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Final Cut has a lot of strengths, but it also has some awfully confusing error messages.  Luckily, the "Insufficient Content for Edit" error is pretty straightforward: you're trying to use more source clip than you have available.

This can occur in a few circumstances: adding a transition, making a 3-point edit, or performing a replace edit.  Read on for specific details about each situation.

Trying to add a transition
One of the most common places you'll see the "Insufficient Content" error is when you're trying to add a transition between video clips without handles ("handles" are extra video before or after the part of the clip you've edited into your timeline).  To solve this problem and add the transition, you'll need to trim back one or both of your clips -- see this article for more information.

3-point edit
The "Insufficient Content" error also can come up when you've marked In and Out points in your sequence, and either an In or Out point in your clip.  If there's not enough clip to fill between your sequence In and Out points, Final Cut gives you the error message.

There's an easy way to see whether this problem will affect you.  At the upper-left corner of the Viewer, Final Cut shows you the amount of clip you have marked; similarly, at the upper-left corner of the Canvas, you see the amount of sequence you have marked.  If the clip duration is less than the hole you're trying to fill in the sequence, you'll either need to mark more of the clip or use a Fit To Fill edit to slow down the clip so that it will fit.

Replace edit
If you're trying to use the Replace Edit to swap a clip in the Timeline with the one loaded in your Viewer, the error message tells you that the amount of video in the Viewer is too short to reach either the beginning or the end of the target "hole" represented by the old clip in the sequence. 

If you're Replace-editing with In and Out points, try erasing them and repeating the edit.  If you're editing without In and Out points -- that is, directly from the Viewer playhead to the Timeline playhead -- try moving your Viewer playhead closer to the position of your Timeline playhead.  That is, if you're wanting to replace close to the beginning of the old clip in the Timeline, try moving your playhead in the Viewer closer to the beginning of the new clip.

Needless to say, we cover all of these editing techniques and many, many more in our Final Cut training courses.  And now that we offer training online via WebEx, we can beef up your bag of editing tricks cheaper and more conveniently than ever before.

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Easy 3D Video in Photoshop was the previous entry in this blog.

Creating Title Text in Final Cut Pro is the next entry in this blog.

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