not really understand stems in different voices

hello, i know this question has already been asked but i still can’t quite understand. Maybe my English is not good enough for these subtleties. I put two examples, written in 3 voices on sibelius and dorico. On Dorico the first voice and voice 1 up, the second voice 2 up, and the third voice 3 down. And I would like the stems to be aligned as on sibelius. What am i missing? Thanks and sorry for my stupid question maybe

Sorry to say this but the version made in Sibelius is incorrect. Dorico correctly differentiates between the upstem voices so you can always see who has what. The alignment on the first beat gives the false impression that there is only one voice, and the alignment on the second beat is particularly bad, with the two different voices with two different note values.

But if you insist on doing it the Sibelius way :unamused: , look for the Voice Column Index property in Engrave Mode.

cool,i ididn’t know the Voice Column Index property, and it works prefect !
nevertheless in this case would not be better to choose for the middle voice, descending stem 1 ? by writing in four voices is, there generally a way to choose the voices up and down?
Thanks a lot

I don’t think the middle voice would benefit from having down-stems in this particular case. In general, if there are 3 voices in 1 staff, I think the middle voice can switch stem direction depending on context. If you have 4 independent contrapuntal voices, I guess 2 up + 2 down would make sense, but I don’t think there are strict rules for that.

I really don’t like the G quarter note and B half note sharing a stem. My reaction reading this is “did somebody mean the G was a half note, of the B was a quarter note?” This isn’t a violin chord where only the top note is sustained for the full length.

I don’t really mind whether the G stem is down, or up and offset to the right as in Sibelius. You don’t need completely consistent stem directions in the middle voice, so there is no need to offset the F# and A in the first chord IMO.

I find the whole up-stem/down-stem convention confusing for voices. I mean, why force the user into specific paradigm whereby the direction of a stem indicates which voice it uses, when the user can just select some notes and assign a voice to them?

If I create a divisi section on a staff, I have two sets of notes, both of which can (and very likely shall) have stems that go both up and down. Happens all the time in music. Yet for playback, I’m supposed to refer to either divided staff as up-stem or down-stem, and to remember how I’ve designated them. Why? Why not just “voice 1” and “voice 2,” which is far more intuitive? And what about unison passages? What do I call those, now that I’ve created more voices for the staff? Their stems go up and down all over the place, too.

Voice colors would be a nice visual reference. Dorico doesn’t do that, though. (EDIT: I am referring to the Play tab, here.)

Also, what’s the method for getting rid of unused voices? Dorico is supposed to get rid of unused voices when I close a file, but that isn’t happening in my scores. In the Play tab, I’ve painstakingly gone over every bar of a flow for some voices, for the whole range of notes from C-1 to C9, and found them completely empty – yet they’ve hung around for months. Even if it did work, why can’t I invoke that functionality at will? Why do I have to close and re-open the file?

Also, how do the “Set for this flow” and “Set for all flows” buttons work in the Play tab? Assuming they’re relevant only when a user makes a change, wouldn’t I normally want a change to apply only for the flow on which I’m working? So why is the much more destructive “Set for all flows” on by default, and more annoyingly, why does it revert to that setting every time I go back to the Play tab? Why can’t it remember which mode I used last, and just stick with that until I change it? Also, there’s a button tool-tipped “Enable independent playback of voices.” That seems like something that you’d want to have on by default, right? I mean, why would you not want that on the vast majority of the time, and once you’d turned it on, how often would you ever turn it off? (Pretty much never, right?) And yet, it’s off by default. (Weirdly, Dorico remembers whether you turned it on, but it won’t remember your choice for “Set for this flow” and “Set for all flows.”)

As amazing as Dorico’s playback functionality is (best in class for notation software, easily), it’s overly engineered. A few key aspects of it should be much simpler than they are (from the user’s perspective, anyway).

If you’ve got a project in which you believe Dorico is not correctly removing unused voices, please provide it. You can attach it here or you can email it to me.

You can turn on voice colors under View > Note and Rest Colors > Voice Colors.

Sorry, I meant voice colors in the Play tab. In Write mode, yes, but that visual language/distinction does not carry over to the Play tab. (It’s not a big deal – as I wrote, it would be “nice” – but it’s an inconsistency that I do find mildly annoying.)

You can get it here. Check up-stem voice 2 in the first flow, and down-stem voice 1 and up-stem voice 3 in the second flow.

The double bass in flow 1 has an extra staff, which has a voice assigned to it; I guess you once upon a time had a divisi or an extra staff and later removed it, but the extra staff still hangs around (for good reasons that I won’t go into here). If you know you don’t ever need that staff back, you’ll need to create a new double bass and copy the music across from the old to the new, being sure not to create a new staff. Likewise in the flow 2, you once upon a time had a third staff for the double bass, and its voice is still kicking around.

I know that you wrote that you won’t go into the reasons, but if you can summarize, why would a voice on a staff persist once I’d deleted the staff?

Is this behavior documented in the manual (which I admit to having read only cursorily)?

There is an interesting discussion in this thread, including this quote:

And yes, this is documented in the manual, which despite its slow start is really good now!

The same logic probably applies to setting up playback for nonexistent voices in Play mode.

If you import a template that defines different patches for a trumpet section, for example, depending on the voice numbers, you don’t want Dorico to delete it after your first day’s work just because you haven’t written the trumpet parts yet!