Document Requirements

This section is about the music’s appearance. For instructions on how to import document files, see the User Guide.


The Music must be professionally engraved and must use conventional notation.

Music created with modern software, such as FinaleSibelius or Forte will photograph correctly.

What’s My Note? reads vocal lines only. It does not recognize piano and instrumental parts.


What To Do If It Fails

If your music will not photograph on the first pass, retry. But do not persist in retrying; the image may eventually get past the software’s safeguards, but is likely to contain errors when played.

Instead, try one of these fallbacks:

Fallback A. Rotate the camera 90 degrees, and photograph half of the page (full width, half height). This makes the image larger, and easier for the computer to interpret.

Fallback B. Print an enlarged copy of your original page. (For example, photograph the full page or half of the page using the Camera App, then print it from your phone or from your computer onto a full sheet of paper). Correct the gaps and blurred ledgers (see below), using a thin pencil. Then use What’s My Note? to photograph the corrected copy.

Doubtful Situations

Photocopies, screen grabs or low-resolution images downloaded from the Internet will probably fail to be read.

Photographing the screen of another device will not work. (Screen images do not have sufficient resolution.)

Sweet Adelines uses music produced for internal use, some of it decades old. The staff lines may be unevenly spaced, and the lyrics may overlap the note stems. This is moderately confusing, even to human readers.

Here are some errors that we have seen in printed music, which caused What’s My Note to reject the page.

Overlapping symbols.



Music that is faded, or contains gaps. This image contains a flat, but it is barely visible

OCR music app



Accidentals are occasionally misplaced in older printed music. This might not be evident on first glance.
music reading app



Ledger lines can be particularly troublesome. They can be blurred (A) or positioned too far from the staff (B).




Ties from one staff to another.