Dynamics

Updated 1 day ago

    Dynamics are symbols indicating the relative loudness of a note or phrase of music. They can be found in the Dynamics palette in either the Basic or Advanced workspace.

    Dynamics palette (Advanced)

    Additional dynamics are available in the Master Palette (Shift+F9).

    Note: if you wish to adjust the overall playback volume of the score, use the volume slider in the Play Panel, or Synthesizer.

    Add a dynamic

    To apply a dynamic to the score, use one of the following methods:

    • Select a note and double-click a dynamic symbol in a palette.
    • Drag a dynamic symbol from a palette onto a note.

    To create a crescendo or decrescendo, see Hairpin.

    Adjust properties

    The default dynamic of the score is mf (mezzoforte)—set at MIDI velocity 80 (out of 127). Depending on the dynamic governing a particular section of the score, velocity (and the resulting loudness) may be less than or greater than this.

    To edit the velocity of a dynamic:

    • Select the dynamic and, in the Dynamic section of the Inspector edit the Velocity value—higher for louder, lower for softer.

    To adjust the range (i.e. the staves in the system affected by the dynamic):

    • Select the dynamic, and in the Dynamic section of the Inspector, chose an option from "Dynamic range". The default is "Part," which means that all staves for a particular instrument will be affected. "Staff" limits the effect to the staff attached to the dynamic. "System" means that all staves in the system will be affected by the dynamic.

    Customize a dynamic

    Dynamics can be edited just like any other text object. Special character shortcuts can be used to add the following symbols:

    • Ctrl+Shift+P (Mac: +Shift+P): Piano p.
    • Ctrl+Shift+F (Mac: +Shift+F): Forte f.
    • Ctrl+Shift+M (Mac: +Shift+M): Mezzo m.
    • Ctrl+Shift+R (Mac: +Shift+R): Rinforzando r.
    • Ctrl+Shift+S: Sforzando s.
    • Ctrl+Shift+N (Mac: +Shift+N): Niente n.
    • Ctrl+Shift+Z (Mac: +Shift+Z): Z z.

    You can also edit the velocity and range etc. (see above). If desired, you can save the result for future use in a custom palette.

    Single Note Dynamics (SND)

    Starting in Version 3.1, MuseScore supports single note dynamics. In addition to editing the velocity, you can also edit the velocity change in the inspector. Entering a number into this field will change the velocity of the note by approximately that amount after the initial velocity is played. A negative number can be used to lower the volume after the initial note and a positive number will make the note play louder after the initial volume.

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