FR: Edit instrument, add MIDI instrument export selection

It would be great if the new “Edit instrument” dialog could have a simple dropdown where we could choose which MIDI instrument to be used in MIDI export.

For example, the current Bass singer is being exported as some kind of acoustic bass instrument. Being able to change this to a male voice would help here :slight_smile:


I’m not sure what you mean, Günther. MIDI doesn’t really have a concept of instruments, as such, so it just exports the stream of events for an instrument to a track. It will have a name supplied, which will probably be “Bass”, but there’s no information in the MIDI file to specify what sound that should be using when it’s later played back. Presumably you’re then working with that MIDI file in another application, and it is deciding to assign the bass guitar sound on the basis of its track name.

Hm… I have to admit that my knowledge of MIDI is quite limited.

I had assumed that each track in a MIDI file has a program number associated, so a piano will sound as a piano (1) and an acoustic base sounds as an acoustic base (33).
And my special new e-woodwind instrument which I would create by myself in Dorico should be exported as sounding like a clarinet (72).

So, what you are saying is that from a MIDI perspective, the “Bass” singer, the “Bass” acoustic instrument and the newly created special synth “Bass” is all the same?

(I only used MIDI export once for a customer’s project, where I exported MIDI and opened them in the native Windows Media Player. I was quite confused that the Bass singer sounded ike an acoustic bass, while the mezzo-soprano sounded somewhat like a tiny guitar. :smiley: )

So far as I know, Dorico isn’t exporting program changes in the MIDI files it exports. I could be mistaken, but I don’t think so.

Well, in the end it does not matter for my feature request: If MIDI needs a proper name (instead of a program number) for an instrument in order for MIDI players to make an educated guess of which sound to choose, so be it.

So the Bass singer would probably need a “Male voice” export name, and the Bass player would get his “Acoustic bass” name exported to the MIDI file.
And for my special-e-woodwind-squeeky-thing I could enter “Clarinet” :slight_smile:

The feature request stands, only the details changed a bit :slight_smile:

I don’t like to disagree with @dspreadbury , but if I create a new project using the Choir SATB, unaccompanied template, apply the HSSE+HSO (Pro) playback template and export a MIDI file, it contains these program changes with patch numbers counting from zero:

2, 0, Title_t, "Soprano"
2, 0, Program_c, 0, 52
3, 0, Title_t, "Alto"
3, 0, Program_c, 1, 52
4, 0, Title_t, "Tenor"
4, 0, Program_c, 2, 52
5, 0, Title_t, "Bass"
5, 0, Program_c, 3, 32

Since Dorico knows that the instrument labeled Bass is in the Singers family, the program change for this instrument should specify patch number 52, not 32.

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Right – evidently Dorico is probably doing some kind of General MIDI patch assignment when it exports MIDI, then. I will make a note of this and investigate when things are not quite so busy.


Thanks, Daniel!
I’m aware that this is no high-priority thing, of course.
I just figured that with the new Edit Instrument dialogue, this could be the perfect spot to add this option :slight_smile:

It seems that Dorico 5.0.10 has removed Bass from the Singers family in the instrument picker. Somehow I don’t think that is the way to solve the problem which the OP and I have raised in this topic.

Well, let’s put it this way: This is one way of solving it :wink:

@dspreadbury There seems to be some regression here. I guess, people writing for choir might run into problems without the Bass singer available.

Heh, OK. I will take a look at this as soon as possible. It should only be removing duplicate instruments within the same family.

Hope this fits in here:

Dorico in English:

Dorico in German:

Different amount of singers, bass missing in German.

Yes, we know about this, and we’ll fix as soon as possible.