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

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

I’ve recently figured out that the large note-values look better if you

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]


2 thoughts on “Comparing Lilypond and Petrucci”

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