Dancing Dots
Where Music Meets Technology for the blind
Dancing Dots serves blind musicians and their educators through technology and training

Sibelius Speaking 3 Technical Support and Tips

Special Notice: Our independent developer has decided not to update his scripts for Sibelius 3 to run with Sibelius 4 or 5. Dancing Dots has no copies of Sibelius 3. If you plan to order Sibelius Speaking 3, you must have your own copy of Sibelius 3 to use as Dancing Dots has no more units of Sibelius 3 to sell.

Read the important information on this page to learn about the special requirements for running Sibelius Speaking 3.

JAWS Versions

  • Sibelius Speaking 3.1 will work with JAWS 5.1 through 6.2, many JAWS users have run Sibelius Speaking with later versions of JAWS however they are not supported.
  • To install Sibelius Speaking 3.1 into JAWS 6.2 you must click on the Options button in the Welcome dialog, enter '6.20' in the Search for additional JAWS version field, click on the OK button and then finish the installation as usual. This method will work for all versions of JAWS up to and including JAWS 7.1.
  • If you are still running Sibelius 3.0 with Sibelius Speaking 3.0, we urge you to apply the free updates available for both of these products. Here are some advantages.
  • It is also important to understand that one can install multiple versions of JAWS on the same machine and use the older versions when working with Sibelius and then switch back to the newer version of JAWS for other work. Please see Freedom Scientific.

System Requirements

  • VERY IMPORTANT: Sibelius Speaking requires that you run Sibelius 3.1.1 which is a free, downloadable update for Sibelius 3.x customers. Download the free Sibelius 3.1.1 Update. Sibelius Speaking will install and appear to run with earlier versions of Sibelius 3.1 but the scripts will fail in performing certain key functions. You must download and update your unit of Sibelius 3 using this update.
  • You must be running JAWS version 5.1.383 through 6.1. Sibelius Speaking will not work with JAWS 4.5 or earlier versions of JAWS.
  • If you have already installed a more recent version of JAWS than JAWS 6, there is no need to uninstall that version. Simply install a supported JAWS version and load that version of JAWS when you wish to use Sibelius 3.
  • You must set your Windows display settings to use 16-bit color in order to use Sibelius Speaking 3.1.1. We recommend that you set the display color back to 32-bit after closing Sibelius 3 and then rebooting your PC. At that time, you will probably also want to load a more recent version of JAWS than 6 if you have a license for such a version.
  • Download earlier versions of JAWS from Freedom Scientific's website. You may download and install any earlier version of JAWS than the version which you have already installed without any additional cost or authorization.
  • . Download a free update to JAWS 5.1 (for registered JAWS 5.0 users). You can also order an update CD from Dancing Dots for $20 which includes shipping and handling within the continental U.S. By the way, if you reside in the United States and you want to purchase or upgrade JAWS for Windows, Dancing Dots is authorized to sell it to you. In fact, Dancing Dots now represents not only Freedom Scientific, but also many of the major manufacturers of assistive technology and music supplies.
  • Click here for information about running CakeTalking and Sibelius Speaking on the same computer.
  • You must use an English keyboard layout and an English version of Sibelius.
  • Even if you use Sibelius Speaking on a laptop PC you must set the JAWS Keyboard Layout to "Desktop" (JAWS / Options / Basics / Use Keyboard Layout).
  • For best results when using Sibelius Speaking on a laptop, Dancing Dots strongly recommends that you use a full-size PC keyboard as many vital Sibelius Speaking functions rely on commands issued from the numpad. USB or wireless PC keyboards are relatively inexpensive. Some customers have had success with auxiliary num-pad attachments but others have not so we recommend that you try the accessory before you buy.


  • The latest version of Sibelius Speaking 3.1 is 3.1.10 released 10/15/04. To check on the Internet to be sure that you have the latest version of Sibelius Speaking, go to the Start menu and click on Programs | Sibelius Speaking 3 | Sibelius Speaking Internet Update.
  • The latest version of Sibelius Speaking for Sibelius 3.0 is 3.0.9, released 10/9/04 but we strongly recommend that you update to Sibelius 3.1 and Sibelius Speaking 3.1 if you have version 3.0. These are nfree updates.
  • To install Sibelius Speaking 3.1 into JAWS 6.2 you must click on the Options button in the Welcome dialog, enter '6.20' in the Search for additional JAWS version field, click on the OK button and then finish the installation as usual. This method will work for all versions of JAWS up to and including JAWS 7.1.
  • Click here for information about running CakeTalking and Sibelius Speaking on the same computer.
  • Help with Authorization Problems.
  • Using Sibelius Speaking without administrator rights.
  • If your Display's color scheme is not in English, you MUST set Control Panel | Regional and Language Options | Regional Options | Standards and formats to your language.
  • Click here to send an e-mail to technical support.
  • Sorry but the document Getting More Started with Sibelius was never written by Sibelius Speaking's developer.
  • Miscellaneous Audio Solutions
  • How to manually enable the Sibelius Speaking Plug-Ins
  • Question: Why can't I get sound out of my keyboard?
  • Answer: In the ideal situation you would want to have an external midi device such as a midi module or additional midi keyboard connected to your midi controller's midi output jack. If you set Sibelius to play back through the keyboard's midi output jack, you won't hear any sound unless a device is connected there. To hear sound through your pc's speakers that are connected to your sound card, you will need to select the Microsoft GS wave table. While you certainly can hear playback through the wave table synth, recording parts in Sibelius while using this will not be very practical because there will be a delay between the time you play a note and the time you actually hear it. This is known as latency, and is a limitation of the drivers of your onboard sound card. If you intend to input material into Sibelius using the midi keyboard, you may want to consider getting an external midi module such as the EDIROL sound canvas. You can find out about it by going to our Midi Equipment page.


Version 3.1.10

Improvements over 3.0

  • JAWS 5.1 is supported
  • Using the Filter System Items dialog, you can now successfully filter for chords.
  • Using the Find System Item Dialog, you can now find repeat text marks, like D.C. al Coda, D. S., etc.
  • Enabling the Sibelius Plug-ins has been improved.

Version 3.0.9

Improvements over 3.0.7

  • Enabling the Sibelius Plug-ins has been improved.
  • Rename staff has been fixed.
  • Other minor bugs were fixed.

Improvements over 1.3

  • Graphics recognition is supported in all Windows operating systems including XP.
  • Works with the latest versions of Sibelius (3.1) and JAWS (5).
  • More comprehensive documentation.
  • Full access to Sibelius' mixer.
  • Ability during playback to stop and move to the current bar.
  • Create markers to any part of the score and immediately jump to that position.
  • You can get a list of all current key or time signatures and immediately move to any of them.
  • When navigating, JAWS will tell you whether you are on a grace note or not.
  • When creating a new score from the new score dialog, you can define the initial parameters such as title, metro mark, tempo, etc..
  • Using repitch mode you can re-input the notes of an existing passage and all note durations, articulations and rests say the same.
  • Many new cool features.
  • Enhanced ability and all Sibelius Speaking 1.3 bugs have been resolved.

Improvements over 1.2

  • Numerous bug fixes.
  • More reliable graphics labeling.
  • Improved lyric entry.
  • More comprehensive documentation.
  • Support for drum notation and pop and jazz arrangements.
  • Automatic display settings verification.

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Copyright 2004 Dancing Dots

Copyright 2002, 2005 Dancing Dots