MuseScore 4 notes decay before I let go of Midi Keyboard

• Oct 23, 2022 - 21:33

In Muse Score 4, any time I try to hold out a note or chord when holding down notes on my MIDI keyboard, the notes decay relatively quickly (about 1 second) before I've actually let go of the keys. In fact, it doesn't matter how long or short I strike the keys, the note duration is the same. For example, if I strike the keys with a staccato articulation, the note still plays for about a second before decaying.

This is frustrating when trying to experiment with melodic ideas that require longer note durations before committing them to the score. I compose jazz pieces, and this audio issue renders any swung eigth note ideas that I play into an incomprehensible off-time mess.

Changing the rhythmic note value selection for "note input" has no effect on this issue, as I don't have "Insert" selected when playing through melodic ideas with my MIDI keyboard (or else they would get committed to the score).

After I've committed my melodic ideas to the score via "Insert", note values playback correctly for their intended durations, which included whole notes and ties.

I could, of course, 1) go back to v.3.6 or 2) experiment with compositional ideas on another keyboard or in another software, but I often use VSTs such as Kontakt to inspire melodic compositional ideas and capture them to score immediately as part of my process.

I've included a lead sheet I'm working through in Mv4 as an example. You won't be able to open it properly in Mv3.

Is there a setting I need to change, or is this a known issue with the development versions of Musescore 4?

Attachment Size
New_Idea__10-18.mscz 481.77 KB


MuseScore isn't designed for real-time playback. Better to use the built-in sounds on the keyboard or a separate app, for that.

The setting for how long notes sustain during note input is given in Edit / Preferences / Note Input.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Thanks for the quick response, Marc.
I understand that MuseScore isn't designed for real-time playback, but I don't experience this issue in the current MuseScore 3.X. When I strike a keyboard key in M3, the audio plays for as long or short as I hold the key down until the note decays naturally. This allows me to play any articulation and dynamic. In version 4, it doesn't matter how long, short, hard, or soft I press my MIDI keyboard, the sound engine plays the note for the length of time set in Edit / Preferences / Note Input, and the velocity of my key strike has no effect on the dynamic of the note that plays back.

Is there something different in the sound engine or playback of M4?

In reply to by Glennallen81

Yes, it's entirely new, that's kind of the main point of MuseScore 4.

But - are you sure it's MuseScore 3 playing the sound when you hold notes long? I don't have a MIDI keyboard attached currently, but I never found it to work that way in the past - notes played only a fixed length of time, and with a fixed velocity, and with no sustain pedal support, in previous versions of MuseScore 3. Maybe some improvement was made more recently than I ever tested.

Notes not only have the same duration, but also the same velocity. That's really disappointing, also considering that it worked well in the previous versions.

In reply to by Swite

I definitely agree. For me, Musescore 4 is practically unusable, because I make notes with midi keyboards and always want to listen while playing. It is strange that this feature has been left out of the new version, when it worked well in the older version. I'm a teacher and in a teaching situation I can't use the latest version, but I use the 3.6.2 version, which works just fine.

In reply to by KurttuArtsi

I agree, and to rub salt in the wound, you can't even mute the master bus... if you want to listen to your MIDI keyboard through another app (which of course I never had to do in MuseScore 3) you first have to mute each and every individual instrument in your score... because even though there is a mute button on the master bus, it DOES NOT WORK for some reason like ....? why????

also the lag, omg. i could almost tolerate the static duration and static velocity if musescore supported buffer sizes below 1024 samples... so painful

In reply to by -Stef-

Your OS should provide a mute for each application in its system mixer, but if it doesn't, simply turn down the master volume within MuseScore - no need to mute each track one by one. Meanwhile, there is already a bug report logged for the lack of mute support on the master channel.

Sounds like you are also experiencing some sort of lag on MIDI input? This seems to happen on certain systems with certain input devices for reasons that are not fully understood. There are issues filed for that too, and some optimization to address some of that already in place for 4.2. But every system is different (mine has no discernible lag at all, for instance). The more info you can provide about the inqiue qualities of your system that might be contributing to the lag, the better the developers will be able to find solutions for your particular case.

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