Limit of 127 staves by layout


As you may know, Cubase has a (stupid) limit of 127 staves by layout !

I agree that 127 staves is already unreadable, but this limitation avoids to custom all settings of a template (with hundreds of tracks/staves). Indeed, I would like to set, for each of my tracks, the name of the staff, its key, its quantization, etc. Then, when I do a music, say with 40 or 50 instruments, I open the score for these instruments and all is already set. As far I understand, it’s not possible for the moment.

How do you work around this limitation ?
Maybe several layouts ? But can we combine them ? (for example, one layout for the woodwinds, one for the brass, etc, then when I open my score on the selected/used tracks, it would pick settings from the different layouts in the newly created one)

I asked to support, but they tell me to ask here (which is ridiculous according to me, like they don’t want to improve Cubase)


Windows 10, Cubase Pro 10.5.20

Perhaps, if this limitation is impacting you, you need a more sophisticated dedicated scoring program like Dorico rather that the basic scoring capabilities included in Cubase.

Actually, I don’t use the score editor of Cubase to produce my scores (too much ugly/primitive for me). But I need it to export an xml, then I import it to Sibelius or Dorico.
And to have a usable xml, I need to set for each staff at least the name, the quantification and the key. And I don’t want to do that each time

This limit should never even be approached.
The Layout refers to what is printed on paper. Having a system of more than 35/40 different instruments/staves is rare.

You cannot just add your tracks and then apply a predefined Layout that would set everything well in the score. This is indeed not possible … by default!
Because this is not the way the Score Editor works, as opposed to other (or dedicated) scoring programs where you just choose your instruments and a preconfigured layout pops up.
In Cubase you have to build almost everything yourself from scratch. And this is paradoxically what I precisely like about the Score Editor. :wink:

I suggest that you consider the following options:

1- Build and save your own layouts to cover a maximum of your most used configurations.

2- Use Templates
Save your Templates, for example in the Scoring section of the Hub, and start your project from there.

3- In your case:

What you should use is Staff Presets. From there, adjusting your Layout, is a matter of seconds.
See the attached picture.

I usually work with large orchestral templates in the Score Editor, and despite its limitations, I never felt the need to export my scores to any other program.


The scoring capabilities of Cubase are maybe not as sophisticated as that of Dorico, but they are, by no means, … “basic”!
(at least in Pro version)

Quite true - I meant it more in the sense doing basic day to day scoring tasks not that the tasks themselves are basic.

I wonder if you might comment more on how you manage your Layouts. Mine are always a mess with several having the same name but containing different combinations of staves. And they seem to replicate on their own. I think I’m missing some key concept about how to effectively use them.

I must admit that the Layout functionality is probably the least intuitive part in the Score Editor.

What you need to know is that every time you close the Score Editor and reopen it from a new combination of parts, a new layout is automatically created. If you do nothing and close the Score Editor, the newly created Layout is removed. But if you bring any modification to this new layout, in the score, or simply by clicking Apply in the Layout tab, that layout becomes persistent in the Layout list. You have the possibility to rename your layouts in the Layout settings windows in order to differentiate them more easily.
You can remove Layouts that are not currently in use.
Finally, If you remove tracks that are part of existing layouts, you can use the function “Clean up” in the Layout settings window to remove the layouts which contained those tracks.

I think that with these clues you can get away with it.

This is it. I couldn’t understand why a new Layout would appear, seemingly randomly.

Do you tend to mostly use Open Layout rather than Open Score Editor?

I never use Open Layout.
And I rarely open the Score Editor.
Because I rarely close the Score Editor :smiley:

I sometimes get the feeling people don’t really know the extent of the Editor’s capabilities. It’s not basic at all.