Archive for July, 2011

Mouse Scroll Wheel Behavior in Adobe Premiere Pro

The scroll wheel on the mouse can be useful to speeding up workflow in Premiere Pro, that is, if you know how to use it. This is especially true if you are switching to Premiere Pro from another application. For example, Final Cut Pro editors are used to using the scroll wheel to move the timeline vertically to see more tracks. In Premiere Pro, the scroll wheel moves the timeline horizontally. This may seem disorienting at first, but you should know that you can use the mouse to scroll vertically. To do this, hover the pointer over the scroll bars in the timeline, then use the scroll wheel on the mouse to move the timeline vertically.

The scroll wheel has an additional function, and that is zooming in and out of the timeline. Sure you can type the = and – keys to zoom into and out of the timeline, but if you hold down ALT (Windows) or Option (Mac OS), and scroll with your mouse you can zoom in and out that way. Scrolling down with the modifier key enabled zooms out of the timeline while scrolling up zooms in.

Just a couple of tips for your scroll wheel that should save you time as you manipulate the timeline in Premiere Pro.

Apple iTunes integration with Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5

These days, more and more stock music providers deliver royalty free music via iTunes. In other NLEs, you’ll typically have to dig around in your iTunes music folder to find the file, convert the mp3 file, move it to a directory with the rest of your media, and finally import the music file into your project. I’ve always found this a rather painful process. How about you?

In Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5, this process has been greatly streamlined. Let’s see how it’s done. To import iTunes music files, do the following:

  1. Launch Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5.
  2. Launch Apple iTunes – the iTunes interface will now be in the foreground.
  3. In iTunes, locate the music file you wish to import into Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5.
  4. Drag and drop the music file into the project panel. You can drag it directly into a bin, if desired.
  5. The music file will now be available to use in your project.

Though it isn’t a major feature of Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5, this is a really cool way to get your royalty-free music from iTunes into Premiere Pro with ease.

Keyboard Shortcuts: Trimming with Premiere Pro (CS4, CS5, & CS5.5)

Want to take your Premiere Pro trimming chops to a new level? Then you’ll want to use keyboard shortcuts to trim. Memorizing a few keyboard shortcuts will help you on your way to a smoother editing workflow. Before you reach for the Ripple or Roll tools on your next project, check out the following tips.

In Premiere Pro, there are a number of keyboard shortcuts you can use to trim, including using the Extend Edit and Trim to In Point commands. You can also use an interface specially made for fine trimming, the Trim Monitor.

Extend Edit is in the Sequence Menu in Premiere Pro CS5.5

Extend Edit is in the Sequence Menu in Premiere Pro CS5.5

Let’s first focus on keyboard shortcuts that may assist you in trimming clips in the Timeline. The first you may be familiar with, the extend edit command. An extend edit is one where the edit point will move to the location of the playhead with a keyboard shortcut, which is essentially a roll edit. Since you cannot directly select an edit point in a Premiere Pro timeline, there must be two commands to perform an extend edit: one to move the edit point forward to the playhead and another to move the edit point backward to the playhead. In Premiere Pro CS5.5, these are called Extend Previous Edit to Playhead (E) and Extend Next Edit to Playhead (Shift+E). In Premiere Pro CS5, these are called Roll Previous Edit to CTI and Roll Next Edit to CTI. These do not have assigned keyboard shortcuts, so you must assign them in the Keyboard Customization dialog.

To perform an extend edit, do the following:

  1. Target the tracks you wish to effect in the extend edit.
  2. Park the playhead where you want to extend (roll) the edit point to.
  3. Press the appropriate keyboard shortcut (E or Shift+E).
  4. The edit then snaps to the playhead.

For more info about the extend edit function, see this video by Karl Soulé on AdobeTV:

You can also read more about the extend edit function on my blog:

Another keyboard driven trimming shortcut is similar to an extend edit, in that a clip’s edit point can snap to the playhead. The main difference being that it will trim the in or out point, and then leave a gap behind rather than rolling the edit point. It’s called “Trim to Playhead”. This is also one that is not already set up as a keyboard shortcut, so you must assign them. Just look for the commands: Trim In Point to Playhead and Trim Out Point to Playhead. I used Control+I and Control+O.

To do a trim to playhead, do the following:

  1. Target the tracks you wish to effect in the extend edit.
  2. Park the playhead where you want to trim the clip’s in or out
  3. point to.
  4. Press the appropriate keyboard shortcut (Control+I or Control+O).
  5. The clip’s in or out point then snaps to the playhead.

Want to trim with greater precision? Then you’ll want to be more familiar with the Trim Monitor.

Before you begin using the Trim Monitor for fine trimming, I like to set up the interface to loop with a keyboard shortcut. Looping is desirable because you can observe the cut a few times before deciding to add or subtract frames. To do so, go to the Keyboard Customization dialog, choose “Panels” and type in “Loop”. You should be able to find the proper command there. I assigned the shortcut to Alt+L (Command+L Mac OS).

Though you can trim with the mouse in this panel, I’ll be describing the keyboard driven workflow, most important to advanced editors.

Here’s how to work with the Trim Monitor:

  1. Park the playhead on or near any edit point.
  2. Press the T key, the Trim Monitor Launches.
  3. Press the Spacebar to begin looping playback. Audio and video will playback repeatedly. Evaluate the cut and decide if either the outgoing or incoming shot needs to have frames trimmed from it or if a roll trim needs to take place.
  4. To ripple trim the edit point, first select the correct side of the edit point you wish to trim. For a roll trim, select both sides of the edit point.
    • To set up a roll trim: press Alt+1 (Option+1 for Mac OS).
    • To set up a ripple trim for the outgoing shot: press Alt+2 (Option+2 for Mac OS).
    • To set up a ripple trim for the incoming shot: press Alt+3 (Option+3 for Mac OS).
    • Once you have set up the trim mode, you should see blue bars above and below the clip(s) you wish to trim.
  5. After the mode is set, choose the amount of frames you wish to trim.
    • To trim backward by one frame, press Alt+Left Arrow (Option+Left Arrow for Mac OS)
    • To trim backward by multiple frames, press Alt+Shift+Left Arrow (Option+Shift+Left Arrow for MacOS)
    • To trim forward by one frame, press Alt+Right Arrow (Option+Right Arrow for Mac OS)
    • To trim forward by multiple frames, press Alt+Shift+Right Arrow (Option+Shift+Right Arrow for MacOS)
  6. Press the Spacebar once more to begin looping playback. Evaluate the cut and repeat steps 4 and 5, if necessary.
  7. If you are satisfied with the cut, you can move to the next cut by pressing the Page Down key. Press the Page Up key to move to the previous cut.
  8. When your fine trimming is completed, close the Trim Monitor by pressing Control+W (Command+W for Mac OS).

Once you have internalized and practiced these keyboard shortcuts, you’ll be able to trim any clip just the way you want to. If you have any trim tips, be sure to place them in the comments and I’ll add them to the article.