Avid Site EQs

I'm a big believer in EQing nearly everything; Speakers (goodbye everything under 80hz, as well as a rolloff above 3k), Music (reverse that - take out where speakers ranges are in the music), etc.

And in Avid, the EQs are real time. 

I tend to use the same ones over and over and over again. Sure, I could save them in a bin. But why not save them in Avid's own EQ bin - making future reuse faster/easier.

Open the following "bin" called Site_Effects (from the location below) and drag your EQ into it - for access as a preset built into the Avid tool.

Add to the site Eqs: 

(Windows) drive:\Program Files\Avid\Avid editing application\ SupportingFiles\Site_Effects 
(Macintosh) Macintosh HD/Applications/Avid editing application/ SupportingFiles/Site_Effects

Avid tips like this will be in sessions at NAB/Post Production World

Replace...from bin (Premiere)

Great little Premiere feature - the Replace clip feature.

A favorite variation is "Replace from bin." Meaning the Director or Producer is in the room and asks you to swap one shot for another? Select the shot on the timeline; select what you want to replace it with from a bin, right click and choose "Replace with Clip > From Bin".

Adobe Sessions with tips like this will be at NAB/Post Production world

Click for full size. Totally mappable via keyboard too

Scaling large images down quickly (Premiere)

The only real problem about the way Premiere handles images? It brings in all of their beautiful megapixels - but the scale is at 100% - meaning large pictures are HUGE - with their edges far outside of the frame area....

....unless you select them and choose Clip > Video Options > Scale to Frame size.

Then all of them are scaled down (making it easier to animate!)

Adobe Sessions with tips like this will be at NAB/Post Production world

Smart keyboard mapping. (Avid)

I'm a big believer in mapping your keyboard on an Avid. (Nothing new in this) But I believe in 'smart' mapping - the idea that the key you bind a function should have meaning (to you.)

This tip is not about mapping your keyboard...nor that you can map elements with the shift key held down.

Rather, this tip is based on the idea that you should only bind keys that make sense. I've taught bunches of people how to use Media Composer. When I walk into a facility I chuckle if someone has a sticker above the F Keys. Why? Because they had to write down what the key does, because it doesn't make sense.

Anything mapped should have a logical connection to it's function, another key's function or the way you work.

Right now, go look at your keyboard. Where is the Remove Effect button? Don't tell me it's on an F key.


My Remove Effect is underneath the Quick Transition button. Why? Because it's the only button on the keyboard that creates an effect. The Shifted version of it removes an effect.

The tip is really this: map your keyboard in a purposeful way.

Some other quick suggestions: Set Expert Render to Shift-R - because, frankly, we still think of it as rendering. Put the Segment modes (yellow/red arrows) underneath the Splice in/Overwrite because they share similar colors.

Avid tips like this will be in sessions at NAB/Post Production World

Did you know you can have audio track keyframes? (Premiere)

This is one of those 'totally cool' features that I'm always surprised that most people don't know about.

Adobe Premiere Pro has clip keyframes and it also has keyframes for the track.

Look! There are keyframes on the track now!

Two Quick thoughts
These are GREAT for swapping different music in/out (you just use replace - the keyframes are on the track, so music stays ducked!)
But if you make timing changes on your tracks (such as trimming/removing/adding frames) these keyframes won't slide to stay in place.)

Adobe Sessions with tips like this will be at NAB/Post Production world

Automatically lower Music (Avid)

There's nothing worse in an Avid than importing music, forgetting to adjust it's gain downward...and hitting play, only to be deafened by the music.

Unless you know this trick:

Import Dialog box

Import Dialog box

The Import Dialog box has a TAB marked audio. Adjust the "Apply attenuation" gain during import.

All your imported audio will now be gained downwards by -20db - meaning, no more music pain!

Avid tips like this will be in sessions at NAB/Post Production World! Come join us!

Any color you want (Avid Tracks)

One of the unique/cool things about Media Composer is that you can colorize tracks.

This trick might be at one of the Avid sessions at Post Production World @ NAB

During the offline Edit, I want (need) my tracks to have a variety of colors - this makes it visually clear what a track is for. For example, all my main audio tracks (Interviews/key characters) bright, room tone tracks in pink, Video effect tracks in Green (greenscreen, get it?)

Not useful during an online edit (I prefer neutrals while I color correct.) but killer in the 'story' mode of editing.

Which timeline is easier to read? The one on the Left or the Right?

So much easier!

So much easier!

Who can visually read this?

Who can visually read this?

The problem is this: the Avid Palette for the last five years only shows pastel colors.

Unless you know the following trick:

Holding down the opt/alt key before you to go to the track palette opens up the full system colors - giving you every color you might want/need.

Avid tips like this will be in sessions at NAB/Post Production World

Golden Rule of Compression

The Golden rule of Compression (above all others) is this:

Try to compress your video only once. Each time you compress your product, you're taking a chance and lowering it's final quality.

I keep seeing people use tools like Handbrake to rip a DVD into MPG4 and then use another tool, like Apple Compressor to make ProRes. That's taking a distribution quality codec (MPEG2) taking it to another distribution quality (h.264) and then to an editorial codec.

Try, when possible to only transform your video once - at the end of your editorial process.

Compression Tips like this can be found by attending sessions at Post Production World at NAB (this link includes links to non-PPW sessions)

Build your photo montage to music quickly (Premiere)

Everyone sooner or later is asked to build a photo montage. Here's how to build them quick in Adobe Premiere Pro.

Drop your music in, play back and press the M key for markers on the music during the beat. Then use the Automate to Sequence button at the bottom of the project panel.

Click to view. Switch from sequentially to "at unnumbered markers"