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There are certain things about Avid Xpress or Media Composer that may drive you nuts.  One of those things is Media Composer does not allow you to add filler at an end of a sequence.  Wouldn't it be nice if you could tell Media Composer to always display 30 seconds of filler, even if you are zoomed all the way out?  This would give you an idea of how much additional content you need to fill.

Well, here is a fantastic trick on how to configure your timeline when you are doing spot work so you are always dealing with a fixed timeline. 

 

Import a still image in a Bin.  It doesn't matter what the clip is.  To make this easy, you may want to configure your import settings to import still images as 30 seconds.

import_settings.gif

Edit the 30 second to V24.  Yep, that's right. 

 

 

 

add_v24.gifYou can add a V24 without adding all the tracks in-between by holding down the option key when you add a new video track.

 

 

 

So now you have a timeline that looks like this:

media_composer_timeline.gif

 

 

 

 

locking_media_composer_tracks.gif

Next, right click on V24 and choose Lock Tracks. This will prevent V24 from changing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The last step is to hide V24.  You can do this by navigating to the timeline menu and unchecking V24 from the Show Tracks menu.

hiding_avid_track.gif 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That's it!  By heading a locked track, Media Composer will always display 30 seconds of filler.  This will make it easy to determine how much content you need to complete the spot.

We teach tricks like this in our Media Composer 101 Training Class!  Remember, it doesn't matter whether you are new to the software, or have years of editing experience.  There are always new and creative ways to use the software.

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JVC HD200U and HD110U: New Pricing was the previous entry in this blog.

File size for HD formats is the next entry in this blog.

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