Should really appear the play panel in the Dynamics page of the handbook?

• Jul 25, 2011 - 14:15


I'm not sure if play panel should appear in the handbook page related to dynamics. I think that it's not the same the Volume than dynamics. Volume has to do with loud and soft. Is maybe a parameter wich you can use to adapt the music to the needings of a situation: High volume for a big place with lots of people, a low volume to allow people to speak despite the music... Dynamics has more to do with intensity and expresion. One way to show intensity is to play loud a sound, but there are other things like attack and articulation or sound colour on wich dynamics depend.

Besides, dynamics depend on each other. Forte must "seem" louder than mezzo-forte, but softer than fortissimo. If volume where a box wich contains music with diferent dynamics, I would say that volume doesn't depend on the things that are inside of it. It behaves like a frame for dynamics. With a low Volume, a forte "seems" still forte.

Taking into account that the users of this program are musicians, I must say that I don't speak to my students in terms of volume and my teachers didn't with me.


Traditionally, dynamics are for musicians playing the score, and volume is for electronic equipment recording and playing back sound of any kind, including music.

The playback function of MuseScore requires ties across that boundary. It attempts at a purely technical level to do the job of the musicians, and let you hear what you have on the page, or in the computer file. So, you need to be able to adjust overall volume for the entire piece to a comfortable and appropriate level, but you also have to be able to "conduct" the program as it tries to substitute for real musicians to interpret the dynamics the way you want. That's the content of the Dynamics text in the playback section of the manual. That material should remain as it is. Perhaps another section on Dynamics under Notation would be a good idea.

This and several other posts point to a deeper issue as to the role and importance of playback in MuseScore, which deserves a thread of its own in General Discussion.

-- J.S.

In reply to by John Sprung

I understand the arguments you expose above, and somehow, they make sense. However I still believe that it would be better to put separately explanations on Dynamics and Volume. It seems hard to teach a music program to play human-wise, since humans often don't know why they play the way they do.

Maybe, as long as this feature is not implemented, we could simply put a link or a short explanation about how to change volume in the dynamics page. Now there is a short mention on "Play Mode" on how to change volume through the play panel, but we could write a new page named "Volume" to explain in detail the different ways to change volume: They Play Panel, the Mixer, mute and solo, dynamics... On the other hand, I would change the page "Change and adjust sounds" to "Change instruments" and I would move the information about the mixer to the new "Volume" page.

Anyway, I feel unhappy also with the handbook index. Please, take a look to this post . Perhaps you have some good idea.


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