Beam properties

• Feb 21, 2019 - 19:27

Can anyone understand the logic to beam properties who don't, like me, just click and get frustrated and then somehow we get what we want?


In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

Thanks but the manual does not match experience. A have a 6/4 bar and need to group 12 quavers in three groups of four. According to the manual, I should be able to say which of those quavers start a beamed-group, are in the middle of a beamed-group, and end a beamed-group, but it just doesn't work. Any help would be much appreciated.

Beaming is a cooperative effort between notes and rests. Yes, beams can be applied to rests. The word "Note" below applies equally to notes and rests.

No Beam - The note will not connect to any other note
Start beam - The note is willing to attach itself only to the next note. It will not connect to the note before it.
Middle beam - The note is willing to attach itself to either the note before or after. This applies to Beam 16th sub and Beam 32 sub as well.

If the two consecutive notes are willing to connect to each other they will beam, if one of them is not willing, the two notes will not beam.

Auto - The beaming pattern defined in the time signature will be applied to the note.

By default, all rests are set to no beam, so they will not beam to notes. If you change the beaming on a rest to auto the rest will follow the definition in the time signature as though it were a note.

Thee are three bugs I'm aware of that are important. In version 3.x up to 3.0.2 you cannot have a beam cross a bar line. Also in version 3.x, if you use cross-staff notation on a group of beamed notes, the beam will be displaced vertically (up or down). In version 2.x, a beam that crosses a system break will be will be displaced to the beginning of the system.

In reply to by mike320

Thank you. I had to select all, then turn them all to Middle Beams, then select the first of each four and set those to Start Beam. What I was failing to do was to select all notes in the chord that started the four, rather than just the one of the notes. Got there in the end. Thank you to everyone for such a fast and supportive set of responses.

In reply to by julianpinn

Also, Mike, your description is far superior to the one in the manual where the description for Middle beam is incorrect. Yours is correct. Thank you again.

Beam start: Start a beam at this note (or rest).
Middle of beam: Do not end a beam at this note (or rest).
No beam: Do not beam this note.
16th sub beam: Start a second level beam at this note.
32nd sub beam: Start a third level beam at this note.
Automatic mode: Apply default beaming as determined by the current time signature.
Feathered beam, slower: Start feathered beam to indicate gradually slower tempo.
Feathered beam, faster: Start feathered beam to indicate gradually faster tempo.

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

That's not my experience of how Beam middle behaves. I had a 6/4 bar (measure) full of quavers (1/8th notes), so 12 of them that were not behaving as I wished. I simply selected them all, made them all Beam Middle, which joined them all up, then selected the first of each desired group sequentially and made each of them Beam Start. That was the only way I could get that 6/4 bar to behave and that was against the description in the manual and perfectly as described by Mike320, "Middle beam - The note is willing to attach itself to either the note before or after. This applies to Beam 16th sub and Beam 32 sub as well."

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

A beam can start on a note with a middle beam if there is no beamable note before it. This actually happens quite a bit when you have a 4/4 song with two groups of 4 8th notes defined like the default, then start the measure with an 8th rest followed by consecutive 8th notes.

In reply to by julianpinn

The description in the manual before it was "fixed" by Jojo was concise and accurate. Perhaps there needs to be a comment that indicates that beaming is determined by two consecutive notes/rests.

See what you think about the change I made to the manual.

I would add to this my experience that if a score was imported from XML, even long ago before it was imported into MS2 and then MS3, beamings and stem directions are imported will be assigned to notes, and will resist your subsequent attempts to deal with their surroundings. In specific, all "auto" beaming will be defeated. If beamings and stem directions seem not to concur with the wonderful belongs-in-handbook stuff just posted here, that may be the reason. The solution to that is to "erase" all explicit beamings by marking the whole score and clicking "auto", and then begin again imposing your specific needs.

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