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Topic: Dots n beams (Read 7791 times) previous topic - next topic

Dots n beams

I recently sent an NWC score to a pianist, who responded with much helpful commentary. Among other things, he made several comments about the notation.

The most unsightly thing he found was the unnatural length of the partial beams in sixteenth notes beamed to dotted eighth notes. He said they would be confusing to a performer, as they looked too much like full 16th-note beams.

Why does NWC generate such long partial beams? Can this be fixed?

- seb

Re: Dots n beams

Reply #1
I am not exactly clear on your question. Are you referring to a group of beamed notes that are, for example, comprised of different durations. For example, a dotted eighth note beamed with a following sixteenth would seem to be what you are describing. In this case, NWCD extends the 16th note portion of the beam for half the distance to the 8th note. In situations like this, NWC always uses half the distance between the two notes of differing number of stem flags.

I hope this helps.


Re: Dots n beams

Reply #2
Yes, you understood me: I was referring to a dotted eighth beamed to a sixteenth.

Your formula, using half the length where the duration difference is half, etc., doesn't seem standard to me. Printed notation almost never uses a half length - more like a quarter at most. I would be happy to see this formula changed.

Re: Dots n beams

Reply #3
Noteworthy Composer is an excellent product especially for its price but it does have elementary typographical flaws, easily corrected I'm sure, that detract from its usefulness. Many have been mentioned in this forum and it is disappointing that the recent release has not fixed them.

My own bugbears are:

1) Subsidiary beams should only be about the same size as a note-head, not half the length of the main beam. It really does make the score look ugly at the moment.

2) In chords, if two notes are on consecutive line and space (or vice versa) they should be written so that the lower note is on the left of the stem and the higher on the right. And it doesn't matter which way the stem goes! NWC produces some weird chord shapes which are far harder to recognize than chords written in the conventional way.

3) Simultaneous chords (on different clefs) should be aligned headnote to headnote, and not on the leftmost notes as at present.

4) The font size for lyrics is too small for practical use in dimly lit churches or for anyone with less than 20-20 vision.

5) Back-to-back Master Repeat bar lines look ridiculous with the empty pseudo-bar between them.

Is there any chance of these problems being fixed, or even a comment that you don't agree?