Avid Tips: Using the Keyboard to Lift and Extract

Using the keyboard is an option to go through all the different menus in Avid software. Instead of pointing and clicking with the mouse, there are keyboard strokes and keys that can be used to easily perform tasks within Avid video editing programs. Using the keyboard can make your video editing go much faster than constantly having to select different functions in the drop down menus. There are specific keys and key combinations that can be used to lift and extract different frames of clips within the film.

Step 1: Select the Clip

Extracting and lifting are generally used when deleting areas, though it can be used in other circumstances. However, before it is possible to lift or extract a clip, you need to select it. Use the mouse to select the clip that is to be selected. Be aware that anything connected or related to this clip will be selected along with the clip. Once the cursor is on the clip, press the "T" key to select the clip. To move from frame to frame within the clip, it is possible to move the cursor between each frame by using the "L", "J" and "K" keys.

Step 2: Selecting Options

Instead of using the keyboard to select the clip, it is possible to lasso the frames by dragging a square around the desired frames. This is done using the cursor. As with the keys, all tracks will need to be selected.

Step 3: Extracting

Extracting a clip is basically deleting it from the current film and track. Once the desired clip is selected, hit the "X" key. This will extract the selected clip as well as the space it occupied. There will be no empty space left behind. If you have not selected the correct tracks, then the resulting film will be out of sync or there may be other problems.

Step 4: Lifting

Instead of extracting a clip, it is possible to lift it. The keyboard key for lifting is "Z". This will delete the selected clip. However, unlike extracting, there will be empty space left behind. This is the space that the lifted clip previous was in. With this step, it will need extra steps to deal with the empty space, but there is no chance that the film will go out of synch, which is a problem with extracting.

Step 5: Modified Commands

It is possible to lift or extract anything using modified keyboard commands. Ctrl + X will lift or extract whatever is selected. If a red arrow is highlighted, then a lift will occur. It a broken yellow arrow is highlighted, then an extraction occurs. These modified keyboard commands make it very easy to delete sections and can speed up the editing process a lot. When the frames are selected, these modified commands are immediately selected.

Step 6: Avid Software

The nice thing about Avid programs is that the same keyboard commands are used across most of their software. Many times the actual name of the function is different. For example, a lift is referred to as delete and extraction as ripple delete. This entirely depends on the software on your computer.