A small collection of spacing-related issues

How would you search for this functionality, based on your own experience/understanding of what’s going on (ignoring the terminology Dorico uses)? I.e. how would you describe what you wanted to do to the notes you had originally to get your desired end result?

Fair question. I think I tried “spacing voices overlap” but that takes me to something that explains ‘voice columns’ but does not cover the minutiae of rhythm dot spacing.

I got there eventually by trial and error in the Engraving pull-out bottom panel. I’ve only been a user for about a month, and I must say Dorico seems very powerful but there is a steep learning curve especially for someone used to using a mouse and directly editing graphics, rather than going through a lot of keyboard shortcuts. But that’s a whole other debate I expect! Thanks for your quick response.

That’s useful to know, thanks.

That link is from the Dorico 1 manual – you can find the Dorico 4 manual here (it’s changed and improved a lot in the last few years!)


As a new user, you might also benefit from working through our First Steps guide – it’s a step-by-step tutorial that takes you through creating a short piano piece, start to finish.

It’s what a Google search comes up with, though…
I used the same search on your v4 manual and looked through all 390 (!) hits but could still not see which one answered my question about the placement of rhythm dots. What should I have searched for?
The ‘new users’ example you linked to seems very useful on how to optimise layout but I still can’t see, on a quick look through, how it answers my question about clashes between accoutrements to voices.

Unfortunately that can be the case, as naturally older documentation has been around for longer. We’re still looking into ways of making it more obvious when you land on an older page (and a newer version is available), but in the meantime, there are some ways you can tell what version you’re looking at:

  • The look and feel of the page: Dorico manuals before around v3 look quite different online than the newer version (compare your page in the v1 manual to its equivalent in v4: Note positions in multiple-voice contexts)

  • The URL: there’s a version number in the URL for each page of the manual, which looks like e.g. /v4/

To be frank, I wouldn’t hold up Peters as an example of anything worth emulating. :face_vomiting:

@andrewtchadwick hopefully the titles of pages in the manual give a good indication of the content included on that page. (info about our Documentation structure)

I ask what users searched for/what their first instinct would be to try to tailor search results, and improve them for the future.

If you want to know specifically about rhythm dots, try searching for “rhythm dots” – the 2nd result is titled “Rhythm dot consolidation” Search Results - Dorico Help

I have just now gone through these topics, making sure there are related links at the bottoms of pages between note positions/voice columns/rhythm dots and more keywords relating to “spacing” for the rhythm dot consolidation topics.

The First Steps guide doesn’t specifically deal with rhythm dot consolidation, no – I shared it in a more general sense in case it’s helpful to you as a new user.

Already knew how to do that - but I’d have needed though to have thought of this as a possible solution, when I was looking at ways of moving rhythm dots around and changing spacing between voices. Sometimes you do want to reproduce, as far as you can, some other editor’s layout decisions. All I am doing, for interest, is adding a viola part to some Faure songs to make up a programme that includes the Brahms songs for mezzosoprano, viola and piano.

Yes, thanks; it’s good to interact with the team. This was the reference to partially solve my problem, then I also needed to move the X position of the notehead to get the result I was after (whether it followed Gould or not!). Got there by trial and error

Maybe if your example piano piece showed clashes with dots and accidentals, and not just the note positions, it might cover this ground?