Musescore 4 not playing certain notes on playback (especially piano playback)?

• Jan 2, 2023 - 03:24

The two examples I have documented show three problem areas (& perhaps there are more):
1) when the same note must be played in a different stave in the same clef (fairly unique situation, but necessary)
2) when the same note is present in a different stave AND clef (and not even coinciding) but during a pedal
3) when the same note is present in the same stave but during a pedal (but not always?)
All of these issues (found in piano music) are present in a screenshot below (with notes that did not play highlighted in yellow) and also in a .mscz file I have also attached.

All three of these are situations in which the software is not playing notes that I very much want it to play. I use Musescore playback files to construct compositions/pieces so it is important that it be able to read notation as I intended it to be played -- it is not just a rough cut that I later replace with live instruments (I rarely have any).

It is possible that this was an issue with transitioning an older composition/transcription to the newer engraving software, but I have now copied the problem areas to a new .mscz file originating in Musescore 4 (in fact, the very one that is attached) and the playback issue persists.

Thank you very much for reading, and if all goes well, understanding, and even better, perhaps helping. I have not ever asked a question before but have been impressed by other forum discussions and the general spirit in which Musescore operates.

UPDATE: Another general playback issue I have is that on multipart pieces, it appears that you must do Cmd + A (I have a Mac) or manually select all staves at a certain location and then press play, but that is rather inconvenient to do every time. Is there any other way? Any help on this issue would also be helpful. (For example, if there is any way to make the default be to play all parts, I would love to do that, and only play individual parts when in parts view.)

Attachment Size
example.png 167.67 KB
example.mscz 33.9 KB


I've found when I am working in muses score 4 the program just seems to not bother to play certain notes or groups of notes sometimes. I have to 'remind' the program the notes exist by editing them in someway, like the program is some bored band kid who's not paying attention. This doesn't seem to have anything to do with pedal or multiple staves playing the same notes for me.

In reply to by Whitefang165

How do you get MS4 to actually behave and play those notes? I really want to like MS4, but its habit of refusing to play random notes (or on a similar subject, randomly cranking down the volume of certain instruments in the middle of a song even when there are ZERO dynamic changes) keeps turning me off of the software. How do you correct this?

In reply to by SpartanChief17

For me changing the pitch seems to make the notes play again. The easiest way I've found is to shift the notes up and down an octave as that way accidents don't get messed up. Haven't found any solution for the random dynamic changes. Although I think it will be amazing in the future MS4 really isn't in a good condition right now, very frustrating to work with on many fronts.

I have found the same problem. It seems that a held note will prevent that same pitch from being played again for its duration, if it is in same voice. The workaround I have found is to assign the notes that aren't sounding to another voice. It's a small hassle, but at least I can get it to play properly.

It seems that Muse Sounds piano can't play those notes because they are already being played. Switch to Basic piano and they will play.

In reply to by bobjp

When I first looked at this I was not on a computer with Musescore installed. I see that the triplet symbols are just hidden. Since they are in fact triplets, I don't understand why the previous note would already and still be playing in either Basic or Muse Sound.

In reply to by bobjp

I confirm this. As soon as I switched only the piano to Muse Basic, the rest of it worked. You are right. There seems to be something wrong with that particular sound with sustaining notes. This is using Linux, of course, and with the built-in sound on the motherboard. What I haven't tried is putting a dedicated sound card in my machine. Could that fix the issue, as well?

In reply to by ItsAlexHere

Just wanted to confirm that I have the same issue with notes not playing in a piano score, apparently randomly. At least, I haven't been able to identify anything in particular. I tried switching to a piano instrument from Kontakt but have the same issue there. Similar as others mention, changing the pitch of the muted selection up and down fixes it - temporarily.

It's an .mxnl file I imported from Logic Pro. The voicing was messed up after the import so I'm trying to fix that, but not sure if there's any relation to that.

Using current version of MuseScore4 on Mac os Ventura 13.4.1

In reply to by tommy_strandbe…

Indeed, but I wasn't responding to the original posting :-)

For the record, the original score shows a known issue where attempting to play a note while that same note is currently being sustained doesn't work with Muse Sounds. it's kind of a corner-case scenario, but I too would love to see it fixed, so hopefully the Muse Sounds team gets on it eventually.

Wanted to add onto this - in the same score, notes from the bass guitar and drumset both randomly don't play, regardless of voice or staff. Tried reentering them, changing the voice and playing around (putting it up and down the octave) and it still doesn't play. At this rate may as well go back to ms3 :/

Glad to see your report.

I have LOTS of problems importing MuseScore 3.6 to MuseScore 4 so I'm glad to see your post.
This score came to mind because it was problematic today!

Shifting pitch has been recommended as a fix, but that didn't work.
The remedy was to paste to another score, which worked thought it can have own issues.
Switching from Muse Basics to Muse Guitars worked

Guitar TAB - 3.6 to 4.2 import with notes not playing Example.mscz


I'm having the same issue. Doesn't resolve when I try the other fixes (shifting the pitch, changing to basic piano sound font, messing with ties, etc.) In fact, messing with the ties over the repeat line made it worse, so I'm wondering if it has to do with something like the 'note off' function in the notes or underlying MIDI. Take a look at the playback around the second ending of the first repeat (verse 2). Thanks.

Attachment Size
Easter_Song.mscz 178.52 KB

In reply to by jonathan.straker

I'm not hearing any problems with anything in the alto in bar 10 or anywhere near there. Canyou be more specific about which note isn't playing for you? It may help also to upload a screen recording to YouTube so we can be sure we're hearing exactly what you are hearing on your system to then compare to what we hear on ours.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Okay, so weirder and weirder. The original problem (Alto line around measure 10) resolved magically. Not sure why. Computer restart? Cache got cleared? No idea. However, now the same kind of issue is showing up in the tenor line right after the repeat. Consistent with what others have posted, the first two notes are not playing - which matches up with the half note that is tied across the repeat. There is a video of what I'm experiencing here: And I have reuploaded the file. Alto and Tenor lines are soloed for troubleshooting.

Attachment Size
Easter_Song.mscz 178.29 KB

In reply to by jonathan.straker

Why is there a tie there extending out of the first ending? It seems MuseScore is trying to honor it and that's why next notes don't play, but none of this actually makes sense notationally. Delete the spurious tie, then playback should be more as you expect. You might need to force MuseScore to regenerate the playback info - save/reload should do it, or Ctrl+A to select all, then Ctrl+Up followed by Ctrl+Down.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Ah. Yes. Older problem. You are right, bad notation, but it's a habit I got into a while ago as a workaround because it was simpler than most of
I create files to facilitate learning church music, so they need to match the received written music fairly closely, and the playback needs to work. So, the tie across the volta is probably what is causing the problem. I'll tinker with it. However, is there a better/newer solution for ties across voltas?

(And thank you for the quick response and the incredible piece of software!!!)

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