Tempo Editor: also access via timecode track?

@dspreadbury Earlier I talked about the usability of accessing the tempo editor via clicking tempo markings, it’s a clever approach but in practice is clumsy as you have to keep scrolling around to get to them and such.

I had a thought that a natural solution might be to add the timecode track to the selection choices. It makes sense doesn’t it? Timecode is a time element, presently clicking on it does nothing, but it makes a lot of sense to have it also allow editing of the tempo as it’s just another time/tempo indicator. Thoughts?

I’m not sure it would help a huge amount, would it? In fact, it might be less convenient still than using tempo marks. Tempo marks at least appear (or at least can appear) above multiple staves in the ensemble, whereas the timecode staff only appears in one position.

However, we do agree that it would be helpful to be able to access the tempo editor in Write mode without needing to select a tempo item, and we’re thinking about how to achieve this in future.


Yeah I do think it would help quite a bit. Upside is that if you have it enabled, it’s always there. Here’s a use case

  • Write a score with a large number of bars. One tempo at the beginning
  • You’re in the middle, for humanizing you need to play with the rubato, you have to go all the way to the front, click that tempo, then go back to where you were, etc …
  • Now you’re elsewhere, you have to repeat the operation, scrolling back and forth horizontally
  • With the timecode track, all you have to do is maybe scroll vertically, and it’s always there in whatever bar you are in.

The only downside is you may not have a time code track, but you can easily enable/disable, or ignore it. For that matter you may not have any tempo markings.

For the media music I write this is the most common use case. There are few if any tempo changes (that would most of the time go into a new flow as it’s a different section in the film/cut scene/game), and all the humanizing is done in Dorico. Regardless, logically since timecode is in the ‘time/tempo’ category it seems natural.

For now, would it be faster to create a new tempo marking, hide it and use that as a starting point?

Good thought, but I don’t think so. It’s more about the ‘flow’ of humanizing than milliseconds. For inspiration I like to have a well played back track for important bits, so I’ll fix up while writing, so here there’s a lot of jumping in and out from node changing to humanizing. And otherwise in finalizing I get into a conducting mode, switching between played dynamics/CC, note length and tempo primarily. The timecode track is always up so I can keep an eye that I’m keeping on hit points.

You see the problem is these libraries can be twitchy, I’m using BBCSO primarily which can awfully blat out initially. But to get it just right I find it takes a lot of this switching between those three control axis (tempo/duration/CC).

So yeah fooling around with lots of scrolling, or hacking around it by dropping in a temp time just so I can get the editor doesn’t work well.