Tuplet input drum voices

First time I’ve had to arrange complex drum kit parts.
What is the best method to input drum fills which contain up- and down-stem voices in tuplets, but that I want beamed together.

At the moment I’m creating the tuplet in both voices then changing the voice so that they’re all the same. There is a lot that can go wrong with this method, especially with nested tuplets. A further problem is that I then can’t just delete the spare (now empty) tuplets.

There must be a better way?

I’m not sure I can quite visualise this: you want notes in separate up- and down-stem voices to be beamed together?

Yes, for drum fills. Say 7-let 16ths around the kit using drums that are in up- and down-stem voices. It’s messy to be picking 16ths out of up- and down-stem tuplets, rather than them all beamed together.
I’m sure it’s less complicated to do than say, but I’m making a meal of it at the moment.

Ah, so you have drums that are normally notated in (say) a down-stem voice but you want those notes to be temporarily in the up-stem voice when they’re part of a tuplet? If so, you can do it by inputting them as normal, then selecting the notes that have ended up in the “wrong” voice and putting them into the “right” voice using Edit > Percussion > Change Voice.

Change voice doesn’t work unless you have identical tuplets in up- and down-stem voices. This is time consuming, but works until I then want to delete what is now an empty tuplet - the tuplet that I changed voice from. Deleting the tuplet deletes the note that is now in a different voice.

This may be slightly off the path, but I struggled with this just yesterday. I had a drumset part where I wanted to have a quarter note triplet hitting kick, snare and crash on all three beats. I tried entering them as regular quarters, then hitting the triplet button, but it would only change the crash and not the other two instruments. It took me 10 minutes to get everything lined up. I find triplets really difficult to work with in Dorico. I must be doing something completely wrong.

Triplets are definitely more awkward to work with in percussion kits than they are in pitched music, because a percussion kit is a special kind of condensed staff, bringing multiple instruments down onto a single staff, which means that each note belongs to a separate instrument and thus has to be part of a separate tuplet, which are then combined together. Ideally you as the user would have no knowledge of this underlying complexity, but there are certainly some leaky implementation details (as they are called in the software trade) in this area that we hope to improve in future (though we don’t have any concrete ideas about precisely how to do that at the moment).

My best shot at this now is a kit with each instrument both up- and down-stem.
When you change percussion voice is it not really changing the voice, as it still seems to be related to the tuplet it was previously part of?

One (unrelated) area that tuplets could improve would be the ability to alt-arrow notes, but with the rhythmic grid modified by the tuplet.

I understand it is a collision of competing objectives in the case of percussion sets. As a software developer spanning 45 years (not continuously), I know that feeling. And I don’t have any great ideas.

It seems that some of these cases are considerably less mind-boggling when the user displays percussion as single-line instruments. Sometimes I keep an extra layout around just for that reason. I wonder if there would be any merit in having a hot-key that would expand the 5-line notation into single-line instruments within the current layout, just as a momentary thing to enable these most difficult edits, then revert to the normal layout view. Maybe that would be a popup “zoom in window”.

Just dreaming a little here, such a “zoom in window” might also be a useful function when working on regular instruments that contain multiple voices simultaneously.

Steve, you may find that setting Notation Options > Percussion to use a single voice helps with your tuplet issue.

I don’t like the kick stem up, but it’s a great idea for this point in the process. I’ll also experiment to see if writing like this then changing the Option back afterwards is any clearer.

I also now have rests in the now empty down-stem voice that are resistant to Remove Rests, There doesn’t seem to be a place to End Voice.

You can’t edit rests at all in percussion kits at present, which is obviously a big limitation, but one we will remove in a future version.