Flat > Editor > Music notation tools > Harmonic



Harmonics are available in the toolbar Articulation for string instruments, and in the toolbar Tab for fretted instruments.

Natural Harmonic: Sounding PitchNatural Sounding
Natural Harmonic: Touching PitchNatural Touching
Artificial Harmonic: Touching PitchArtificial Touching

Note: At this time harmonics are not interpreted by our playback (you will have the notation written on your score/tab, but not the corresponding sound). To learn more about our playback interpretation, check out the dedicated audio playback help page.

What is a harmonic?

Harmonics are a technic of play on string instruments, that is used to reach higher pitches using physics properties.

Natural Harmonics

First, there are natural harmonics. On a ringing open string, if you press gently on the exact middle of the string, it will multiply by 2 the frequency of the sound, and you will get a sound one octave higher than the sound of the open string. There are several places on the string where you can press to create a harmonic. It could be at one-third of the string, resulting in a sound one octave and one-fifth higher. Or at a quarter of the string, that results in a sound 2 octave higher than the open string.

Artificial Harmonics

So far I only talked about open string. However, it is also possible to create harmonics on stopped strings. For instance, if you want to have a sound an octave higher than the sound of the stopped string, you need to press your finger at the middle of the vibrating section of the string. This is what we call an artificial harmonic.

How to create harmonics?

Natural harmonics

For the natural harmonics in Flat, you can either show the Sounding Pitch or the Touching Pitch.

The Sounding Pitch is the pitch that you hear when you play the harmonic.

Natural Harmonic, Sounding Pitch

The Touching Pitch is the pitch where you gently press the score to create the harmonic.

Natural Harmonic, Touching Pitch

Artificial harmonics

There are two steps to create artificial harmonics on Flat. First, add the note on which you will gently press the string to create the harmonic. Then, click on the Artificial Harmonic button. Now you can complete the harmonic by inputting the note on which you will stop the score.

Artificial Harmonic, Touching Pitch

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