Playback techniques vs playing techniques?

I’ve noticed the playback techniques in Play menu and indeed the 3.5.10 release notes state:

Playback techniques. The Edit Playback Playing Techniques dialog has been
renamed Edit Playback Techniques, and can now be accessed via the Play menu
as well as via the Edit button in Engrave :arrow_forward: Playing Techniques.

But, Engrave->Playing techniques and Play->Edit Playback Technique do not display the same thing :question:

What is the relationship between the two? How are playback techniques different and how can they be used?

“Playing techniques” are the notations you input into the music and are intended to be read by the player, such as “pizz”.

“Playback techniques” (previously “playback playing techniques”, but now slightly renamed to be shorter and a bit more different) are the ‘back end’ of playing techniques, and they tell the playback device what sound to use to match the playing technique, i.e. telling the VST instrument to switch to the “pizzicato” sound.

Description in the manual here :slight_smile:

Ah, right, I forgot I was defining playback techniques :exclamation:

So in playing techniques i defined HH Open 3 quarters but also “Open 3 quarters” which is now visible in play -> edit playback techniques.

I’m not sure I understand why another level of abstraction is needed though, unless one would want to remap score to an already existing expression/percussion map, but even that is a moot point, as one has to remap somewhere anyway.

Important follow up question: playback techniques are not exported as a part of percussion maps, effectively rendering export useless for any user defined maps (see import_missing_pt.png). And there is no export of user defined playback techniques, either, which makes sharing customer maps impossible, right?

Sharing a project file is not a real workaround, as maps could be scattered across projects.


The reason for having that extra level of abstraction is because there’s a many-to-one mapping between objects in the score and the playback effects they generate. The word ‘open’ and the ‘o’ symbol above a high hat are different Playing Technique events but they correspond to the same Playback Technique. Similarly, ‘mute’, ‘con sord’ and ‘avec sourd’ are different Playing Techniques mapped to the same Playback Technique. You can define your own, which could be text, symbols, or graphics. The Expression Map deals only with Playback Techniques, and you wouldn’t want to have to define separate entries for muted, con sord and avec sourd, as in sound terms they’re the same thing.

Internally we originally called Playing Techniques, ‘Playing Technique Appearances’, which may be a helpful distinction.

Re: sharing of custom playing techniques and playback techniques: you can do this by saving an Endpoint Configuration and using it in a Playback Template. If you have an expression map that references custom Playback Techniques, and there are custom Playing Techniques that use them, then those will all be saved in the Endpoint Configuration.

Doh, I’m even using them this way myself :blush:

That IS a good name! I like “Playing technique” and “Playing technique display” (or appearance or …) easier to grasp!

I’ll investigate this, thanks. Of course each user needs to modify their endpoint, but if we can share configurations this way, it’s a start. I still think playing and playback techniques should also be in percussion kit and percussion map exports.

@Paul, that doesn’t seem to work.

See the attached playing template. Although it includes dependencies in playbacktemplatedeps.doricolib, they are not mapped in percussion map!

Also missing are the playing technique appearances - can’t use the playback playing techniques if there’s no appearances to add to the score!



Komplette - Abbey Road Modern Drummer - Sparkle.dorico_pt.zip (1.33 MB)

Aha, unfortunately this looks like an omission. Custom playback techniques that are referenced in an expression map are included in an endpoint configuration, but custom playback techniques in a percussion map aren’t. I’ll log this as a bug. I think you might be able to work around this: create a new expression map for your Abbey Road drummer that doesn’t do anything, but has an entry for your custom techniques. Set the endpoint for the plugin to use this expression map. It shouldn’t have any effect on playback, but when you save the endpoint config then it should cause the techniques to be included.

Seems to work after creating dummy expression map, thanks!

Also, I believe there is another bug: the popup which is showing Playback techniques is titled Playing Technique Combinations (in multiple places).