Once you've launched Avid Media Composer, you'll see a number of windows in front of you. In this movie, we'll briefly go over some of the more organizational features of the interface. And just so, you know we are working with a loaded project for now. In chapter two, I'm going to take you on a full start to finish, fast track workflow of a project. And then, in chapter three, we'll drop back to creating a project from scratch, okay? So, I just wanted to get you comfortable with what everything is first, and then we'll start from a blank slate. All right, so what we're looking at right now is the source record workspace, named after these two monitors here, the source monitor and the record monitor.
Together, the source and record monitors make up the composer window, and then down here, I have the timeline, and then over here, I have the project window, all right? So the project window, the composer window and the timeline defines this editing working space that we're going to be in most of the time. They're all empty for now, but we will be loading them in the next movie. If I come up to Windows > Workspaces, notice that there are a number of default work spaces and also notices that you can create your own work space and we will be doing in this chapter six. But as I go through these, notice that the windows are reconfigured and different tools are displayed.
And that's basically all a work space is is a configuration of open windows and tools. So I'm going to go back to Source Record, because I want to show you one thing and that's right here. Any time we make a change that we want to keep, we simply make the change, and then choose Save Current. And I'm going to do that right off the bat, with the location of my project window. The way I like to work, is, I like to have the project window in the lower left, so, I'm going to drag this down, okay, like so, and then that leaves me room for my bins up here. Now, depending on how many monitors you're working with and the resolution of them, the project window might be in a totally different location for you.
But for me, right now, I'm only working with one screen and I'm at a lower resolution for the purpose or recording this training, so I just want to bring my project window down here. To save this, again I go to Windows > Workspasces > Save Current. So now if I go to another workspace, and then back to Source Record, you'll see that it resets accordingly. All right, so let's start off by talking about my project window. The project window is the central repository of everything inside your project. In fact, it's gotta stay open for your project to stay open.
If I close it, you can see that the project closes and I get kicked back out to my select project window. So I'll come back in here. Okay, so what is the project window exactly? I'm going to expand this and you can see that there are seven tabs across the top. We'll be getting into most of these during this course but in this movie we're going to stick in the Bins tab. Now the Bins heading shows you all of the folders and all of the bins inside of your project. So I have two folders in here and you can see that I have my bins inside of my folder. Now inside the Bins are your clips, your sub clips, your sequences and other materials like titles and effect templates.
Now in a lot of other types of software, it's just kind of encouraged that your store your materials inside of Bins or folders but in Media Composer, it's a requirement. Absolutely nothing can live in the general area of the project window. Okay, so this sort of forces you into some semblance of organization right off the bat. So let's just take a look at a few things here. As you can see, a closed bin is a dark icon, and it's meant to look like an old fashioned trim bin with little strips of film hanging off the sides. If I open a bin, you can see that the bin icon in the project window becomes light colored, and you can see that this particular bin contain some clips.
If I want to open multiple bins, I can have them living side-by-side like so, and cluttering up my workspace, or you can actually have them live within one window, and you do that by setting up a tab structure. So I'm just going to grab this heading right here, not the name of the bin, but the tab heading, and just drag this over. You can see that it's all going into one window, and you just go back and forth between them by clicking on the heading. To close one of the bins within the tab structure, you just click on the X, and to close them all, you click on the X in the upper left hand corner, on a Windows system, it's in the right hand corner.
Now if I want to open up all of these bins in one window, I just click and then Shift-click at the bottom and then I right-click and I say Open Selected Bins in One Window. If I just choose Open Selected Bins here, it will open them all separately. So I'll do one window, and here they all are. I'm going to just resize this and bring this over to my upper left corner, and you can see that I can't really see the names of the bins because there's too many. But there's this drop down menu here and that allows you to easily go back and forth between these bins.
I'm going to go to my sequences bin here and let's say that I want my sequences bins to live along side the rest of my bins. I can tear this off by just dragging this into the general area, and I can reconfigure my view like so, okay? If I want to quickly close all my bins at once, I just need to make sure to select one bin and then come up to Windows and Close All bins, and then they all close. I'm going to twirl up my assets folder for right now because I want to talk about creating new bins in folders and I want this out of my way.
All right, so I create a new bin by clicking on this big new bin button or by pressing Cmd+N or Ctrl+N on a PC. And by default your bin is called whatever your project is called and then bin. And then you would have Hot Glass Bin one, two, three, four, five all the way if you didn't rename your bins but of course you do want to rename your bins. I'll just call this one Broll and I'll do Cmd+N and I'll call this one Interviews. And now let's set up two folders. I'll go ahead and click on this fast menu, and seasoned editors call this the hamburger menu, because it looks kind of like a little hamburger.
And I'll choose New Folder, and I'm just going to call this Hot Glass Master, and I'll do another folder and I'll just call this Footage. So the rule is, folders can go inside of folders. So I'll put footage inside of Hot Glass Master and I can trawl this down and bins can go inside of folders. So I'll go ahead and put my Broll and my Interviews inside of Footage, and I'll trawl this down. You can see that my bins are inside of the folder, but bins cannot go inside of bins, I can't put interviews in Broll or vice versa, bins only exist alongside other bins.
All right, so bins inside of folders, folders can be inside of other folders. If you want to delete a folder or a bin, you just click on it and press Delete. If I delete a folder, it's going to delete both the folder and the bin inside of it, and I'll get rid of this on as well. I'm going to trawl down trash, and here it all is. It's all in red as you can see, and the trash is actually a folder that exists inside of my project. Now I usually recommend against emptying the trash until the completion of a project just in case you accidentally throw something away that you later need, but because these folders and bins are empty, I just created them, I'll show you how to empty the trash.
You come up to your project window Fast menu, or hamburger menu, and choose Empty Trash, and you say Yes I'm Sure, and it's gone. Okay, so that's a little introduction on bins, and folders and how you organize and display the various buckets that contain the stuff you edit with. So now that we've got that covered, let's get to the fun stuff inside of our bins so that we can start editing.
Note: This Avid Media Composer v. 8 Essential Training only addresses software updates up to v. 8.5. if you are using Media Composer v. 8.6 or later, please access the following courses instead:
Media Composer 8.7 Essential Training: 101
Media Composer 8.7 Essential Training: 110
- Setting up the editing environment
- Importing media
- Building a rough cut with basic editing and trimming techniques
- Navigation and customization techniques
- Editing audio
- Adding effects
- Multicam editing
- Performing color correction
- Creating titles with Avid Marquee and NewBlue Titler Pro
- Managing media
- Exporting your project
- Troubleshooting in Avid Media Composer
Skill Level Beginner
Q: This course was updated on 12/12/2014. What changed?
A: We added and revised tutorials to cover the changes to Avid Media Composer in v8.2 and v8.3. Watch the "What's new" movies for an overview of the updates.
Q: This course was updated on 8/24/2015. What changed?
A: Avid released the 8.4 version of Media Composer in June 2015. We added two new movies to this course to describe the update and covering working with high-resolution files in the newest version of the software.
Q: This course was updated on 02/25/2016. What changed?
A: We added five tutorials covering the Avid Media Composer 8.5 update, released in January 2016.