Copied fret numbers have negative values

(Windows and Mac)

Under specific circumstances, guitar TAB notation shows negative fret numbers when measures are copied from other instrument staves.


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Standard guitar notation copies correctly to the TAB staff, but other instruments sporadically ignore the command to make 0 the lowest fret and place notes at negative values. These notes are technically correct values if negative values were possible. The notes translate correctly when moved to lower strings.


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There are a number of ways to fix this. Here are two that we have found to be effective:

In Edit > Preferences > Edit (Mac: Finale(your version number) > Preferences > Edit) there is a preference that reads “Respect instrument ranges when copying or changing instruments”. If this preference is deselected, all staves will copy correctly into TAB staves from then on. Please note that this option is not available in PrintMusic.


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If you have notation in place that you don't want to have to copy again, then you can manually adjust each note. Choose Simple Entry and Ctrl + click (Mac: Opt + click) one of the fret numbers. You can then use the up- and down-arrow keys to move between strings and out of negative numbers, and the left- and right-arrow keys to move between notes.