Manage Formats in Avid Liquid

Avid Liquid allows users to combine and manage video formats no matter what the original format of the video is. To use this technology, videographers just need some simple knowledge of Avid and some pre-recorded clips.

Step 1: Obtaining the Property Information

The first thing that you want to do is figure out what the sequence format is. This is done by right-clicking on the black space in the timeline. This will bring up the timeline properties. The format will depend on the presets or even the first clip in the sequence.

It is important to figure out what format the timeline is in because this will affect how you manipulate the rest of the clips in the sequence. Sequence formats do not matter, but aspect ratio does. Some clips will be smaller than others and they will have to be stretched to fit the main format.

Step 2: Yellow Edit Slice

When a clip is added to the timeline, sometimes a yellow slice will appear on the top of the timeline where the clip numbers are. This means that the clip format is different than the sequence format. This indicates that the clip needs to be rendered to fit the sequence.

To learn more about the properties of the clip, right-click on the clip. This will bring up the properties menu and you will be able to see in what format the clip was filmed or originally rendered.

When a clip is dragged and dropped into the timeline, it will automatically change to fit the sequence, but this often means that the clip is too small. If it is, a black line will be all the way around the clip. The clip will have to be enlarged to fit the rest of the sequence.

Step 3: Changing the Aspect

If a clip is in another format and it is too small, the scaling can be changed so that the clip matches the rest of the clips. To do so, right-click on the clip and bring up the property menu. In the property menu, go down to Scaling.

Now, left-click on the Scaling drop-down menu and you will see several options. To fit the format of the rest of the sequence without adversely affecting the look of the clip too much, select Fit Largest - Keep Aspect. Then, hit Apply.

One issue with changing the scaling of a clip is that it may not look too good if it has to stretch too much. For example, a video using Windows Media may look distorted if it has to be converted to HDV. You may do better replacing that clip with one taken in a better format.

Step 4: Changing the Sequence Format

You can also change the format of the sequence. To do this, click on the Sequence tab located on the left-hand side and then go into the properties menu. Select the format that you would like to use.

There are a number of formats that you can use and these range from HDV to NTSC to 720/24p.