Spotting & Editing Video Files
There are three methods to import video & audio files into a project:
1 - Dragging files directly onto the current Timeline from the macOS Finder 2 - Dragging files into the Media Tab from the macOS Finder 3 - Using ‘Add Media to Project’ from the ‘File’ menu.
The first method is often the quickest, as it adds that file into the Media Tab as well.
Let’s begin by using that method to drag a movie file from Finder - onto the Timeline, which is visible within the bottom right hand side of the Editing section.
This adds the video region to the video track, and creates audio tracks and regions for all audio tracks the movie contains.
Video and the corresponding embedded audio regions will always be linked (even when editing them)- to make sure they always stay in sync with each other.
This also adds the video to the project’s Media Tab, which can be found in the left-most tab of the Tab Section. This is where all the audio & video files which have been imported into the current Project reside - regardless of whether they are on a timeline or not.
As this is the first movie file in the timeline, Video Sync will set the Timeline frame rate to the frame rate of this video file. Now that this is set, all consequent movies dragged to the same Timeline must have the same frame rate in order for them to be allowed to be added to the same Timeline.
It is not possible to mix and match movie files with different frame rates on the same timeline. Though it is possible to have multiple timelines in the same Video Sync project - each with a different frame rate.
It is also possible to drag multiple files of the same frame rate onto the same timeline simultaneously using the import methods detailed above.
Spotting to the embedded timecode start (Video Files Only)
Certain video containers such as .mov & .mxf can contain a start timecode timestamp embedded into the metadata of the video file.
To snap the start position of the video file in the Timeline to the embedded timecode point, double-click it to bring up the PROPERTIES Tab & click the Place At TC button.
Move must be set for the Mode at the top.
Another way to achieve the same result, is to hold down the Command key while importing or dragging to the timeline from the Media Tab. The video file will move to that point once the mouse button is released.
The Command key method does not work when dragging files directly from the MacOS Finder.
Both these methods will work for multiple files too, but will only work if the start timecode is within the timecode range of the Timeline that the video is being moved to.
For example, if a movie file has an embedded timecode of 00:00:00:00 and the Timeline has a start timecode of 01:00:00:00, both Cmd-drag and Place at TC will not allow the file to be placed until the Timeline Start value has been set to at least 00:00:00:00 & the Timeline Duration to a length long enough to allow for the length of this file at the very least.
Setting the start timecode manually
To enter a specific timecode start, double click the file in the timeline and enter the start timecode numerically in the Movie Region or Audio Region properties tab panel that appears in the top left Tab section (with the Mode tab set to Move).
Where there is a burned-in timecode display on a video file, this timecode value is usually the current first frame being displayed after the file was double-clicked.
Files can also be dragged left and right outside of the boundaries of the timeline view to enable the Timeline Auto Scroll feature. Drag further to scroll faster, & drag less to scroll more slowly.
For more exact positioning, with the file still selected in the Timeline, use the , and . keys to nudge the file left and right in one frame increments. Add the Option key modifier to move the region in increments of 1 second and the Control key modifier to move in increments of 5 seconds.
If video or audio files are placed overlapping others in the Timeline, these overlapping files take precedence, ie the underlying files will not play at the points where they are being overlapped.
Underlying video or audio files remain intact in the Timeline once the overlapping files are removed.
Moving to other tracks
Click on a file & drag it up or down to move it onto tracks above or below the current track.
Hold down the Control key to temporarily lock the start position of the file in place when moving it.
Hold down the Option key while dragging one or more files on the Timeline to duplicate them.
To delete a region, or multiple regions- first select the area over them, & hit the Delete button.
To permanently lock the Timeline position & prevent any further editing of any video or audio region, double-click it to show the Properties tab & enable the Lock Region option.
Horizontal Timeline Zooming can be achieved using either:
The Zoom Slider found above the Visual Events track
The R & T hotkeys
Holding down the Option key & either scrolling the wheel down & up- or swiping a trackpad down & up with two fingers.
Use the zoom slider to the left of the Timeline zoom slider to increase or decrease the audio waveform size vertically.
The Vertical zoom setting does not affect the output volume.
With the cursor above the halfway point of a video or audio file, click on roughly the area to be separated. Zoom in if necessary to better see the area.
With the cursor above the halfway point of the waveform, hold down the Control key while clicking & dragging left & right to scrub the audio waveform to better identify the separation point.
To fine tune the edit point, move the edit cursor left or right in one frame increments using the , and . keys. Use the Option key to move the edit cursor in increments of 1 second and the Control key to move the cursor in increments of 5 seconds.
Once the edit point has been found, press B to separate the region, or use the menu function Edit -> Cut Regions at Selection.
Using the same spotting methods detailed earlier in this chapter, the start points of the 2 regions can now be changed separately.
When the mouse cursor is close to either the left or right region boundaries, it will change to the trim icon to indicate that the region can be trimmed by dragging the border.
Files can also be trimmed using the Trim mode in the Properties view to trim the start and end of the region either numerically or using the drag control button to the right of the In Point and Out Point text boxes.
Click & drag the cursor in the timeline left and right outside of the boundaries of the timeline view to enable the Timeline Auto Scroll feature. Drag further to scroll faster, & drag less to scroll more slowly. This can be useful when wanting to navigate the Timeline quickly; or to select the area from the InPoint in view, to an Outpoint which is currently out of view, eg when zoomed in a lot.
Hold down the Option key simultaneously to move the Playhead in the opposite direction (towards the start of the Timeline).
Hold down the Shift key when pressing the Tab key to expand an existing Timeline selection; or to select the area from the current Playhead position through all the region boundaries being navigated through.
Hold down the Option key simultaneously to select in the opposite direction (towards the start of the Timeline).
To make a numerical selection in the Timeline where the In & Out points are already known, use the numeric Timeline timecode In & Out fields in the Controller Bar section, to enter the timecode values manually.
Sorting the Media Tab
The MEDIA Tab list can be sorted manually by clicking on a particular file & dragging it up and down in the list. A yellow line appears showing the position that the file will be moved to.
Multiple files can also be selected using the standard MacOS Shift & Command key modifiers, & moved simultaneously in the same way.
Move the cursor onto the file name in the list until the mouse-over window appears to see the full file name if it is being truncated in the list.
Use the search tool at the bottom of the list to show only files containing certain text. The Filter icon will go blue to show that the list is currently only showing filtered results. The search can be cleared by clicking the X button to the right of the search bar.