QuickScore Elite Tutorials


Getting Started  How To  Manual  MIDI and Audio


Aftertouch is a MIDI message that tells you how hard a key is being held down (or, if we are talking about a non-keyboard controller, how much pressure is applied to a note) after it has been initially played.

block text

In QuickScore Elite, block text is distinguished from lyrics and expressions. Blocks of text can be any size and font.


MIDI messages can be sent and received over sixteen channels. This allows you to have several instruments hooked up together, or instruments with more than one voice, each playing notes sent on separate channels. For example, a sequencer like QuickScore Elite can send notes on channel 1 to a drum machine, notes on channel 2 to a guitar synthesizer and notes on channel 3 to an electronic piano, which are all hooked together on the same MIDI network.


The clipboard is where Windows stores temporary data. This data can be of just about any type and can be used by any Windows program that recognizes it. When QuickScore Elite cuts notes or other events, they are copied to the clipboard. You could exchange data between two copies of QuickScore Elite running at the same time using the clipboard.

control area

The control area refers to the gray area at the top of a window which contains palettes, buttons and controls. The main window, the Score Editor, the Piano Roll Editor, the Controller Editor, the MIDI Mixer, the Audio Mixer, the Event List and the Song Editor all have control areas.

Control Panel

The Windows Control Panel lets you change the way you have set up your Windows system. You can set up fonts, printers, MIDI drivers, the MIDI Mapper and other things that affect your system. The settings you choose in the control panel affect all Windows programs, including QuickScore Elite.

control points

Control points are used when you enter or edit adjustable symbols such as slurs or crescendos. Control points for slurs are shaped like little triangles. Control points for other symbols are shaped like little diamonds. There is one control point on the left edge of the symbol, one in the middle and one at the right edge. You click on a control point to select it. You can drag a control point around on the screen, which will cause the symbol to adjust its shape.


Controllers are MIDI messages that control some aspect of the sound made by the receiving instrument. There are 127 controller messages. Two of the common controllers are volume and pan.

A controller also refers to any device that sends MIDI commands, such as a keyboard, a breath controller or a MIDI guitar.


When you record you use a count?in. The count?in is a number of beats, which is typically three or four. You set the count?in beat count in the Metronome dialog under the Options menu.


There are cursors in the Score Editor, the Piano Roll Editor, the Controller Editor and the Song Editor. In the Score Editor the cursor is a vertical line over a staff with ledger lines above and below it. In the Piano Roll and the Controller Editors the cursor appears as a vertical magenta line across the display. In the Song Editor, the cursor appears as a box around the current bar. The time of the cursor is displayed in the Time Display, in the middle of the main control area. Step entry with the mouse or the keyboard takes place at the cursor point, as well as pasting of data that has previously been cut or copied.

duration value

The duration value is the duration of notes that are entered with the mouse or in step time from the keyboard. It is also the amount the cursor will move forward when you press the arrow keys. When you position the cursor with the mouse in the Score Editor, it will always move to a multiple of the step value. This is the same for the Piano Roll Editor, except when the Snap/Free button is set to Free. In this case, the cursor will move to the exact point the mouse is clicked.

You set the duration value using the durations palette and the duration value qualifier button in the main control area.

engraver spacing

Engraver spacing is used to space music so that it looks good visually. When you use engraver spacing, you assign the amount of space notes of each duration take up. For example, you can have thirty-second notes taking up only half as much as quarter notes if you want to. Your music will generally look better if you use engraver spacing.

Without engraver spacing, spacing occurs by time, rather than by appearance. Crowding of music sometimes occurs, because you always put music occupying the same amount of time in the same amount of space. For example, eight thirty-second notes take up the same amount of space as one quarter note. The thirty-second notes are crowded together and the quarter note is all by itself.


An event is a single piece of data used by QuickScore Elite. An event is also called an object. An event can be a note, a lyric, an expression, a piece of text, a symbol, a clef, a MIDI event (like a controller or pitch bend), or a tempo change.


An expression is a type of text used in QuickScore Elite to denote the expression or the nature of the music. Typical expressions are allegro, a tempo, agitato, or cantabile.


Faders are used in mixing boards to change the value of certain parameters (such as volume or pan). They are sliding switches which move up and down. In QuickScore Elite you grab a fader with the mouse and drag it up and down to do exactly the same thing you would on a real mixing board.

General MIDI

General MIDI provides a standard list of MIDI instruments and drum sounds. For example, a General MIDI instrument always provides a piano sound for patch 0 and a fretless bass for patch 36. All General MIDI instruments use MIDI channel 10 for drum sounds. The mapping of pitches to drum sounds on channel 10 is standardized.


An icon is a button with a picture on it representing an object or an action.


When you play in QuickScore Elite, you can have the music loop. You set up the loop using the Loop control in the main control area. You can edit while you loop. This allows you to make a lot of experimental changes and immediately hear what they sound like.


Lyrics are words set to music. In QuickScore Elite, lyrics are attached to notes. When you enter lyrics, the text is centered under the note.

Media Player

The Media Player is an application that comes with Windows. It allows you to play wave and MIDI files. It is useful for testing your MIDI setup. Normally if the Media Player can play a MIDI file, QuickScore Elite should be able to as well.


In QuickScore Elite, you are provided with an audible metronome which sounds once a beat at the current tempo. It can be set up to sound when you record or play.


MIDI is a protocol for transferring musical data between synthesizers and computers.

MIDI clock

MIDI clock is a MIDI message sent twenty-four times per quarter note. It is used to synchronize two MIDI devices. It can also be used to synchronize a sequencer to tape, but it is usually easier to use MIDI time code for this purpose instead.

MIDI file

MIDI files are files in a standard format containing MIDI data, usually songs. They can be read and written by most sequencers, including QuickScore Elite. There are three types of MIDI files, type 0, type 1 and type 2. Type 0 MIDI files contain data in a single track. Type 1 MIDI files contain data in multiple tracks. Type 2 MIDI files contain data in multiple tracks and are broken up into multiple sections (or patterns). Type 2 MIDI files are uncommon. MIDI files have the extension .MID.

QuickScore Elite reads type 0 and type 1 MIDI files and writes type 1 MIDI files. It can also read the first pattern of a type 2 MIDI file.


Each MIDI device including your computer has a MIDI In and a MIDI Out port. MIDI In is where MIDI data comes into the device. In QuickScore Elite, the MIDI In is used for recording.

MIDI interface

Your computer needs a MIDI interface to be connected to other MIDI devices. A common MIDI interface is the Roland MPU?401. A MIDI interface will have at least a MIDI in and a MIDI out port.

MIDI Mapper

The MIDI Mapper is a Windows application that comes with Windows. It lets you specify MIDI settings for your system. You can select the MIDI Mapper as your MIDI output device instead of a regular driver in the MIDI Setup dialog in QuickScore Elite.


Each MIDI device including your computer has a MIDI In and a MIDI Out port. MIDI Out is where MIDI data leaves the device. In QuickScore Elite, the MIDI Out is used for playing.
MIDI time code

MIDI time code is used to synchronize a sequencer to tape. MIDI time code (or MTC) messages are sent four times per SMPTE frame, that is from 96 to 120 times a second, depending on the SMPTE format. The SMPTE format is encoded in the message. This allows synchronization which is independent of tempo, which distinguishes it from MIDI clock.

QSD file

QSD files are the native files of QuickScore Elite. They are more elaborate than MIDI files, because they contain a good deal of formatting information as well as all the types of objects QuickScore Elite supports. QSD files have the extension .QSD.


An object is a single piece of data used by QuickScore Elite. An object is also called an event. An object can be a note, a lyric, an expression, a piece of text, a symbol, a clef, a MIDI event (like a controller or pitch bend), or a tempo change.


A palette is a group of icons, one of which is usually selected. You click on an icon to select it. QuickScore Elite's toolbars are palettes, as is the durations palette and the object type palette.

A patch (also called a program) is the sound stored in an instrument. You choose a patch by sending the instrument a program change command.

patch list

A patch list is a list of the names of all the patches contained in an instrument. There are 127 patches in a patch list.

piano roll notation

Piano roll notation emulates the piano rolls used in player pianos. Time is represented horizontally and pitch is represented vertically. At the top of the display are the bar numbers. To the left is a vertical piano keyboard showing the pitches of the notes in the display. Notes appear in the note area as horizontal bars. The vertical position of the bar indicates the pitch of the note. The beginning of the bar shows the note's start time and the length of the bar shows the note's duration.

print preview

In the Score Editor you can view your music in normal (or Edit mode) or Print Preview mode. Print Preview mode lets you see your music as it will be printed out. You can see the whole page in your window in Print Preview mode by clicking on the 100% button. You can't edit in Print Preview mode.

program change

Program changes are MIDI commands that tell the receiving instrument to change its internal sound to the one specified by the program change number associated with the program change command.

punch-in and punch-out

Punch recording is used to record over a certain section of music without disturbing the music before and after the section. The punch?in point is the point where the section starts and the punch?out point is the point where the section ends.


Quantization is used to make sure notes start and end on exact boundaries. For example, if a quantization setting of sixteenth notes is used, all notes will start and end on 16th note boundaries. In QuickScore Elite, notes can be physically quantized or the display of the notes can be quantized without affecting the real timing of the notes.


A sequencer is a device that controls (or sequences) the MIDI data that is sent to a MIDI setup. There are hardware and software sequencers. QuickScore Elite performs the function of a sequencer.


SMPTE is a time-based synchronization protocol developed by the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers. It is the most widely used protocol for synchronization of video and audio devices. SMPTE devices can be linked to MIDI devices using special hardware, which typically converts SMPTE to MIDI time code.

sound card

Sound cards are the most cost-effective way to provide a computer system with MIDI sound. A sound card plugs into your computer and lets you play MIDI and often wave audio.

step entry

Step entry allows you to enter notes or chords of a given duration from your keyboard. You set the duration value in the durations palette and then enter the notes from the keyboard. The notes are entered at the cursor point. Every time a note or chord is entered, the cursor advances by the duration value, setting up to enter a new note or chord after the last one.


Symbols in QuickScore Elite include dynamics, articulation marks, slurs, tablature chords, figured bass and a great variety of other musical symbols.

tape transport

QuickScore Elite's tape transport is where the play, record, pause and stop button are. It is in the middle of the main transport.

time display

The time display in QuickScore Elite shows the time of the cursor in the current window. The time is displayed in Bars:Beats:Steps format on the top and in SMPTE format below that. The time display appears in the middle of the main control area.


A toolbar is a palette of tools. You select tools to perform different operations upon objects. In QuickScore Elite the Score Editor, the Piano Roll Editor and the Controller Editor have toolbars, located at the far left on their control areas.


In QuickScore Elite, events or objects are organized into tracks. In the Score Editor, each track is shown as either a single staff or as two staves bound together with a curly brace, the top staff having a treble clef and the bottom staff having a bass clef.

TrueType font

TrueType fonts are Windows fonts that can be resized and appear on the screen exactly as they appear when printed. The Mozart font used by QuickScore Elite is a TrueType font.


MIDI note messages all contain a velocity. This generally refers to the velocity with which a key is depressed, which translates into a dynamic level, but this is not explicitly defined. Some MIDI instruments allow you to assign velocity to different attributes of the note.

wave file

Wave files contain audio data. These can be sound effects or even musical compositions. Wave files provide a fairly exact representation of sounds, depending on their resolution and the hardware they are played on, but they are a lot bigger than MIDI files. Wave files have the extension .WAV.

Starting Out

Score Editor Tutorial - Notes and Formatting

Score Editor Tutorial - Text, Lyrics and Symbols

Setting up for Sequencing

Piano Roll Editor Tutorial

Controller Editor Tutorial

MIDI Mixer Tutorial

Song Editor and Event List Tutorial

Recording MIDI Tutorial

Recording Audio Tutorial

Audio Mixer Tutorial