Changing audio volume over time
Video: Changing audio volume over timeNow, we are going to look at a couple of different ways to change the volume of a clip over time. Now, here is the finished product that we have been looking at, our little project here we have been using throughout this training series. I am just going to resize the video and audio portions here, so we could see this a little bit better. Audio track 2, we have our music but it's just too loud. So, I brought the audio down and then I animated it getting quieter. Because while he is talking, we definitely want this to be in the background and not too loud. And then at the end while I animated this fadeout getting a little bit louder.
- Making a rough cut
- Making preliminary edits
- Performing slip edits
- Using the Razor tool
- Moving edit points
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In Premiere Pro CS5 Essential Training, author Chad Perkins shows not only how to edit video with Premiere Pro, but he also explains how to use video to tell compelling stories. This course covers the Premiere Pro workflow from a high level, providing a background on how projects go from start to finish before diving into basic clip adjustments, such as color correcting scenes for more dramatic impact, applying transitions effectively, and slowing down and speeding up clip playback. The course includes creative techniques, such as making titles and removing a green screen background from a shot. Exercise files are included with the course.
- Adding footage to the Timeline
- Creating dynamically linked content
- Making overlay and insert edits
- Moving edit points
- Playing a clip backwards
- Understanding pixel aspect ratio and frame rate
- Applying motion effects
- Cutting video to music
- Compositing with green screen and blend modes
- Correcting color
- Creating titles and lower thirds
- Exporting sequences
Changing audio volume over time
Now, we are going to look at a couple of different ways to change the volume of a clip over time. Now, here is the finished product that we have been looking at, our little project here we have been using throughout this training series. I am just going to resize the video and audio portions here, so we could see this a little bit better. Audio track 2, we have our music but it's just too loud. So, I brought the audio down and then I animated it getting quieter. Because while he is talking, we definitely want this to be in the background and not too loud. And then at the end while I animated this fadeout getting a little bit louder.
I will explain why that is later. But these little dots indicate that we are changing the volume over time. So, that's what we are going to be doing. Again, I am going to be showing you a couple of methods of how to do this. Let's first listen to our project with the audio as is and see if you can hear the problems. Listen to the guy speaking and see how the music is a distraction. (Music Playing) (Male speaker: Beautiful scenery.) (Male speaker: Plenty of places to ride.) (Male speaker: Beautiful weather.) Okay, that's probably as far as we need to go. Because we could really barely even hear what he is saying.
Also, if we notice these audio meters, this is huge over here. The Audio Master Meters panel, it gives us display of the volume and if you have at any point the audio getting up into the red here, these two little dots, these squares at the top. If those turn on or turn red, then you are in trouble and you need to turn down your audio, because it's going to distort when you play it somewhere else. So, that's really bad news. No matter what it sounds like in your headphones or in your speakers or on your computer, that's not a good guide. The guide that you need to use are these little dots right here.
Now, again I am going to use the audio waveforms as a guide to my editing. I know that these little waveform little dots here are when the guy talks. So, I am going to use that as a reference for editing the volume or animating the volume of this music track. The first thing I am going to do is click on this rubber band. The default value for the rubber band for audio tracks-- actually I am going to just resize this really quick-- is volume level. So, I am going to click on the rubber band. I am going to drag this down till it's about -3. The -3.19 is what I am getting here and that's fine.
If I want to get it more fine-tuned, again I could hold down the Command key on the Mac or the Ctrl key on the PC. But that's fine wherever that is. Then what I am going to do is I am going to hold down the Command key and I am going to click before the cut point. That will be the Ctrl key on the PC. Then after the cut point I am going to click again. The reason why I am doing this is because I want this intro to be kind of loud. Even though we've reduced the volume of -3, it's still going to be plenty loud. But then I want to reduce it again when he starts speaking. So, I am going to drag this keyframe, which is what we've created by Command+Clicking or Ctrl+Clicking on this.
Take this down to about a -13 or so. Again, -12.62 or somewhere in that ballpark is going to be just fine. Now, if we play this back we'll hear the audio coming strong at first, because that's the first thing that we hear and that's good. Then the speaking comes in and then when the speaking comes in our audio is begun to fade down a little bit. (Music Playing) (Male speaker: Beautiful scenery.) So, I like that much better and also too because the audio starts strong, we don't really need to hear it that strong.
Because as it fades away we kind of get that sense. We could actually be very, very quiet in the background. Because it's started loud, we kind of are looking for it and mentally our ears are listening for it. So, it doesn't have to be as prominent as it was in the beginning. Now, at the end here I want the grand finale of the music to be played while this guy says his final comment. That's going to give us the most emotional impact. (Male speaker: It just doesn't get any better than this.) But then it kind of fades out. The audio fades out and it plays there.
It just shows like the logo. I want the fadeout to be a little bit louder during the logo. So, what I am going to do is I am going to Command+Click another point, right about here after the guy's done saying what he is saying. So, basically it will make it so that from this keyframe all the way to this keyframe at the end, there is not change in volume, which is what we want. Then I am going to click a point here, about at the end of that last clip. Basically, when we are looking at this logo. I am actually going to bring that up, bring that up maybe to zero or so.
So, that way we have this little like ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, little fadeout at the end there. We'll be looking at the logo and that will be something to listen to while we are looking at the logo. (Male speaker: It just doesn't get any better than this.) So I like that. That's kind of cool. But we do need to actually fade out. So, what I am going to do is then Command+Click or Ctrl+Click another point. Then drag that all the way down, and if you drag it all the way down you'll see this -00. That's supposed to be like the infinity sign. So, it basically means negative infinity, which means muted.
So, I am going to backup. Now, let's play that final little sequence here. (Male speaker: It just doesn't get any better than this.) So, maybe that fade out a little bit too abrupt. I don't want to drag this keyframe over to the right, so the fade out, it's a little bit more gradual not as jarring. (Male speaker: It just doesn't get any better than this.) And maybe that last keyframe right here when it gets loud, maybe it's a little bit too high. So maybe I want to drag that down to -1.50 or somewhere around there. So, basically now we have this really controlled audio.
A lot times like this is the way I find myself using audio where you kind of like riding the controls and changing it and bring it up and down. Of course, you got to be subtle about it because the viewer can't recognize that. But if you have these gradual fades. I might want to drag this apart a little bit farther so that the changes happen more subtly. That's a good idea. This is again a very common workflow. We are constantly changing the audio based on whatever else happens to be going on. With the music video, you probably want to fiddle with the audio. But because we have multiple things vying for our audio attention here.
We have a speaker and a music track. Then we kind of have to balance that and shift that balance as we go through the program. Now, I am going to do something unthinkable here. I am going to hit the Home key and select the clip here and then go to the Effect Controls panel, open up Volume. What I am going to do is I am going to click the Stopwatch for Level. That is going to get rid of all of our keyframes. I want to show you another way to adjust audio in Premiere. I am going to go to the Audio Mixer panel. I am going to, If you are not seeing that, then you go to Window > Audio Mixer and then choose the sequence for which you want to open up the Audio Mixer.
But this is very much like a traditional recording studio's Faderboard and we have these individual controls. But notice like let's say for example, Audio 2 this refers to this Audio 2 track. If I drag this audio down, we'll not see any change to this rubber band. That's because this rubber band refers to the volume of this clip and the Audio Mixer panel refers to the volume of the entire track. So, let's say we had one little clip of a song here and then another clip of some other audio here. Maybe this is like a dialogue track and this is where all the dialogue goes.
The Audio Mixer panel controls the volume of the entire track. Now, it's really cool. It remembers what you're doing. So, let's say we decided to control the volume or animate the volume of this track using only the Audio Mixer. What I want to do is first I want to name the track a little bit better. So, I'll just name this Music instead of Audio 2. Notice that changes it here and Timeline panel as well. What I am going to do is change underneath Music it says Read. This is the Automation mode. I am going to click this and I am going to change this to Write.
What that's going to do. That's going to allow me to just manually set the volume however I want. I know that I want this to be let's say zero for right now, because I've already reduced the volume of the clip itself. So, that's okay. Then I am going to play this back and then as I play this back, I am going to change the fader, the volume by clicking this little fader here. I am going to move it up and down as I want it to move up and down in the program. So instead of setting keyframes, I am just going to manually grab this as I see fit. (Music Playing) (Male speaker: Beautiful scenery.) [00:008:07.60] (Male speaker: Plenty of places to ride.) [00:008:10.60] (Male speaker: Beautiful weather.) [00:008:13.60] (Male speaker: It just doesn't get any better than this.) Okay, so there it has able to give a little bit more control.
So, now as I scrub through this, you'll see that the Fader automatically moves as I moved it when I was listening to the program. So, I decided to do something else. I dropped it a little bit too drastically in the beginning. Then I slowly raised it up, and then actually for this grand climactic by this guy when we were looking at him, I brought the music up a little bit more. So there is a gradual increase. Watch this Fader as I drag through this. Then it got a little bit louder and then we could fadeout at the end.
So, basically if you want to manually adjust the volume of entire track. You can do so with the Audio Mixer panel. You can control the panning as well if we want this to go left or right. If we wanted to solo this by clicking this little trumpet icon. We could even record actually. If you have a system to get audio into your computer, you can hit the Record button and actually record audio to a track from Premiere. In some of my previous Beyond the Basics training for Premiere on lynda.com, I go really in depth into the audio capabilities of Premiere.
It really boggles the mind. It's a little bit more advance and we need to get into in the Essential training series, but just be aware that there's a lot of power and control here. So again, if you want to adjust the volume of a clip, you can use the rubber band here in the Timeline panel. You could also use the volume control to manually set keyframes. The way that we do all the other properties in Premiere. And we could do that again in the Effect Controls panel. Or if you want to adjust the volume for entire track, you could use the Audio Mixer panel.
Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Premiere Pro CS5 Essential Training .
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- Q: When attempting to open the project exercise files into Premiere Pro CS5, an error message appears:
This project contained a sequence that could not be opened. No sequence preview preset file codec could be associated with this sequence type.What could be causing the error, and how can the files be opened?
- A: There are a few possible explanations.
First, if the projects are not importing correctly, the error could be with the codecs being used on a particular machine. Check to make sure the Video Previews codec setting matches the file type being used.
Another possible issue could stem from using the trial version of Premiere CS5. Some codecs for encoding MPEG formats are available only with the full version of Premiere CS5.
Additionally, the "Video Previews" codec setting for the Custom Sequence Presets could cause the issue if it is defaulting to “I-Frame Only MPEG”. Changing the setting to Microsoft AVI might fix the problem.
Lastly, if the projects are not importing into Premiere, try importing the video footage by itself, rather than the entire project file.
- Q: How does one perform internal edits within a piece of video in Adobe Premiere? For example, if I have a single clip of video, comprised of multiple segments strung together, how would I go about removing gaps and/or cleaning up each segment and then assembling the clips in a desired order? Most tutorials emphasize laying down multiple clips on the Sceneline or Timeline, but not editing one clip of video.
- A: To remove footage from a single video clip:
- Drag the Current Time Indicator (CTI) to the first frame of the segment to be deleted, click the Split Clip button in the Monitor panel, drag the CTI to the last frame of the segment to be deleted, and then click the Split Clip button again.
- Delete the segment by clicking on the clip and either choosing Edit > Delete And Close Gap, or pressing the Delete or Backspace key. That will remove the segment and the rest of the projectwill slide over to the left to fill the gap.
- Q: I can't view the exercise files.
- A: Most of the video clips in the training were encoded using H.264. If you are on a PC, you may need to download the latest version of the free
QuickTime player from quicktime.com. Be sure to install QuickTime with your Adobe applications closed. QuickTime installs a series of codecs on your
machine, and many Adobe apps require QuickTime components to function properly.
- Q: Why are many of the video files H.264 if some users must download additional components to view them?
- A: This is one of the most common video formats in the world right now, certainly for distribution. This is because it is currently the most optimal
way to provide high quality video at the low files sizes that we need to be able to distribute these assets online. Even though it may require an extra
download for some users, this is the best way to be able to get you the highest quality exercise files. There isn't another video standard that is
cross platform that is free and that works as well as H.264.
- Q: What is the most effective way to import a JPEG into Premiere Pro (i.e. best quality resolution, best playback speed)? When I import a photo as a JPEG and add it to a sequence, only a very small part of my photo is shown, because of the high resolution of these photos. Should they be resized in Photoshop first? Will changing it using effects provide the quality I am looking for?
- A: Images can be scaled down using the Scale Transform in the Effect Controls panel as explained in the training. You can also scale down the images in Photoshop to match the size of your sequence in Premiere. But I prefer to use the Scale Transform as it gives me more flexibility and allows me to "zoom in" (aka scale up) photos without loss in quality. You'll probably want to make sure that the proportions of the image match the sequence though.
- Q: Does Premiere Pro offer Z-axis editing like After Effects?
- A: Premiere Pro does not offer 3D as After Effects does, but you can use the Basic 3D effect in Premiere to simulate that environment.
- Q: The exercise files don't work for me. I get an error message stating the sequence(s) could not be loaded and it returns me to the Welcome screen. I am using the trial version of Premiere Pro and the correct codecs do not seem to be included.
- A: All the required codecs are included in the trial version of Premiere. You just need to activate the trial with your Adobe ID. If you don't sign into Adobe, anything with MPEG compression will be unavailable. Signing resolves that issue and restores all MPEG-based support.
- Q: I'm receiving the following error message from Premiere Pro. "This project contained a sequence that could not be opened. No sequence preview preset file or codec could be associated with this sequence type." How do I resolve it?Additionally, when I try to create a project, I only have DV sequence presets available.
- A: Solution 1: Deactivate, and then reactivate Adobe Premiere Pro.Launch Adobe Premiere Pro by clicking the application icon. Do not attempt to load a project file. Choose New Project, then create a project. The settings you choose in this step are not important.Launch Premiere Pro so that the Help menu is available. Choose Help > Deactivate. Then on the Deactivate, screen click the Deactivate button. On Premiere Pro CC Choose Help > Sign out ...Then sign back in. Launch Adobe Premiere Pro as you did in Step 1. On the Sign In Required screen, click the Sign in button. If prompted, sign in with your Adobe ID. The full list of sequence presets is reinitialized. Open the project the generated the error to ensure that it opens correctly. If you are still unable to open your project, contact Adobe Technical Support.Solution 2: Re-create the Adobe Premiere Pro preferences and plug-in cache.Get ready to press the Alt (Option) + Shift keys simultaneously. Launch Adobe Premiere Pro by clicking the application icon, and immediately press and hold the Alt (Option) + Shift keys. Continue to hold the Alt (Option) + Shift keys down until you see the Welcome Screen. Note: If the preferences have been reset successfully, the Recent Projects area of the welcome screen will be blank. (Holding Alt (Option) alone on launch will reset the preferences. Holding Shift alone will delete the plugin cache.)
- Q: When I tried to open the exercise files for this course, the following message popped up."This project was last used with Mercury Playback Engine GPU Acceleration (CUDA), which is not available on this system. Mercury Playback Engine Software only will be used?"What do I have to do to solve the issue?
- Luckily, there is no issue. This is how Premiere Pro operates. "Mercury Playback Engine Software only will be used" is an indication that the machine that is being used does not have an approved/fast enough graphics card. However, all the files and media for this course will work just fine.
- Q: After loading a project from the exercise files for this course, the media appears "offline" and cannot be used. How do I fix this?
- A: This issue occurs because the project was not created in your copy of Premiere Pro, so your copy does not know where to look for the asset files. To fix this, please see the video "Relinking offline media."
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