Join Damian Allen for an in-depth discussion in this video Exploring the Soundtrack Pro interface, part of Final Cut Studio Overview.
After launching Soundtrack Pro, you will notice that the entire interface is contained within a single window. By clicking the pane icons in the upper- right, you can customize the window to display only the areas of the interface that you want to focus on. You can resize the border between the panes by dragging and you can also drag off tabs to create independent floating windows or to place them in another section of the interface. Using the Layouts button you can quickly save and recall window arrangements.
Here, I'll select Standard, click Apply to restore the standard layout. Each tab in the interface performs a specific function, so it's worthwhile becoming familiar with each one. The Video tab displays the video associated with your project at the current playhead position. (Man speaking/indecipherable.) The Project tab contains settings to accommodate film to video conversions, timecode offset settings, file management settings and master metadata of your project.
The main section of the interface is the Project pane. Tabs at the top provide easy access to any projects you may have open. At the top-left are buttons for accessing editing tools. Of significant note are the Selection tool, the Time Slice tool for selecting portions of a track or multiple tracks, the Blade tool for splitting clips, and the Scrub tool for precise alignment of the playhead. Press the Backtick key above the Tab key on US keyboards for quick selection of these tools right at your Mouse Pointer.
Below this bank of controls is a Global Timeline view for quick easy navigation around lot of projects. And below this is the Timeline Ruler. (Man speaking/indecipherable.) Drag in this section at the very top of the ruler to create a selection. Click again to remove the selection. Drag inside the ruler to create a cycle region for looping playback. You can cancel the region by pressing Option+X. If you just want to move the playhead make sure you drag its triangle. (Man speaking/indecipherable.) Or click in the upper section of the ruler to jump to a new location.
The audio tracks themselves are very easy to work with. To add a new track, choose Multitrack > Add Track or press Command+T. The new track is added to the base of the list. Click to rename a track and double -click its Track icon to choose a different one. Standard Record, Mute and Solo buttons appear in the top-right of the Track Editor.
A smaller button to their left bypasses any effects or sends applied to the track. Below this are Level and Pan sliders. Double-click either of them to reset. Ctrl+click or right-click on the Pan control to switch to a surround sound panner. With the surround panner active, double- click to launch a more detailed surround HUD. Click the controls at the bottom-left to adjust the track height and you will see that with the larger track height value, record, input and channel count are also visible.
Click the disclosure triangle to the left of the track name to show and hide envelopes associated with the track. Automation points can be edited, inserted and manually deleted here. To zoom the view of the playhead, simply drag the Zoom slider. Use the Mighty Mouse wheel to scroll left and right, or drag the thumb slider at the base. Performing edits in the Project pane is simple. To trim or extend the in point of a clip, mouse over to lower-left edge, then drag.
Use the lower-right edge to do the same for the out point. Click-and-drag the top edge of a clip to create a fade in or fade out. Once the fade is added, double- click to choose a slope for the fade. Ctrl+click or right-click to remove the fade. To split a clip, first just select the Blade tool then click down to split the clip at a certain point. Click back to the Selection tool or press the A key.
When two clips are overlapped, Soundtrack Pro will automatically create a cross fade. Double-click the cross fade to choose fade curves for the incoming and outgoing clips. Along with the Zoom Level and the Track Height are controls for the Snap To units and also the control to enable or disable snapping. In the lower left, the Details tab provides information for a selected clip or file.
The Effects tab provides access to many real-time effects and filters available in Soundtrack Pro. Simply select from the category to the left and drag an effect to the lower pane. Controls can be adjusted as needed and the floating window closed. To recall it, click the Advanced button. Note that the effect is applied to the entire track, not just a selected clip. The Tracks tab provides useful ways to group, select and recall unique selections.
It also conveniently shows the channel strip of a selected track. Notice here how this strip updates to reflect the current selection. By selecting the Analysis tab, Soundtrack Pro can locate and remove common audio problems such as clicks and pops, power line hum and phase issues. Select a clip in the Multitrack Editor, select the checkboxes for the items you want to analyze and then click the Analyze button.
The detected problems appear in the lower pane. You can then select them and click Fix. The Actions tab lists all the processes that have been applied to a selected clip. All processes are non-destructive. Simply by deselecting a process, its effect on the clip is removed. You can even reorder the process by clicking and dragging. Here, I'll apply an effect specifically to the single clip selected. As opposed to adding it to the entire track, I'm applying it to the single clip.
Now we can drag to rearrange the order of the actions. Moving to the base of the interface, the File Editor provides waveform editing for the selected clip. Drag to create a selection and then Shift+ Click to adjust or readjust the in or out point. To ensure zero crossing edits, choose an option from Edit > Adjust Selection to Zero Crossing.
Use the Toggle buttons in the upper right corner to view, select and edit your waveform using an alternate Frequency Spectrum view. The Frequency Spectrum view includes the powerful ability to adjust the Volume or Amplitude of specific frequencies in your audio. Like a lot of processes, edits performed here are non-destructive and can be disabled or reordered using the Actions tab. The Multitake Editor allows for the creation of a final composite clip from multiple take recordings.
The Conform tab is used for updating a project after changes have been made to the associated Final Cut Pro project. The Mixer emulates a traditional mixing console. It's simply an alternate representation of tracks in the Project pane. Changes made in one view will be visible on the other. And the Bin tab presents a quick summary of all media used in the open projects. To reuse elements, simply drag them into a track from the Bin. The Meters tab shows current playback levels and peaks for your output device.
And the Recording tab maps hardware Input channels to tracks in your project. Rounding out the interface to the lower right, we have the Browser, which provides quick access to the Finder for import of sounds and other media elements. The Search tab for quickly locating specific sounds, leveraging categories, and keyword metadata. And the Favorites tab, which provides access to commonly visited locations, such as work in progress directories and sound library volumes on your network. To add a Favorite, locate the directory on your network, Ctrl+Click or right-click and choose Add to Favorites.
As you have no doubt already seen, Soundtrack Pro really is a deep application in terms of the problems it can solve in sound for picture projects. In this course, we only have time to look at few of the more common features but be sure to watch the Soundtrack Pro Essential Training course in the lynda.com Online Training Library for the big picture of how Soundtrack Pro can rescue and enhance your audio.
- Editing and compositing in Final Cut Pro 7
- Working in 3D space in Motion 4
- Sending a mix to Soundtrack Pro 3 for sweetening
- Encoding for the iPhone with Compressor 3.5
- Roundtripping a sequence to Color 1.5 for grading
- Burn Blu-ray discs of your Final Cut Pro sequences
- Adjusting the speed of a clip with the retiming tool in Final Cut Pro 7
- Building templates for Motion 4 in Final Cut Pro 7