It seems that Dorico doesn’t take hidden empty staves into account when deciding how to scale large time signatures.
There are many more actual woodwind instruments in the score but when hiding the empty staves and even condensing the clarinets, Dorico doesn’t change the scale factor to 4 as is set in Engraving Options.
That is true, and it is intentional, so that you have a consistent time signature size for each instrument family from system to system. It’s not common to use these kinds of time signatures in scores that omit a large number of empty staves.
I don’t know how to provide any more information than I did in my previous reply, so let me try the same words in a different order: because the music in which these kinds of time signatures are conventionally used do not typically involve hiding empty staves (i.e. music for film/TV/game recording sessions where the conductor wants to see the same staves in every system), the time signatures take into account the actual number of staves in the bracket, not the number of staves shown in the bracket. Another way to look at it is that it’s not recommended to use large time signatures in a score where the number of staves shown in the system is highly variable. A third thing to consider is that you might find showing time signatures above the staff more suitable for this kind of score; that would be the more conventional approach for concert music (such as mid-century Boosey and Hawkes scores for composers like Britten) where there are many meter changes but the number of staves in the system varies in order to produce a more compact vertical layout.
Thanks for the clarification. The reason I specifically want this kind of behavior is for Hollywood productions. I understand why you know the standard for not hiding staves in recording sessions while using large time signatures but this behavior is something that is required nonetheless. I also understand that many people may not need or think of this and might be considered an edge case scenario. I just thought that this might not have been thought about and was a simple fix.
I have to disagree with you Daniel. What you describe is old Hollywood scores, where a lot of changes were made on the spot during a recording session. This is why all staves where needed. Today with the advent of detailed electronic demos it’s no longer the case. I use large time signatures because they are easier on the eyes during a session, after sleepless nights, and hide empty staves, because this reduces the number of page turns.
I’ve just complicated a large film score in Dorico, and even though I love the output, and the condensing is groundbreaking, the way it handles large time signatures was a weak point.