Modes in Dorico

Modes in Dorico represent a logical sequence of the workflow phases of preparing music, but you can switch between them at any time as required for your own workflow.

Dorico Pro contains the following modes:


In Setup mode, you can set up the fundamental elements of the project: instruments and the players that hold them, flows, layouts, and videos. You can also determine how they interact with each other; for example, by changing the players assigned to layouts.

You can view music in the music area and switch between viewing other tabs and layouts, but you cannot select or interact with anything in the music area in Setup mode.


In Write mode, you can input and edit your music, including changing the rhythmic positions of items, changing the pitch of notes, and deleting notes and items. The available toolboxes and panels allow you to input all the notes and notation items that are most commonly used.

By design, you cannot move notes and items graphically on the page in Write mode. Graphical adjustments are only possible in Engrave mode.


In Engrave mode, you can make fine adjustments to the position, size, and appearance notes and items and determine how the pages of your project are laid out, including editing and creating page templates.

By design, you cannot delete any notes or items, change their rhythmic positions, or change the pitch of notes in Engrave mode; this prevents mistakes when engraving.


In Play mode, you can change how your music sounds in playback. You can do this by changing the playback template and assigning VST instruments, inputting automation, adjusting the mix, and changing the sounding duration of notes in playback without affecting their notated duration.


In Print mode, you can print your layouts or export them as graphics files. When printing layouts, you can specify the paper size and other options, such as duplex or booklet printing. When exporting layouts, you can specify different graphics file types, such as PDF or PNG, and the information you want to include in their exported file names.