes into tablature.

Transcription is relatively precise, and you’ll get good-quality tablatures with this software.

It supports audio files such as MP3 and WAV, as well as YouTube videos, which you can import live. You’ll get your tablatures in just a few minutes, and can then download the files in PDF, MIDI and MusicXML formats.

Guitar2Tabs offers a free option where you can transcribe the first 30 seconds of your favorite guitar pieces. Beyond that, you’ll have to pay a subscription fee ranging from €7.99/month to €19.99/month (€75.99/year or €190.00/year if you choose the annual payment options).

All in all, this software is a great alternative if you want to transcribe guitar-only songs. You’ll get good tablature in no time, and at a fair price.

Guitar2Tabs music transcription software presentation video

guitar2tabs transcription songs

Conclusion about The 10 Best Free Music Transcription Software and Apps

All the music transcription applications presented in this ranking give you an initial overview of the automatic music transcription landscape. While this list is not exhaustive, it is intended to be relatively diversified, so that you can choose the software that best suits your needs.

We also recommend that you always check the result of your transcription, whatever application you use, before using and sharing it. As automatic transcription of musical notes is a highly complex discipline, no software is yet capable of consistently achieving 100% accuracy. So we can only suggest that you go through the result and manually correct any remaining errors.

We hope this article has helped to clarify things for you, and remind you that you can also try out our own music transcription software.

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