Moving to Next/Previous Edit in Avid

Navigating the timeline can be infinitely easier if you know how to move from the next or previous edit in Avid. The initial instinct for a beginning editor is to attempt to place the cursor at the exact spot between two clips. This can be difficult and therefore inefficient if you are zoomed out. Rather than constantly adjusting the zoom view, you can invest some energy into learning the keyboard short cuts.

Step 1: Apply Stickers

With your Avid system, you should have received a palette of stickers for your keyboard. These stickers show you what keys are set up for certain short cuts while still showing you the keys as they should work in other programs on your computer. You can change the key to command relationship in your settings, but the stickers correspond to the default.

Step 2: Set up the Timeline

Your timeline has several different tracks. In many occasions, all the tracks will have exactly the same cuts in all the same places. This happens when you are only using the corresponding synced audio for each video clip. However, in many instances, you will have different audio complimenting the video. For instance, you could have music playing under an entire scene. So you need to determine which track you will want to use to jump across the timeline. If you use the music track, then you will jump across the entire scene with one push of a button. However, if you use the video track with more cuts, there will be more clips to navigate. Select the track that you want to use as your map, and click on it so that it turns purple. Make sure the other tracks are deselected and therefore gray.

Step 3: Using the Keyboard

There are many new symbols on your keyboard due to the stickers. This can initially become overwhelming since many of them are foreign to you. In time, you will pick up on what they all do and how useful they can be. For now, we will focus on the "A" and "S" keys. Notice that these each have a black arrow pointing to a vertical line. The "A" key has a left-pointing arrow and the "S" key has a right-pointing arrow. The vertical line symbolizes a splice point between two clips. If you hit the "A" key, then you will command your cursor to jump to the previous cut in the timeline, and if you hit the "S" key, you will be jumping to the next splice point. Notice that the jumps will follow the cuts only in the tracks that you have selected as per step 2.

Moving to the next or previous edit in Avid is a quick way to get to useful points in your timeline. Your keyboard provides many short cuts that will greatly improve your editing experience. Once you get acquainted with the commands, you will work more efficiently and intuitively.

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