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Comparing Lilypond and Petrucci

While I'm working intensely on the site redesign, you might have to put up with the things I'm writing about it to help me think.

Here's a query I made on the lilypond-users mailing list:

In general, I love the way lilypond output looks when compared with other computer-generated sheetmusic.

I'm aware that the ideal espoused by the developers is the 19th century hand-engraved sheet music.

I usually like the look of my lilypond output as compared with the late sixteenth and early seventeenth century printers I usually transcribe.

I always like the look of lilypond output as compared with anyone's hand-written music.

But when I transcribe Petrucci from the facsimile, the spacing lilypond does always looks clunky, especially in the parts with large note-values.

I've recently figured out that the large note-values look better if you put:

\context{ \Score \override SpacingSpanner #'base-shortest-duration = #(ly:make-moment 1 1) } in the \layout block.

I believe Petrucci's spacing is just equal spacing for every note, no matter what its value.

Does anyone have any tricks for making lily's output look a little more like that?

I'm trying to redesign my website, and one idea I have is to have a graphic in the header with a facsimile on one side and lily's output on the other. So it's important that people not look at the lilypond output and say, "Wow, that's ugly compared to the facsimile." Of course one way to do that would be to use an ugly facsimile (of which there are many), but it would be more fun to use a beautiful facsimile and also have beautiful lilypond.

I'll let you know if I get any useful answers.


Here's the first page of the Petrucci facsimile of Adieu mes amours by Josquin:

[Petrucci facsimile]

And here's the cantus part lilypond produces:

[Lilypond cantus]

And here's the tenor part from lilypond:

[Lilypond tenor]
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  • By Lilypond vs Petrucci, Round II « on May 24, 2009 at 10:38 AM

    […] said in the round one of this comparison that I’d let you know if I got any useful answers to my query on the lilypond list. One of the list […]

  • By Status of site rollout « on June 9, 2009 at 12:18 PM

    […] “Adieu mes amours” from Petrucci’s Odhecaton merges into the lilypond transcription I’ve done. (See this post, and this later one for the material I have to work […]