Recently I wrote a post on reading music charts on the iPad, featured there was the iPad app ForScore. Since then Apple have updated their iBooks app so that it allows you to also load PDF files onto your iPad (and iPhone as it’s now available for both).
Just to re-cap, ForScore works by you saving PDF files on your computer then syncing them to your iPad via iTunes. It has a nice interface in the app section of iTunes where you can just drag and drop the files, next time you sync the arrive on your device.
Apple’s iBooks doesn’t work like this. (Well yet anyway)
Instead you have to drag and drop the PDF files onto the media section of iTunes, much like you would if you were adding music to your library, the PDF files then appear in the ‘books’ section alongside your other media (music, podcasts etc…)
Once they are in your iTunes library when you are going to sync your iPad choose which books or PDFs that you would like to be transferred. See the screen show below for the exact place to to this.
I have read a number of blog posts where people are complaining about this way of getting the PDF files onto the device, sure it would be nice if it did work like ForScore does, but when you think about it Apple is just treating books (PDFs) like they do other media, I don’t think it’s that offensive.
The main issue is just knowing how it works, hence blog posts like this one!
One final thought, could you use iBooks to load up your iPad with music charts and not bother with a dedicated app like ForScrore? Well yes you could but don’t forget there is a couple of extra things like the ability to make a set list and a visual / audible metronome that does set ForScore apart as a PDF viewer specifically for music charts.
I still think it worth the few dollars to have it.