8va clef?

• Jan 24, 2017 - 15:29

I was wondering if there's any way to change the clef to an 8va treble clef to change the octave on any instrument I want. I have a pan flute I want to have higher, but it seems to be stuck with a normal treble clef no matter what I do.


You can also consider keeping the normal clef but setting the playback transposition for the staff to be an octave higher (or lower) via right click / Staff Properties.

In reply to by JackBombeeck

These clefs are designed in this way in and comes from standard fonts (Bravura, Emmentaler, etc).
I guess there's no way to change it.

Also, It is very clear for me: If the number's positions is the top of the clef it says to octave-up, If It's the bottom of the clef it says to octave-down.

I don't recommend it in any way but if you need it, you should:
Once you've finished writing your work, you can manually add "va" or "vb" or "ba" text one by one.
However, make sure that you don't need to make any changes on to these measures in the future.

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In reply to by Ziya Mete Demircan

Ah, that explains a lot (so no bug or missing feature...). It's just that my eye-sight isn't very good and I find the 8 at the bottom of the clef hard to see, that's all - 8va is easier to see. Just having it on the first clef of the appropriate staff of the piece would be a help, so I'll add text there that lines up with the clef-sign. Everyone, thanks for your help.

In reply to by JackBombeeck

The thing is, that clef shouldn't normally be used anywhere that it isn't already completely understood. For example, when writing for guitar, we know the top space E is the highest string on the guitar regardless of whether someone includes the "8". Or, when writing for soprano recorder or piccolo, we know the "C" on a ledger line just below the staff means the lowest note on the instrument regardless of the presence of the "8", etc. There aren't supposed to be cases where you actually play the same music differently depending on whether that clef is used or not. Or, said another way, you aren't supposed to use that clef in situations where its presence actually changes the meaning. It's just a choice of whether or not you prefer to have the "8" as a reminder the music is transposed an octave.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

It's not unusual in complex recent piano music to switch between normal and octave-transposed clefs. Here's an example (see the bottom system of p. 3): http://www.chrisdench.com/sites/default/files/ks.pdf

Octave-transposed clefs are also important to clarify the sounding pitch when a score is printed in concert pitch. However, the standard form is to attach a lone "8" above or below, without va/vb. Suggestion to JackBombeeck: have you tried switching to a different one of the music fonts provided with MuseScore (Bravura, Emmentaler, Gonville)? You might find a more legible choice...

In reply to by PaulSC

I understand, and agree as well: it should have no impact on how the piece is played, but acts as a reminder to the reader. In my case there were 2 flute parts (just called flute1 and flute2), and the top flute was intended to be one that plays an octave higher (yes, clef with '8' above not below, but i was just testing the possibilities earlier). I hadn't chosen an appropriate instrument, but thought to indicate it this way. Trying to change the font for a clef with better readability is indeed an option - haven't checked it out yet.

In reply to by JackBombeeck

A flautist want to see 8 ledger lines rather than a 8va clef. The 8va clef will cause mayhem and confusion. Flautists actually prefer ledger lines to an ottava (the line with the 8va above the staff), but know what those mean.

In actuality, about the only performers who don't mind an 8va clef are musicians who transpose exactly 1 octave, but the notes are written on the correct line still, like most of the guitar staves in MuseScore. In these cases the 8va clef handles the transposition.

When I first started writing music for the Viola, I would use the 8vb treble clef so I could keep track of the notes I was writing and see my chords with other instruments at a glance. I've since learned to pay attention to the alto clef notes of the viola and some trombones and the tenor clef notes used by many bass clef instruments.

In reply to by mike320

The near unreadable copy of the copy of the copy of the original score had a comment near the clef that said '1st flute 8va', which is wat prompted the idea in my head to (ab)use the clef for it, while trying to recreate a readable score (not for myself - i don't play flute, which is why i don't really know what flautists want to see...). Your comments have been most instructional, thank you :-)

In reply to by JackBombeeck

The note you mention is not normal, but quite understandable on a conductor's score. Such short cuts on a conductor's score are more common that they should be in my opinion. The musician's part in this case would no doubt be annotated in a way the flautist would like, that is the first flute would have everything written an octave higher as they expect.

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