Musicxml export does not include notehead specification when using custom notehead definitions

• May 4, 2019 - 00:06
Reported version
P2 - Medium
S3 - Major

Musescore (3 release and beta) does not declare notehead shape when exporting to musicxml which results in all specialized notehead shapes defaulting to the standard oval dote shape. To recreate, export attached percussion score to musicxml (see second attachment), then open exported musicxml in Musescore .

Official "notehead" element specification:

Attachment Size
noteheadlostinexport.mscz 9.47 KB
noteheadlostinexport.musicxml 28.83 KB


Musescore 2.3 does specify notehead element.

Example Musescore 2.3 Musicxml output has "notehead" element between "steam" and "beam" elements:

<note default-x="125.23" default-y="-145.00">
        <instrument id="P2-I63"/>
        <beam number="1">end</beam>
          <tuplet type="stop"/>

However, Musescore 3 musicxml output has NO "notehead" element between "stem" and "beam":

  <note default-x="153.04" default-y="5.00" dynamics="133.33">
        <instrument id="P1-I87"/>
        <beam number="1">end</beam>
        <beam number="2">backward hook</beam>

Having no notehead element prevents users from accurately exporting musicxml files for other programs and online services, and lessens backward compatibility with Musecore 2.

Title Bug: Musicxml export does not include notehead specification Musicxml export does not include notehead specification when using custom notehead definitions
Regression Yes No
Severity S2 - Critical S3 - Major
Priority P2 - Medium

I just tried it and it worked fine for me when using the standard drumset. Also works fine for noteheads added manually to pitched staves. Seems to be a problem only if you are using the special notehead editing feature that allows different noteheads for each rhythmic value. And this is the same as 2.3.2.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Did you test out my earlier attached score? The notehead shapes were specified in the drumset settings which are independent of rhythmic value--I'm not clear what you mean by that. In the newly attached score, I defined the custom noteheads in the instrument.xml file instead of in the drumset settings. Still, the notehead shapes are not retained when importing back the musicxml version.

In reply to by Sambaji

I just tested the standard drumset. As you pointed out, the notehead shapes are retained in the standard drumset instrument when exported to musicxml. So it appears that the notehead attribute is not retained when exporting to musicxml if the noteheads are not already prefined in the default instrument.xml file. In other words, it doesn't seem to process any customizing within the drumset settings or an additional instrument.xml file?

No, it is as I said: it works fine when using the standard notehead group settings. The only time it doesn't work is when you are using the special new "Edit notehead" facility (added at 2.3) that allows you define different noteheads for different durations, not just different pitches. The vast majority of users have no need for this - the standard notehead groups are more than sufficient. But it was needed for the MDL extension.

Not sure why you were using this here, but if you didn't experience problems in MuseScore, you must not have been using it there either. I'm reasonably fluent in takadimi but I'm having trouble understanidng how/why you are using this feature. Durations are not really relevant to percussion in general, and are especially not relevant to takadimi analysis. There's no reason I can see why you should have needed to make the solid noteheads different than the others, you could have just continued to use the notehead groups as you presumably always did before so that setting a pitch to "slash" makes it so for all durations, not just quarter & shorter.

And yes, I tested it with your score. You are definitely using the "Edit notehead" setting to select different noteheads for different durations. Uncheck that box and go back to using the "Notehead group" dropdown as you presumably always did in the past.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

I didn't intend to have different noteheads for different durations. As you said, that's irrelevant. The only reason I chose different noteheads is to correspond to the instruments that is playing. Since there are no half or whole notes in this exercise, I didn't pay to much attention to them. I just chose what I though looked for quarter notes and smaller. You'll right though. I'll redefine the noteheads in the instrument.xml using the dropdown presets to keep it simple to make sure the noteheads are the same for all durations. Thanks for the help.

To sum up, you are saying that if I don't edit any noteheads, leave the "edit noteheads" unchecked and instead stuck with a preset in the note groups dropdown menu, Musescore will properly export the notehsapes to musicxml.