Ties and Octave Adjustment


I got Dorico this morning and so far I am enjoying it. I have used Sibelius since the beginning so it might take a few days for me to get use to this.

Im having some issues with ties. I am trying to write a dotted half note tied to an eight note but it keeps putting it half note tied to a dotted quarter note. It achieves the same thing, but I want it written the other way. Is there a way to change that?

I know in sibelius that I could select a whole measure and press control and arrow up or down and it would move it an octave. Is. there anything like that in Dorico. I know if you hold shift and alt and then the arrow keys it only moves it a half step.

Also in sibelius I could write octave notes in the same part. So if I wanted a low B Flat and a high B Flat on beat one for the tuba I would simply just select the first note and then hit shift B on my keyboard and it would put a B and octave higher in the score. Is there a way to do that similar in Dorico.

As of right now I think those are my only questions.

Nick Farrell

Hi Nick,

By default, Dorico will notate any duration you enter to fit the many rules that you can set up in Notation Options (found in the Write menu in Write mode, or by pressing Ctrl/Cmd+Shift+N). Have a look at the Note Grouping options to see the sorts of things you can control in this regard.

However, for individual examples like the one you mention you have the option to ‘Force Durations’, which is enabled by pressing the G-clamp icon in the Notes toolbox on the left-hand side of the Write window, or by pressing 'O). Now Dorico will keep to the rhythmic durations you specifically enter, so you can enter the dotted half note, choose the eighth note in the Notes palette, type ‘T’ or press the Tie button in the toolbox and enter the note and it will keep your tie chain intact.

In Dorico, Alt+Up/Down changes the pitch by a diatonic step and as you have discovered adding Shift to that moves it by a chromatic step. If you instead add Ctrl/Cmd, that moves it by an octave. So press Ctrl/Cmd+Alt+Up to move the pitch up an octave.

Adding more notes to make a chord in Dorico is extremely flexible and can be achieved by pressing the Chords button in the Notes toolbox or by typing Q (for, er, quords…). With Chords active the caret does not advance, but rather adds more notes to the current position, by default always adding notes above (unless you are using a MIDI keyboard of course). So to add the notes in your examples, start note input, press Q, select the note duration and press B on your computer keyboard, then press B again to add another an octave higher. The press Space to advance the caret.

Hope this helps!


I have been having loads of problems with Dorico, but I expected this. It is why I wanted to get in on the ground floor with version 1.0, to learn the program as it develops. Some of the problems (playback, percussion) were expected. Others (pitch input) I have figured out. I am really a read-the-manual-style, so the on-line help (understandable in light of the evolving nature of the program) is not optimal for me. But I will persevere.

If Steinberg had tried to fund version 1.0 as a Kickstarter campaign, I expect it would have had lots of takers. So I don’t understand why so many are complaining about the state of the program; it was never advertised as a complete solution right our of the gate. It is an opportunity, and that is how I see it.

Kudos to the development team and the selfless support folks who have been tirelessly on line since the release. Such responsiveness is admirable. This is my first experience with Steinberg, and I am impressed.

Well, in all fairness, if you call something “The New Gold Standard”, people WILL have certain expectations… :neutral_face:

Can’t wait for the updates :slight_smile:

For the record:

  1. I love the program and the design philosophy behind it,
  2. knew exactly what the limitations would be,
  3. had never planned to use it for actual production at this stage and
  4. just got involved early to get to know it from literally day one and in order to make use of the crossgrade offer.



I am trying to delete ties but it keeps selecting both notes the ties attached to. For instance I have a tie that crosses a bar line in one part. I copied and pasted that part to another instrument to save time and I was just planning on deleting the tie and switching the second note, but for some reason it is not letting me. Am I doing something wrong. Can I select ties independently?


To change the second note of a tie chain, press Enter to show the caret, position it at the second note, then enter the replacement note. (Make sure you are not in insert mode).

I tried that and it changes both notes. I want to break a tie chain.


It seems like the ties are the thing that is driving me the most crazy.

If you look at my image you will see the top two instruments are tied the right way, but I can’t seem to get the lower instrument to tie that way. I can’t remember how i did it. I tired to use the lock button to force it, but it won’t work. Any idea?

As you can see when I select the tie it also selects the notes.
Screen Shot 2016-10-21 at 1.27.32 PM.png

I was wondering also how to decide which octave when inputting with computer keyboard with pc.
Is it possible before inputting the note?
I read that after inputting note it should be possible with Alt+Ctrl+Arrow.
In Scandinavian keyboard layout Ctrl+Alt doesn´t seem to work, there is nothing happening. I wonder if I’m missing something…



Normally if you press A-G, Dorico chooses the octave closest to the note you have already input. If you want to explicitly choose the octave above, type Shift+Alt+A-G, and if you want to choose the octave below, type Ctrl+Alt+A-G (on Mac, it’s just the key marked Control, not Ctrl+Alt, and not the Command key either: just the Control key plus A-G).