MuseScore rhythm settings?

• Apr 3, 2013 - 21:21

Below is the tempo and rhythm of a norwegian tune. Its time signature is 3/4.


Will MuseScore play this back ok if I just add a tempo text set to 108 BPM? Or are there some other settings I would have to correct so that MuseScore knows how to play this correctly?

Attachment Size
rhythm.jpg 12.86 KB


For the tempo, a tempo text with BPM=108 will work. The other part of the text in the image indicates that the tune is played in swing. You can have MuseScore play swing if you change the setting in Display -> Play panel.

In reply to by Svish

Should be pretty obvious with any example containing a string of eighth notes. Say, a C major scale. With swing playback turned off, each eighth note is the same length. With swing playback turned on, it sounds exactly as the picture you posted says it should sound - like a series of triplets such that the first eighth of each pair is approximately twice as long as the second. long-short long-short long-short long-short.

Are you sure you are turning this on in the Play panel?

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Thanks! Yes in this piece the difference is very obvious. But gotta say this is kind of strange. Cause I tried to create a new score myself now, a piano score, punched in a bunch of Gs eights, and when playing this back there was no difference between swing and regular. I looked at yours which had scales, so I nudged the first 4 notes into a simple scale, played it back again, and now there is a difference. Changed the scale back to all Gs, still a difference. I don't get it. Waited a bit, set it to regular, and then to swing no difference. Switching back and forth a couple of times with some random play and rewind to start, i suddenly hear a difference again.

Doesn't seem like this play mode thing is completely stable?

In reply to by Svish

Interesting. I've never seen it not work. But on any case, the whole mechansim has been pulled out of 2.0, hopefully in preparation for eventually imp,ementing something better - that would let you apply swing playback to just a selected region, that would give you comtrol over the actual ratio of long:short (2:1 is definitely *not* actually appropriate; it's far too exagerrated at any but slow tempos). But I haven't heard any word on whether work is acually progressing on that.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Yeah, seems rather unstable here.

Best thing would be if I could just type in what is in that picture as Tempo text and then MuseScore would just do the right thing and play it back correctly. The tempo text as it currently is seems quite limited and I often have to "translate" what is written in a sheet of music because when I use the same number the song is either way too fast or way too slow.

In reply to by Svish

Not sure what you mean by "limited" - the vast majority of tempo markings in the world are just ordinary text, or at most (quarter note) = (number), either of which are perfectly simple to enter. Is there something else you mean? Or maybe you didn't realize you can enter any text you like? Or that you can change the actual tempo represened by terms like Allegro by right clicking them, or by changing them directly in the dialog box where you enter them? I'm not understanding what you mean you need "translate" numbers, unless perhaps you mean that in compound time, MuseScore still works im quarter note units rather than eighth or dotted quarters as woild be more typically written. And here, I'd agree there should be a way to get that effect, in the dialog where you enter the actual tempo.

In my experience, it's only rare oddball markings like the pseudo-swing marking you show here that can't be entered directly, but that represents a miniscule percentage of tempo markings. It's virtually never used in music written for people who actually play that type of music. You see it only when someone tries to write a quasi-swing piece for classical musicians or whatever. People who actually play music with swing rhythm would think of that type of marking as being kind of childish, like putting note names in the middle of noteheads as you sometimes see in hooks for beginners.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Well, most are written as (quarter note) = (number), but some are written as (other note) = (number) and then just typing in the number doesn't always end up with the right tempo, as you mention in the last part of your first paragraph.

I also find it a bit troublesome that the tempo text is sort of split in two. The text and the BPM behind it. Wish I only had to type in (note) = (number) and then MuseScore got the speed right itself. Of course this would mean you couldn't type any text you wanted in there, but I there could maybe be room for both somehow? Anyways, I'm just dreaming here :p I think we agree. The tempo thing sort of works, but could be improved. Think it could be a lot smoother with some tweaks. Hopefully they will do it for the next version and if they don't I will survive :)

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

2.0 has a checkbox in the tempo properties that says "determine tempo from text". Sounds promising, but it doesn't seem to do anything that I can see. Anyone know how this is supposed to work?

Anyhow, yes I understand now - tempo text in 1.X is not "limited" in the sense of there being things you can't do with it, but it is definitely more cumbersome to use in some cases than one might prefer.

In reply to by [DELETED] 5

Looks excellent! Doesn't seem to work in the build I am using (a custom one from Tony last week with his chord symbol horizontal spacing changes), but that's exactly how I'd have expected. I click Follow Text (which is off by default in this build) and the tempo field doesn't grey out as it does in your video, and it doesn't update when I change the text. So I'll assume for now his build is using an incomplete version of this code.

Hi Svish -

Please take a look at the image below and check out the attached score of it.


Notice that the drop-down menu in the Play Panel has Swing selected.

Try the other options in this drop-down menu (Straight and Shuffle) to see what effect they have on the playback of the eighth notes in the score.


Attachment Size
swing.mscz 1.6 KB
swing.png 14.68 KB

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