Key signature arrangements

Dorico Pro automatically follows conventions for the placement and appearance of key signatures, such as showing accidentals in the accepted circle of fifths order and positioning key signatures between clefs and time signatures.

The order in which accidentals are shown in key signatures is different for sharp keys and flat keys.

  • For sharps: F, C, G, D, A, E, B

  • For flats: B, E, A, D, G, C, F

Accidentals are arranged automatically in these orders in Dorico Pro for all standard Western key signatures. There is an accepted pattern for the placement of accidentals in a key signature, so that they fit inside the staff according to the current clef. The pattern of accidentals is the same in all clefs, apart from the tenor clef, which requires sharp key signatures to follow a different, ascending pattern to ensure the accidentals fit on the staff.


Arrangement of sharps

Arrangement of flats






For custom, non-standard key signatures, you can determine the order in which accidentals appear in the Edit Custom Key Signature dialog.