Arpeggios and accidentals - spacing

I’m trying to move a bunch of arpeggios further away from the the accidentals next to them. In the attached example some of them are very close - almost touching. They don’t need much by way of additional spacing (1/8 ?), but a little change would provide far better clarity. There’s certainly room there without forcing it via a system break.

The engrave options link spacing to the note and that only works when there aren’t any accidentals. I’ve tried a different approach - spacing to the left of accidentals and while that works that seems to be a generic setting that impacts the whole score.

I can move them manually - and that works for the upper staff. But I can’t move some of them on the bottom staff. I may be wrong but I’m guessing that’s tied up with the fact that there’s two voices on the bottom staff.

It’s not a huge issue - but I like to get these things right. For me it raises a couple of questions. 1) a minimum spacing for arpeggios from accidentals and 2) the ability to move items when multiple voices are present.

Don’t know why you’re not able to move the arpeggios in the left hand, it works as expected for me. Can you upload the file?

For the spacing, you may try increasing the value under Engraving options → Accidentals → Gap to the left. This will of course affect more than just the arpeggios, but might still give you a pleasing result overall.

Here’s the result with 1/4 spaces (the default is 1/8), no manual adjustments.

(For the record, I think it’s a reasonable request)

Thanks Anders. Unfortunately I couldn’t download it - but don’t worry, I’d already tried the gaps to the left at 1/4.

As for moving the arpeggios in the left hand, they can be moved by dragging (as I discovered later). However, some of them are resistant to moving by holding down alt and clicking left - my first approach. I prefer that approach as it gives a bit more consistency.

Strange, it works for me. Are you certain that the main body of the arpeggio is selected, and not the square handles?

Yup. Oddly, a couple of them moved left very slightly, and then no more, if I moved them up and down (Alt-up/down) first. But that was only two out of six.

As a slight tangent, does the team have any plans to add an option to adjust the gap to the right of an arpeggio when there IS an accidental?

I like the gap between accidentals and other general objects as it is; it’s just arpeggios that seem to me to not have enough space, so I’d rather not use the engraving options to universally adjust the gap to the left of accidentals. A dedicated “gap to right of arpeggio with accidental” setting would be useful, at least to me.

Cheers :slight_smile:

EDIT: To clarify (because after a few readings, it occurs to me that I might not have been entirely clear), I mean that a setting in the arpeggios section of engraving options to make this adjustment would be useful; it’s the left gap setting in the accidentals section of engraving option that I’d rather not have to resort to as that affects more than just arpeggios.

Yes, we do plan to be able to do this. It’s not straightforward but it’s on the backlog.

Oh, fantastic :smiley:

I realize there have only been 2.2 and 2.2.10 updates since this question was asked – I’m assuming there’s still no way to increase the space between an arpeggio line and chord accidentals?

For context, here’s Dorico on the left and the publisher’s house style on the right. Dorico’s arpeggio lines are way too close for comfort. But in general Dorico’s spacing throughout the piece is good, so I hate to just increase the space next to every accidental…

Thanks for your time.

fyi, similar issue here on the other side too.

I think the spacing here depends on the font. The music font in your example isn’t Bravura, and to my eyes the problem with the column of naturals next to the arpeggio is that the line is “darker” than the accidentals and visually too prominent. In fact the line in your font is physically wider than the Bravura line, but the accidentals (and white noteheads) are lighter than Bravura.

On the other hand, the publisher’s spacing of the line next to a single accidental looks too wide, IMO.

The Dorico spacing looks fine to me with Bravura …

Hi Rob, thanks for the reply, but to each his own — I find the default spacing in your example way too close. You’re right that I’m using a custom music font, but I feel there needs to be more space between the arpeggio line and accidentals in the default case, too. The line of your natural nearly touches the arpeggio line. Here’s another example from a published score showing the spacing I’m trying to get.

And I agree with the other issue, that it would be appreciated to have control of the spacing on the left side as well — but at least in my case, the right side is more urgent.

Dorico does increase the space to avoid arrow heads colliding with accidentals.

Each to his own as you say, but I like the fact that Dorico is good at packing music onto a system without it becoming illegible. It’s a lot easier to respace music wider than to make it narrower and still keep it readable.

Yes, Rob, I also like the fact that Dorico is good at “packing music onto a system.” That’s why I don’t want to increase the space before every accidental, I just want to increase this one bit of space, in each place it occurs. I changed back to Bravura to look at this harp part (bigger example below) and see if I could be convinced the space would be okay, and I just don’t see it. The lines are too close to the accidentals.

If I change them all to arrows, then they do look better to me, so maybe I can convince the publisher that’s a good idea… It’s not ideal to have to change the composer’s notation (even if it doesn’t change the intention in this case).

I’d like to second this, would really appreciate the option to adjust the gap to the right of an arpeggio when there IS an accidental. I’m having this issue myself right now, and really just need a TINY bit more room. Without the accidentals there is plenty of spacing by default, but with accidentals it looks very cramped and odd, this is a rolled chord with 3 accidentals on it btw.

Yes, I agree this would be a useful option to have. It’s unfortunately non-trivial to add for boring technical reasons, but I can confirm it’s on our (endless!) list of things to address in future.

I have found that if I go to Engraving Options - Gaps - Gap to left, and change the “Gap to left of leftmost accidental” from 1/8 to 3/8 that works as a good compromise, especially if there are a lot of arpeggio signs to move. It doesn’t screw up the rest of the accidental spacing with notes etc.too much. Depends on the nature of the music I suppose, but works well for me.

I too will be glad when this is a thing of the past.

Screenshot 2020-12-10 104613
Another problem is that dynamics can collide with arpeggio signs:

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Am I right in thinking there’s no change in Dorico 4?

Correct, the issue with arpeggio lines being positioned too close to accidentals immediately to their right has not yet been addressed. It’s not an easy one to improve, unfortunately, but it remains on our list.