Changing the octave of clefs

You can change the octave shift of individual clefs. For example, to accommodate different horn and bass clarinet transposition conventions. You can change the octaves of clefs in concert pitch and transposed pitch layouts independently.


  • The lower zone is shown.

  • Properties is selected in the lower zone toolbar.

  • If you are in Engrave mode, Graphic Editing Graphic Editing button is selected in the Engrave toolbox.

  • You have opened a layout with the required transposition in the music area. For example, if you want to change the octave of clefs in concert pitch, you have opened a concert pitch layout.

  • If you want to change the octave of initial clefs, you have input clefs at the start of each flow.


  1. Select the clefs whose octave you want to change. You can do this in Write mode and Engrave mode.
  2. In the Properties panel, activate Octave shift in the Clefs group.
  3. Change the value in the value field.


The octave of the selected clefs is changed in all layouts with the same transposition. For example, 1 shifts clefs up one octave, and -1 shifts clefs down one octave.

The pitches of notes on the staves of the selected clefs are adjusted automatically. For example, if you shift a clef up one octave, notes after the clef appear an octave lower than they do without the octave shift.

  • You can specify octave shifts when inputting clefs using the clefs and octave lines popover.

  • You can also change whether Dorico Elements respects or ignores octave indicators on clefs, such as treble G clef, octave above.