Rhythmic Grid - Play Mode

Is there a reason why the Rhythmic Grid must always be the same in Play Mode and Write Mode?

The majority of the time I write with the grid set to eighth notes. But in Play Mode, where I’m invariably adjusting tempo, entering pauses etc. I set it to the highest possible value. It would be useful to be able to set it differently for different Modes and, ideally, be able to set a default value in Preferences for Play Mode.

Also, I’ve searched to see if someone else has logged this - apologies if they have and I just can’t find it. For as long as I can remember, I’ve only ever seen part of the grid for each quarter note when in Play Mode - whatever rhythmic value is set. It’d be good to see the whole grid.

This is something we’re aware of. I’m not sure what we should do here; whether to have an independent setting or a snap on /off setting so that you can enter notes aligned to the grid, but finer detail for continuous controllers.

Thanks Paul.

This indirectly answers something I’ve always been puzzled about: why does Dorico use a piano roll as the basis for Play Mode? I just assumed that Write Mode was the place for note entry.

FWIW I think Cubase’s snap / grid functionality is good.

The difficulty here is that many users do expect DAW-like functionality, and expect piano roll views and controller lanes. However, unlike a DAW, Dorico doesn’t store MIDI events. It stores notation objects which give rise to notes. The note events in Dorico are stored in quantised positions, but displayed with playback offsets (this is exactly the opposite of a DAW where events have arbitrary time stamps but may have a display quantise to show them snapped to a grid). And so this does result in a natural tension between the sort of operations users expect to be able to perform, because the act of quantising (for instance) doesn’t quite mean the same thing for Dorico as it does in a DAW.

We certainly take inspiration from Cubase in the design of Play Mode features, where it makes sense to, so the snap/grid model may be something we’ll look at in the future.

That does sound like a quandary. I can definitely say at least for me that I can’t think of any scenario where I WOULDN’T want the grid to be as fine a resolution as possible for MIDI continuous controller data editing in Play Mode, so I agree with the OP that it’s always felt strange that it’s tied into whatever the resolution setting is in Write Mode…

Perhaps the solution goes back to Dorico’s original premise: enter the music first (in Write mode) and then detail visual presentation (in Engrave mode) or, in this case, playback (in Play mode); so setting the grid once to enter written notes and then to change it once to customize playback would not be such a burden.

At least that should work until the Dorico Team decides to make dual grids possible.

This is minimized for me by having assigned the rhythmic grid resolution to increase/decrease using 1 and 2.

I did reverse it: 1 gives me a smaller grid unit (“increase” resolution) and 2 is the opposite.

Derrek, that might be OK, except that these days, being able to “write” music without note-by-note audio feedback is becoming a lost art for the vast majority of notation software users.

(That’s not meant as a value judgement on different ways of working - just a statement of fact).

True, Rob, but how precise does the playback-in-process have to be to be getting on with as one writes. Presumably the fine-tuning would be for a demo file once the writing is done.

I think that if the playback gives a reasonable enough indication as writing develops, it doesn’t have to be that precise. However, as an example of where Dorico doesn’t currently give a reasonable enough indication - consider holds and pauses. These have to be programmed manually - and in all likelihood will involve a high value grid (as the image in post #1 shows). Personally I like to hear holds and pauses while I’m writing.

Yes, but there are different levels of “hearing”, and of understanding notation!!!

On another forum (which shall remain nameless) somebody recently asked a question about choosing chords to harmonize this, which was claimed to be a “waltz in A melodic minor.” Not that you would ever have guessed that from the way it was notated - but actually it is a waltz, once you decipher it.