Move a hairpin to start later with playback (across tied notes)

Let’s say I have something like this:

I want the hairpin to start toward the 2nd or even last bar of these tied notes. I understand that you can adjust this visually in engrave mode, however I want it to affect playback more importantly, so it sounds as though the player holds the dynamic for a little bit before decrescendo’ing, rather than an immediate decrescendo.

I can’t for the life of me figure out how to move the hairpin over to start where I want it to. The only way I’ve gotten it to work is to delete the existing hairpin, untie the notes, start a new hairpin on one of the later notes, then retie them. It will work then, but it’s a bit of a hacky workaround. Is there no way otherwise?

Select the dynamic. Ungroup it (if it is grouped). Move the hairpin with alt-right arrow and shorten it using shift-alt-left arrow (It will move by the current grid value)


@wing, I’m not sure if you already know this but you can also enter the dynamics precisely where you want them to begin/end using the dynamics popover.

Ah ha, it was the grouping that was my issue. I guess it groups by default to the nearest dynamic on the notes when I create a hairpin. As soon as ungrouped I was able to move it left/right wherever I want. Thank you!

When I use the dynamics popover on tied notes like this, it still wants to put the hairpin at the start of the first note. Is there a way to specify in the popover to start later, or start on a specific bar number?

Invoke the caret (start note entry) - move it to where you want the dynamic, then use shift-D… to open the popover.

Hmm, just tried that. The popover opens but when I enter a hairpin and hit enter, nothing happens. It appears to work with text dynamics though, just not hairpins.

Yes, the key thing is to start Note Input (Shift+N) so you can place the caret where you choose.

After closing the popover, keeping the caret active, navigate to where you want the dynamic to end and either: enter a new dynamic with the popover to end the hairpin and create the new dynamic, or, press ? and the hairpin will end.

It’s all here, and it’s very powerful:

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Ah, wow, that works, though I never would’ve guessed such a thing. Not terribly intuitive or self-evident from a UI perspective, feels like a bit of a hidden easter egg really, but at least now I know. Thank you both!

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I disagree that it’s not intuitive: it works just like any other popover, which is a unique feature to Dorico.

Popovers were a very ”odd” concept for me when I began with Dorico. I think that I rushed into using the program before learning about them, and they are a feature that is hard to appreciate before you have learned to use them effectively etc?

It is definitely not self-evident from a UI perspective. One of their big uses is to minimise mouse-clicking. I guess it wouldn’t make much sense (to me) having a feature designed to save you mouse-clicks, visible to click. It could almost be a waste of space?

But, all the info is available: the help page I linked, the YouTube videos, the First Steps guide… I didn’t really use these to the best of my advantage. It actually took a post like yours for me to understand how it works with note input.

Anyways, hope that helps! Happy Easter!

I think you can invoke any of the popovers using this method. I certainly use it to place dynamics, turns and text.

I have to admit that my slur entry-ing is probably not as smooth and effective as it could be. I think I do too many keystrokes.

I personally don’t think anyone would normally guess this without learning it first is how I mean it’s not intuitive. (Enter hairpin, popover disappears, now obviously the next step is move the caret and hit a question mark!) To be fair I’ve been using Dorico for more than a year and I actually find popovers very intuitive, I’m speaking more specifically to this hairpin step which is not made self-evident and could use a little clarity rather than the popover simply disappearing like nothing happened.

What I would suggest from a UI perspective is something to make it clear it is waiting for the user entry - this could be something like the hairpin appears but is flashing or semi-transparent, and as the user advances the caret the hairpin, still flashing or semi-transparent, stretches to the point. Then hitting an enter key (which to me is also more intuitive, but ? if you prefer) would simply commit the hairpin. It would be both visual and obvious as a process.

Or maybe when selecting a tied note, the program could observe which “note” in the tie the user clicked? If the user clicked the first note of the tie, or the second or third… Of course some may not like this behavior but it kinda makes sense to me, it’s still one note but could be treated as separate notes in terms of placing dynamics.

Alternatively, maybe it could be nice to have the option for hairpins to not group to text dynamics by default within the preferences. I actually usually don’t like to have them connected unless I manually elect to do so.

Just some spitballs, I just never would’ve guessed I needed to press ? after the popover disappears. Thanks for the advice.

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That would have been useful for me (who didn’t really read the manual).

I certainly didn’t!

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Or press the space bar to extend the hairpin by grid increments.
There’s nothing like reading the Version History release notes or searching the manual; no matter how much experience one gains, things can slip by.


Sometimes I am frustrated/confused that when I google search for something, the manual appears, but it’s often an old manual for Dorico 2, Dorico 3, etc. While some things are the same, many things have been moved or renamed since those versions. I do wish the online manuals were more clearly archived or re-direct to the newest manual in those cases. I should probably bookmark the Dorico 5 manual to go straight to it but I haven’t gotten around to that yet haha.

All that said, I do still think there are things which could be made more self-evident by the UI and user interaction.

I know that the documentation team are trying to improve things. It’s not as simple as redirecting you to the latest version, though, because there are people out their still using older versions of Dorico that need to be able to access the version of the manual that’s relevant to them.