Changing instrument doesn't seem to work.

• Nov 8, 2017 - 20:30

I am using v2.1. I want to change the instrument for the whole score. Currently, it is piano. I have followed the directions in both links:
After doing both, the instrument is still the piano. Thanks


If you want to change for the whole score, then do not use the mid-staff-instrument-changes method. if you've done that, then undo it - or at least remove the extraneous Instrument text. Then the Change Instrument in Staff Properties will work as expected. If you continue to have problems, then indeed, attaching the score will help.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

ok, using the score I posted above. The original instrument is a violin. I change the clef to bass clef, the score is transposed up an octave. Then right-click on the staff and choose staff properties, then change the instrument to say contrabass.
The score is then transposed another octave and the sound of the instrument is piano. But in staff properties it says contrabass.

Attachment Size
TheCell_Ex2_Copy.mscz 5.42 KB

In reply to by

First, changing the clef from treble to bass does not transpose it up an octave. All pitches remain the same. This of course means the notes need to be displayed higher on the staff. For example, the first note of your originally melody is the F above middle C. When you change the clef to bass clef, you will see it remains the F above middle C - no transposition happens at all. Now, of course, in this particular case, you probably don't really want the melody to be that high if it is to be played on contrabass, so you will need to lower it an octave from where you initially wrote it.

Second, the contrabass sounds an octave lower than written, and MuseScore knows this. So when you change the instrument to contrabass, MuseScore does change the display of the notes an octave higher so that the sound will remain the same. You wrote an F above middle C, and in order for it to sound like an F above middle C, you need to write it an octave higher. That;s just how the contrabass works - not just in MuseScore, but in real life as well. All music for contrabass needs to be wirtten an octave higher than you wish it to sound.

What you will then realize if that the F above middle you originally wrote is a ridiculously high note for contrabass, pretty much unplayable. And the melody goes higher from there. If you want your melody to be playable on contrabass, you will need to transpose it down a couple of octaves. It's not that MuseScore transposed it up - quite the contrary, it very carefully left the meoody exactly in the octave you wrote it in. The problem is just that this is entirely inappropriate for contrabass. So you will need to transpose it down.

So if you already wrote a melody for violin and now want it to be played on contrabass instead, you will need to do three things:

1) change instrument to contrabass
2) change clef to bass
3) transpose down to make it playable - since the contrabass range is basically two octaves lower than the violin, you will probably want to transpose it that much

The second file you posted does only the first of these three things. You still need to do the other two.

Beyond that, as mentioned, Sonatina is not GM-compatible, so you can't use it with MuseScore unless you manually adjust the sounds in the Mixer. That would explain why you aren't hearing contrabass sounds even though Staff Properties clearly shows the instrument is set to that.

If you're not already expert in such things, probably best not to mess with that, and restore the original soundfont. You mentioned reinstalling MuseScore, but that doesn't change your settings - you need to do Help / Revert to Factory Settings for that. Then once you get the hang of things more, you can start experimenting with more advanced settings like that. Right now I think it's just causing confusion.

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