In older editions of violin music, the diamond note-heads indicating harmonics are practically of the same size as regular note-heads (at least to my eye).
On the contrary, in modern editions I see rather often that diamond note-heads are smaller.
In Dorico, they are drastically smaller.
Is it considered now an engraving standard?
And related question.
Should I decide to slightly increase the default size of diamond note-heads, I know that that can be done with Custom scale property.
Is it possible to set such custom scale for particular note-head type at the flow level; i.e. instead of adjusting individual notes?
I’m certainly not opposed to adjusting the diamond notehead set in Dorico if we can reach a consensus on what would be better than what we have now. Bravura includes a variety of diamond noteheads, e.g. between U+E0D7 and U+E0E3, U+E1B8 and U+E1B9, and U+E938 to U+E93D.
If anybody likewise has any examples of published scores with particularly clear harmonic notation, then I’m also keen to see those.
I’ve shown to a few violinists - both professionals and students - Dorico’s default rendering, and the consensus was that the default is harder to read; though the opinions differed on whether it should be the same size as regular notes or somewhat smaller.
Personally, I do like smaller diamond note-head because it looks more elegant and also conveys visually the notion of lighter touch. So, for me, it’s a matter of balance between visual expressivity and legibility.
Here’s my take on it. (I work in Dorico at 200% magnification; hence ‘oversized’ image)
The problem with such drastic scaling up is the terribly disproportional size of accidentals.
I vaguely remember that there was a suggestion of how to bypass that - i.e. to combine normal sized accidental and scaled-up diamond head. But as far as I can recall, the process seemed to be too tedious to be practical, if there were numerous instances.
I also find the diamond noteheads to be on the small side; I’m scaling up 130%, but a downside emerges: it appears that accidentals are also affected, even when the notehead is engaged individually in engrave mode.
I’m also wondering how to go about editing playback to reflect the technique.
Ideally, I would be able to go into Play mode, remove the two notes I’ve written, add the sounding pitch (preferably with playing technique for harmonic), and have none of this affect the notation. However, I haven’t seen any instruction on how to edit playback without affecting notation in either the videos I’ve watched or the forum posts I’ve found. Is there a “disable notation edits” or “edit playback only” option somewhere?
I agree with Andre, the notehead size doesn’t reflect ‘standard’ sizes from the late Renaissance and early Baroque. I would also say that stems are never placed on either side but always in the centre of diamond noteheads. Therefore, either the noteheads or the stems need a standard horizontal replacement to coincide with the bottom or top of the diamond depending upon stem direction. Attached is a page of handwritten diamond notation from 1542.
I might also observe that the same problem exists in Sibelius and also existed in Score. I suspect, the reason being that the diamond set was chiefly for string harmonics rather than Renaissance white notation. Notwithstanding, It would be great to have the capacity to use diamond notaton for incipits.
On a more pedantic point than the above…the italic nib slant of the ‘minimus’ noteheads is the reverse of the natural use of an ink nib. The thick lines should be the downward sloping notes not the upward sloping notes and longer note values are always larger. I find this is an issue with the current size of default breve and lunga values that are also appear to me undersize.