Capo Playback

• Jun 23, 2019 - 17:41

I would like to use MuseScore to notate the use of the capo with the guitar. And I'd like to do that with a linked stave, say treble and tablature.

Now I've tried to use the capo playback feature and I can in some circumstances get it working as I expect. But not reliably.

Now I think part of the problem is that I've read, and re-read this description so many times it's become meaningless to me (from the manual):

"MuseScore allows you to transpose the playback of a staff, without affecting the music notation. This simulates the effect of a capo (Wikipedia) on the instrument."

I think my brain is having problems because of my understanding of the treble clef notation of music and the tablature notation of music - both linked to the same stave. I'd think of the tablature as notating how you'd play the music, and the linked treble clef being the notes you're actually playing.

So in the example fragment attached, I'm trying to notate capo 5. I've carefully followed the notes. And the tablature is showing the incorrect result, without a capo.

Now maybe MuseScore is doing exactly what it said it would. It's not affecting the music notation. Mmm. It can't be difficult writing MuseScore features that don't affecting the music notation. Am I missing something here? I guess what I'm looking for is a similar capo feature that does affect music notation in the way I'm expecting.

Any help or pointers gratefully received.


Attachment Size
Example.png 14.58 KB


Enable Concert Pitch to see the actually sounding pitch and ignore transposition.
(Alternatively, if you never want to see what the pitch would have been without the capo anywhere (not even in parts), you could change the tuning of each string upwards individually, instead of transposing the entire instrument. Kinda tedious, though.)

Mscore is functioning correctly & doing exactly what transposing an instrument means. But don't feel bad about being confused; it's just that transposed notation is for the most part a needlessly confusing abomination that we're just stuck with for historical reasons. :)
Capos (and maybe downtuning) for string instruments are actually some the few cases where I agree it can make sense (as it's a non-permanent alteration to the instrument) - but only for open chords notated as letters, or if you're used to sight-reading guitar sheet music and ignore/lack tabs, anyway...
/rant ^^

Do you still have an unanswered question? Please log in first to post your question.