Inputting dynamics with the popover

You can input dynamics and expressive text using the dynamics popover, both during step input and by adding them to existing notes. You can also input different dynamics into each voice independently in multiple-voice contexts.


You can also change dynamics during step input by following these steps when the caret is at the rhythmic position of the dynamic you want to change.


  1. In Write mode, do one of the following:
    • Start note input.

    • Select existing notes across which you want to add dynamics.

  2. Press Shift-D to open the dynamics popover.
  3. Enter the dynamic you want into the popover.

    For example, p, p<f>p, or f>.

  4. Input the dynamics and close the popover in one of the following ways:
    • To input the dynamics for all voices on the staff, press Return.

    • During note input, input the dynamics only into the voice indicated by the caret indicator by pressing Alt-Return.

    Open-ended dynamics, such as p<, automatically extend during step input as you continue inputting notes, or if you advance the caret by pressing Space.

  5. Optional: During step input, stop open-ended dynamics by pressing Shift-/ or by opening the dynamics popover again and inputting another immediate dynamic, such as f.


The selected dynamics are input. They are positioned according to your settings on the Dynamics page in Engrave > Engraving Options. Voice-specific dynamics are placed below the staff by default, even if they are input into an up-stem voice.

During step input, dynamics are input at the caret position, and extend automatically if you included an open-ended gradual dynamic. Voice-specific dynamics are input in the voice indicated by the quarter note symbol beside the caret.

When you add dynamics to existing notes, immediate dynamics are added to the first note in the selection while gradual dynamics are added across the selection.

  • If you entered a dynamic phrase into the popover, such as p<f>p, each dynamic and hairpin lasts a quarter note (crotchet) by default. You can lengthen/shorten gradual dynamics and groups of dynamics later.

  • Some expressive text, such as molto, appears before immediate dynamics rather than after them, even if you do not enter them in that order. This follows the generally accepted practice for expressive text placement.

    You can hide immediate dynamics later if you only want to show expressive text.

After Completing This Task

You can move dynamics within dynamic phrases and change the placement of dynamics relative to the staff.