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Avid Media Composer Audio Keyframes

This lesson focuses on mixing audio within Avid Media Composer using audio keyframes.

Please note:  Working with audio keyframes has changed since version MC 6.5.  Improvements include the ability to move, copy, or paste groups of keyframes.


Mixing audio is easy using audio keyframes.

So in this lesson I've reset the sequence to show you another method of mixing audio.

First, navigate to the fast menu within the timeline window, and choose audio data - volume.

The volume data option must always remain checked in order to add audio keyframes.

Then place the position indicator over a segment you would like to adjust.

Make sure the sequence track indicator for the segment you are parked over is turned on, and the other track indicators are turned off.

Also, make sure this keyframe button is turned on.

Okay, now it's time to press the keyframe button on your keyboard.

This will place a single black triangle at the location of the position indicator within your sequence.

Click on the keyframe triangle to drag it either up or down to adjust the audio level of the segment.

There is a visual indicator at the bottom of the timeline that will show you the actual level adjustment as you drag the keyframe.

Now, you can also paste the keyframe data from one segment to another.

To do this, click on the keyframe you want to copy and press command c to copy it.

Then park over another clip segment, and press command v to paste.

Now, by expanding the size of an audio track, you will see a more detailed range of volume units.

Okay, I'll also add another keyframe for the ambulance segment.

Now, if you select a keyframe and hold down the command key, it will snap to the various volume units with the segment.  

If you are working with clip segments that are in stereo, place the position indicator over the clip segments.

Then make sure you turn off all the other sequence tracks except the tracks you are working with.

When you press the keyframe button on your keyboard, a keyframe will be added to all the active tracks.

Since you have more than one keyframe, hold down the alt key, and drag a forward lasso around the keyframes that you want to select.

Then you can drag both keyframes together.

To de-select keyframes, hold down the alt key and click anywhere within the timeline window.

So now let's work on fading the music back up during the cut-away of this ambulance.

To do this, you will need a minimum of four keyframes for each clip segment.

So now, draw a forward lasso with the alt key to highlight the keyframes in the middle, and drag them upward.

To move keyframes horizontally, make sure they are selected, and hold down the alt key.

This will allow you to drag the keyframes to the left or right within a clip segment.

Now, if you have extra keyframes that you want to delete, just make sure the keyframes are selected and press the delete key on your keyboard.

Okay, this is important.

The audio mixer tool, and audio keyframes can work together.

If you make adjustments within the audio mixer tool, it will also affect the volume of clip segments.

The combined levels will be either additive or subtractive based on the level adjustments.

I suggest that you stick with one method of adjusting audio to avoid confusion.

Okay, I'll use command Z to undo that last action.

And finally, one more point, if you navigate to the fast menu and turn off the volume graph, the keyframe graph will disappear.

However, the audio adjustments will still be valid.  

A pink triangle within a clip segment indicates that audio keyframing adjustments are active within the segment.

When you turn on the volume graph, the keyframe data will re-appear.

Okay let's play the sequence to check it out.

"We had a call from fire rescue, that were three men being extricated from a manhole and unconscious, and not breathing"

"Not sure of the cause right away, came to find out they said it was possibly methane.  Inside they were doing work, and I believe it was a sewer hole.

"From the time the run came in, until we got the victims out was approximately 32 minutes.  That's an excellent time and it just shows how good of a specialized rescue team we've got and how good of a fire department that we have."

Now you have the basics or working with audio keyframes.

And don’t forget, GeniusDV also offers classroom and flat rate onsite Avid Media Composer training.

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Adobe Premiere Moving Filmstrip Effect was the previous entry in this blog.

Avid Media Composer RTAS Audio Filters is the next entry in this blog.

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