Dorico 4 playback issues - random loud notes

Hi, I’m having issues with the playback in Dorico 4 + Noteperformer 3.3.2. Certain notes seem to lose their dynamic and playback properties and play back much louder and in this instance without mute. After one or two notes it returns to “normal”. The music is not imported from xml or midi so there shouldn’t be any playback overrides. It usually happens to the same notes every time. I’ve tried deleting the whole passage and rewriting it and the problem persists. What am I missing?

What instrument/sound is producing this result?

Hi Derrek, violin 1 and sometimes violas.

It’s usually note 3 or 4 in a range and seems to move depending on where I start playback.

Are those, perhaps open strings on the Violin or Viola? While that may be realistic (if those are the notes) it would be a shame, since string players can replace the open string notes with fingered notes, whereas NP (presumably) would not.

If the loudness is more rhythmically based, could your playback be specifying that some beats of a measure are accented? If so, I think that may be adjustable, although I cannot recall where.

Hi Derrek, unfortunately it has nothing to do with open strings or accented notes. It’s playing back in the same level as when you select a note which makes me think that it somehow is losing the dynamic and playback properties.

I have found this happening with flute, oboe, and clarinet (all solo) in Noteperformer. The score originated in Dorico, and everything was entered from the computer keyboard - no MIDI signals or information. It can happen after a dynamic marking of piano. One thing that these instances all have in common - for me - is that they occur on long held pitches, i.e., whole notes or longer in duration. But, it does not happen consistently…

Hi rpearl, yes I have noticed the same thing. Only long notes are affected and it does not happen consistently.

I’d start by disabling all beat stress and dynamics humanization in the Playback Options. If it’s still very marked then the thing is to post a sample project as there are lots of us with NP and it should be easy to compare results, esp. if you also attach a very audio clip so we hear what you’re getting

I’ll experiment with this. The file did start as a 3.1 or 3.5 file, for what that’s worth. I haven’t made any adjustments under the hood, as far as I can recall.

Posting sounds like a good idea, but as it happens in a seemingly random manner, I’m not sure it will be “capturable.” But, it’s worth a try!

One way of explaining what it sounds like is - you know when you stop playback and right away play again, sometimes Dorico/Note Performer doesn’t stop right away but plays a couple more notes. If the passage that is played is soft and has mutes for strings the playback of these “extra” notes will be loud and without mutes. That is the sound of these random loud notes I’m getting.

I’ll try to capture audio but as rpearl says it comes and goes very randomly.

For me it can found in two ways: a sustained pitch which suddenly has the volume turned up, or a pitch that starts much more loudly that any note previous in that dynamic marking. In these cases, the dynamic preceding has always been piano. Often these are after a rest; it rarely happens to notes within a phrase.


to both @rpearl and @earv , are all of these behaviours specific to Dorico 4? I admit I haven’t done much NP testing in the new Dorico version.

Yes. Never had these issues in earlier versions.

Sorry, I meant to ask specifically about the latest Dorico patch, namely 4.0.10, as there have been improvements to the audio engine since the initial 4.0 release. Just playing through a string quartet with NP and the current version and can’t find significant strange behaviour – a couple of inexplicable accents also occur in D3.5

I see. I went straight from 3.5 to 4.0.10 so I wouldn’t know if 4.0 had the same issues.

ok, so that rules that out then.

If it’s any clue, I’m not getting these issues when exporting audio. Only during playback.

There haven’t been any changes in the way Dorico generates the MIDI data it sends to NotePerformer that would account for these issues, to my knowledge. In the first instance I’d suggest sending any reproducible cases to the team at Wallander Instruments for them to investigate.

I am pretty sure it happened in 3.5, but as it has been intermittent, I can’t say for certain. I think I would have noticed this if it had occurred after I moved to 4.