Secondary beam breaks

This was started in another post but I think it’s important enough to start a new topic.

Would it be possible to remove the limitation of one fewer beam than the number used to either side of the split or, preferably, to include another beaming preference setting which prevents secondary beam breaking altogether? There are plenty of places where I’d just like a run of eight 32nd notes without a break halfway, or to be able to notate the aria of the Goldberg Variations the way Bach did it without Dorico’s telling me I have to do it differently. I just checked the Henle urtext edition of the Beethoven sonatas and groups of 32nds (and smaller note values) are almost invariably notated without secondary beam breaks. Same with the works of Bach and a lot of other composers. The same goes for 16ths in time signatures like 3/8 or 6/8. It should be possible to notate a group of 16ths without Dorico’s breaking the secondary beam at every 8th. Please make this possible!

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If you want to produce a beam with no secondary beam break, you can select the first and last note in the group and choose Edit > Beaming > Beam Together: when you create a manual beam, Dorico doesn’t produce any automatic secondary beam breaks.

Thanks for the instruction. I didn’t think to select the first and last notes of the group; I’d tried selecting the notes around the secondary beam break and choosing Beam Together, but that connected those two notes and broke the beams before and after that.
But does this mean that if I want to produce a score which looks like most of the music I’ve seen (without secondary beam breaks), I have to do it manually for each each group? If so, could there be a setting in Notation Options to prevent secondary beam breaks entirely?

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Yes, I think in principle we could add an option for this. If you find that you need secondary beam breaks less often in a given flow, then being able to disable them altogether and then create them when needed via the ‘Split secondary beam’ property might be a more useful approach. I’ll log this and we’ll try to implement it in the relatively near future, though I can’t promise it will be imminently.

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A small issue I’ve run into while trying to recreate beaming found in a vocal manuscript: “Beam Together” seems not to work if there is a tied rhythm involved. In the attached image, the beams of beat 4 of the first measure should look like beat 2 of the following measure but nothing i’ve tried seems to make it behave how I want.

If you try to do this in Write mode, if you select one note in a chain of tied note, you automatically select all the tied notes. Since the quarter-note in beat 3 can’t have a beam, “Beam together” does nothing.

In Engrave mode, you can select the exact notes you want (i.e. just those in beat 4), and “Beam together” will work.

Just to revisit this idea, I too would second being able to disable secondary beam breaks. I did locate the Edit > Beaming > Beam Together independantly (after exploration) but it is rather cumbersome if the whole piece requires (or the engraver desires!) no secondary breaks.

Just checking in on this- since this thread has there been anyway of automatically disallowing secondary beam groups for an entire flow or project?

No, there’s no option to automatically disallow secondary beam breaks at present.

I would plead very much for the possibility to avoid secondary beam breaks automatically.
Editing music of the baroque era would be much easier.
For me it’s the only little obstacle against working really fast with this otherwise brilliant software.
Have been on board since day one or so.
Never looked back or regretted the step.

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I agree, currently working on a project mostly in 3/8 and will have to go through, bar by bar, and change the beam groups for all 7 instruments.

You can zap the secondary beam breaks in 3/8 by entering the time signature as [3]/8, i.e. one beat in a bar not three.

That idea doesn’t work very well for time signatures with longer bars, because it also makes the primary beams take the whole bar regardless of the note values.

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That’s genius, thanks!

Just what I looked for!