voice 2 can't be added at the middle of a measure

• Dec 8, 2013 - 18:53

A problem about about adding Voice 2 (http://musescore.org/en/handbook/voices).

I'm a beginner of Musescore. I've read about the video of adding voices in the above link. When I try to add voice 2 in the middle of a measure, I can't do that unless I add rest at the beginning of the measure so as to add the notes at the correct position of voice 2. After having added the notes at voice 2, I delete the rest at the beginning of the measure in voice 2 which is shown at the attached screenshot; otherwise a rest will be seen from at voice 2.

Is it a bug or limitation?

Besides, adding voice 2 seems a little difficult which will always overwrite voice 1 unintentionally. I'm unsure if there's bug in the software.



Step 2 of that handbook page mentions the need to start at the beginning of the staff or measure, so it's not a bug :-)
Also this isn't any different from voice 1, and how else should MuseScore detect where you want to have the note?

In reply to by riow

You *can* remove the rests, although this can make it more difficult to edit the measure later. Hiding them is usually safer. But be sure you understand the rules of music notation and are 100% positive it's legitimate not to show these rests. In most cases, it is musically necessary to show all rests, or else the human musician playing the piece won't understand the rhythmic structure of the measure. There are a very few specific exceptions where the context makes it sufficiently clear that the rests can be hidden / removed, but when in doubt, leave them in.

In reply to by riow

Well, as I said, there are fairly specific rules about when it is OK to suppress the rests that would ordinarily be necessary to show a complete voice. So these cases *do* exist. But they are very much the exception. If you don't know the rules, it's better to show the rests, moving them vertically to avoid collisions as necessary. If you delete rests that should be there, you make it the music harder to reader and in some cases, impossible to tell exactly what rhythm is intended.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Since I mentioned there are exceptions, I suppose it would help to describe what some of them are:

1) Passages that are "mostly" monophonic - all voices having the same rhythm - except for isolated places where one voice has additional notes. For example, an extended passage with three-note chords in quarter notes, except there is one place where one of the three voices has two eighths instead of a quarter. In these cases, it is customary to write the passage as if it were a single voice - all three notes of each chord sharing a single stem. Then a second voice is used just for the eighth notes.

2) In some contexts, if a voice enters on beat 3 of a 4/4 beat measure, then you can possibly skip the leading half rest. Similar for a voice entering on "big 2" ("little 4") of a 6/8 measure.

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

Maybe what this person wants (and I've wanted as many times is):

Click on a note in a certain voice, say voice 1.
Select voice 2 (right now this re-voices the note, so maybe some other gesture needed).
Issue a new command, "rests up to here" and have MS fill them in.

In reply to by [DELETED] 1831606

Hmm, filling in rests seems like a task for note input mode, but I could see a variation of this: a special version of the voice switch command that didn't reset the cursor to the last good position after switching voice but instead immediately backfilled rests to keep the cursor at the same position. That's doable, I think.

While this might not be a bug, it surely is a royal nuisance, and I think it's an unnecessary restriction. MuseScore should be able to figure out where the note is just as well as the human who enters it in the score can see that it is in the correct position, aligned as it is with other notes in the same chord from other voices. See the picture below for a prime example of what I'm entering, and I'm encountering this type of score regularly with the hymn book I'm compiling. This is far, far from the exception...rather the rule. Entering extraneous and unnecessary rests, only to have to remove them (which is a chore in itself, considering they frequently end up positioned underneath of the notes from other voices which have to be shifted up or down in order to click on the rest to select it for deletion, then the note must be re-shifted back to where it belongs) is an exercise which obviously the programmers of MuseScore have not apparently experienced, or they would have seen fit to allow these restrictions to be relaxed.


Attachment Size
MuseScore2.png 22.05 KB

In reply to by Tongkam

FWIW, you say it's the "rule" to not show leading rests, but really, it's the rule only in very specific contexts - hymns and relatively simple mostly-monophonic piano music. In other contexts, the rule is that rests *must* be shown.

Anyhow, it's not really clear how you would envision this working in practice - how would a person entering notes via computer keyboard or MIDI tell MuseScore where those notes are? I guess you are talking about entering notes by clicking with the mouse, but that's never going to be very efficient anyhow.

BTW, regarding the rests - no need to select them individually or indeed delete them at all. You can press "V" to mark them invisible immediately upon entering them, or you can wait until later, right click one rest, Select / More / Same voice, and hide or delete the rests all at once. Still, it is true that stems need to be adjusted manually, and there probably are other optimizations that could be made here.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

"I guess you are talking about entering notes by clicking with the mouse, but that's never going to be very efficient anyhow."

If there's a more efficient way to do this, other than having an expert with a midi-capable keyboard actually play the song (we don't have this capability), I'm all ears. Yes, I'm mousing in the notes. It's tedious. And they are all hymns. The scores are riddled with situations like I posted above. I'm spending an average of between 25% and 40% of my score entry time on this issue with the rests for voice 2. So this is not just a small irritation to endure on occasion. In about four hours' time I average 6 scores, and I'm trying to do that four days a week at present as I work on this compilation project. That translates into an average of an hour or so per day tinkering with these rests simply because MuseScore will not let me drop in a note on voice 2 anywhere mid-measure.

I did find a partial workaround. If I enter the note as voice 1, then click out of note entry mode and, with that note selected, click on voice 2, it will change that note to voice 2, sometimes without adding the additional rests (sometimes it adds them, and I haven't figured out why it does or doesn't). If it does add them, it's still easier to simply click and cut them out than to to have entered them too. This workaround does not work, however, on cases where the voice 2 has a different note length. And where the note is actually the same as voice 1, it must be entered above or below, then shifted after the voice change.

In reply to by Tongkam

Well, the most efficient way is usually to just type the notes, using the shortcuts for durations and the letter names for the pitches, as explained in the Handbook and demonstrated in the tutorial videos. If you have a MIDI keyboard, entering the notes that way is very easy too, and doesn't require significant keyboard skills since it's one note at a time anyhow. Or, you can use the Piano Keyboard built in to MuseScore (press "P" to display)

Chances are there are other shortcuts you are not aware of - I definitely recommend spending some time with the documentation, also asking questions here. Entering passages like the one you show here is actually quite straightforward when you type the notes in, though. I'd recommend doing so one measure at a time, one voice at a time. So enter voice 1 in full, then switch to voice 2, entering the notes and rests and hiding the rests you don't want to see with "V" (or deleting them, if you prefer) as you go along. You never have to leave note input mode, never have to click, never have to shift anything - it works quite smoothly.

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