Avid Media Composer 8 is a professional video editing software that can handle all aspects of movie, television, and broadcast production. Learning how to use the software efficiently will help you become a better editor saving you tons of time over the years. You can alter your user settings to fit your specific work style.

In order to change your keyboard setting and command actions, go to the Settings window on the top of your Avid Media Composer interface. Once clicked, you’ll see a list of all the user, site or project settings. User settings relate to the customization of Media Composer that you are able to transport from one computer to another (if user settings are saved on a hard drive).

Understanding Timelines

When you load a sequence, it will appear on your main default timeline. All of your items will be the same size and will have default colors. For faster editing, create a separate video and audio workspace. Best practices indicate that you create large video tracks, small audio tracks, add clip frames (with extra information for better organization. Make sure to save your changes (under Video) in case the program shuts down unexpectedly. To change user settings for working on your audio, click on your original settings to start from scratch. Turn your Waveform (under audio data) and also the auto gain to key frame audio in your timeline.

Setting Up Your Timeline

When you open up Avid Media Composer, you’ll see an untitled menu with a drop down arrow on the bottom of your timeline. Once you click, choose “Save As” to save your current timeline user settings. You can change the name and hit “Okay” so that name will appear where “Untitled” appeared before. When the name is in italics it means that there have been changes since the original user settings for your setup.

Quick Commands

When customizing your Avid Media Composer, you’ll need to learn quick commands to speed up your editing process. To add a new track, press Ctrl/Cmd + y for video tracks or press Ctrl/Cmd + u for audio tracks. To alter the height of the track, press Ctrl?Cmd + I to increase their size or Ctrl/Cmd + k to decrease their size.

Color Segmentation

For a more streamlined video editing process, color your tracks to separate between audio and video tracks. To change color, select the tracks you want and then click the Fast Menu to choose Track Color. For faster editing, you may also add the Dupe Detection setting (under Fast Menu) so you can detect when there are duplicate clips in your sequence.

Once you have your Avid Media Composer customized to your preferences, you will notice that your video editing will get faster. There are plenty more customization options you can change to make your specific workflow faster and more efficient.

Now, you’ve got started on customizing your avid video editing software. In order to improve your avid workflow, you’ll learn with experience what user settings work best for audio and video editing.

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