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Why Every Band Needs Guitar Pro

If you're looking for a tool to work with tabs, this app is undoubtedly the one you need.

Photo by Techivation / Unsplash
Editor's note: Sadly, this piece is brought to you without partnership with Guitar Pro, but simply out of love for this software.

If you're looking for a tool to work with tabs, this app is undoubtedly the one you need. Guitar Pro is a convenient software app for musicians, which has been a game-changer for at least... 20 years—how cool is that?!

Initially created as a tablature editor, it has expanded its capabilities to become a score-writing tool, now accommodating various musical instruments beyond just the guitar.

Let’s explore this marvelous tool together. Here you can get the info on how Guitar Pro can help your band collaborate and prepare for rehearsals, practice, and learn songs independently, whether those are your own compositions or the songs you have always wanted to learn.

Guitar Pro 8 — the Most Recent Version

There have been many versions of Guitar Pro, each with its own improvements and feature optimizations. Now, it has more than 100 available instruments, a realistic sound engine, an extensive tabs library, and, most importantly, tools for sharing and collaborating on musical projects, allowing your band members to work together on compositions.  

Image credit: Guitar Pro

Now here's why your band surely needs Guitar Pro in your toolkit. If not yet, for some reason.

Tablature and notation (big advantage if you can't read sheet music properly!)

At the heart of the Guitar Pro app lies its ability to display both tablature and standard notation for various instruments. That is the main reason for bands and musicians (including me!) to start using the app. This feature becomes a bridge between band members, ensuring that musical ideas are communicated clearly and accurately.

What's more, it's also a great help if you're struggling with reading sheet music. Tablatures make playing an instrument a much easier task.

Frankly, I still cannot read sheet music properly, either, so tabs are a great help. The program also simplifies the collaboration between different instrument players. Whether it's a guitarist laying down a riff or a keyboardist introducing a new melody, the app facilitates a common language that helps members overcome instrument-specific nuances.

Image credit: Guitar Pro
"I couldn't live without Guitar Pro. It's really well developed software and there's an endless amount of tabs for songs made for it, moreso than for basically any other software/format. Also very easy to make your own tabs(which I'm guessing you wont be doing just yet). And it's very handy for practice/exercises so you can play along and adjust speed, and even have a whole routine kind of laid out, so it'll take you from one exercise to the next automatically. If you're remotely committed to playing guitar, I'd highly recommend it," a user on Reddit shares.
Might be useful: How to find the key of a song, even without a perfect pitch

Playback for practice and virtual rehearsal space

The playback features of Guitar Pro transform it into an effective practice tool for musicians, so your entire band can listen to the complete composition or focus on specific instrument parts. How does it help? This aids in individual practice sessions, allowing each member of your band to perfect their contributions to the overall sound.

It's also a nice tool for rehearsal sessions as you can quickly look into the tabs or even make some changes right when they appear during a creatiму process.

It can become a virtual rehearsal space, enhancing your band's preparedness for live performances. Guitar Pro has a high-quality sound engine for playback, providing realistic sound for various instruments, and a built-in metronome to improve timing and precision.

Streamlining composition and arrangement

If your band writes songs together, Guitar Pro will gladly serve you all as a digital playground. Intuitive tools for composing and arranging music, empowering band members to contribute ideas seamlessly, are at your service.

For example, you can build the sound with a pedalboard and add the effects relevant to the composition. This streamlined approach accelerates the songwriting process and encourages collective creativity.

Image credit: Guitar Pro

Seamless export and sharing for remote collaboration

Collaboration is crucial to the rehearsal space, and Guitar Pro does everything it takes to foster it. The app's export and sharing features enable your band members to collaborate remotely, so you can easily share compositions in various formats, promoting an exchange of creative ideas.

And if you don’t know what to play at your next rehearsal, the access to the extensive library containing tabs and sheet music for a wide range of songs and genres will help you with some ideas.

"I've learned almost everything that way. You can easily download every tab and play and adjust everything. You can slow tabs down, or repeat certain parts on a loop to practice. It's been a blessing for me. Also really easy when the song is in a different tuning. Guitar Pro tabs always seem to be way more accurate than other tabs I find. Also when you want to write your own stuff it's so good. In my old band we used to sent each other riffs in guitar pro so the others could easily experiment with it. I might be biased after using it for 10 years but it was worth the 70 dollars," happy user shares.

Variety of instruments

Lack a specific instrument? Well, find a band member who can play it, but before you do, you can leverage a diverse range of virtual instruments Guitar Pro has to offer.

In the most recent Guitar Pro, the available instruments include acoustic, electric, classical, and bass guitars, drum and percussion, keyboards and piano, strings and orchestral instruments, wind instruments, bass and vocals. Even if you don't own a specific instrument, you can experiment with it in your bangers using Guitar Pro. There is also an integration with MIDI devices for input, so you can capture musical ideas using MIDI instruments.

Guitar Pro 8 for Windows/macOS

The PС version holds all the mentioned advanced editing features: tablature and notation, score creation and editing, a realistic, high-quality sound engine for playback, support for multiple tracks, integration with MIDI devices for input, and practice tools, including speed control, metronome, and loop functions to facilitate efficient practice sessions.

It also has import and export options thanks to its compatibility with various file formats. The desktop version also provides a full-screen interface, allowing for a comprehensive view of the musical score and editing tools.

Image credit: Guitar Pro

Guitar Pro for Android/iOS

The primary advantage of the mobile app is its portability, enabling you to work on musical projects on the go. It also integrates cloud storage and sharing options specific to mobile platforms. However, the mobile app has a simplified interface to accommodate the smaller screen size of mobile devices, and the functionality is narrower than in the PC version.

Read also: Best Music Making Apps for Desktop, iOS & Android in 2024

It's made mostly for rehearsing and editing on the go and the playback function is quite minimalistic. Guitar Pro claims that it's a universal app that one can install on different devices using the same operating system without purchasing it twice. This makes the mobile version a good companion to the desktop program. It is also compatible with tabs from all Guitar Pro versions.

Image credit: Guitar Pro

Prices for Guitar Pro: How Much?

Guitar Pro 8 license for Windows/MacOS costs $69.95 for new users and almost 50% cheaper if you already have a license for any of the previous versions. An upgrade will cost you $34.95, you just need to enter your license if you have Guitar Pro 7 or fill in the forms with your User ID and Key ID if you have Guitar Pro 1 to 6.

As for the mobile app, the prices are different for Android and iOS here. The Android version costs $5.49, while the same app for iOS costs $6.99. If you have both types of devices, choose wisely, as you might need to purchase it two times for different operating systems.

Overall Score: 9/10

I can say from my own experience that this program is an invaluable tool for any music band. I've never met a band that was like, "We don't use Guitar Pro." MySongBook and some other tabs sources online are an excellent way to find tablatures of your favorite songs and learn them for your next rehearsal or to improve your playing skills. It's also great for making your own tabs for tracks and working on them collectively, as well as sharing them with new and old band members for everyone to keep up-to-date.

Here are a few of their TrustPilot reviews to back our opinon:

A little hint—there are fewer and fewer reasons to come to rehearsal unprepared because the program is available not only on a computer but also on smart devices. The slight disadvantages can be the price (still worth it, though!), some amount of research you may need to do, and, possibly, tutorials you need to watch before you start using the program.

In conclusion, the Guitar Pro app is a must-have tool for bands looking to enhance their collaborative process and optimize rehearsal preparation. No wonder this app has become an integral part of the modern music-making toolkit.