Dorico Elements for simple sheet music?

Hi folks, I’ve checked the differences between Pro and Elements, and I’m wondering if Elements may be enough to produce standard song sheets. That is, a piano grand staff, vocal melody above, with multiple verse lyrics. I’m guessing that it won’t have the customization options of Pro, but might be fine for relatively simple songs. Opinions?

Of course, it would work fine for that.

The only significant limitations are number of players (a dozen or so), and no control over customized engraving options.

Yes, jgg, Dorico Elements is designed expressly for that kind of use case. I hope you would find it very satisfactory for those needs!

Thanks guys. I am used to tweaking staff spacing and bars-per-system in order to minimize overall page numbers. But hopefully Elements will be good enough for the moment, since that’s all the budget can stretch. :slight_smile:

I’d imagine (though I’m not positive) you can still adjust Casting Off settings in Layout Options, without access to Engrave mode. That said, do you already own Sibelius or Finale? If so, you could take advantage of the crossgrade pricing for Dorico Pro.

The best way to answer your questions is to download the trial version and play with it for 30 days.

Sorry to say, I’m not finding Elements to be suitable at all for what I thought was “simple sheet music”. When lyrics are entered I find that I have many systems with just 1 bar per system, meaning that the song is perhaps 15 pages long. Changing the font size of lyrics would probably fix that, but it can’t be done. Some of the other adjustments in Engrave mode would also help trim the page length, I’m sure. It’s a big step up to Pro for just a handful of extra functions. :frowning:

Woah there. Layout Options—Vertical Spacing.

If two bars won’t fit on a system, you need either a smaller staff size or bigger paper. (Or, don’t write your song in 23/8 time but use shorter bars :wink: ) I don’t have Elements but you should be able to choose one of the other of those somehow in Setup mode.

Thanks heaps for those suggestions, but…

  • Vertical Spacing may help a tad here and there, but won’t change the fixed lyric font size forcing 1-bar-per-system so often in my piece.
  • Smaller staff size would be perfect, yes, but I can’t see anything allowing that in Setup Mode. Surely that’s an Engrave mode function…?

Layout Options—Page Setup. You can also try Layout Options—Note Spacing, and decrease the default spacing from 4 to, maybe, 3.75.


Space size! My apologies, I didn’t realize that would change the staff size. Yes, that works, thank you, thank you, thank you!
More work now… :slight_smile:

The terminology isn’t obvious, but a “space” is the distance between two staff lines.

The size of almost everything else is measured in “spaces” (not millimeters or inches) so that everything scales correctly for different staff sizes.

jgg, you may already know about this, but here’s an interesting historical overview:

Thanks Dan - yes I did know about rastrum. It’s obvious now, but when you’ve been adjusting Staff Size for years, and the term is so common that other forum members use it… I’ve glanced at Space Size maybe 10 times over the past few days without fully taking it in, because I’m looking for Staff Size! :slight_smile: