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Engraving Enhancements

We are pleased to announce a couple of new features in the latest release of GuitarSharp. Several of our users are now using GuitarSharp to produce sheet music for publication and for distribution to their guitar students. From this, we have been asked to make some enhancements to the engraving (screen / printing) styles used by GuitarSharp.

Take a look at the Before and After screenshots below to see these enhancements in action:

Brackets and Slanting Beams

Stave Brackets

When guitar music is published, a common style is to group the Classical and Tablature staves together to make it obvious they are specific to the same instrument. This is done by preceding the staves with a Bracket to show that the staves are grouped together. GuitarSharp now supports the displaying of this Bracket which helps improve the style of the engraved output.

Slanting Beams

In the above screenshots, you can now see that the styling of the drawn Beams between consecutive notes has been improved. Previously, Beams were simply drawn as horizontal lines connecting the stems of the notes. However, the common way of drawing these Beams in printed music is to slant the Beams (where possible) to reduce forcibly extending the note stalks that would have been necessary to draw horizontal Beams. The improvement of using slanted Beams rather then horizontal Beams gives your music an improved professional appearance. You can still force breaks in Beams where you feel the Beamed notes should be grouped in a particular way, and these Beams will also be slanted in the best way to join the notes together.

As always, any suggestions for enhancements to GuitarSharp are gratefully received . So please keep your suggestions coming!

Slashes and Chord Diagrams

The latest version of GuitarSharp that has just been released contains a couple of really useful features which were requested by one of our users. Let me give you an overview of these:

Slash / Rhythm Notation

The Note Styles toolbox now allows the Slash Notation to be assigned to Notes and Chords by dragging and dropping the Slash Adornment from the toolbox onto the Note/Chord, or by using the “/” keyboard key. The Slash Notation is a type of purposefully vague musical notation which indicates a player can improvise their own rhythm pattern or it indicates the repeat playing of the previously indicated chord. This can also help make the music easier to read.

SlashNotation

In the example above, you can see on the left that the A chord had to be previously written 4 times, but with this new version you can select to display the chord in the Slash Notation as shown in the right example.

Chord Diagrams

GuitarSharp previously allowed you to display the Chord Diagrams of commonly used chords in a Part in the title of the Part. This new version of GuitarSharp extends this further to also allow you to display Chord Diagrams directly above the actual chord where they are played. This makes it really easy to see the fingering of the chord without have to keep referring to the Chord Diagrams in the title.

ChordDiagramLegends

As you can see in  the above example, the first chord in each bar has been configured to display its Chord Diagram and Name above it. This means that when you are far into a piece you don’t need to keep referring to the Chord Diagrams that are way up in the title. This option can be set from the Chord Properties screen which is shown when clicking on the chord in the Chord Toolbox.

Accompanied Chord Diagrams

Similar to the Chord Diagrams above, sometimes it is useful to know the chords that an accompanying player is playing at the time, or to indicate the chord to strum whilst the tune is being played.

AccompaniedChords

The above example shows that whilst the tune is being played, the accompanying player would be playing an A chord at the beginning of the first bar, and a B chord at the beginning of the next bar. This is just for illustrative purposes! Usually the single notes being played would match one of the notes in the chord that is being played otherwise the melody would sound rather odd. But anyway, the ability to add this Chord Diagram Adornment means that you can describe the rhythm part of the music whilst you are looking at the tune. This saves you switching between parts to see each player’s music and also helps to synchronise the playing of the players. This feature can be added by just dragging and dropping the Chord Diagram Adornment from the toolbox on the notes.

Thanks for the suggestions

We are really grateful for these suggestions from our users. If you have any suggestions for changes or new features to GuitarSharp, then feel free to drop us a message from the GuitarSharp website or from the Feedback menu in the GuitarSharp application. We are really keen to hear from our users and want to develop GuitarSharp further to make it the best software package for guitarists of all abilities.

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