# Beat division

Hey guys, so… when I write a measure in 5/4 and I wanna write 8 sixteen notes like 4 notes on one beat and 4 notes on the next one, I can’t. Dorico writes all of them together why??? please tell me there is an easy way to solve this, it is very annoying. Thanks!

Put in the meter like this: [1+1+1+1+1}/4

It will read as 5/4, but give the sixteenths in groups of four:

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Thank you! But is this the only way? There should be an easier, faster solution as well…also why doesn’t Dorico just read the 5/4 as a normal 4/4 plus one, I guess 99% of people wanna use it that way…

I would wager a lot of people view 5-beat measures as 3+2 or 2+3, which makes Dorico’s approach highly useful.

To echo Derrek’s reply - 5/4 is normally seen as a mix of 3+2, or 2+3. Think Take Five - 3+2. 4/4 + 1 won’t give the emphasis of the (uneven) half bar. What you want is actually the outlier - not a bad thing, but less commonly seen.

I suppose there could be another way, but really is [1+1+1+1+1]/4 that much work?

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One problem with [1+1+1+1+1]/4 is that straight eighth notes get all 10 beamed together. It would be more useful and more standard if n/4 could group 16ths in fours by default the way 4/4 does.

Whenever this comes up I find myself wishing for a feature to freeze existing default beam groups, so they are unaffected by a meter change.

I don’t know how difficult either of these ideas might be to implement.

Mark - hadn’t realized that. I only looked at the 16ths as per the OP. It would make sense, as you point out, to have the /4 beat kept distinct. After all the 1+1 etc., implies, if not demands, that each beat be separate.

Well, if you wanna write fast it is. I had to look up what the command for a bracket is and to type everything down. I thought maybe there was a way to separate the groupings into beats with just a key…if I remember correctly Finale has that option. Not here just to hate on Dorico, it has multiple things that I like! But I think they make some basic things over complicated, when the approach should be that if you wanna write something complex and rare well that’s when you go to the Forum

But thank you guys for the help!!!

If you just want to split beams, there is a command for that (right-click on a note), and that suggests you could create a shortcut to do it with a single key-combo.

The meter popover is very flexible and you only need to learn one syntax (which makes it fast). For example you could do [2+2+1]/4 or [2+1+2]/4 or [3+1+1]/4 to get different beam groupings.