… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #1179: Double-click & Mouse Tricks

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Double-clicking is a cool way to change the interface.

Drag the small vertical line next to the chevron to resize the Workspace bar.

Topic $TipTopic

Hidden in Adobe Premiere are some interesting double-click mouse tricks. Here’s what I’ve discovered so far.

NOTE: I’m using the Premiere Nov. 2020 update. I have no idea how long these have been in the software.

Double-click mouse tricks:

  • Double-click the header – where “Learning” and “Assembly” are located – to hide it. Single-click the small space that remains to get them to reappear.
  • Drag the small vertical line between the workspace names at the top and the right chevron arrow to expand or collapse the space for workspace names.
  • Click the small House icon in the top left corner to return to the Home screen (duh… took me forever to try this).
  • Double-click the top of the Program Monitor to bring it full-screen. Double-click in the same place to put it back.
  • Actually, double-click the top of ANY panel to expand it to full-screen.

NOTE: This last double-click is the same as pressing the tilde key – except you don’t need to worry about where your cursor is located.

These are some very cool time-savers. Share ones you’ve discovered in the comments, below.


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… for Apple Final Cut Pro X

Tip #1147: A Faster Way to Apply LUTs

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Adjustment layers are created in Motion and affect all clips below them.

The Custom LUT effect with a custom LUT applied to an adjustment layer.

Topic $TipTopic

Normally, we apply LUTs (color Look-Up Tables) to an individual clip. But, recently, a reader suggested a faster and better option – use an adjustment layer.

You may be familiar with adjustment layers in Photoshop. These are special layers that, when you apply an effect to them, change the look of all the clips below them.

Premiere has adjustment layers, but FCP X doesn’t… officially. However, they are easy to create in Motion.

NOTE: Here’s a tutorial that explains how.

The benefit to adjustment layers is that we can apply a LUT to the adjustment layer to change the look of all the clips under it. This makes it extremely easy to create a look for an entire project and, by tweaking just one setting, affect a whole flock of clips at once.

Apply an adjustment layer above your clips in the timeline, then apply Effects Browser > Color > Custom LUT to the adjustment layer.

Next, in the Inspector, apply the LUT you want. (See screen shot.)

NOTE: This effect won’t allow you to apply camera LUTs, but does allow applying any creative LUT you want.


… for Apple Final Cut Pro X

Tip #1153: A Faster Way to Apply Keywords

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

When importing, keywords can be automatically applied based on folder names.

A composite image: Files organized into folders (left), From Folders checkbox in Media Import, Keywords assigned in Browser (right).

Topic $TipTopic

Keywords are a fast, flexible and powerful way to organize clips in the Browser. However, applying them can be time-consuming. There’s a faster way. Organize those clips that are not copied from a camera card, into folders.

NOTE: For camera card files, rename the folder that contains the camera card files, without renaming the media files themselves.

In the Media Import window, check Keywords > From Folders (see screen shot).

Then, when the clips are imported, keywords are automatically assigned to each clip based on its folder name.

NOTE: If you select a folder that contains other folders (see screen shot) all folder names are assigned as keywords.


… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #1004: A Faster Way to Jump

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

We can jump to a specific timecode, or move to a spot relative to where we are now.

Click the blue numbers (bottom), then enter a new timecode to jump the playhead there.

Topic $TipTopic

As projects get bigger, finding faster ways to move around means you can get more done in less time. Here’s a cool trick.

Click directly on the blue timecode numbers at the bottom left of of the Program (or Source) Monitor, then enter the timecode where you want to move the playhead.

Press Return and the playhead jumps there instantly.

EXTRA CREDIT

Enter timecode as HHMMSSFF, without punctuation.

Type +, followed by a number and Return, and the playhead will add that duration to the current playhead location and move right.

Type , followed by a number and Return, and the playhead will subtract that duration to the current playhead location and move left.

If you enter a number greater than your frame rate, Premiere will automatically calculate the correct duration.


… for Apple Final Cut Pro X

Tip #997: A Faster Way to Jump

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Click the timecode then enter the timecode where you want to jump the playhead.

Click the timecode (top) then enter a timecode to “jump” the playhead.

Topic $TipTopic

As projects get bigger, finding faster ways to move around means you can get more done in less time. Here’s a cool trick.

Click directly on the timecode numbers at the bottom of the Viewer, then enter the timecode where you want to move the playhead.

Press Return and the playhead jumps there instantly.

EXTRA CREDIT

Enter timecode as HHMMSSFF, without punctuation.

Type +, followed by a number and Return, and the playhead will add that duration to the current playhead location and move right.

Type , followed by a number and Return, and the playhead will subtract that duration to the current playhead location and move left.

If you enter a number greater than your frame rate, FCP X will automatically calculate the correct duration.


… for Random Weirdness

Tip #951: 5 Easy Hacks for a Solo Shoot

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

These five tips will help improve your next shoot.

(Image courtesy of Pexels.com.)

Topic $TipTopic

This article, written by Tanner Shinnick, first appeared in PremiumBeat.com. This is an excerpt.

Work smarter, not harder! Tips, tricks, hacks — whatever you call them — these five easy moves will make your next solo video shoot better.

Clients are looking for every opportunity to cut costs and save money. Yet, with customers spending more time online looking at screens, they need more video than ever. And that means there’s money to be made by videographers and filmmakers with the right gear, attitude, and hustle to offer end-to-end, turnkey production capabilities.

  1. Use Camera and Equipment Carts. When you’re working alone, minimizing the amount of equipment you need to carry is absolutely key. As such, gear and camera carts are total game-changers.
  2. Don’t Sleep on B-Roll. When you’re on a solo shoot, the stress may begin to set in and you might think you’re saving time and energy by sacrificing B-roll. Don’t believe it. You’re filming solo, sure, but that doesn’t mean it has to look like you filmed alone.
  3. Choose Zooms Over Primes. Most of the time, I love a solid prime over a zoom. However, man, they sure do slow you down. For solo operators, choosing a zoom over a prime is an absolute must.
  4. Bring Extra Media. Whenever I’m working a solo shoot, I bring enough media to last me the entire day.
  5. Embrace Stock Footage. Stock footage is a smart choice when you need shots that scheduling, headcount, and gear limitations don’t allow for. It’s an even smarter choice when you make the clips part of your plan right from the start of your project.

The article link at the top has more tips, links and a video on solo shooting.


… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #943: What is a Stacked Panel Group?

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Stacked menus are often better when working on a smaller monitor.

Premiere panels displayed stacked, and the menu that activates them (inset).

Topic $TipTopic

In the fly-out menu for most panels, there’s an option for “Stacked Panel Groups.” Ever wonder what this does? Here’s the answer.

When you click the fly-out menu (pancakes) next to most panel names, one of the options is Panel Group Settings.

Click it and the menu shown in the screen shot appears.

The default setting has both Stacked Panel Groups and Solo Panels in Stack unchecked.

When you check Stacked Panel Groups, all panels in that group are listed vertically (see screen shot).

When Solo Panels in Stack is checked, only the contents of the currently active panel are displayed. Otherwise, the contents of all open panels are visible.

NOTE: The Solo option only applies when panels are stacked. The benefit to using Solo is that it keeps the interface cleaner on smaller monitors.


… for Apple Final Cut Pro X

Tip #871: A Faster Way to Change Durations

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

I use this technique in virtually every project – especially for transitions.

Setting a duration in the timecode display.

Topic $TipTopic

I illustrated this tip while presenting a recent webinar covering the basics of editing in Final Cut Pro X.

We all know that we can change the duration of a clip, title or transition by grabbing an edge and dragging. But, there is a faster way – using timecode.

To use this technique:

  • Select a clip, group of clips, transition, title or other timeline element.
  • Type Control + D. This automatically opens and selects the Duration field in the Timecode window.
  • Type the duration you want to enter, without entering any punctuation.

Final Cut will automatically calculate the correct time based upon the frame rate of the project. For example, if you have a 30 fps project and type:

  • 30 – Final Cut enters: 1:00
  • 120 – Final Cut enters: 1:20
  • 45 – Final Cut enters: 1:15
  • 325 – Final Cut enters 3;25
  • 1234567 – Final Cut enters: 1:23:47:07 (Um, that one I had to check…)

… for Codecs & Media

Tip #828: What is Hardware Acceleration?

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Hardware is faster because it doesn’t have the latency and overhead of software.

Image courtesy of Pexels.com.

Topic $TipTopic

As media compression codecs get more complex, compression starts taking longer and longer. Hardware acceleration comes to the rescue, but… what, exactly, is it doing?

In computing, hardware acceleration is the use of computer hardware specially made to perform some functions more efficiently than is possible in software running on a general-purpose central processing unit (CPU).

Hardware is far faster, but software is far more flexible when it comes to handling change. Hardware is superior when performing the same task over and over and over again. This is because software has a processing overhead due to loading and interpreting instructions as well as data. Hardware, provided it is designed for that purpose, doesn’t have the overhead and delay associated with software. But, it is much more difficult changing hardware when the task it needs to perform changes.

An operation can be computed faster in application-specific hardware designed or programmed to compute the operation than specified in software and performed on a general-purpose computer processor.

Hardware acceleration is advantageous for performance, and practical when the functions are fixed so updates are not as needed as in software solutions. However, the invention of reprogrammable hardware (FPGSs) has allowed hardware to be more flexible because it can be reprogrammed as necessary.


… for Codecs & Media

Tip #829: Why Are Some Codecs “Inefficient?”

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

GOP compression yields smaller files, but those files are much harder to edit.

Topic $TipTopic

One of the key reasons for transcoding highly-compressed camera masters into an intermediate (or mezzanine) format is to make the media more “efficient.” But, what makes some codecs efficient and others not?

In general, there are two ways that media can be compressed:

  • I-frame
  • GOP

In I-frame compression, each frame in a sequence is compressed individually. The entire contents of the frame are contained in that compressed image. This means that to display that image, all the computer needs to do is uncompress that one frame.

In GOP compression images are compressed in groups; generally containing either 7 or 15 frames. The first image is compressed in its totality. However, for each remaining image in the group, only those pixels that are different in each frame from the preceding frame are compressed and stored in the file.

NOTE: GOP (pronounced “gop”) is an acronym for “Group of Pictures.”

GOP compression creates far smaller files because only portions of each frame are getting compressed.

However, in order to display a GOP-compressed frame, the computer needs first to find the first frame in the group and decompress it. Then, it needs to add all the changes stored in all the frames after the first frame and up to the frame the playhead is parked on.

While GOP compression creates very small files, the computer has to work VERY hard to display each frame as you jump randomly around in the timeline. This is especially true as multiple clips are stacked above each other. Each group needs to be decompressed separately.

GOP compression is perfect for playback, because the changes in each frame can easily be added to the currently displayed frame. However, video editing means that we are randomly jumping from one frame and clip to another. In those situations, I-frame compression is much more efficient because only one frame needs to be decompressed, not an entire string.