Play mode > edit instrument, HALion window

I find the interaction between Dorico and the instrument editor a bit cumbersome.

  1. If I’m in Play mode, drill down an instrument and click on the little piano keyboard icon to edit it, I would like to have the current instrument already selected in the HALion window that opens.
  2. The HALion window appears to not be a part of the current application in a way, but isn’t a separate application either. If that window is open it still shows “Dorico” as application name in the menu bar on macOS but I can’t switch between windows of Dorico with Cmd-< or Cmd->, as usual on Mac. I can switch between windows if a project window is focused. And likewise, the three-finger-swipe-down gesture on the trackpad that brings up all windows of the current application only brings up the HALion window if that window currently has focus. It’s kind of weird. I would like it to be a true part of Dorico (not to mention the very non-Dorico and unintuitive user interface and interaction in that window which deserves a whole nother discussion).

Thanks for your feedback. There’s no way currently for Dorico to select a particular channel in HALion when you show the HALion window: HALion is simply running as a VST plug-in inside the audio engine process, and although there is some special communication in order for Dorico to tell HALion to load particular sounds, there’s not a great deal more that Dorico can tell HALion to do, or indeed for HALion to be able to report changes you make back to Dorico.

We know that, on both Windows and macOS, having the audio engine run as a separate process presents some inconvenience in terms of managing the windows it owns with the windows that Dorico owns, and we hope to be able to address that in a future version, but it’s not something you should expect to change in the near future, I’m afraid.

I’ve just started playing around to try and get to understand how playback works.

I’m sure there’s a key point I’ve missed.
Where is the Halion setup stored in Dorico? (Playback template, Endpoint configuration or somewhere else?)

and how can I ensure that my Halion setup is saved with the project file?


You don’t need to do anything to ensure that your playback configuration is preserved when you save your project: Dorico always saves the state of all of the plug-ins in your project when you save, and will restore it the next time you open the project.

Technically a playback template is a recipe that is used to provide the default allocation of sounds to the instruments you add to your project. A project knows what playback template is in use so that it knows how to add sounds for new instruments as you create them, etc., but the playback template itself is not really part of the project: that’s something that lives in the application. However, the expression maps and percussion maps that are used by the playback template are saved in the project itself.

Many thanks for the clarification.