Vioilin notes sustain in one song but not in the other, even after exact copying?? HELP!

• Mar 6, 2021 - 20:55

OK, this is driving me nuts. I have been working on a song and when I entered a series of violin notes, I was pleasantly surprised to hear them sustain from one note to the other ... a beautiful bow gliding motion from measure to measure. That was exactly what I wanted. To hear what I mean, open the MuseScore file named "Test1", included below and listen (the default violin is selected).

When I cut and pasted the SAME exact notes from one score to a new one, the violin notes stopped more abruptly between notes and measures. The bow glide was no longer much apparent, even though I swear the two scores were set up the same. To hear this effect, listen to the same notes in MuseScore file "Test2" below. You will hear the notes stop more abruptly. I tried adding slurs from one measure to another, but the notes still stopped too quickly.

What the heck is different about the two scores, and how can I enter violin notes so that they sustain like file 1, and not stop abruptly like file 2?

Attachment Size
Test1.mscz 12.23 KB
Test2.mscz 6.47 KB


Might have something to do with how you created the new score. Your two files do indeed play differently on my system. But when I created a new violin score and copied the notes, it played properly. Slow violin expr. had a tiny gap. I never use the "slow" fonts. They seldom work well for me.

In reply to by bobjp

Sorry, but when I created a new score again in 12/8 time using just the treble clef, and copied and pasted the notes from Test1, then selected any of the violins in the mixer, they did not sound like Test1. There was a pause from measure to measure. In test1, those notes as played by the violin solo sustained seamlessly from note to note, even across measures and without slurs. Please listen again. To help, I have uploaded to my cloud site the best violin solo .sf2 file I have encountered so far. When selected in the mixer and test1 is played, you can close your eyes and just smile at the subtlety of the sound. Get it here:!AlxY_utkDRE6nHTAOms_fQa_zEVV?e=PRD4SE

Somehow, I did something in the Test1 score that I don't remember, that I simply must figure out. Violins when melodically played, sound best (as in Test1) when the sound is smooth, with the bow going up then down and each note blending into the next with no discernible break. I just have to figure this out. I'd be grateful for your further help.

Check the instruments dialog:
Test1 is written for Violin and assigned the Violin sound patch in the mixer
Test2 is written for Piano and assigned the Slow Violin Expr. sound patch in the mixer

Both instruments use different default note durations, more specifically in Test2 notes will have a default duration of 950 promille of the notated duration. You can verify this both in the status bar as well as via the Piano Roll Editor.

To fix Test2:
1. Right-click (Ctrl-click on Mac) on the staff and open the Staff/Part Properties
2. About in the middle of the dialog, click Change Instrument
3. Choose "Violin" as the new instrument
4. Select All (Ctrl-A / Cmd-A)
5. In the Inspector (F8) click the "Notes" button
6. Press "Shift-S" twice; toggling staccato on and then off again.
As staccato influences the default note duration, it will be reset to the (new) instruments default when toggling it on and off again.

To fix future scores:
Add the Violin instrument to your score if you intend to score for a violin instead of the Piano instrument.

In reply to by jeetee

DAMN, DAM!!!! You did it. (Big grin). That fixed it. Wow!

For my own knowledge, what is the parameter that violins use to sustain notes (not staccato but ...)??? Aside from choosing a violin instrument sound from scratch, if I wanted to assign the same effect to other instruments, is there any place in MuseScore I could select whatever violins use for durations?

Also, I still have discovered a new problem. I fixed the test2 score as you said. BUT ... (sigh) ... the beautiful violin .sf2 soundfont i discovered (download from my cloud site), that sounds so beautiful, seems to have a glitch. It works perfectly in the default dynamic and all dynamics below f, but if I pick a note and assign a dynamic of f, ff or higher, the beautiful sustain effect goes away and it becomes much more staccato. This does NOT happen with the MuseScore violin ... just the new one I want to use. Do you have any idea how to stop this from happening?

In reply to by jeetee

OK I downloaded the plugin and will install it. Hopefully, I will understand how to use it. Thanks so much for the information. In a quick read of the read-me file, it seems that the plugin allows me to extend the "off time" of a violin note. However, I am not sure how it would work if my problem is not the note, but the dynamic. If I apply an *f" dynamic to the violin note and from that point forward, all the violin notes turn "off" rather quickly, do I just add value to the "off time" of every note after the dynamic thereafter and that will return the note to a longer sustain? Or ... is this way to simplistic and there is a lot more to learn?

In reply to by fsgregs

As for the edit:
Likely your beautiful soundfont contains different samples for different dynamic levels. It makes sense for a bowed instrument that the bowings of the notes become more pronounced on higher velocity levels.

The only way to "fix/prevent" that from happening is to edit those samples out of your soundfont using a separate soundfont editor. I'm not familiar with that process at all; but gather from other forum posts here that Polyphone is somewhat the goto (free) software for such a task.

In reply to by jeetee

Jeetee: Actually, I'm not so anxious to lower the volume but simply want the sustain function of the bowed string to extend out longer. Will the Note length property be able to do this inside the score if I figure out how to do it, or will I have to edit the soundfont itself (something I really am afraid to tackle)?

In reply to by fsgregs

So...I'm trying to follow what has happened, here.
Near as I can figure, you had a violin part that worked as you wanted. Yes?
Then you copied that part to a new line and it didn't play like you wanted. Yes?
Then you found out how to fix the staff and it played correctly except for volume problems.

What happens if you set up the new staff properly. New score/choose instruments(double click)/violin? Copy the part into that. If that works, I can't see spending time trying to fix something that was incorrect to begin with. Unless you need to fix old scores. But there other way to do that.

BTW, I have noticed that unless I set up instruments correctly to begin with, all kinds of things can go wrong. Not just violin but it could happen to most any instrument. You would think that when setting up a treble clef staff, you would be able to assign any instrument to it and have it play properly. Not always the case.

In reply to by bobjp


Well, I am certainly learning the nuances of MuseScore. When I did what you said, and set up a Treble clef in a new score, double-clicking and selecting the Violin, then copying and pasting in the violin passage of interest, then loading the beautiful violin soundfont, then playing it, the sustain worked perfectly. Then, I added an f dynamic to a note. Yesterday when I did that, the volume increased as expected but the beautiful sustain dropped out for all notes beyond that one. I was prepared to use the plugin that jeetee suggested to try adjusting the sustain, but when I did what you suggested instead, the violin sustain STAYED in place. GREAT!!! It all worked out beautifully. I don't know why!!! But ...

In the major song I adapted for MuseScore (Hans Zimmer's Chevaliers De Sangreal), I did insert a violin track using the "View>Instruments>add instrument" commands in MuseScore. So, the track the violin part is on, is a correct track for the instrument. Nevertheless, when I attempt to boost its volume with an *f" dynamic, its sustain instantly drops out for all subsequent notes. Did you say you know of a way to fix this, aside from the Plugin that jeezee suggested?

In reply to by fsgregs

OK. I've spent a bit of time on this, now.
Here's what I have discovered so far.

I can't get the font from your link to sound at all. I would not pretend to know how Polyphone works, but I opened your font in it and started pushing buttons. There are four instruments in your font. The preset name is "all around". I can only guess that this was someones attempt to combine all four into one. I deleted your preset and created four new presets, one for each instrument. I exported this new configuration and installed it in MuseScore. Then I had sound. When I went to assign instruments, I discovered that each of the four instruments in the font sound different. One of them is the smooth sound you like. Two are variations of a more strident and separated sound. The last has no sound.

All my tests with the sustained sound and a proper staff at any dynamic remain sustained. So I suspect that the problem is your version of the font. Perhaps when you add a forte the font gets shifted to the louder, more strident and separated version. As determined by the "all around " preset. No idea, really.

In reply to by bobjp

Wow! thanks for all the effort. If the combined soundfont contains voices that are actually silent, but one of them sounds just like the beautiful violin I like, would it be possible to place that revised .sf2 file on a cloud site and send me the link to it? If it works no matter what dynamic is used, that is what I would want. I can use it in my song. Alternatively, if it is under 30 MB or so, you can email it to me at My email now takes attachments up to that size.

By the way, I found the same strange behavior of a silent font at first. However, as soon as I assign a different instrument in the mixer to that track and click "Play", the notes play fine. Then, when I reassign the violin all around in the mixer to the same track, it now plays. Weird, I'll tell you. Try it.

In reply to by bobjp

It's important to not to have mismatched regarding single note dynamics. If the staff says it supports them in staff properties, you should choose a sound that responds to them, and be sure your CC option is set appropriately for that soundfont as well. Any mismatch in there can cause notes to not sound, or at an inappropriate volume.

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