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Countdown Timer for Final Cut Pro

Here's a quick video tutorial on how to create a countdown using a plugin from Too Much Too Soon.

Continue reading for a full text based tutorial on this same tutorial.

Adding a Timer overtop of your video is actually very easy. Using the Too Much Too Soon free plugins, you can create a timer that counts either up or down, and can move in real time, slow motion or fast motion. After installing these plugins, you will be able to access it from the Video Generators. Which will load it into the Viewer, where you can set the parameters.

countdown_timer_final_cut_pro.png

The default of this generator is to show Hours, Minutes, Seconds, & Milliseconds. In the Controls tab you can change what is shown as well as font, color, etc. The trick to using this generator is to keyframe how you want the timer to move. For example if you create a 10 second countdown generator, you can set the first frame at 10 seconds, and the last frame at 0. This will cause the timer to move from 10 seconds to zero over the course of the generator. If you were trying to show a 1 hr build up over the course of 1 minute, you would create a 60 second generator an keyframe the starting value at 0 and the ending value at 1hr, and the timer will ramp up rapidly over the 10 second generator.

countdown_timer_controls_tab_final_cut_pro.png


Time is measured in milliseconds in the clock generator, so 1 second equals 1000 milliseconds, and 1 hour would be 3,600,000 milliseconds. Doing the math that would equate milliseconds to 29.97 timecode is enough to make you crazy. The work around here is to make the generator longer to an even number, then just trim it in the timeline. For example if you needed to create a realtime clock showing the elapsing of 9.69 seconds, you would make a 10 second generator, and then trim it to 9 seconds and 21 frames to get the desired generator.

countdown_timer_final_cut_pro_example.png

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Trim Media in QuickTime X was the previous entry in this blog.

Revealing Affiliated Clips in Final Cut Pro 7 is the next entry in this blog.

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