Tablature settings

Score Tablature settings are only available when Additional Score Options is selected in Advanced preferences.

Guitar tablature is a method of notating music for fretted string instruments—especially for guitar and electric bass—but also for other fretted instruments, with four to six strings. In this system, the horizontal lines represent the strings of the instrument. Notes are always written on the line/string at which they are played. The fret numbers are shown instead of regular note heads. Logic Pro automatically converts notes into tablature, if a staff style containing a Clef parameter set to one of these tuning sets is used. The exact characteristics of these tuning sets are determined in the Tablature pane.

Figure. Score Tablature settings.

Twelve different tuning sets can be defined. Each of them corresponds to one line in this pane. The regular guitar and bass tunings are already included as defaults (first line and last five lines), as are some of the more common guitar tunings.

Tuning set parameters

  • Name field: Double-click to change the name in the text field.

  • Strings pop-up menu: Choose the number of strings (between 3 and 16).

    Note: Up to eight strings are shown directly within the pane. If more than eight are selected, you can move the visible section by clicking the arrows, or dragging the scroller.

  • Assign pop-up menu: Select the method for automatically assigning notes to strings.

  • 1 to 16 fields: Double-click to type, or drag vertically to select, the pitch that the open strings are tuned to.

Common parameters

  • Head Style button group: Choose one of the four head styles:

    • Numbers only

    • Numbers in circle

    • Circle 1/1, 1/2 notes only

    • Black and white (1/1, 1/2 notes) circles

  • Bass String buttons: Click to determine the display of the lowest string. It may be the same as other strings, or slightly thicker.

  • Up- and Down Strum buttons: Click to change the style of the Up- and Down Strum objects displayed in the Chord Grid and Tablature Markings Part box.

TAB Markings parameters

  • Palm Mute field: Customize the name, font, and size of the Palm Mute object in the Chord Grid and Tablature Markings Part box.

  • Let Ring field: Customize the name, font, and size of the Let Ring object in the Chord Grid and Tablature Markings Part box.

  • Slap field: Customize the name, font, and size of the Slap object in the Chord Grid and Tablature Markings Part box.

  • Line pop-up menu: Adjust the line: solid, dashed, or dotted.

Determine the string assignment

As most notes can be played at different positions (frets) on different strings, the Assign parameter in the Tablature pane performs an essential role. In most cases, the MIDI channels of the individual notes determine the string assignment. The MIDI channel parameter of an individual note has no impact on MIDI playback. The playback channel is determined in the Track inspector, found in the Main window.

  • Click in the Assign column (for the corresponding Tuning Set), and choose from the following string assignment options:

    • Pitch

      Logic Pro assigns each note to the string on which it is playable, at the lowest possible position. In order to influence the string assignment, there is a rule (in Pitch mode only) that a note’s fret position cannot be lower than its MIDI channel.

      This method is generally used when notes are recorded from a MIDI keyboard:

      • An A3 (on MIDI channel 1) is displayed on the second fret of the G string. If you want the note to be displayed at a higher position (to correctly display the proper fingering of a passage), you need to set its channel to 3 or higher. This means that the fret position cannot be lower than 3, so the note will be displayed at the D string’s seventh fret.

      • If the channel is between 8 and 12, the A3 is assigned to the A string on the 12th fret, and to the low E string (17th fret) for channels 13 to 16.

      If you want to force even higher positions, you need to use one of the other assignment modes.

    • Channel

      In this mode, the number of the string (1 to 6, counted from the lowest string) corresponds to the MIDI channel. Channels 7 to 16 are assigned to the highest string.

    • Inv. Channel

      Like Channel, but counted from the highest string (1) to the lowest (6 and above). This way of numbering the strings is generally used in traditional guitar tablature.

      Note: As most Guitar-to-MIDI Converters send notes (played on different strings) on different MIDI channels, the Channel and Inv. Channel modes are suitable if you’re using a MIDI guitar to record MIDI regions. The tablature notation is displayed exactly as the music was played during recording.

    • Inv. Ch–1 and Inv. Ch–2

      These modes should be used when recording and notating electric bass parts with Guitar-to-MIDI Converters.

      • “−1” is designed for five-string bass (with an additional high B string).

      • “−2” is designed for four-string bass.

      The principle is the same as Inv. Channel mode, but the number of the MIDI channel is reduced by 1 or 2, in order to properly convert the channels for bass string assignment.

      The string assignment for a four-string bass will be 3 to 6, and 2 to 6 (counted from highest to lowest string in both cases) for a five-string bass, just as with guitar strings that sound one octave higher. Notes on channel 1 will be assigned to the highest string.