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Mark Syncs the Spot

Learn how to use markers to replace the legacy in/out marks to create manual sync points By Diana Weynand, James Alguire and RevUpTansmedia

(Special Thanks to www.revuptransmedia.com)

One of the most missed features of legacy Final Cut Pro is persistent in and out marks. That is to say, once in and out marks are set in a clip, they remain exactly where they are, as a part of the clip, until explicitly changed or removed. Unfortunately, this arguably essential feature for digital video editing did not make it into Final Cut Pro X. If you set in and out points on a clip then deselect that clip and reselect it, the in and out marks are gone.

While it is true that you can use ratings, like Favorites, in FCPX to create persistent clip selections, in and out points have valuable uses beyond just marking a usable portion of a video clip. For example, when working with multiple video angles, in and out points were important references for defining a common sync point across those camera angle clips used to create a multiclip in legacy Final Cut Pro.

Now that Apple has re-introduced multi-camera editing back into Final Cut Pro with the update, how do you manually specify common sync points in your video angles, since you can't set persistent in or out points? In this tutorial, you will learn how to use markers to replace the legacy in/out marks to create manual sync points in video angles used to create multicam clips in FCPX.


One Camera, Ten Angles, No Waiting

To begin your will want to work with an Event that has clips you want to combine into a multicam clip for a multi-angle video edit.

1 Launch Final Cut Pro X.

2 In the Event Library, click to select an Event with multi-angle video files or any group of clips you'd like to edit as a single video clip.

3 In the Event Browser, click on the first clip that needs a sync point reference created.

Clappers are often used to identify common sync points in video and film footage, but you can use any obvious video and/or audio events as a sync reference. Hand claps; door slams, or car crashes are good examples.

4 Press the spacebar or L key to play the clip or simply skim through it to locate and appropriate sync point.

With footage that was shot from multiple angles, you should choose an event that is visible in all the angles. If you are using found footage or stock footage simply choose the event that makes the most sense for your story.

5 In the video clip, press the spacebar to stop the clip playback, or click if skimming, to choose the desired frame.

6 Press the M key to set a marker on the chosen frame.

A blue marker is added to the top of the video clip at the playhead or skimmer location. Final Cut Pro X can use markers to create a common sync reference, instead of the legacy in/out points.

7 Repeat steps 3 to 6 for each clip that is to be an angle in the multicam clip.

Now we'll use those markers as sync points for a multicam clip.

1 In the Event Browser select all the clips that have markers set.

2 Choose File > New Multicam Clip.

The Multicam Sheet will drop down providing a number of options that can be adjusted to create the Multicam clip.

3 In the Multicam Sheet:

Set the name to Markers for Sync multi.
Set the Angle Assembly option to Clips.
Set the Angle Synchronization to First Marker on the Angle.
Uncheck the Use audio for synchronization option.
Leave all other options set at their defaults.

Click Okay.

If your clips are from different cameras, or have different angles explicitly set then leave the Angle Assembly option set to Automatic. If Final Cut Pro can't figure out which clip is a different angle, then your multicam clip angles may not appear as expected.

The new Multicam clip will appear in the Event Browser and can be edited into a project and used like any other clip.

So even though you don't have those legacy persistent in and out points, you can still manually set sync points in your clips using markers. Final Cut Pro x's new Multicamera editing features provide even more options and flexibility than legacy Final Cut Pro's did, and you should definitely check them out.


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Diana Weynand, an Emmy nominated editor, a distinguished educator and Apple Certified Trainer, is the author of several books including the Apple Pro Training Series: Final Cut Pro X, Final Cut Pro 7 and Final Cut Pro for Avid Editors and How Video Works. Diana has been on the cutting edge of technology training for two decades, and is co-owner of Rev Up Transmedia, (Formerly Weynand Training International) an Apple Authorized Training Center and mobile application developer.

James Alguire, an Apple Master Trainer, has been involved in the computer industry for over 25 years. His experience includes digital design, electronic prepress, multimedia, digital video/audio, technical support and training. He is an Apple Certified Trainer, an Apple Certified Technical Coordinator, an Apple Certified Help Desk Specialist and Apple Certified Support Professional. He is a lead instructor for Rev Up Transmedia and was a contributing writer for Diana's book, Final Cut Pro X.
Related Keywords:Final Cut Pro, Final Cut Pro X, FCP, Sync Points, Clip Selections, Video Editing

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  • Mark Syncs the Spot by DMN Editorial at Jan. 30, 2013 3:31 pm gmt

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