We’re pleased to announce the release of a second maintenance update for Dorico 4, version 4.0.20, and a complementary update to Dorico for iPad, version 2.1, bringing another tranche of useful new capabilities, and some 90 fixes addressing issues reported since Dorico 4.0’s release in January. Let’s dive in.

Key Editor improvements

We are continuing to focus on improving the user experience in the new Key Editor in Write and Play modes, and Dorico 4.0.20 brings a trio of further useful improvements.

Firstly, when you right-click in the piano roll, velocity or continuous controller editors, a quick tool selector appears, similar to the tool buttons palette in Cubase. This allows you to change the current tool very rapidly: hold the right mouse button to show the quick tool selector, move the pointer over the tool you want to use, then release the right mouse button. You can return to the select tool by simply right-clicking, as the selector will open at the mouse pointer’s current position, automatically choosing the select tool.

Secondly, in Dorico for macOS and Windows the select and multi-select tools have now been combined, which makes selecting items in the piano roll, velocity and continuous controller editors much easier with the mouse: click, Shift+click and Ctrl+click (Windows) or Command-click (macOS) all now work as you would expect, making it much easier to work efficiently in these editors.

Thirdly, you can now change the horizontal zoom of the editors when the mouse pointer is over any part of the main piano roll, velocity and continuous controller editors by holding Ctrl (Windows) or Command (macOS) and using the mouse wheel.

There are a number of other minor improvements and bug fixes for the Key Editor, including more reliable updating when adding independently-routed voices, improvements to velocity editing, better handling of octave transposing instruments when adding notes in the piano roll editor, and so on.

Now that the selection, editing and zoom behaviours in the existing piano roll, velocity and continuous controller editors are feeling good, our focus is on reimplementing the missing editors that we know Dorico users are waiting for. Editors for tempo, dynamics, pitch bend and a specialisation of the piano roll editor for percussion kits are our top priority, and we expect these to be included in the next update. Beyond that we have plans to further integrate the transform tool (making it available in the continuous controller editor, for starters) and make it possible to stack multiple editors for the same track, so you can see and edit data for multiple continuous controllers, or velocity and a continuous controller, at the same time.

We know that it’s hard to wait for these improvements, but it’s important that we build these in the right way to provide a smooth user experience. Thanks for your continued patience!

Spotlight and Quick Look

Dorico now supports Spotlight system-wide search and Quick Look file preview on macOS.

The fields in Project Info in Dorico projects, such as title, composer, lyricist and so on, can be indexed by Spotlight.

Dorico projects last saved in Dorico 4 or Dorico for iPad include a PDF preview of the last active layout, and this is what will be shown when activating Quick Look in the Finder (by default, this is bound to the keyboard shortcut Space), and such projects will also show a thumbnail in the Finder instead of the standard Dorico project icon. Projects that have not yet been saved from Dorico 4 or Dorico for iPad do not include suitable graphic previews, and so will not display a thumbnail in the Finder or show a preview via Quick Look.

Notation improvements

There are a handful of new engraving, notation and layout options introduced in Dorico 4.0.20. Full details are in the Dorico 4 Version History PDF, but here’s a whistle-stop tour:

  • New cautionary accidental option for notes of the same octave in the same bar when using the Modernist accidental duration scheme (Accidentals page of Notation Options)
  • New option to join vocal staves with a single barline at the end of the system but preserving breaks between staves earlier in the system (Barlines page of Engraving Options)
  • New option to produce more consistent beam positions with flat beams where the inner note is closer to the beam than the outer notes (Beams page of Engraving Options)
  • New option to show fingerings in chord diagrams when they appear in the “chords used” grid at the start of the flow (Chord Symbols and Diagrams page of Layout Options)
  • New option for where a trill extension line should end on a tied note (Ornaments page of Engraving Options)

Additionally, Dorico 4.0.20 also adds a new single-stroke caesura, which can be created via the Holds and Pauses panel in Write mode, or by entering //single into the Shift+H popover.

…and more

These aren’t the only improvements in Dorico 4.0.20. Among other improvements to new features introduced in Dorico 4, the jump bar now has a wider repertoire of available commands, and has a more forgiving fuzzy search, while the Library Manager now makes it easier to synchronise entire sets of options or all library collections.

For a complete list of all of the changes and improvements in Dorico 4.0.20, please refer to the comprehensive Dorico 4 Version History PDF.

Installing the update

Dorico 4.0.20 is a free update for existing Dorico Pro 4, Dorico Elements 4 and Dorico SE 4 users. If you are currently running Dorico Pro 3.5 or Dorico Elements 3.5 or earlier, you can buy an update to Dorico Pro 4 or Dorico Elements 4 from the Steinberg online shop.

Assuming you already have Dorico 4.0 or 4.0.10 installed, you can update to Dorico 4.0.20 free of charge.

First, quit Dorico and any other Steinberg application that you are running on your computer. Next, because we have also recently updated Steinberg Activation Manager, we recommend that you run Steinberg Download Assistant, which will automatically update Steinberg Activation Manager to the latest version, along with any other elements of the Steinberg run-time environment (including eLicenser Control Center and Steinberg Library Manager) that may be outdated on your computer.

Once Steinberg Download Manager has finished updating any required components, go to My product downloads in the left-hand list, where you will find Dorico Pro 4, Dorico Elements 4, or Dorico SE 4, depending on which product you have installed. Select this, and on the right-hand side you will see Dorico 4.0.20 Application Installer. Click the Install button immediately to the right. This will download and run the Dorico 4.0.20 installer.

(Unlike with previous versions of Dorico, there is no longer a separate updater installer: you can simply run the Dorico 4.0.20 installer to update your existing Dorico 4.0 or Dorico 4.0.10 installation, rather than using a separate installer.)

On Windows, pay close attention to whether it is recommended to restart your computer at the end of the installation process: if recommended, do restart your computer, as this should avoid font cache problems that you might otherwise encounter, which result in some icons in Dorico’s user interface and some music symbols in the score not appearing correctly until you restart your computer.

If you are running Dorico for iPad, the app will be updated automatically if you have automatic updates enabled; if not, simply run the App Store app on your device, tap your avatar in the top right-hand corner, then tap Purchases, find Dorico in the list of purchased apps, and tap Update.

What’s next

After two significant updates to the desktop and mobile versions in the eight weeks since Dorico 4 was released – between them fixing nearly 200 bugs and adding new features like Quick Look and Spotlight support, the quick tool selector in the Key Editor, new engraving, layout and notation options, and more besides – we are currently focused on restoring the missing editors in the Key Editor as quickly as we can, and if everything goes according to plan, these will all be included in our next update. We are also currently working on improving file management in Dorico for iPad, and hope that these improvements will be ready soon.

If you’d like to try Dorico 4 for yourself, you can download and install a fully-functional 30-day trial of Dorico Pro or Dorico Elements. Alternatively, Dorico SE is completely free to use forever and includes all of the essential power and workflows of Dorico Pro and Dorico Elements, limited to projects with a maximum of two players (though it can also open larger projects read-only, allowing printing and playback). If you have an iPad, Dorico for iPad is free on the App Store, and provides an optional in-app purchase subscription to unlock functionality similar to Dorico Elements, including iPad-only features like annotations in Read view.

Thanks for reading, and thanks for using Dorico. Stay tuned for news of our next update!

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