How to use the mid staff sound change?

• Jul 25, 2016 - 19:14

I'm having a bit of a problem here. I can't seem to be able to change the sound of the electric base channel to a different one. I already have five different types of sound fonts. But still I can't change the channel can someone help me here.


In order to do more than guess, we would need you to attach the score you are having problems with and to describe precisely what you are trying to do. Have you read the Handbook section on this topic? At which specific step are you having problems?

There are two different ways to change the sound of the playback in mid-staff. It depends on what you are trying to accomplish and what the program recognises. Both are accomplished from the Text menu in the F9 Palettes list.

If you wish to change the playback sound to an entirely different instrument, you need to initiate a mid-staff instrument change by using Instrument text. Click on the starting note and then double-click on "Instrument" in the Text menu of the palettes list. The word "Instrument" will appear over that note (you can modify that using the usual text-editing process to make it read as you like). Once you have done that, right-click on that text element and select 'Instrument Text Properties'. In the dialogue that will appear, make the appropriate changes and click OK. Note that if you change from a transposing to a non-transposing instrument (or vice-versa) things get a bit compicated. See the Handbook for Instrument Change .

If you wish to change the playback sound to a different articulation for a particular instrument (for instance, calling for a cello to play pizzicato for one section), you need to use Staff Text. When you right-click on a Staff-Text element, you will get a dialogue which allows you to assign recognised sounds (channels) to certain voices. Only sounds which are recognised as alternatives to the main sound of a particular instrument will appear in the drop-down. (Also note that you need to click on the voice number before changing the sound channel for that voice. Otherwise it will not have any effect.)

For the electric bass, only the 'normal' channel appears as an option in the Staff Text Properties dialogue. I am not aware of any way that you can use the UI to add the sounds from different fonts to the list of channels that appears in this dialogue. You can change the playback sound to another sound-font in the F10 mixer, but that change will apply to the entire piece for that staff.

In reply to by Recorder485

Recorder is there like certain instruments that allow you to change the sound channel right. Because the Electric guitar doesn't have other channels to choose from?
Why is that? and what do you mean appear in the drop down?
Plus is there a way to change the synthesizer sound for each individual instrument and change them at different places in a song and does the mixer have a way to do that as well?

In reply to by Duil Maighstir

??? Adding an Instrument Change in no way changes the sound until *you* change it in the Mixer, and it only changes it from that specific point onwards - so you can have the regular electric guitar for the first part of a song, change to distorition later, change back to regular later, etc.

Please do re-read the Handbook again, as well as the responses above, to better understand the process and hopefully see where you are going wrong. But if you continue to have trouble, please attach the score you are having trouble with and describe in more detail what you are trying to do.

In reply to by Duil Maighstir

Certain instruments are defined in the program as having specific 'channels' for differing sounds for the same instrument. In other words, if you add a staff text saying Pizz. to a cello part on a specific note, you will be able to select 'pizzicato' from the dialogue which appears when you right-click on that staff text.
Pizzicato channel for cello.png
On the other hand, if you try the same thing with a flute part, when you click on Staff Text Properties all you will get is the 'Normal' channel. Flute parts (and guitar parts, and electric bass parts, and all other non-bowed string parts) do not support changing to a 'pizzicato' channel because that is not a normal behaviour for the real-world instrument.
Flute channel drop-down.png

So, in practical terms, if you want to change the playback sound of a standard electric bass guitar in mid-score (say, to 'Fretless bass' or '5-string bass' or whatever), you will need to change to a different instrument using Instrument Change Text, as explained earlier. This has nothing to do with 'channels' for those instruments which support multiple sounds.

I already have five different types of sound fonts.

I understand this to mean that you've downloaded multiple electric bass soundfonts to use with musescore, is that right? If that's the case, and you're trying to change channels in one of these additional soundfonts midscore, I think you're maybe going to need to add instrument definitions for your soundfonts, which involves doing some XML editing and you would need to consult the musescore developers' handbook for that topic. A similar question is answered in this thread: which might be of help to you.

If I'm wrong, please disregard this message.

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