Duplets in 9/8

• Jan 19, 2024 - 22:37

Mu4.2 chromebook/linux mouse imput i5 8 gig

Duples do not work in 9/8 time signature. Trying to do whole rest. End up with two 1/8 th rests.
Not sure but any compound time sign might be the same with duples. Triplets seemed to work correctly, but did not check all possibilities.

Any thoughts for dividing 9 beats in half? :)


Are these the duplets you seek?

For three sets of duplets of eighth notes:
Insert a dotted quarter note
Add >Tuplets >Other >Ratio 2:3

For one set of duplets of dotted quarter notes:
Select the whole-bar rest
Add >Tuplets >Other >Ratio 2:3

There are many possibilities to explore.

Attachment Size
Duplet98.mscz 18.24 KB

In reply to by underquark

I do not think we are on the same page. The duplets you seem to be mentioning are dotted quarters, if I understand. This is still to small a division. As I hoped I said , I want the duple of the Whole measure. Two halves would be what I assume should show up. Instead MU4.2 was only giving 2 1/8 th rests. That is not dividing a whole 9/8 meas in two parts.

Your second suggestion seems to be in the right direction, I will have to try that. I guess I am not understanding why other 2:3 is necessary when you are choosing duple anyway. And I still do not understand why the program is dividing a whole rest into (2) 1/8 ths? Thanks for the comment. (Can not open your attachment, yet)

In reply to by R. L. F.

You asked "Any thoughts for dividing 9 beats in half? :)" I provided a thought.

Duplets are usually two in the space of three, hence two dotted quarter notes in the space that would usually be occupied by three dotted quarter notes. In what way is that too small a division of a whole measure? Why would writing two half notes make it easier to interpret?

I don't know why my attached file isn't opening for you. My version:
OS: Ubuntu 22.04.3 LTS, Arch.: x86_64, MuseScore version (64-bit): 4.2.0-233521125, revision: eb8d33c

In reply to by underquark

I am not on my work system, so it will not open. Will try again.
So, I agree that two dotted quarters will be fine, if I could get there. That is my problem. How? I will try your second suggestion. Yet, I still do not understand why clicking the whole rest and selecting duple, does not give the desired result. Why is choosing 2:3 necessary when you have chosen duple?
I usually think of duple as ending with larger notes than what would be half of the measure note(s). That's the only reason I said halves. Either works fine, if I get there. Will let you know. Thanks again

In reply to by underquark

Sorry, but the more I stew over this the two dotted quarters are just not correct, even though they fit and may unfortunately be the best result. It is not 2 into 3 I am doing, but two into one.
I have given more thoughts in some of the other responses. It is a conundrum for sure, with not a great choice. But for me, the two dotted quarters are just not satisfactory. I will continue to mull this over and experiment with some of the choices suggested. I just repeat, the program is not giving anything close for this example. And what it does is truly incorrect.
Thanks for the thoughts

In reply to by R. L. F.

  1. Select full bar rest, Add/Tuplets/Other, 8 in the space of 9, Number & Bracket set to None.
  2. Select first quaver rest, press W twice.
  3. Select next quaver rest, press W twice
  4. Place the minims over minim rests
  5. Add the 2 manually (I used fingering).

    I've not found a way to add the bracket & number automatically.


In reply to by rothers

@rothers: these two 1/2 notes as duolet in 9/8 don't make any sense to me from what I remember from my music lessons.
2 should indicates 2 in the place normally taken by 3, and in 9/8, three 1/2 notes are not taking the "normal" places.
Three dotted 1/4 notes do.
So you need a duolet of dotted 1/4 notes.
Or you're experimenting with notation ?
Or I don't remember my music lessons correctly, happy to be corrected then.

In reply to by frfancha

I am sure you are correct, mostly. But, it is 'squeezing' two notes/rests into what was one note/rest. The two halves are not exactly right either, but better than two half note + dotted 1/8 th combination.(or dotted quarters)
Just as with a triplet or quintuplet, you are squeezing more into one. For a quarter 3 sixteenth would also fit, yet you are not squeezing a larger value into the space. We therefore use quarters. Or 5 thirty seconds would work, but we use 16 ths instead

My 9/8 marking is presenting a problem. We are asking the performer to fit the larger number of beats into a smaller space. Triplet, 3 where two is normal, quintuplet, 5 where four is normal. And for my duple it is really 2 where one is normal. It is the whole rest I am dividing into two beats. Not 3 notes/rests into 2.(beats is poor word choice in this instance, but I hope you get the idea)

I just know the program is not giving a correct result for duple in this case. Thanks for responding

In reply to by R. L. F.

Heu .. no.
A duolet is to squeeze less notes not more.
And to be clear that doesn't impact in any way the duration of the 9/8 measure.
Whatever note you choose to put in there splitting the 9/8 measure in 2 will have the same real duration.
So I don't get why you much want to use the incorrect 1/2 notes instead of the correct dotted 1/4

In reply to by R. L. F.


You wrote:

"Guess we will have to agree to disagree.
I would only ask, when the rest of the tuplets are squeezing more notes into the beat, why is a duple different? Afraid I do not think so. Guess we will just disagree on this part! Thanks for the thoughts"

I have now checked in music reference books to make sure my memory doesn't betray me, and it doesn't. What I wrote is exactly how it is. So feel free to disagree of course, but be aware that only you will undertand your notation.

In reply to by rothers

The more I think over this, even the two halves are not really enough. You are trying to 'squeeze' more notes into the same space. 8 vs. 9 is not really doing this. It comes close. And trying to use two halves + two dotted 1/8 ths is really ridiculous! I still prefer the halves.

In reply to by R. L. F.

Actually it may be as good as you will get. Think about a little differently than you have been. Set a 9/8 score with 2 staves. Add 9 1/8th notes to the upper stave. What is the middle of a 9/8 measure? Note 5. There are are 4 notes on each side. Now in the measure below, duple the rest. add the two 1/8th notes. The second one will sound after beat five.
Next, divide a 9/8 measure in half, you would need not a duple but a half note tied to a 1/16 note. Followed by the same. Then the second note happens after beat 5.
Same either way.
And now my head hurts.

In reply to by bobjp

Try the same thing with 3/8 meas. What is the mid point there. Yet, I think, as what we would normally expect, the dulpe would be two quarters? Making the performer squeeze two slightly larger values in the same beat space. Think of a triplet. One quarter and it is three 1/8 th notes. Slightly larger values squeezed into the same beat. The duple should be working the same. Though, with my 9/8 meas, as you said nothing really works, perfectly. My choice is still the 2 halves. I think the performer would grasp the concept. But the program puts 2 1/8 s. Not exactly obvious. I still prefer something close to slightly larger than half the meas.

And Yes, my head has been hurting for a few days now!! Thanks for the thoughts

In reply to by frfancha

And, 3/8 or not, this is always true :
A duplet is two notes (or rests) taking the duration normally taken by three of them.

These notes can be sub-divided of course, so taking again the 3/8 case, a duplet can be two 1/8 notes, or a pair of 1/16 notes followed by one 1/8 note, or...

In reply to by frfancha

That is probably true. Though I have been occasionally using a duple in a score for many decades and have not had any confusion. I do know, as a performer, looking at a meas with 2 notes that would note equal the total beats of a meas, my first question would be "do you want some kind of pause between these notes"? That is just me.
For centuries, composers have set the practices that theorists have codified. This seems to have been the other way around. Of The tuples duple is different. Not pushing the boundary of the beat or meas, but shrinking it.

But yes, each to their own way.

In reply to by bobjp

I think Musescore is mishandling the request to duple which leads to strange phenomenon like this. In the 9/8 bar, the duple request should have followed the same procedure as the 6/8 and 12/8 bar, namely to take each dotted quarter (which is three eighths), make a duple out of it, and then enclose the whole thing in a duple bracket. The fact that None of us are sure what is happening means that people are gonna have to get together to decide what is the best practice here. Then the Programming Boys™ can take over and create a subroutine, including the "h" as they're wont to do.

In reply to by FBXOPWKDOIR2

There is no doubt at all from a musical point of view.
A duplet in 9/8 is two dotted 1/4 notes or rests.
So MuseScore creating a duplet of two 1/8 rests instead of two dotted 1/4 when pressing CTRL 2 on a 9/8 measure rest is just a plain bug.
As simple as that.

In reply to by frfancha

But regardless of whether the notation should be two dotted quarters or two eights, there's a bigger problem. Both show that two even notes are to be played in an un-even measure. How will a group of musicians agree on when to change to the second note? My guess is they won't. Depending on what the melody is doing, they will make one note a fraction longer. That's not to say they couldn't play exactly two even notes. But they would have to agree on what that means. When do you change? On beat five? Right after beat five? Yes, they will need to feel it. That's what musicians do. I'm just thinking that a duplet in 9/8 might not be all that musical.

In reply to by frfancha


Here's the thing. There is what's right. And there is what you have to do in reality. Two dotted quarter notes are what is right. But MU4 doesn't produce that. But it does produce something that is usable. I write for playback. So the fact that MU4 produces two eight rests is totally irrelevant. Mu4 does provide a way to place two evenly spaced notes in a 9/8 measure and play them back. In just a few clicks. Done.
Sibelius can't do that. If you select a 9/8 measure and hit the duplet routine, You get an error. You have to set up the measure with dotted quarter rests or notes, first. Is that the way it should be done? Of course. No argument from me.
MU4 can't produce a duplet from 3 dotted quarter notes. Or from a 9/8 measure rest. But it can produce a playback option. A bug for sure. But MU4 is a world of work-arounds.

In reply to by bobjp

Agreed! (My work is only for one player) And Yes the player needs to feel it. And with two notes that are at least very close to the meas length, I think that will come more easily than two notes that are equal only to the first and last beat.

I started this thread to point out that MU4.2 is not doing things correctly no matter what. Not to start a discussion about duples. So , I am through, you all may continue as you wish. Good luck on an answer.

In reply to by R. L. F.


You wrote :

"I think that will come more easily than two notes that are equal only to the first and last beat"

You realize this is exactly what a duplet means right ? That two notes becomes half longer because they are in a duplet ? And it would be weird for musicians to have another kind of duplet, they will struggle to read it and probably correct the score to be able to read it normally ?

In reply to by frfancha

As I said we can agree to disagree, but please do not change a definition of a term to suit your thoughts. Duple does not mean half. It is double. As in two for one. Just as triplet is 3 for 1, quadruplet is 4 for 1, quintuplet, etc. Duplet is 2 for 1. Not half.
The choice of the two is where we shall agree to disagree!

As with triplet, quintuplet, etc we are squeezing more notes into that one....not making less duration than before. But this discussion was never why I posted the problem. Just to get a confirmation that it was not just another annoying something I was experiencing with the program, and I did hear that. So I am back to work!

In reply to by R. L. F.

"I said we can agree to disagree, but please do not change a definition of a term to suit your thoughts. "

I'm not changing anything but use duplet how it is defined in music. You seem to have your own special idea about what it is, and use analogy with triplet to assert the duration is shorter while it is the opposite.
Why not.
If you are happy to think so I will not try to convince you.

Probably this apparent bug should get reported on GitHub
There once was a similar issue, with 12/8, https://github.com/musescore/MuseScore/issues/12546

Switching a 9/8 duplet's number type to relation shows that is is a 2:9 one. It can't be a 2:3 one, as there's no duration for that, as 9 can't get divided by 2 and result in a valid single duration
So maybe this isn't a bug after all

What you really want (2 half durations in the space of 2.25) is an 8-let

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