Final Cut Pro Audio Mixer: Mixer Automation and Keyframe Recording

The Final Cut Pro Audio Mixer allows you to record keyframes. Mixer automation is when you play back a sequence in Final Cut Pro, and the mix is automatically controlled by the audio level and pan keyframes in the clips. This guideline will set you up for keyframe recording and give you directions on how to do it.

Choosing a Resolution

Before you can begin using the Audio Mixer in Final Cut Pro to record keyframes, you need to select a frequency that will be used to record audio level and pan keyframes. To do this, with Final Cut Pro open, select User Preferences. When the User Preferences window opens, select the Editing tab. When the Editing tab opens, you will be given three resolution options.

  • The All option will record by using the maximum number of keyframes available. The All option is the most precise option made available by the Audio Mixer. However, by using the All option, your clip may be very difficult to edit later on because there will be many closely positioned keyframes in the audio level overlays.
  • The Reduced option will record only a subset of keyframe information. The keyframe information is created when you move the fader or panning slider of a clip. The recording that you get with the Reduced option will still be accurate, but you will have less keyframes, which will make your clip a lot easier to edit when compared to the All option.
  • The Peaks Only option uses only the minimum number of keyframes that are needed to produce your recording. When you use this option, the keyframes that you record in the Audio Mixer will only reflect the highest and lowest levels that were recorded. You should only use this option if you know your project will need a lot of editing done down the line.

Recording Audio Level or Pan Keyframes

To begin recording audio level or pan keyframes, you will need to open the Audio Mixer. Click on the Record Audio Keyframes button, which is located at the top of the Audio Mixer. This will tun on keyframe recording. You will then need to open either the Timeline or Viewer. With the Timeline or Viewer open, position the playhead over the exact location of where you want to begin recording keyframes.

With the playhead in position, you can begin the playback of your sequence. You will now need to use the fader or panning slider, which is located in the relevant track strip. While your sequence is playing, position your mouse over either the fader or panning slider, and hold the mouse down when you want to begin recording keyframes.

While you are holding the mouse down to record keyframes, you can adjust the audio or pan levels by moving either the fader or panning slider. When you are done recording keyframes, release your mouse. If you allow your sequence is continue to play, the fader and pan controls will return to their default settings. While the sequence is playing, you can use the Audio Mixer to make any other necessary adjustments. When you are done making adjustments, stop the playback of your sequence.

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