first impressions

Started using pro 2 a few days ago. Have been using notation software since the days of Personal Composer. :open_mouth:

Started with Personal Composer > Encore > Sibelius > Dorico.

Started with a piano score as an exported midi file from Sibelius imported into Dorico. As expected, and as I have experienced with most all notation software, the interpretation isn’t always exact but it did play back correctly. Part of it is having to define a global split point between treble and bass clef staves which doesn’t always work well for every measure.

It took quite a bit of “clean up” editing but that is what I expected and actually what I was hoping for because it forced me to learn the program. However, figuring out what and how to go about it was the intuitive part. I did refer to the on line help but it was only to learn keyboard commands and shortcuts, etc.

So far I am really liking this software.

One area where I experienced some difficulty and a bit of grief and frustration with and where I hope the engineering team will consider improving is with multiple voices on both the treble and bass clef staves (as stated this was a piano score).

I am by no means a professional at scoring but previous software, even Personal Composer back in the day, seemed a bit easier at handling multiple voicings.

Dorico kind of forced me into using it’s conventions whereas all the other programs let me decide how I wanted to express multiple voicings.

The “Shift-V” for stem up and stem down just wasn’t easy (for me) to use. What I would like to see is the ability to define a “voice 1” and an associated “stem up” or “stem down” orientation before entering any notes. Then move on to a “voice 2” and “stem up-dn”, etc. Dorico seems very sensitive and a bit rigid about accurate timing within a given measure (and rightly so) but at least the way I ended up having to enter multiple voicings was in the end very tedious. It was particularly difficult when it came to using Ties across the same Voice in a measure.

Maybe it’s just me and there is in fact a more intuitive way to go about it that I haven’t stumbled upon yet but overall I really do like this software.

Tony, in regards to using multiple voices: there are several options here. Dorico handles multiple voices wonderfully. Have you explored “New upstem voice” or “new downstem voice”? You can change selected notes to a different voice by right clicking and going to Voices. That’s also an easy way to see how many voices you have currently, and whether they are up or down stem.

If you have want to force a new voice up or down, add a new voice by Shift-V-V. The icon will indicate whether the voice you’re adding is up or down. By default, voices alternate between upstem and downstem.

Just checking: once you have created a voice, are you trying to toggle between voices by using shift-V? Instead, just hit V. Shift-V will create a new voice every time you do it.

While you’re getting used to voices, view voice colors. It helps keep track of things.

One more clarification: Dorico will put voice 1 stems up and voice 2 stems down by default if both voices are present in the same bar, so that shouldn’t be an issue.

You mentioned cleaning up a piano score where the split point isn’t always what you want. Do you know about Alt-M and alt-N? Life changing.

Tony,
I’m glad you are enjoying your first experiences with Dorico. You obviously have long-term experience working with notation software but if, like me when I started with Dorico 2 years ago, you have not had cause to use the MusicXML format before, I suspect your experience with importing your Sibelius-generated file would have been more trouble-free if you had exported it from Sibelius in MusicXML format and imported that into Dorico rather than a midi file.

Also, if you are not already aware of it, Dan Kreider has produced his wonderful A Beginner’s Guide to Dorico. which can be viewed on-screen or downloaded and printed as a pdf document at the link below. I find it very helpful to have close-by when working with Dorico.

https://www.steinberg.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=246&t=145125

Like I said, maybe it was just me not being familiar enough with a new program. Thanks for the tips. Will try them on the next project.

Yes at the time I exported it as just a Type 1 midi file.

I will look into that beginners guide.

Thanks.