Gearing up for MuseScore Studio 4.4

• Jul 1, 2024 - 16:09

Hi everyone,

Let's take a quick peek at what's coming in version 4.4 of MuseScore Studio.


As we hinted at the time of the last release, the next version of MuseScore Studio will finally deliver some good news for percussionists! However, delivering a world-class percussion system for MuseScore Studio is a task of such enormity that we've decided to split our new percussion features across two releases.

We're pleased to announce that MuseScore Studio 4.4 will support a new library of Drumline sounds from Muse Sounds, as well as improvements to the audio engine that benefit percussion.

Then, in MuseScore Studio 4.5 (expected December), we aim to deliver a new interface for writing percussion notation. This will include a new user interface—which replaces the antiquated Drum input palette and Edit Drumset dialog with a modern design focussed around customizable drum pads—as well as a universal mapping system for sounds and notation that supports a wide variety of percussion instruments, implements, and techniques.

Naturally, there's a lot of work to do to build the new interface as well as the underlying support systems, and we want to take the time to do it properly. When it's ready, we expect the new interface will be just as revolutionary for percussionists as the rest of MuseScore Studio 4 is compared to MuseScore 3.

Qt 6

MuseScore Studio 4.4. will be the first release using Qt 6, the latest version of the cross-platform framework that powers MuseScore's UI on Windows, macOS and Linux. Qt 6 brings a host of improvements, including better support for scrolling and touch gestures. It also unlocks the potential for native Apple Silicon builds, and we're hoping to have these builds ready in time for the 4.4 release.

The current plan is to release with Qt 6.2.4, which maintains compatibility with Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa), macOS 10.14 (Mojave), as well as Windows 10. Fonts are handled slightly differently in this version and we're currently working to ensure that score and UI text looks as close as possible to how it did in MuseScore Studio 4.3, which uses Qt 5.15. If you encounter other differences while testing, please let us know.

Important: Plugins must be updated to work with Qt 6 otherwise they won't appear in the Home screen or Plugins menu in MuseScore Studio 4.4. Plugin developers, please see issue #21659 for details, and these commits for the required changes.

Other features

  • Improved playback of dynamics, including the ability to assign dynamics to individual voices
  • Enhanced systems for positioning line objects and dynamics
  • Better default spacing for lyrics and accidentals
  • New style options (in Format > Style) for those and other elements
  • Updated score templates in New Score dialog

Privacy policy

The 4.4 release will also see a small change to the privacy policy to facilitate more accurate reporting of user numbers while still respecting the privacy of our users. See the draft text for details. We don't collect any private or identifying information.

Help with testing

If you'd like to test these features, you can do so in the nightly builds. Use the builds labelled "master" for now. If we add builds labelled "4.4" later on then you should switch to those instead.

As always, if you see anything amiss, please:

  • Make sure you can reproduce it in the latest nightly build.
  • Check for existing issues on GitHub. If you find one, upvote it 👍. Only comment if you have something meaningful to add.
  • For new issues, provide a short, meaningful title that describes the specific problem.
  • Playback bugs: create a minimum reproducible example and upload a screen recording (with audio) to demonstrate it.
  • Engraving bugs: attach a problem score and screenshots.
  • Keep comments and descriptions short. Use the <details> tag to hide supplementary info, like build logs.

Thank you for your support!

The MuseScore Team


In reply to by mtuliosax

According to the "Sabatella Rule" you should multiply any official time estimates by 1.5. So in this case if the bigwigs say 1 month, it will really be 1.5 months. If this holds true it will be released mid-August. I guess we'll see. ;-)

Is any of these updates going to fix the volume of the choir? Even when I adjust the volume to the utmost, the choir is nearly inaudible, so I'd like to know if this problem would be fixed.

In reply to by Davi Benjamim …

I often find myself boosting the volume of the choral voices, although I'd say they're a long way from being inaudible :-)

In general, Muse Sounds volume levels are designed to accommodate a wider dynamic range than you get from soundfonts, which is why they their default loudness tends to sit a bit on the low end.

Unfortunately, addressing this is partly out of our hands, because the team that actually creates the sounds is quite separate from ours. However there are still ways to boost their volume if you still need to (do check out the free Muse FX plugins). Hopefully this still makes them workable for you while we wait for further volume refinements.

Yes! Very excited to hear about the updates. Thank you for taking the time to let us know what's coming (especially with musesounds) —a lot of us appreciate that!

'Improved playback of dynamics'
Is this in MuseSounds or in MS Basic?

In reply to by JonasEM

It's with both (and VST too).
But there's a bit of nuance here. Not all sound technologies are going to get the "full package" of dynamics upgrades (for technical reasons).
But we will be bringing per-voice and per-stave dynamics in 4.4, as well switching to using velocity instead of volume as the main playback parameter being affected by dynamics. So overall a lot to look forward to :-)

Hello, thank you for this new update, I look forward to the new drum and dynamics features.
Quite some time ago, I read here that there had been pull requests for the jack functionality to be brought back to Musescore. I'm waiting for it impatiently and so do my band mates !
And what about VST Plugins in the Linux version, whe can we hope to see it arrive ?

Cool! Seems closer to 4.3 than 4.2 was to 4.3–but 4.3 was a relatively small update, and 4.4 was actively being worked on when 4.3 was released.
> When it's ready, we expect the new interface will be just as revolutionary for percussionists as the rest of MuseScore Studio 4 is compared to MuseScore 3.
Funny you say that—does this mean that it will have completely unrecognizable UI and multiple regressions?
Just kidding, I’m sure it will be great! 4.5 too!

In reply to by Joshua Pettus

MuseScore 3 on Linux had a pretty useful dialog for selecting and configuring the audio engine. You could select Pulse, ALSA, Jack and set a couple of essential parameters for that.

Starting with MuseScore 4, the previous audio part was completely dumped. You just can select "default" and you can not even guess what's meant. Getting MuseScore 4 to play on Linux may in reconfiguring the entire system to match whatever MuseScore expects from "default". On most systems this means "no sound at all". The support pages are full of " no sound problems" and partly weird things to try to get it working again.

That's a pitty, as essentially ALL other software on Linux does not have the slightest problem with "default".

The OS itself usually does "Pulse" that is mediated to the ALSA basement but may show higher and varying latency. Getting straight to ALSA needs exclusive access to the sound output which in the most case is not allowed. JACK would provide solid and low latency by keeping the multi tasking needs. Modern PipeWire does even better. Almost every Linux updated 2024 meanwhile has PipeWire as preferred API.

As I see it, MuseScore 4 does expect "default" to be ALSA (without telling) and fails using this in a compliant way. It even seems to expect very specific settings for that (like 44100Hz clock rate). Unless you are able to configure your Linux to list the audio devices as

Default ALSA Output (currently PipeWire Media Server)

you are getting nowhere. :-(

That's quite a burden for the casual MuseScore 4 user that does nor regularly debug and compile their own Linux system and thus is lacking the proper expertise to provide the (untold) "default".

While it is certainly fancier to rework the GUI (mine still stops updating after a while, shortly before crashing the entire application) and to provide new tools for the percussionists, I rather would see enhancing very basic properties the really help in writing scores, like proper extension of slurs and ties into "Volta 2", not eating terminal staccato notes in playback or useful backwards compatibility of sore files.

Great news for drum notation, i hope!
I have stumbled across a common drum in Europe and Asia called a tupan, which I want to use in my next Symphony.
I haven't found anything on the internet on how to notate for it, so I've had to invent my own. If you guys find in your research a resource on how it's notated please link to it.
I'm just hoping @JoJo-schmitz can backport it to 3.7. 😄

Do you have more detailed info about these new features? I'm currently doing a lot of manual editing that I'm hoping these features might allow me to avoid:
- Enhanced systems for positioning line objects and dynamics
- Better default spacing for lyrics and accidentals
- New style options (in Format > Style) for those and other elements

In reply to by Janet E.

Documentionatin will presumably be coming along gradually, but meanwhile, just try out a nightly build to test for yourself!

If you need further assistance, feel free to ask for help on the Supprot forum. Attach your score and describe there problem(s) in more detail so we can understand and assist better.

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