New features


Documentation for this new version is ongoing, and you may encounter some discrepancies between screenshots in the operation manual and how the application appears. We recommend that you also read the Version History for Dorico 4.0 for information about other new features not yet included in this documentation. You can download the Dorico 4.0 Version History from the Steinberg Download Assistant.

New Features in Version 4.0.0


Jump bar
  • The new jump bar allows you to perform commands and go to locations using only your computer keyboard. See Jump bar.

  • You can assign jump bar aliases to specific commands, for example, so you can use shorter entries for your favorite commands. See Assigning jump bar aliases.

Project templates
  • You can now save existing projects as custom project templates, allowing you to create future projects containing the same players, page templates, and default settings. See Saving custom project templates.

MIDI improvements
  • The handling of imported/opened MIDI files has been extensively improved. You can now map tracks to specific players and playing techniques, and save your settings for reuse in subsequent imports. See MIDI Import Options dialog.

  • During MIDI recording, Dorico Pro now automatically transcribes multiple simultaneous parts into separate voices, such as in contrapuntal piano music. Depending on your settings for MIDI recording and quantization, Dorico Pro can also detect slurs, tremolos, trills, pedal lines, tuplets, and grace notes. See MIDI recording.

Player sorting
  • By default, players are now automatically sorted in orchestral order, regardless of the order in which you add them to the project. You can change the player sorting setting in the Players panel in Setup mode. See Players panel.

  • You can now designate players as soloists, such as in a concerto for solo violin and orchestra. Soloists are treated differently, such as their instruments not being numbered with other instruments of the same type and being automatically positioned in the conventional score position, that is, above the strings. See Designating players as soloists.

  • You can now define capos for individual fretted instruments. You can then control how capos affect notated pitches and chord symbols/diagrams independently of each other to suit a range of requirements. See Capos.

Lower zone
  • The lower zone, formerly known as the “bottom panel”, now contains multiple different panels, including Keyboard, Fretboard, and Drum Pads panels that you can use to input notes and the Mixer and Key Editor panels that you can use to adjust playback. See Lower zone (Write mode).

Instrument filters
  • Instrument filters allow you to show only the staves of selected instruments in galley view. You can easily switch between showing only staves in the filter and all staves in the layout. See Instrument filters.

Insert mode scope
  • Insert mode has been given additional functionality, allowing you to change the scope of its impact. For example, you can now set Insert mode to affect all players in flows and also change the duration of the current bar. See Insert mode scopes.

  • You can also now set a stop position in each flow, which prevents any material beyond the stop point being affected by inserted notes. See Setting Insert mode stop positions.

Musical transformations
  • Dorico Pro now provides multiple tools for transforming pitches and rhythms, including reversing and inverting pitches. See Musical transformations.

  • The functionality of the note tools popover has been expanded to include the new musical transformations. You can also transform notes using new, dedicated dialogs. See Note tools popover.

  • Dialogs for visual items and options in the library are now accessible on a new Library menu. This also allows you to access these dialogs from all modes. See Library.

  • There is a new Library Manager that gives you an overview of all visual items and options in the current project and allows you to compare these against another project, your user library, or Dorico’s factory library. The Library Manager makes it easy to import options from any of these locations into the current project, from all options down to a granular per-option level if required. See Library Manager.

Numbered bar regions
  • Numbered bar regions allow you to show bar counts in a region without additional notations. This can help performers keep track of how many bars have passed when playing repetitive music. See Numbered bar regions.

More New Features

Language improvements
  • You can now automatically reset all existing instrument names and customize the appearance of accidentals and note names when changing the language for instrument names. See Changing the language for instrument names.

Hub redesign
  • The Hub has been redesigned, and now includes a Create New page where you can set up basic project information, including adding the project title, selecting a time signature, and specifying a starting number of bars. See Hub.

Ensemble picker
Duplicating layouts
  • You can now duplicate existing layouts, which copies everything in the original, including page template and staff spacing overrides. See Duplicating layouts.

Write mode toolboxes
  • Some functions in the Notes toolbox now have additional options available when you click and hold their button, including allowing you to open the tuplets popover. See Notes toolbox.

  • You can now switch between accessing panels and popovers from the Notations toolbox in Write mode. See Notations toolbox.

Note spelling
  • A new automatic note respelling dialog has been added, allowing you to specify the notes you want to respell and apply general preferences to the selection. See Respell Notes Automatically dialog.

  • You can now copy note spellings to other layouts, for example, if you originally respelled notes in a part layout but want those spellings to appear in the full score layout as well. See Copying note spellings to other layouts.

  • Additionally, you can reset changes to note spellings in either the current layout only or in all layouts. See Resetting note spellings.

Chord symbol improvements
  • You can now show parentheses around chord symbols, including showing only a single left or right bracket on individual parenthesized chord symbols. See Parenthesized chord symbols.

Insert Music Symbol dialog
  • The new Insert Music Symbol dialog makes it easier to add music symbols, such as note glyphs and accidentals, to text items and in text frames. See Insert Music Symbol dialog.

Figured bass improvements
Casting off improvements
  • Additionally, there is now a preference for whether system/frame breaks are allowed within bars. Disallowing breaks within bars lets you select anything in the bar at the start of which you want a system/frame break. See Allowing/Disallowing breaks within bars.

Pasting articulations
Chord diagram fingerings
  • There are now separate font styles for fingerings and starting fret numbers in chord diagrams. See Chord diagram font styles.

Percussion improvements
Staff label improvements
  • You can now show player names instead of instrument names for each player in each layout independently, and set both full and short player names for each player. For example, in works with multiple percussionists, showing “Percussion 1” in staff labels regardless of their current instrument is sometimes preferred. See Showing instrument/player names in staff labels and Renaming players.

  • You can now show vertical labels for player groups to the left of staff labels, as is sometimes used in large-scale works. See Player group labels.

Last but Not Least

Saving, resetting, and removing defaults in options dialogs
  • A Reset to Factory option has been added to the Preferences dialog, allowing you to restore the factory defaults for application preferences if necessary. See Preferences dialog.

Project preview
  • When you save projects, Dorico now generates preview images of the layout open in the music area. PNG files are used on the Open Recent page in the Hub. See Project Info dialog.

Pedal line improvements
Changing voices
Page templates
  • The templates for achieving consistent page formatting that used to be known as “master pages” have been renamed, and are now known as “page templates” throughout Dorico. See Page templates.

  • You can now show crosshairs when selecting and/or dragging items in Engrave mode, which can help you align items more easily. See Hiding/Showing crosshairs.

Font style improvements
Accidental scale size
Bar number improvements
  • You can now hide numbers in subordinate bar number sequences and only show alphabetical letters, such as “a”, “b”, and “c”. See Adding subordinate bar numbers.

Beaming improvements
  • You can now force centered beams for beams that include notes only on one side of the middle staff line using the new Custom Centered Beam dialog. See Creating centered beams.

Hiding clefs and key signatures after the first system
Grace notes