Staff spacing and dynamics with cross-staff notation

Hi all!

  1. In engrave mode, filters don’t work, so I can’t select the dynamics by filtering them. I think the ability to filter score elements in Engrave mode would be useful? Example in image 1, where dynamics have ended up under cross-staff beams.

  2. After a bit of clicking around, I manage to get the dynamics selected, use shift+alt+arrow to move them down and the staff spacing goes haywire, as shown in image 2. How I can prevent this from happening?

Thank you! I also asked this on the FB group, so apologies in advance for cross-posting.

And this is why I use the facebook group, this forum is painful to use. Tried to attach these images three times now, apologies.

For the benefit of anyone who stumbles across this in future and isn’t on the Facebook group:

The dynamics are attached to the top staff. Every time you bring them down, Dorico pulls down the bottom staff in order to keep the dynamics above the bottom staff.

The solution is to Cut the dynamics, set the caret on the bottom staff and Paste the dynamics.

I really would like to be able to change the dynamics “cross-staff”, using n or m as for notes. This would make this kind of edit soooo fast, and would be quite consistent, I believe.
[Edit] I just checked, and a simple alt-m performs exactly what pianoleo has advised, because it’s my keyboard shortcut for “move to the staff below”. I do not remember if this one is a default shortcut or not, but if not, I would advise you to add it — I also have shift-alt-n/m to copy to staff above/below. It works in write mode.

I think it is - I just forgot!

Thanks both - I’ll post more here in future.

Any thoughts on the filter commands being available in Engrave mode?

It’s not something that bothers me frequently. You can always filter in Write mode and then switch to Engrave mode. Your selection will remain selected.

I have a feeling this only works if Write mode is in Page View, but I can’t remember if this has been improved or if there are other caveats.

OK, fair enough - I’m not massively keen on switching mode all the time, but that’s a personal preference thing.

That is one of the only frustrating aspects of Dorico for me. There are certain things that you have to switch to engrave mode for. This is perfectly acceptable and logical as a general precept, although, undoubtedly, many of us would like a few of those things to be opened up to write mode.

I’m finding myself perpetually in the wrong ‘mode’ for a lot of functions that (I believe) should be common to both modes. Filtering is a great example. It’s often extremely useful to be able to filter out all dynamics (just to stick with my current example) no matter which mode you’re in. Sure, switching modes takes a second, but it adds an extra step - my Dorico experience has been really good, on the whole, but I’m finding a lot of these ‘extra steps’ to be necessary (I’m looking at you, tied notes). I’ve no doubt these things will get ironed out in the future (the Dorico team are perhaps the most user-responsive I’ve ever seen). On the other hand, it’s also difficult for me at this point to work out what are features of the programme that could use improvement, and which are simply my own lack of familiarity with the program, and the development team also need to avoid chasing after every user-suggestion that might inadvertently make the program worse/result in bloat. I’m sure it’s a difficult balancing act.

I believe the reason that filtering is disabled in Engrave mode is that it would slow things right down. Though I’m sure there are better examples, think about one of those cross-staffed S-shapes slurs. In Write mode, that’s one item. In Engrave mode, it’s five or six (or more!). Multiply that across an entire flow selection and you have the potential for a very slow operation.

Since Engrave mode is intended for tweaking the appearance of individual items as a “last resort”, I suppose it’s arguable that filtering (which operates on groups of items) isn’t very relevant for that purpose.

If you need to do operations on “all” items in some category, the best place to do them is by setting the Engraving Options, not filtering and manually tweaking. If the Engraving Options don’t give you what you want, then ask for better Engraving Options!

Hmm, yes I see both your points. Here’s an example though - I have just finished inputting a piece for oboe and piano. I use a lot of cross-stave notation in my piano writing, and many of the dynamics end up clashing with beams etc. Selecting objects that are in the same position on-screen is always a little tricky (in every program, this isn’t unique to Dorico), so the ability to be able to select a bar (or two, or three and so on), filter dynamics in order to move them would be really useful. And it is an engraving operation - so switching back to ‘write’ mode and then back again is a redundant extra step that feels rather counter-intuitive. I actually do think I’ve understood the engraving options pretty well, but no algorithm is ever going to get this stuff 100% correct.

Try using Alt+Shift+Click to select objects superimposed on each other. Each click will select a different object.

Thank you Leo, this is really helpful.

For what it’s worth, although we don’t have any plans to make filters available in Engrave mode, the forthcoming Select More feature does work in Engrave mode, and provides a very quick way to select dynamics e.g. on the current system so that you can move them.

Oh, thanks Daniel - I’ll look out for ‘select more’. I think that’ll cover 90% of my needs.