Extremely Slow Score (2.7MB file size) - HELP!

Good morning, all (or afternoon, depending on where you are).

Dorico 3 on Mac OS High Sierra (10.13): I’m working on a symphony: 4 flows, 40 minutes of music total, 27 staves. I am using Noteplayer playback with its default sounds.

I uninstalled Dorico 2 (and all supporting files, I believe) when upgrading to Dorico 3.

My file is so slow. Scrolling and note input seem OK, but selecting a note has a lag of a few tenths of a second, dynamic input/delete takes almost 5 or 7 seconds, and any setting I change takes almost 30 seconds of the “the spinning Mac color wheel”.

The file is too large to attach. Setting playback template to SILENT did not reduce filesize (it’s still 2.7MB). Here is a Google drive link: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1k89WNqYlCK35aa1W8KiWsmO6OM2F-fno

And here’s a video showing how slow the file can be:


If you’re using condensing, switch it off when you’re doing input. Condensing requires an enormous amount of computation, so you should keep it switched off while you are still writing your music.

Condensing was off while I wrote the piece. Now I’m trying to do the Engraving so I keep switching back and forth between the two modes to try and fix some of the issues in my other thread. However, the piece was brutally slow even in Dorico 2 before condensing became a thing.

Applying settings in a big score will be slow: at the moment, when you change settings in any of Dorico’s options dialogs, it will perform a complete re-layout of all layouts that are visible. In a 150-page project for full orchestra, that will take at least a few seconds. Changing the staff size by .1mm, for example, took 13 seconds for me in your project on my MacBook Pro, which is about what I would expect. Obviously this is very slow, and we have plans to improve this in future, but for the time being it’s about right. Adding a dynamic took about 3 seconds, which is definitely slower than it should be, but if you switch off condensing, on my MacBook Pro at least it is more or less instantaneous. So if you’re still writing the music – and I would count adding and deleting dynamics as writing the music – switch condensing off. It will make Dorico feel much, much faster.

When I’m all done with writing (with condensing off) and it comes time to prepare my score for printing (which will be in the next month or so), I’m going to have to do all the engraving with condensing on. Right now, it takes a few seconds of latency just to select a frame. It takes almost 15 seconds to create a text frame. Changing the position of a music frame takes almost 30. I’ve created master pages to try and reduce some of that forced workload but with constantly varying system size, I’m going to have to tweak a lot of stuff to get pages formatted correctly.

Out of interest, why will you need to be changing the position of so many music frames and adding so many text frames? Are you going to be incorporating large amounts of text into the score?

No, not necessarily. If I need a page of text, I can add a blank placeholder and use a PDF editor to add stuff. But even moving the piece’s title and my composer name down 0.25" today took roughly a full minute. Adding a frame for the flow title took almost 90 seconds.

Hiding empty staves leaves some pages with one system. Playing with spacing (turning on the handles and grabbing them to move staves) is excruciating. Changing file-wide vertical spacing is faster, sure, but with such a long piece I find that fine-tuning each system if needed is better for the overall look of the piece.

You should be able to address a decent amount of the spacing needs with judicious use of the options on the Vertical Spacing page of Layout Options. But of course sometimes you will have to make edits, and yes, I’m afraid those edits will be very slow when condensing is enabled, because every edit will affect a good chunk of the flow. We are of course working on this to try to improve the performance of editing when condensing is enabled.