Bass Clef Question

Dorico 5 SE. I’m new to this. I want to open e.g. Clair De Lune midi file in Dorico SE and see treble and bass clefs. So far, the entire song opens only in treble clef. I’ve searched and explored but there seems no way to do this. Must I upgrade Dorico? Tnx.

You should be able to add an F clef using the right-hand panel; or the Clef popover (SHIFT C, then type f).

MIDI files often don’t contain instrument data, and they can’t specify clefs.

The midi file format really cannot convey the details of piano notation needed in this piece. If you want to inspect the music as it should be, try looking for a MusicXML file. Musescore has tons of scores free for download in that format and others. (I see one by user RickyZ that gets the notation right.) Check out this page of the SE User Guide for more info.

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Hey benwiggy, thanks for responding. I gave your directions a try but I didn’t succeed. Perhaps I didn’t execute them correctly. If there’s a method buried within Dorico SE to convert a grand clef midi file for piano and convert it to standard piano notation, I can’t find it. Steinberg, as ususal, leaves very much to be desired when it comes to ease of use and intuitive help for right-brained people like myself.

If I right-click on the treble clef, a pop-out directs me to “manual staff visibility” which leads to the $80 upgrade page. Oh well.

My reply was about adding a clef, but from your picture, what you want is to add another staff – or rather, use an instrument with a grand staff.

As Mark points out, it’s nothing to do with Dorico not being “right-brained” – it’s that the MIDI file just has ‘notes’, and doesn’t split them onto two staves. (Or even separate voices.) If anything, it’s a case of “garbage in, garbage out”.

I’d agree with him that you can’t recreate the score easily from this MIDI file. You’d be better off entering it from scratch; or importing an XML file.

You should only see “Manual Staff Visibility” when you click on a System Break, not a clef, so I don’t know what’s going on there. For me, double-clicking on a clef brings up the Clef popover.

I would really recommend looking over the videos and follow the Quick Start Tutorial guide, before you start on your own project.

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Thanks benwiggy. So kind of you to respond in such detail. I’ll certainly explore your advice and watch preparatory videos. I would have thought it easy to define a split point i.e. C3 to divide treble from bass zones on a piano keyboard.

However, it appears Dorico 5 SE serves mostly as a tantalizer. The ability to modify clefs, among other vital features, seems to require a paid upgrade. I’ll explore further.

Your picture shows the menu to add a staff, not to modify clefs.

You should be able to change the instrument to a Piano in Setup mode (or add a Piano and copy the music).

A mere split point is not enough. As said, you haven’t got any polyphonic voices in that data.

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Ahh, I found the manner of changing the instrument to piano . Now I must find a way to redistribute notes below C3 to the bass clef. Thanks benwiggy. You’ve helped me progress. I would have thought that in a standard general midi .MID file, the piano track should have been recognized in Dorico as a piano track and notated accordingly.

When I open the midi file in Cubase Pro, a number of standard midi tracks are created but only the piano track is populated with data. I suppose each track is just a bunch of undifferentiated raw notes. Who knew?

MIDI files don’t always contain an instrument definition. They are often just “note on, note off” data.

Honestly, you will still be miles away from Debussy’s score. Try this XML file instead. (28.8 KB)


Thanks Mark! I’m slowly clueing-into these things. It’s been a while since I last tried. So many great things to learn ahead.

Thanks so much benwiggy. That’s a beautiful arrangement. I hope to learn it soon.

In the meantime, I’ll explore the possiblity of finding a program that is able to convert a raw midi file into a quality arrangement like the one in your XML file.

This is a great community!

BTW, I’m using Dorico to play your xml with The Grand Bösendorfer 290 Player. Marvelous!

Erm? That’s no arrangement. It is the Original (barring a little clean up needed).

Some of those scores on the Musescore site are simplified arrangements, but Ben would not give you one of those! :slightly_smiling_face:

There is no such thing. MIDI was designed in the 1980s to make digital keyboards play (and record) a sequence of sounds. That’s all.

Oops. You’re correct!

This one is superb by my standards. The 290 sample adds the depth, tonality, expression and piano artifacts that complete the experience. Gotta have more!

I’m figuring someone is going to come up with an AI filter that can add nuances which plain old Midi doesn’t capture. Maybe Cubase 15?

Hi @BJ_Dobbs alternatively from finding a good XML as @benwiggy gently did for you, here a nice video that explain the powerful Midi import functionality of Dorico (you can for example define the instrument to be a Piano, at the moment of importing the midi, and other options, as midi split note etc…) But this functionality is not present in SE thought, and you need Elements or pro:

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@BJ_Dobbs has Dorico SE, which only includes the automatic MIDI import .

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