MS transposing instrument behavior confuses me

• Aug 18, 2020 - 17:23

I'm moving a large score from Finale 2014 to MuseScore. Let's look at the clarinet.

When I ask for concert pitch display in Finale, I get the oboe & clarinet both in the same key, playing the same notes. If I switch to 'non-concert' view, now clarinet shows different pitches & different key. This makes sense.

I'm baffled that when I display concert pitch in MS, oboe & clarinet are playing the same notes, yet are in different keys - and WHY Eb for clarinet? When I ask MS to show 'non-concert', the notes are different, and both are in the same key.

I'm having a hard time keeping this explanation straight.


It looks like you got the pictures backwards and did some strange local time signature things with the clarinets (both Bb and Bass) in Finale and when you switch to non-concert pitch in MuseScore you are getting the results of what you did. musicxml and .mscz files are required to help you more. Perhaps even the Finale file so someone who has Finale can see if you did it wrong there.

In reply to by Are Jayem

As I suspected, you made the concert pitch and non-concert pitch (aka transposed pitch) backwards. Here is a picture of the mscz file opened in MuseScore. Notice that concert pitch is turned on

concert pitch on.PNG

If this were concert pitch, you would have the same key signature for all instruments. You have decided that MuseScore (or Finale) was wrong and tried to compensate for it and entered a local key signature. When you turn off concert pitch you get unexpected results.

concert pitch off.PNG

which is what you expect when concert pitch is turned on.

I won't show the pictures, but the same thing exists in the xml file you attached. It seems Finale doesn't have a better way to indicate concert pitch and transposed pitch either.

In reply to by Are Jayem

It looks to me like you can apply the F key signature to the first measure. If concert pitch is turned on (the button will be pressed as in my first picture) you will get the same key signature on all instruments. It seems you have the correct notes, but the wrong key signature. Let me know if I'm wrong about this. After you fix the key signature in your copy.

Prior to this I only paid attention to key signature changes as you pressed the buttons. What I explained first is what I've seen other people do. What you did was slightly different and if I'm correct, much easier to fix. Now that I look at the notes, they seem to be OK.

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