I just finished my first large project (four arrangements for orchestra) and I thought I’d share a few thoughts–kind of a Greg/Dorico state of the union. Understand, these ideas are not meant as Dorico bashing. I’ve been using Dorico for almost three years, producing hundreds of leadsheets, piano pieces, and string orchestra compositions. I’m no power user, but I’m also not a newbie. I offer these as suggestions and observations about the software I hope to use til death do us part.
Using “W” to move from part to score is genius. However, I often found myself hunting for the music I had highlighted when jumping to the full score. Indeed, it was often hidden off the screen. I would love for the W navigation to bring my selection to the upper left of the screen, the middle of the screen, or even an animated circle displayed briefly to draw my eye to the selection.
When I have two windows open, it’s often so I can compare or paste a chunk of music into a different area of the score. I wish only the active window would follow the playhead. Many times, I positioned one window at m34 and the other at m78; as I listened to the m34 window, the m78 window would automatically follow the playhead, too, losing my place in that window.
When changing views, I’d like to return to the previous view. For example, while working on the full score in write mode, I’d see a change needed to the page template on p5. I’d switch to engrave mode and make the change. When I returned to my work in write mode, I’d be on the title page. I would imagine that most users would want to return to the last place they were working.
Related to that, I would generally like to return to previous dialogue. For example, I tweak line spacing in Layout Options, close the dialogue to check the page, decide I need to tweak it further, and it’s on a different tool when I return. Once again, it seems most users will want to continue where they left off.
I wish layout options didn’t force me to tab out of a field and hit enter to have the new setting take effect.
I would love to be able to apply a set of page templates. In this project, I wanted to have title/first/default on all parts, but I had to load those templates manually for each part.
There are still lots of place that require clicking on a button before entering a value.
A “snap to” would be great for aligning text items, etc, something like how grouped dynamics work.
I would love to have a little more flexibility with condensing and cues. I understand why Dorico doesn’t want me messing with condensed parts, but it would be nice to at least be able to select them so I could navigate to the section of the score in galley view. Cues are generally great, but every once in a while I want to flip a stem or hide a rest.
It could very well be that there are existing solutions to some of the items above. I’m all ears! Otherwise, please consider these for future iterations of Dorico.
For your second item, it’s now possible in Dorico 5 to choose whether or not a window follows the playhead.
Thanks for taking the time to provide your feedback, Greg. In general, W does keep the music in view when you switch back and forth between the score and the part, so we’d need some more information and steps to reproduce the problem. You should also find that when you reopen, say, Layout Options, the same page of the dialog is open as it was before (though it doesn’t scroll to the same part of the page you might have been looking at before).
I just tried this again to see if I could replicate the problem. Now it’s letting me choose “follow playhead” in one window and deselect it in the other.
I made a few movies but they’re not a file format that can be attached. Can I send them to you via email?
I’ve noticed that even sometimes in the score going from write to engrave back to write modes will send the cursor back to the very first measure. I honestly haven’t found a consistent way of reproducing this, however.
I’ve taken to highlighting a full measure , which seems to “lock” the view to that measure when changing modes.
If the screen ends up where I did not expect it after a mode change I find that pressing the left arrow key followed by the right arrow key in Write mode will often bring the screen back to the location of the most recently selected note.
Greg, you can upload your videos to any cloud storage platform, or upload them as unlisted videos on YouTube, and then post the links here.
Two screenshot movies
Here are links to two files:
- not returning to where i was - In engrave mode, I scroll to the middle of the score, enter the page template edit area, and when I close out it sends me back to the beginning of the score in a different magnification.
- w off page - I choose a bass note (pickup to m101). When I click the W it sends me to the measure after the note I selected.
I hope this helps!
You can also hit P and immediately hit it again when it starts playing. If you have “follow playhead” it will bring you to your highlighted note. But neither of these is ideal.
I usually just hit C for “Center Selection” to do this. Can’t remember if that’s a default or something I programmed, but it works well.
Man that’s useful. I never knew it, as it is not in the View Menu. Really useful command.
Since I’ve seen this post I have used that key command so much!!!
Doesn’t it interfere with the C note when using the computer keyboard to enter notes?
I tried it just now.
If the carrot is there, it writes a “c”, if not, it centers the selection.
Holy hell, how is this not bound by default and mentioned in like the first page of the tutorial?
They should change the key command for inputting the note C to £ so that the C button is free for this function.
On the French keyboard, that key is a diacritic one, so NOOO ! But I guess it was a joke
It seems to work fine. The note input keybinds only apply when you’re actually in note input mode.
Sorry, my silly Aussie sense of humour got the better of me