General placement conventions for tuplets

Tuplet brackets and tuplet numbers/ratios are generally placed on the stem side of notes. When tuplets are shown with a tuplet beam, a tuplet bracket is not always necessary but can be shown in addition to a tuplet number/ratio.

According to convention, tuplet brackets and tuplet numbers/ratios are always placed above the staff for vocal staves, so they do not come between notes and lyrics.

Tuplet brackets should be placed as close to notes as possible without colliding with other notation, such as slurs or articulation. Slurs are usually placed inside tuplet brackets if the slur is shorter than the tuplet bracket. If a slur is longer than a tuplet bracket, the slur can be placed outside the tuplet bracket.

The horizontal position of tuplet brackets should allow it to be immediately obvious which notes are included in the bracket. They should not extend so far that notes following the tuplet appear to be included.

Figure: A tuplet clearly showing the three quarter notes included in the triplet.

Figure: With an extended tuplet bracket, the duration of the triplet is now unclear.