Feature Request: IMPORTING a .WAV audio file INTO a Dorico score

Longtime Finale user here who is intrigued by Dorico and wants to make the switch.
Finale has a must-have feature for me that is not currently available in Dorico:
The ability to IMPORT a .WAV audio file, “tap out” a click-track tempo to the .WAV file (Finale calls this “Tempotap”),
then notate additional VST instruments that play in sync with the imported .WAV file.
My imported .WAV files are most typically rehearsal studio recordings of vocal harmonies with piano, which I then orchestrate.
Steinberg Customer Support has told me that Dorico imports .MP4 video files, but NOT .WAV audio files.
(Please note that I would be IMPORTING a .WAV file INTO Dorico, and not EXPORTING a .WAV file OUT of Dorico.)
I understand that it’s possible to convert my .WAV file to an .MP4 video file (with a blank video screen),
then import the .MP4 into Dorico, but such a conversion results in degraded audio in the .MP4 video file.
It would be much preferable to be able to directly import the uncompressed .WAV file into a Dorico score.
Steinberg Customer Support suggested that I post this feature request in this forum,
to feel out if other Dorico users might have need of this feature, and to get it into the hands of Dorico developers.
If any forum members have experience with a workflow similar to the one that I have described,
I would be interested in hearing about your experiences, and whether you have made anything like this work in Dorico.

You can’t create a variable tempo map with a tap-tempo option in Dorico anyway. Your best bet would be to create the tempo map in a DAW and then use the “import tempo track” option in Dorico.

To be honest I don’t really see why the “degraded audio” converting to mp4 would matter for scoring to the vocal track, unless the original .wav was already poor quality.

As a former Finale user, I say “Jump in, the water’s lovely!”. Dorico may not have this yet, but you’ll find so much else that will save time, compared to Finale, that it makes up for any extra effort. As Rob suggests, you could make the Tempo track in a DAW, and import it.

I’d also agree that any audio ‘degradation’ would hardly be noticeable, unless the purity of the source recording was phenomenal; even so it would certainly be good enough to work with.

We certainly would like to add support for playing back audio tracks in Dorico in the future, but it’s not a feature we’re about to add imminently.

The workaround is to beatmap it in a DAW first, then import the resulting MIDI file into Dorico as the basis for your Dorico session. Then bounce your desired audio from the same DAW session, attach it to a static image in a video app (on Mac you can just use iMovie), and attach THIS video to the same Dorico session from above. The result is perfectly synced audio (controlled in Dorico’s mixer by the “Video” volume control)… I do this all the time.

  • D.D.

Funny enough I was doing this a few weeks ago and I found it extremely easy to do in Dorico, much more than my ‘unmentionable’ previous program! First I imported the WAV into Windows’ own Video Editor, then imported a random picture from the Pictures folder, set the duration to the full length of the track. Then Exported the video, imported into Dorico, added the time signature and added 120 bars (random number), offset the video to start on the 4th beat (since I could tell it began on a pickup), then went to play mode, turned on the metronome/click from the Transport and drew the tempo line to coincide with the track and voila! Everything I wrote after that was in perfect sync with the recording…

Works extremely well (especially when paired with a Midi Tempo Map imported into Dorico from the same session you do the audio bounce from) and the syncing is extremely tight. Having said that, it would be nice (in the future) for there be a way to directly sync up audio without having to do the extra step of syncing to a video file/static video image first (a minor quibble). I’m sure all of this functionality will improve as the program moves forward, of course, though, and in the meantime I’m delighted that I can do this sort of work (!)…

  • D.D.