The documentation states that when Voice Colors is enabled, that the colors are selected at random. Which is fine. But sometimes one of those random colors happens to be the same as the ‘this note/these notes are selected’ color, making it impossible to be certain which notes are selected and which belong to voice X. Thanks!
I seldom use enough voices that I could try this, but if I reached that point, I would probably save and close the project (and perhaps the program) at which point Dorico would reclaim any unused voices and then see if the program reassigned the colors when I reopened the file.
Only 4 voices!
I will certainly try your suggestion. But I think this is a good suggestion for a future enhancement.
I have encountered this problem before.
I often have to work from xml files generated from a scan, and I find that voices are assigned to more parts than I might think are strictly necessary. I have had to reassign voices by trial and error. Reserving the “this note is selected” colour for selected notes would indeed be helpful for me.
If this becomes too much of an issue, there is a command to change voice so you can select multiple notes (whole measures sometimes) and merge into upstem voice one. (This presupposes a uniform rhythm, of course.)
Actually, I have found that note colors are not that random (although I suspect that they are selected by a pseudo-random algorithm with the same seed every time). In the order of creation for one and the same instrument (different staves in multi-staff instruments appear to share the voice count) I always get these colors: light blue, red (this one is slightly difficult to distinguish from selected notes), light green, dark blue, orange (this one is particularly difficult to distinguish from selected notes) and magenta.
I think voice colors need some significant tweaking. Some colors (e.g., cyan) are stupidly bright; I think the D team needs to create a new and more carefully considered palette for this feature. My suggestion would be to set up sixteen muted/desaturated colors (I made eight examples below) which would then contrast significantly with the bright orange caret/selection color. Associate muted color with voices and bright color with UI function.
How about letting the user choose voice colour from a colour picker, with a set of defaults as per @tonywardarts as defaults, then colour blind people could have what colours they can distinguish, and I can have what colours I like!
While I like the idea of options for color-blind people, I think it would be hard to implement an intuitive way to customize the color selection of new voices, considering Dorico’s support for virtually unlimited number of voices. In other words, if they go with the color picker implementation, you would have to pick an infinite amount of colors, and I suspect that the majority of the user base wouldn’t have time for that.
If they ever decide to let us customize the way voice colors are assigned, I suspect that it would be through options like choosing between different color picking algorithms (e.g. suited for particular types of color blindness) and picking a different random seed.