Final Cut Pro: What Is Snapping?

Snapping is a useful feature in Final Cut Pro that will allow you to quickly align a large number of clips or tracks without creating gaps. Snapping makes it easier for you to perform common tasks in Final Cut Pro, such as lining up video and audio clip items together on two tracks or setting the playhead to a particular marker. Using the snapping feature in Final Cut Pro is almost automatic, and this article will address some of the ways that it can make your video editing tasks easier and faster.

The Snapping Feature in Final Cut Pro

Whenever snapping is turned on in Final Cut Pro, items in your timeline snap directly to certain points on the timeline. Items that are affected by snapping include the playhead and any selected clips. Moreover, there are several elements that trigger snapping in the timeline. These elements include: clip boundaries, in and out points, keyframes, markers and the playhead.

If snapping is enabled, the playhead or selected clip will automatically snap to any of these elements whenever it encounters one. The snapping feature is most beneficial when you're working with a large number of clips or don't need to make position adjustments by moving clips a specified number of frames. If you need to move a clip only a frame or two within a series of markers or clip boundaries, snapping is not the best tool to use. However, Final Cut Pro makes it easy to turn snapping on or off at any time you choose.

Enabling or Disabling Snapping

Enabling or disabling the snapping feature in Final Cut Pro is extremely easy. In order to enable or disable the feature, go to the View menu and then select Snapping. If the snapping feature is enabled, a check mark will be visible indicating that the feature is turned on.

You can also enable or disable snapping by pressing the enter key. You can even turn snapping on or off while you're dragging an item. Finally, you can use the snappy button on the timeline to enable or disable the feature as well. If your timeline button bar does not include a snappy button, you can add one by going to the system settings under preferences and customizing your interface.

How Snapping Affects Other Final Cut Pro Functions

Although snapping is an invaluable tool, it does affect some functions and editing tools in Final Cut Pro. The snapping feature directly affects the playhead in both the canvas and the viewer of Final Cut Pro. Therefore, going to certain positions in the clip, while snapping is enabled, can sometimes be tedious.

In addition to the aggravation that the snapping feature can present when working in some areas of Final Cut Pro, it also affects the functionality of certain editing tools. For instance, the ripple and roll tools in Final Cut Pro don't always function the way they should whenever snapping is enabled. Therefore, if you wish to use these tools, you should first disable snapping by using one of the methods discussed above.

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