Since Alice has used an iPad for her performing and teaching since 2011, this information represents her personal recommendations. There are many page reading devices on the market which will work equally well. This is just the method with which she is most familiar.
What size iPad should I buy?
- Buy the smallest (16 GB) version of an iPad. Rebuilt devices often work just as well as new ones.
- Unless you will be using the iPad to store books, magazines, movies, and audio music, Alice has found that almost 800 pieces of music (including orchestral scores), organized in over 60 Setlists takes up barely over 1 GB of space on her iPad.
- A Retina Display is easier to read under most conditions than the original iPad display.
- For most people, the iPad mini has too small a screen to be easily readable.
Besides sheet music, sheet protectors and binders, an iPad can replace:
- Watch or clock
- Music stands, if you attach your iPad to your instrument
- Music stand lights
- Maps and a GPS for finding gig locations
- Audio music to play during performance breaks
- Any concern that you have forgotten something - your gig packing list can be kept on your iPad
Just don’t forget your harp tuning wrench!
Alice's Recommended iPad Apps
No computer will do anything unless you have a software program. On an iPad these programs are known as Applications or apps for short.
How do I view and organize my music?
- Most musicians use the forScore app (http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/forscore/id363738376) for managing their music on their iPads.
- You can import virtually any PDF file from the web or your desktop computer, and connect directly to services like Dropbox.
- Music files can be annotated with text and common musical notation symbols.
- Setlists are easy to create and the app even includes a metronome.
- Janet Lanier provides some excellent tutorials for how to use forScore on an iPad on her website (http://www.janetlanier.com/page/video-tutorials-on-how-to-use-forscore-on-the-ipad)
What is the best tuner app?
- Alice recommends the iStroboSoft-HD tuner (http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/istrobosoft-hd-tuner/id422621942) which is a strobe tuner good for extremely accurate tuning. This tuner sometimes has problems with the extremely high and low ranges on a pedal harp where it seems to hear one of the harmonics and not the actual pitch of the string, but it works well with smaller harps.
- A good "needle-type" tuner is the Cleartune Chromatic Tuner (http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/cleartune-chromatic-tuner/id286799607). This tuner works well for the entire range of 38-string harps.