Pinnacle Studio 15 Manual Ultimate Collection 15.0 Operating Instructions Us

User Manual: pinnacle Studio Ultimate Collection - 15.0 - Operating Instructions Free User Guide for Pinnacle Studio Software, Manual

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Pinnacle Studio
Version 15
Including Studio, Studio Ultimate
and Studio Ultimate Collection
Your Life in Movies
ii Pinnacle Studio
Documentation by Nick Sullivan
Copyright ©1996-2011 Avid Technology, Inc. All rights reserved.
Please respect the Rights of Artists and Creators. Content such as music,
photos, video and celebrity images are protected by the laws of many
countries. You may not use other people’s content unless you own the
rights or have the permission of the owner.
This product or portions thereof are protected in the United States by one or
more of the following United States Patents: 5,495,291; 6,469,711;
6,532,043; 6,901,211; 7,124,366; 7,165,219; 7,286,132; 7,301,092 and
7,500,176; and in Europe by one or more of the following European
Patents: 0695094 and 0916136. Other patents are pending.
Mpegable DS 2.2 ©2004 Dicas Digital Image Coding GmbH.
Manufactured under license from Dolby Laboratories. Dolby and the
double-D symbol are trademarks of Dolby Laboratories. Confidential
unpublished works. Copyright 1993 - 2005 Dolby Laboratories. All Rights
Reserved. MPEG Layer-3 audio coding technology licensed from
Fraunhofer IIS and Thomson Multimedia. Portions of this product were
created using LEADTOOLS ©1991-2006, LEAD Technologies, Inc. All
rights reserved. Portions utilize Windows Media Technologies ©1999-
2005 Microsoft Corporation. Real Producer SDK ©1995-2005 Real
Networks Inc. This product contains portions of imaging code owned
and copyrighted by Pegasus Imaging Corporation, Tampa, FL. All rights
reserved. MPEG Layer II Audio by QDesign Corp. This product
contains a YouTube API.
MPEG Audio technology may be included with this product. Audio
MPEG, Inc. and S.I.SV.EL., S.P.A. require this notice: This product
contains MPEG Audio technology licensed by Audio MPEG and SISVEL
only for use in accordance with Avid’s EULA.
No part of this manual may be copied or distributed, transmitted,
transcribed, stored in a retrieval system, or translated into any human or
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magnetic, manual, or otherwise, without the express written permission of
Avid Technology, Inc.
Avid
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Mountain View, CA 94943
Printed in the USA.
Table of contents iii
Table of contents
BEFORE YOU START .................................................. XI
Equipment requirements ........................................................................ xii
Abbreviations and conventions ............................................................. xiv
On-line help .......................................................................................... xvi
CHAPTER 1: USING STUDIO ....................................... 1
Undo, Redo, Help, Support and Premium ............................................... 2
Setting options ......................................................................................... 3
Edit mode .................................................................................................... 4
The Player ................................................................................................ 5
Playback controls ..................................................................................... 8
Further editing topics ............................................................................. 11
Expanding Studio .................................................................................. 12
Project Archive and Restore .................................................................... 15
Archiving a Studio project ..................................................................... 16
Restoring an archived project ................................................................ 19
CHAPTER 2: CAPTURING AND IMPORTING MEDIA 23
The Studio Import Wizard ..................................................................... 24
Import Wizard panels .............................................................................. 25
The Import From panel .......................................................................... 26
The Import To panel .............................................................................. 29
iv Pinnacle Studio
The Mode panel ..................................................................................... 33
The Compression Options window ....................................................... 36
The Scene Detection Options window ................................................... 37
The Filename panel ............................................................................... 38
Selecting media for import ...................................................................... 40
Import from file-based media ................................................................ 41
Import from DV or HDV camera .......................................................... 48
Import from analog sources ................................................................... 53
Import from DVD or Blu-ray Disc ........................................................ 54
Import from digital cameras .................................................................. 55
Stop motion ........................................................................................... 55
Snapshot ................................................................................................ 58
CHAPTER 3: THE ALBUM .......................................... 63
The Videos section .................................................................................... 69
Opening a video file .............................................................................. 73
Viewing video ....................................................................................... 77
Selecting scenes and files ...................................................................... 78
Displaying scene and file information ................................................... 79
Comment view ....................................................................................... 80
Combining and subdividing scenes ....................................................... 81
Redetecting scenes ................................................................................. 83
The Transitions section ............................................................................ 84
The Montage® Themes section ................................................................ 86
The Titles section ...................................................................................... 87
The Still Images section ........................................................................... 88
The Disc Menus section ............................................................................ 89
The Sound Effects section ........................................................................ 90
The Music section ..................................................................................... 91
The Project Bin ......................................................................................... 92
Table of contents v
CHAPTER 4: THE MOVIE WINDOW ........................... 97
Movie Window views.............................................................................. 101
Storyboard view ................................................................................... 101
Timeline view ...................................................................................... 102
Text view ............................................................................................. 108
The toolboxes .......................................................................................... 108
The Video toolbox ............................................................................... 110
The Audio toolbox ............................................................................... 112
CHAPTER 5: VIDEO CLIPS ...................................... 115
Video clip basics ..................................................................................... 116
Adding video clips to your movie ....................................................... 116
Working with multiple capture files .................................................... 117
The project video format ..................................................................... 118
Interface features ................................................................................. 121
Trimming video clips .............................................................................. 123
Trimming on the Timeline using handles ............................................ 123
Clip-trimming tips ............................................................................... 127
Trimming with the Clip properties tool ............................................... 128
Resetting trimmed clips ....................................................................... 130
Splitting and combining clips ................................................................ 131
Advanced Timeline editing .................................................................... 132
Insert editing ........................................................................................ 134
Split editing ......................................................................................... 136
The SmartMovie music video tool ......................................................... 140
CHAPTER 6: MONTAGE® THEMES AND EDITING . 145
Using themes ........................................................................................... 147
The Themes section of the Album ....................................................... 149
Creating theme clips ............................................................................ 149
Working with theme clips on the Timeline ......................................... 151
Anatomy of a theme ............................................................................ 153
Opening the Theme Editor tool............................................................ 156
Using the Theme Editor tool ................................................................ 157
vi Pinnacle Studio
CHAPTER 7: VIDEO EFFECTS ................................. 161
Working with the effects list................................................................ 162
Changing effect parameters ................................................................. 164
Keyframing .......................................................................................... 166
Using keyframing ................................................................................ 169
Previewing and rendering .................................................................... 172
Video effects library ............................................................................... 172
Standard effects ...................................................................................... 174
Auto color correction ........................................................................... 175
Dream glow ......................................................................................... 175
Rotate ................................................................................................... 176
Noise reduction .................................................................................... 176
Stabilize ............................................................................................... 177
Speed ................................................................................................... 177
Ultimate effects ....................................................................................... 178
Blur ...................................................................................................... 179
Emboss ................................................................................................ 179
Old film ............................................................................................... 179
Soften ................................................................................................... 180
Stained glass ........................................................................................ 180
Luma key ............................................................................................. 181
2D Editor ............................................................................................. 181
Earthquake ........................................................................................... 181
Lens flare ............................................................................................. 182
Magnify ............................................................................................... 182
Motion blur .......................................................................................... 182
Water drop ........................................................................................... 183
Water wave .......................................................................................... 183
Black and white ................................................................................... 183
Color correction ................................................................................... 183
Color map ............................................................................................ 184
Invert ................................................................................................... 184
Lighting ............................................................................................... 185
Posterize .............................................................................................. 185
RGB color balance............................................................................... 185
Sepia .................................................................................................... 186
White balance ...................................................................................... 186
Table of contents vii
CHAPTER 8: TWO-TRACK EDITING ....................... 187
Introducing the overlay track ............................................................... 187
A/B editing .......................................................................................... 189
The Picture-in-picture tool ................................................................... 190
The Chroma key tool ........................................................................... 196
Selecting colors ................................................................................... 202
CHAPTER 9: TRANSITIONS ..................................... 205
Transition types and their uses ............................................................ 207
Previewing transitions in your movie .................................................. 210
Audio transitions ................................................................................. 210
The Ripple Transition command ......................................................... 211
Trimming transitions ............................................................................. 212
Trimming with the Clip properties tool ............................................... 213
CHAPTER 10: STILL IMAGES .................................. 215
Editing still images ................................................................................. 217
Editing image clip properties ............................................................... 218
The Frame Grabber ............................................................................... 225
The Frame grabber tool ....................................................................... 225
CHAPTER 11: DISC MENUS ..................................... 227
Disc authoring in Studio ...................................................................... 229
Using menus from the Album .............................................................. 230
The DVD Player Control ..................................................................... 232
Editing menus on the Timeline ............................................................ 234
Editing with the Clip properties tool ................................................... 236
The Disc menu tool .............................................................................. 241
CHAPTER 12: THE CLASSIC TITLE EDITOR .......... 243
Launching the Classic Title Editor ...................................................... 244
The editor controls ................................................................................. 245
Title-type buttons ................................................................................. 245
Object toolbox ..................................................................................... 246
Editing-mode selection buttons ........................................................... 249
Object layout buttons ........................................................................... 251
viii Pinnacle Studio
Clipboard and delete buttons ............................................................... 253
Text-styling controls ............................................................................ 253
The Classic Title Editor Album ............................................................. 255
The Looks Browser ............................................................................. 255
The Backgrounds section ..................................................................... 257
The Pictures section ............................................................................. 259
The Buttons section ............................................................................. 260
CHAPTER 13: THE MOTION TITLER ....................... 263
Launching (and leaving) the titler ........................................................ 265
File operations ..................................................................................... 267
The Motion Titler Album ...................................................................... 268
The Videos section .............................................................................. 270
The Photos section ............................................................................... 271
The Objects section ............................................................................. 272
The Looks section ................................................................................ 273
The Motions section ............................................................................ 278
Creating and editing Motion Titles ....................................................... 281
The Background Panel ......................................................................... 283
The Edit window ................................................................................. 285
Working with text ................................................................................ 288
Working with the Layer List................................................................ 292
Working with layer groups .................................................................. 299
CHAPTER 14: SOUND EFFECTS AND MUSIC ........ 303
The Timeline audio tracks ................................................................... 306
The CD audio tool ............................................................................... 308
The Background music tool ................................................................. 309
The Voice-over tool ............................................................................. 311
Trimming audio clips ............................................................................. 314
Trimming with the Clip properties tool ............................................... 314
Audio volume and mixing ...................................................................... 316
Anatomy of an audio clip .................................................................... 317
Adjusting audio on the Timeline ......................................................... 319
Transitions on the audio tracks ............................................................ 322
The Volume and balance tool .............................................................. 322
Table of contents ix
CHAPTER 15: AUDIO EFFECTS .............................. 329
Noise reduction .................................................................................... 330
Ultimate effects ....................................................................................... 332
ChannelTool ........................................................................................ 332
Chorus ................................................................................................. 332
DeEsser ................................................................................................ 333
Equalizer .............................................................................................. 333
Grungelizer .......................................................................................... 334
Leveler ................................................................................................. 335
Reverb ................................................................................................. 335
Stereo Echo .......................................................................................... 336
Stereo Spread ....................................................................................... 336
CHAPTER 16: MAKING YOUR MOVIE ..................... 337
Output to disc media .............................................................................. 340
Output to file ........................................................................................... 344
Output to tape ......................................................................................... 352
Configuring a camera or video recorder... ........................................... 352
Output your movie to videotape .......................................................... 354
Output to the web ................................................................................... 355
APPENDIX A: SETUP OPTIONS .............................. 357
Project preferences .............................................................................. 358
Video and audio preferences ............................................................... 361
Make Disc settings .............................................................................. 366
Make File settings ................................................................................ 371
Make Real Media file settings ............................................................. 375
Make Windows Media file settings ..................................................... 378
Make tape settings ............................................................................... 380
APPENDIX B: TIPS AND TRICKS ............................ 383
Hardware ............................................................................................. 383
Graphics card settings .......................................................................... 385
Studio and computer animation ........................................................... 386
x Pinnacle Studio
APPENDIX C: TROUBLESHOOTING ....................... 387
Technical help on-line ............................................................................ 388
Top support issues .................................................................................. 390
Errors or crashes during installation .................................................... 391
Studio crashes in Edit mode ................................................................ 392
Studio hangs when rendering ............................................................... 397
Studio hangs on launch or does not launch .......................................... 400
“Burning failed” error appears in Make Movie ................................... 402
DVDs do not play back, or appear blank ............................................. 404
APPENDIX D: VIDEOGRAPHY TIPS ........................ 405
Creating a shooting plan ...................................................................... 405
Editing ................................................................................................. 406
Rules of thumb for video editing ......................................................... 410
Soundtrack production ......................................................................... 412
Title ..................................................................................................... 413
APPENDIX E: GLOSSARY ........................................ 415
APPENDIX F: KEYBOARD SHORTCUTS ................ 433
INDEX ........................................................................ 437
Before you start xi
Before you start
Thank you for purchasing Pinnacle Studio. We hope
you enjoy using the software.
This manual covers all versions of Studio, including
Studio Ultimate and Studio Ultimate Collection.
Differences between versions will be noted as
applicable. Most of the time, the word “Studio” will be
used generically to refer to all versions. Similarly,
references to “Studio Ultimate” apply also to Studio
Ultimate Collection unless otherwise stated.
If you have not used Studio before, we recommend that
you keep the manual handy for reference even if you
don’t actually read it all the way through.
In order to ensure that your Studio experience gets off
on the right foot, please review the three topics below
before continuing to Chapter 1: Using Studio.
Also highly recommended to new users is the Studio
Tutorial. To launch the Tutorial, click its link on the
“splash” screen when you start Studio, or use the Help
Guided Tour menu command within the application
itself.
xii Pinnacle Studio
Equipment requirements
In addition to your Studio software, an efficient Studio
editing system requires certain levels of hardware
performance as noted in this section. Remember too
that while specifications are important, they do not tell
the whole story: the proper functioning of hardware
devices can also depend on manufacturer-supplied
driver software. Checking the maker’s web-site for
driver updates and support information can often be
helpful in solving problems with graphics cards, sound
cards and other devices.
Note: Some features mentioned here require free or
paid “activation” via the Internet, depending on your
version of Studio.
Computer
Intel Pentium or AMD Athlon 1.8 GHz or higher
(2.4 GHz or higher recommended). Intel Core™ 2 or
i7 2.4 GHz required for AVCHD editing (2.66 GHz
for AVCHD 1920)
1 GB system memory recommended, 2 GB required
for AVCHD editing
Windows® 7, Windows Vista® with SP2, or
Windows XP with SP3
DirectX 9 or 10 compatible graphics card with 64
MB (128 MB or higher recommended); 256 MB for
HD and AVCHD editing
DirectX 9 or higher compatible sound card
3.2 GB of disk space (plug-ins extra)
DVD-ROM drive to install software.
Before you start xiii
The following items are optional:
CD-R(W) burner for creating VideoCDs (VCDs) or
Super VideoCDs (SVCDs).
DVD-/+R(W) burner for creating DVD, HD DVD
and AVCHD discs.
Blu-ray burner for creating Blu-ray discs (Studio
Ultimate).
Sound card with surround-sound output for preview
of surround-sound mixes.
The hard drive
Your hard drive must be capable of sustained reading
and writing at 4 MB/sec. Most drives are capable of
this. The first time you capture, Studio will test your
drive to make sure it is fast enough. Video in the DV
format occupies 3.6 MB of hard drive space per
second, so just four and a half minutes of DV video
will consume a full gigabyte on the drive.
Tip: For capture from video tape, we recommend using
a separate hard drive in order to avoid competition
between Studio and other software, including
Windows, for use of the drive during capture.
Video capture hardware
Studio can capture video from a variety of digital and
analog sources. Please see “The Import From panel” on
page 26.
Video output hardware
Studio can output video to:
Any HDV, DV or Digital8 camcorder or VCR. This
requires an OHCI-compliant IEEE-1394 (FireWire)
xiv Pinnacle Studio
port (as provided by Pinnacle Studio DV). The
camcorder must be set up to record from DV Input.
Any analog (8mm, Hi8, VHS, SVHS, VHS-C or
SVHS-C) camcorder or VCR. This requires Pinnacle
Studio USB-700, PCI-500, PCI-700, or another
Pinnacle device with analog outputs. Output to
analog camcorders or VCRs is also possible using a
Pinnacle Studio DV or other OHCI-compliant 1394
port if your DV or Digital8 camcorder or VCR can
pass a DV signal through to its analog outputs (see
your camcorder manual and Chapter 16: Making
your movie, for more information).
Abbreviations and conventions
This guide uses the following conventions to help
organize the material.
Terminology
AVCHD: A video data format used by some high-
definition camcorders, and for creating DVD discs that
can be read on Blu-ray players. Successful editing of
AVCHD files requires more computing power than
other formats supported by Studio.
DV: The term “DV” refers to DV and Digital8
camcorders, VCRs and tapes.
HDV: A “high-definition video” format that allows
video in frame sizes of 1280x720 or 1440x1080 to be
recorded in MPEG-2 format on DV media.
Before you start xv
1394: The term “1394” refers to OHCI-compliant
IEEE-1394, FireWire, DV or i.LINK interfaces, ports
and cables.
Analog: The term “analog” refers to 8mm, Hi8, VHS,
SVHS, VHS-C or SVHS-C camcorders, VCRs and
tapes, and to Composite/RCA and S-Video cables and
connectors.
Buttons, menus, dialog boxes and windows
Names of buttons, menus and related items are written
in italics to distinguish them from the surrounding text,
whereas window and dialog names are written with
initial capital letters. For example:
Click the Edit menu button to open your menu in the
Classic Title Editor.
Choosing menu commands
The right arrowhead symbol () denotes the path for
hierarchical menu items. For example:
Select Toolbox Generate Background Music.
Keyboard conventions
Key names are spelled with an initial capital and are
underlined. A plus sign denotes a key combination. For
example:
Press Ctrl+A to select all the clips on the Timeline.
Mouse clicks
When a mouse click is required, the default is always a
left-click unless otherwise specified:
Right-click and select Go to Title/Menu Editor.
xvi Pinnacle Studio
On-line help
Two kinds of immediate help are always available
while you are working in Studio:
Help file: Click the help button in the Studio
main menu bar, or select the Help Help topics
menu, or press F1 to open Studio’s help file.
Tool tips: To find out what a button or other Studio
control does, pause your mouse pointer over it. A
“tool tip” appears explaining its function.
Chapter 1: Using Studio 1
CHAPTER 1:
Using Studio
Creating movies with Studio is a three-step process:
1. Import: Import source video material – your “raw
footage” – to your PC hard drive. Possible sources
include analog videotape (8mm, VHS etc.), digital
videotape (HDV, DV, Digital8), memory cards and
other file-based media, and live video from a video
camera, camcorder or webcam.
Import mode is covered in Chapter 2: Capturing and
importing media.
2. Edit: Arrange your video material as desired by
reordering scenes and discarding unwanted footage.
Add visuals, such as transitions, titles and graphics, and
supplementary audio, such as sound effects and
background music. For DVD, Blu-ray Disc and VCD
authoring, create interactive menus that give your
audience a customized viewing experience.
Edit mode is the arena for most of your work in Studio.
See “Edit mode” later in this chapter (page 4) for a
fuller introduction.
Availability: Blu-ray Disc authoring is supported in Studio Ultimate
and Studio Ultimate Collection only.
2 Pinnacle Studio
3. Make movie: When your project is complete,
generate a finished movie in your choice of format and
storage medium: tape, VCD, S-VCD, DVD, AVI,
MPEG, RealVideo, Windows Media and more.
Make Movie mode is covered in Chapter 16: Making
your movie.
Setting the mode
Select which step of the movie-making process you
want to work on by clicking one of the three mode
buttons at the top left of the Studio window:
When you switch modes, the Studio screen changes to
display the controls needed for the new mode.
Undo, Redo, Help, Support and Premium
The Undo, Redo, Help,
Support and Premium
buttons are always to be found in the top right corner
of the Studio window, no matter which of the three
modes you are currently working in.
Undo allows you to back out of any changes you
have made to your project during the current session,
one step at a time.
Redo reinstates the changes one by one if you undo
too far.
The Help button launches Studio’s built-in help
system.
Chapter 1: Using Studio 3
The Support button opens Studio’s technical support
site in your web browser.
The Premium button lets you expand Studio by
purchasing and installing premium content. (See
page 12 for details.)
All other controls on the Studio screen are dedicated
to tasks within the current mode.
Setting options
Most options in Studio are set using two tabbed dialog
boxes.
The first lets you control options related to Edit mode.
It has two tabs:
The other dialog box is concerned with options relating
to Make Movie mode. It has three tabs, one for each of
the three movie output types:
Each panel of both dialog boxes can be opened
individually with a corresponding command on the
Setup menu (e.g. Setup Project preferences). Once
either dialog box is open, however, all of its panels are
available through the tabs.
4 Pinnacle Studio
For simplicity, we generally refer to the different
options panels independently, as in “the Project
preferences options panel”.
Detailed explanations of the options in both dialog
boxes are contained in Appendix A: Setup Options.
Additional options for importing are provided on the
Mode panel of the Import Wizard. The options
available depend on the type of media you plan to
import, as explained under “The Mode panel” on page
33.
EDIT MODE
Studio opens in Edit mode each time it is launched,
because that is the mode you use most often. The Edit
mode display includes three main areas.
The Album stores resources you will use in your
movies, including your captured video scenes.
The Movie Window is where you create your edited
movie by arranging video and sound clips, and by
applying transitions and effects.
The Player provides playback and previewing for
whichever item is currently selected in Studio. That
may be an Album resource – such as a video scene, title
or sound effect – or your edited movie, complete with
transitions, titles, effects and several audio tracks. The
Player is covered below.
Chapter 1: Using Studio 5
See Chapter 3: The Album and Chapter 4: The Movie
Window for detailed information on those topics.
Studio in Edit mode with the Album, the Player,
and the Movie Window, shown here in its
Storyboard view.
The Player
The Player displays a preview of your edited movie, or
of the item currently selected in the Album.
It consists of two main areas: a preview window and
playback controls. The preview window displays video
images. The playback controls allow you to play the
video, or go to an exact position within it. These
controls come in two formats: standard and DVD.
Standard mode
The standard playback controls are similar to those on a
camcorder or VCR. They are used for viewing ordinary
video.
6 Pinnacle Studio
DVD mode
The DVD playback controls emulate the navigation
controls on a DVD player or remote control. Use them
for previewing your DVD or other disc productions,
including menu interaction.
Chapter 1: Using Studio 7
The preview window
This is a point of focus in Studio because you use it so
often, especially for previewing your movie. It can also
be used to display:
Any type of Album content.
Still images or titles from your movie.
Changes to video effects in real time while you
adjust the parameter controls for the effects.
Still frames from your video. While viewing a still
frame, you can step by as little as a single frame in
either direction with the “jog” controls.
Resizing the video preview
If your screen dimensions
permit, Studio lets you
enlarge the Player – and
therefore the video
preview – by means of the
Player size slider. This
control appears above the Player to the left of the Undo
button when reorganizing the display is possible.
Drag the control knob rightwards to increase the Player
size, or leftwards to decrease it. The leftmost knob
position corresponds to the smallest (and default) size.
Resizing the Player optimizes your use of screen “real
estate” to obtain a larger video preview.
8 Pinnacle Studio
The DVD toggle button
Switch between the two playback modes with
the DVD toggle button at the bottom right-hand
corner of the Player. This button is only available when
your edited movie contains at least one menu.
Playback controls
The Player presents either of two sets of playback
controls depending on the playback mode you choose.
When you play your movie back as ordinary video, you
will be using the standard playback controls. If your
movie uses disc menu navigation, you can play it back
as an optical disc with interactive on-screen menus by
using the DVD playback controls. Both groups of
controls are covered below.
The full-screen preview button: This button, just
above the top right-hand corner of the preview
window, switches to a full-screen preview. It is
available in both playback modes. On a single-monitor
system, the full-screen display ends when your movie
ends, or you double-click the screen or press the Esc
key. See the Video preview options in the Video and
Audio Preferences panel (page 361) for settings that
apply to multiple-monitor systems.
The Video preview options on the Video and audio
preferences options panel let you direct the full-screen
preview to the secondary monitor on your system if
there is one. In Studio Ultimate, you can
simultaneously send your preview to an external
device, if desired.
Chapter 1: Using Studio 9
Standard playback controls
These buttons control playback in the Player.
Play / Pause: The Play button previews the
movie from the current position. Once preview
begins, Play becomes Pause. When playback is
paused, the Album scene or Movie Window clip at
which previewing stopped remains selected. The
[Space] key can also be used to start and stop playback.
Go to beginning: This button halts playback and
skips back to the first frame of the material
being previewed.
Fast reverse, Fast forward: These buttons let
you preview your movie at two, four or ten
times the normal speed, in either direction. Use
them to scan for a particular piece of video you want to
work with. Click the buttons repeatedly to loop through
the speed factors.
Loop: This button causes the currently-selected
clips in the Movie Window to play back
repeatedly. This feature is especially convenient whilst
selecting and editing add-on effects and transitions.
Click any playback button to halt looping. The loop
button lights up while looping is active. Looping is
maintained even if you switch playback speeds.
Jog buttons: This pair of controls normally steps
your movie forward and backward by one frame
at a time. To step by seconds, minutes or hours instead
of frames, select the corresponding field in the counter
(see below), then use the jog buttons to modify it.
The Player scrubber
Use the Player scrubber to quickly traverse your
captured video or edited movie in either direction. The
10 Pinnacle Studio
scrubber position corresponds to the position of the
current frame in the captured video file (not just the
current scene) or in the edited movie (not just the
current clip). Thus the scrubber bar always represents
the entire length of the content being viewed.
As you move the scrubber, the preview window shows
the current frame. If you have activated the audio
scrubbing button in the Movie Window, you will also
hear snatches of your movie’s audio as you scrub. See
page 98 for details.
The ability of the preview to keep up with the scrubber
depends on the speed of your computer. If you move
the Player scrubber slowly, the preview display
responds smoothly. As you increase the rate at which
you move the scrubber, the preview will jump frames.
The point at which it does so depends on your
hardware. The smoothness of the preview also
diminishes as the overall length of the material being
scrubbed increases.
The counter
The counter displays the current
playback position in hours, minutes,
seconds and frames. You can
directly modify the counter fields to
select an exact frame to view or at
which to start playback. Simply click on the number
you wish to change and type a new value. To move to a
different field, click again or use the Left and Right
arrow keys.
You can also modify the value in a selected field by
using the jog buttons beside the counter or the Up and
Down arrow keys.
Chapter 1: Using Studio 11
The master volume slider
This control sets the overall audio volume during
preview playback. It is equivalent to turning up the
master volume on your sound card using the system
volume tool. It does not affect the volume of the final
movie Studio creates in Make Movie mode.
The small loudspeaker icon at the right of the control
serves as a master mute button during playback.
DVD playback controls
These controls include the four standard
transport buttons detailed above
(Play/Pause, Fast reverse, Fast forward,
Go to beginning) plus the DVD Player
Control, which is described under “The DVD Player
Control” on page 232.
Further editing topics
Please see the following for details on specific editing
topics:
Chapter 5: Video clips
Chapter 6: Themes and theme editing
Chapter 7: Video effects
Chapter 8: Two-track editing
Chapter 9: Transitions
Chapter 10: Still images
Chapter 11: Disc menus
12 Pinnacle Studio
Chapter 12: The Classic Title Editor
Chapter 13: The Motion Titler
Chapter 14: Sound effects and music
Chapter 15: Audio effects
Expanding Studio
One way to add pizzazz to your productions is to use a
variety of video and audio filters, animated transitions,
titles, VCD and DVD menus, themes and sound effects.
Studio includes an extensive selection of hundreds of
content items and special effects, but it’s also designed
to grow along with your needs. When you want a
particular filter, transition, menu or effect that isn’t part
of the basic set, an easy-to-use upgrade mechanism lets
you find, purchase and install the materials you need
without even leaving the program.
New tools, new media, new frontiers
You can purchase additional media and filters in any of
three ways from within Studio:
With the Help Purchase activation keys
menu command (or the premium shortcut
button at the top right of the Studio screen).
This opens a special browser window in which you
can access a catalog page for any type of premium
content that interests you.
With the Album commands More transitions, More
themes, More sound effects and More menus.
Chapter 1: Using Studio 13
These commands are found on the dropdown lists in
the corresponding sections of the Album. They will
enable you to download, try out and purchase
additional premium content that was not included
with the program installation.
By clicking the activate buttons found in some parts
of Studio.
These buttons can be found whenever premium
content is on display within Studio. The one above,
when seen in the Audio effects tool and the Video
effects tool, would let you activate a pack of audio or
video filters. You may encounter similar buttons in
the Album that let you purchase all the media on a
particular Album page as a theme pack.
How activation works
“Activating” premium content for Studio means to
obtain a license allowing you unrestricted use of the
content on the single machine where Studio is installed.
The licensing mechanism employs two distinct but
mutually related codes:
An activation key for each premium content item you
purchase;
Your Passport, which is a number generated the first
time you install Studio on your computer. You can
view your Passport by selecting the Help My
Passport menu command.
Because the Passport is specific to one computer, you
will need to obtain new activation keys if you install
Studio on a different machine. These will be provided
14 Pinnacle Studio
at no charge, but your user licenses for both Studio and
any premium content you have obtained then apply to
the new machine only.
Note: Although your Passport is specific to an
individual computer, it is not affected by ordinary
hardware modifications such as adding or removing
expansion cards, drives or memory.
If you don’t have an Internet connection...
You can purchase and apply premium content
activation keys even if you don’t have an Internet
connection on the computer where Studio is installed.
When you click one of the unlock links within Studio, a
dialog will be displayed showing information needed
for ordering the specific content you want, including:
An Internet URL where you can activate the content
Numeric identifiers for the Studio program and the
item you want to activate
Your Passport and your Serial Number
Navigate to the given URL from another computer,
enter the information, and complete the purchase as
directed. You will then be given an activation key with
which you can activate the content on the original
computer by using the Help Enter Activation Keys
menu command.
Hiding and showing premium content
If you would prefer not to view the premium content
and features available in Studio, open the Project
preferences options panel and uncheck either or both of
Show premium content and Show premium features.
(See page 358.)
Chapter 1: Using Studio 15
Importing content from past Studio versions
If you are an owner of a past version of Studio, the
chances are that you already own content items,
whether on a “Bonus Content” or “Premium Pack”
disc, or on a hard drive attached to your system. The
Studio “Transfer Content” wizard walks you through
the process of locating all such materials that are
available to you, and importing them for use in the
current version of the software. Among the item types
handled by the wizard are:
Titles
Disc menus
Sound effects
Hollywood FX 3D transitions
RTFx video effects
To launch the wizard, look in the Studio group on your
Start All Programs menu, and select Tools
Transfer Content.
PROJECT ARCHIVE AND RESTORE
As your Studio projects grow in size and complexity,
keeping track of the various media they incorporate can
become a challenge in its own right. The photos and
graphics, video snippets and sound files you include in
a particular movie may come from scattered locations
on your system. To avoid wasting disk space, Studio
does not make separate copies of the files you use. If
you move or delete a media file needed by the project,
however, it won’t be available for previewing or
16 Pinnacle Studio
outputting your movie. When cleaning up your hard
drive, for example, you must be careful not to
inadvertently remove media your Studio projects
require.
Studio’s Archive and Restore feature solves this
problem by allowing you to create a centralized archive
containing a project and all the media it references
(with some exceptions noted below). If the originals of
the files copied into the archive are removed, whether
by accident or design, the project remains secure.
Simply restore the project from the archive and all will
be well.
You can also use this feature for backing up your
project and its media files: just copy the archive after
creation to your backup media. If you plan to restore
the project onto another computer where you have
Studio installed, however, be aware that some types of
resource are not included in the archive. For instance,
effects, ScoreFitter songs, disc menus and so on, from
content packs that either came with your version of
Studio or were obtained separately, will not be
archived. Instead, such resources must be duly installed
and available on both machines. A similar exception
applies to fonts. If you stay with standard fonts, or
those that are installed with Studio, there should be no
problem. Otherwise, you will have to install any
missing fonts before the project will render correctly.
Archiving a Studio project
To begin archiving your project, select the File
Archive Project… menu command. Within a few
Chapter 1: Using Studio 17
seconds, Studio will respond with a dialog box showing
the amount of disk space your archive will require.
(Note: If your project has unsaved changes, you will be
asked to save them before continuing. This is because
archiving works with your project as it is stored on
disk.)
Since the total media size of a Studio project may be
quite large, take a moment to make sure that the drive
on which you’re planning to store the archive has
ample space available relative to the amount required.
Keep in mind that your system partition (usually with
drive-letter C) needs a good amount of free space; if it
becomes too full, your system will gradually slow
down, and may eventually become unstable. Non-
system drives and partitions can be pushed much closer
to their full capacity if required.
Remember , too, that some media have file size
limitations that may restrict the size of video file your
archive can include. Drives with FAT32 formatting and
USB sticks are both subject to a 4GB file size limit
regardless of the total amount of free space that may be
available.
The estimated timing on the dialog is calibrated for a
USB flash drive as the destination for the archiving
operation. Once archiving is under way, the estimate is
dynamically adjusted to reflect the actual write speed
observed.
18 Pinnacle Studio
After you dismiss the information window, a Save
dialog appears for selecting the archive name and
location. By default the archive will be created in the
same folder as the project itself, in a folder having the
same name as the project with the word ‘Archive’
appended.
Archiving commences when you click Save. During
archiving, a progress dialog showing the estimated time
until completion. If you click the Cancel button on this
dialog, Studio halts and rewinds the archive operation
without further ado, leaving your system just as it was
before.
After archiving to the default location, the projects
folder, you will find a new item there: the archive
folder.
Here we see the project file, “One fine day.stx”, the
working files folder, “ONE FINE DAY”, and the
archive folder, “One fine day Archive”. For clarity, our
example folder contains only one project.
Chapter 1: Using Studio 19
Inside the archive folder, we find two new files,
including the archive file itself (“One fine day
Archive.sta”). A “Media” subfolder has also been
created; all your scattered media are centralized there.
Restoring an archived project
Restoring from the archive is in most ways a mirror
image of the archiving process, beginning with the File
Restore Project… menu, which presents a File Open
dialog. Browse to the archive folder and double-click
the archive file we found just above.
20 Pinnacle Studio
After examining the archive, Studio informs you how
much space will be required on the destination drive for
a successful restore.
The final step before restoring the archive is to select a
destination project name and location. The remarks
concerning drive space during archiving apply again
here. Although Studio will not embark on the restore if
you don’t have space on the target drive to complete
the process, remember that having barely enough space
can also be problematic, especially on the system drive.
To avoid system maintenance headaches, be sure ahead
of time that your restore media have sufficient capacity.
As noted in the section on archiving above, the time
estimate given in this dialog is based on the value
expected for restoring to USB flash storage (3 MB/sec).
For another type of device, the timing may vary:
writing to a hard drive, for instance, should be
considerably faster. However, the estimate will be
continuously updated once the restore actually begins,
becoming rapidly more accurate.
The default project name incorporates the date and time
when the archive was created. Change the name and
destination folder as desired, then click Save.
Chapter 1: Using Studio 21
Studio creates a project of the specified name with all
its media in a single subfolder. A progress dialog let
you monitor the restore process. As with archiving, if
you choose to cancel this dialog, Studio puts everything
back the way it was, then reverts to your previously
open project. Be careful, however, if you choose when
restoring to overwrite a previously-restored version of
the same project. Canceling in that case will remove
both the new and previous versions of the restored
project.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 23
CHAPTER 2:
Capturing and
importing media
Studio lets you incorporate many kinds of media in
your video productions. When these are stored
externally to your computer – on a camcorder tape, say,
or a memory stick from your digital camera – they must
be transferred to local storage before you can use them.
This transfer process is called “capturing” or
“importing”. A distinction has long been made between
“capturing” from tape and “importing” from file-based
sources, but it is less significant nowadays when most
audiovisual recordings are stored in digital form
throughout their lifetimes. Only when recording from
analog sources (such as VHS or Hi8) is there still a
“capture” process involving conversion to digital form.
We will most often use the terms “import” and
“importing” to signify all methods of bringing images
and sound into Studio for use in your productions.
The next step
After Studio has finished importing your media, you
will be able to access the imported files for use in your
productions. See Chapter 3: The Album for details.
24 Pinnacle Studio
The Studio Import Wizard
The very first step in capturing is to open the Studio
Import Wizard by clicking the Import button at the top
left of the screen.
The Import Wizard consists of
a large central area surrounded
by a number of smaller panels.
One of these, the Import
From panel at the top left of
the display, has a pivotal role.
It provides a list of device
types that can serve as the
source of your import operation. Your choice of input
source in turn determines the rest of the Import Wizard
display. Above all, the set of controls offered in the
central area for preview, browsing and selecting
material depends on the chosen import type.
Importing can be regarded as a four-step process:
1. Select the import source on the Import From panel.
2. Confirm or adjust the settings on the other panels.
3. Select material to import from the chosen source.
4. Initiate the import operation.
Studio then begins transferring the requested audio,
video and pictorial material from the source device to
your hard drive, using the locations set in the Import To
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 25
panel. Once the import operation is complete, the
Import Wizard closes and returns control to Studio,
where you can access the imported files through the
Album. (See Chapter 3: The Album.)
Here the Import Wizard is configured for importing
material from DVD. For disc sources, the central
area lists the ‘chapters’ available for importing.
IMPORT WIZARD PANELS
The actual selection of material to be imported takes
place in the central area of the Import Wizard. Each
import source uses the central area somewhat
differently.
Depending on the input source, the central area shares
the Import Wizard interface with up to four auxiliary
panels with standardized functions.
26 Pinnacle Studio
The Import From panel
This is the top left panel of the Import Wizard, a
position that reflects its vital role in setting up the
import operation.
The photos, music and video footage you want to
import may reside on a variety of device types and
technologies. The supported import sources include:
All types of auxiliary file-based storage media,
including optical drives, memory cards and USB
sticks (see “Import from file-based media”, page 41).
Click Other devices in the Import From panel to
start.
DV or HDV video cameras using an IEEE-1394
(FireWire) connection (see “Import from DV or
HDV camera”, page 48). Devices are listed by name
in the Import From panel by their device names (e.g.
“DV Device”). Select the applicable one.
Analog video cameras and recorders (see “Import
from analog sources”, page 53). Any analog capture
hardware on your system is listed by name (e.g.
“Pinnacle Systems MovieBox”).
DVD and Blu-ray discs (see “Import from DVD or
Blu-ray Disc”, page 54).
Digital still cameras (see
“Import from digital
cameras”, page 55).
Some sources in the Import
From panel are chosen from a
sub-list of actual devices that
is appears when you click the
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 27
main source entry. In the illustration, DVD / Blu-Ray
has been clicked. The user can now choose between the
two DVD drives installed on this particular system.
Single-frame import
Studio provides two special modes for importing single
frames, rather than continuous footage. These modes
are:
Stop motion: Create an animated film by importing
one frame at a time from a live video source (see
“Stop motion”, page 55).
Snapshot: Import individual images from tape or
from a live source like a webcam (see “Snapshot”,
page 58).
Adjusting analog audio and video levels
Analog capture hardware may
provide additional controls for
modifying parameter levels of
the audio and video signals.
Such a capability is useful for
correcting exposure problems
and the like in the source
material, and when you need
to compensate for differences
in video from multiple sources.
To access the controls, click the more button beside
the source name. This opens the Analog Input Levels
window.
Although you can also adjust these levels with the
appropriate Video effects in Edit mode, setting them
correctly for capture can save you from having to
worry about color correction later on.
28 Pinnacle Studio
The Analog Input Levels window lets you adjust a
number of video and audio parameters. The Hue
slider (fourth from left) is not used with PAL sources.
Setting your audio options correctly as you capture will
help in achieving consistent volume levels and quality.
Particular capture devices may offer fewer options than
are shown and discussed here. For instance, with
hardware that doesn’t support stereo captures, an audio
balance control will not appear.
Video: Choose the type of video you are going to
digitize by clicking the appropriate source button
(Composite or SVideo). The five sliders allow you to
control the brightness (video gain), contrast (ratio of
lightest to darkest), sharpness, hue and color saturation
of the incoming video.
The hue slider can be useful for correcting unwanted
color shifts in NTSC material; it is not available
when capturing from a PAL source.
The saturation slider regulates the “color saturation”
– the amount of color – in the image. (An image with
zero saturation has only black, white and gray tones.)
Audio: The sliders on the right side of the panel let you
control the input level and stereo balance of the
incoming audio.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 29
The Import To panel
After importing, your media items will be accessible as
files on your computer. The Import To panel of the
Import Wizard lets you specify where those files will
be stored. Separate folders are available for video,
audio and picture items, but the Import To panel only
lists those that are relevant to the current import source,
as set in the Import From panel.
As the number of media files on your system grows, it
becomes increasingly useful to give some thought to
how best to organize the material into folders and
subfolders such that in the future you can most readily
retrieve any desired item. The controls on the Import
To panel are designed to automate this process to
whatever degree you choose.
Working with import folders
Until you specify otherwise,
the Import Wizard uses the
standard document folders for
video, music and pictures
within your Windows user
account. The illustration
shows a typical setup in
Windows Vista. To change an
import folder, click either the
small folder button or the
current folder path. (See
“Selecting an import folder” below.)
The folders you choose for each media type, whether
default or custom, serve as base locations for your
imported files. In order to manage your media
30 Pinnacle Studio
collection effectively, you can also specify either a
custom subfolder name or a method of automatically-
generating a name based on either the current date or
the creation date of the imported material. Click either
s“set subfolder” or the more button for the media
type to access the subfolder options. (See “Setting a
subfolder” below.)
For example, if you set your main video folder to
“c:\vid”, and your subfolder naming method to
“Current month”, any video you import will be placed
in a folder with a name like “c:\vid\2009-10”.
Fill level indicator: This bar graph shows for each
import destination how much room is left on the
storage device. The first part of the bar represents space
zzalready occupied on the device. The colored
extension shows how much room any currently-
selected media files awaiting import will require.
Available storage space display
Note: If a destination device reaches 98 per cent full
during import, the operation is halted at that point.
Selecting an import folder
To choose a different base
folder for a given media type,
click the corresponding folder
button or folder name on the
Import To panel. This opens a
folder selection box where
you can navigate to, and if
necessary create, the folder you want to use.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 31
Folders that contain subfolders are indicated with a plus
icon to the left of the folder icon if they are currently
closed, and a minus icon if they are open. Clicking the
icon reverses the state of the folder.
Click the plus icon to view the contents of a folder.
To create a subfolder within the currently-selected
folder, click “New Folder” at the bottom of the file
selector, type a name for the folder, then press Enter.
To rename a folder, select it then either click it once
with the left mouse button, or press the F2 key. An in-
place edit box opens, allowing you to type over the old
name with a new one of your choice. Finally, press
Enter to accept or Esc to cancel the name change.
Renaming the selected folder.
After locating and selecting the folder you want to
serve as the base folder, click the OK button to approve
the choice and return to the Import Wizard window.
Setting a subfolder
To designate a subfolder of the base folder as the actual
import destination for the media type, click either “set
subfolder” button or the more button . These buttons
32 Pinnacle Studio
open a dialog window that represents an expanded
version of the Import To panel, one that includes
controls needed to set the subfolder name or naming
method for each media type supported by the currently-
selected import source.
The expanded Import To dialog window for file-
based media. Since files can be of any media type,
controls for all three types are provided. Most other
sources import only video media, and don’t show the
Audio and Photo controls.
The row of controls for each media type includes a
dropdown list of naming options:
No subfolder: With this option, the files you import
will be stored in the base folder.
Custom: When you choose this option, an in-place
edit box appears. Enter the name of the subfolder in
which to store your next import or imports of the
media type.
Today: Your imports will go to a subfolder named
with the current date, in the format “2009-10-25”.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 33
Creation date: Each imported file will be stored in a
subfolder named with the creation date of the media,
in the same format as above. When multiple media
items are brought in as part of a single import
operation, this may entail creating or updating
multiple subfolders.
Current month: This is the same as the Today
option but without the day portion, e.g “2009-10”.
After making your choice, click the button at the
top right of the dialog window to return to the Import
Wizard.
The Mode panel
The Mode panel of the Import Wizard provides a place
to adjust the options offered by several import sources.
DV / HDV import options
The options for DV and HDV
import are in three groups on
the Mode panel.
Presets: The Presets group
offers two standard
configurations for video and
audio compression, and a
custom setting that lets you fine-tune compression
parameters in the Compression Options window, which
opens when the upper more button is clicked. (See
34 Pinnacle Studio
“The Compression Options window” on page 36.) The
fixed presets are:
DV: This provides full-quality DV capture, using
about 200 MB of disk space per minute of video.
MPEG: MPEG compression produces smaller files
than does DV, but requires more computational
horsepower to encode and decode. This could result
in slower performance on older computers.
Scene detection: When the scene detection feature is
enabled, your footage is divided up on import into
“scenes” that can be displayed and manipulated
separately in the Studio Album. This greatly simplifies
the task of locating material of interest during editing.
Click the lower more button to open the Scene
Detection Options window. (See “The Scene Detection
Options window” on page 37.)
Stop at tape end: This option tells Studio whether to
automatically stop capturing if a blank area of tape is
encountered. A blank area – one without timecode
striping – indicates virgin tape. Provided you have
avoided leaving any blank spots during shooting (by
slightly overlapping neighboring shots), this option
allows for unattended capture.
Import options for analog media
The options for analog import
are similar to those just
discussed for digital sources.
See below for explanations of
the Compression Options and
Scene Detections Options
windows.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 35
Stop when no signal is the analog equivalent of the
Stop at tape end option described above. When set,
Studio will automatically end capture when the signal
from the source device is interrupted.
Import options for file-based media
The Mode panel provides two
options affecting importing
from file-based media.
Delete original: When this
option is enabled, the original
copies of the files you import will be deleted after
copying. This option is handy if you are using the
Import Wizard to consolidate your media and don’t
want your hard drive cluttered with redundant copies.
Ignore duplicates: This option helps you deal with
redundant media files you already have, by telling the
Import Wizard not to import extra copies of files that
may be differently-named but are apparently identical.
Import options for stop-motion capture
In stop-motion animation, a
series of individual frames is
captured from a live video
source. Depending on your
plans for the stop-motion sequence, you can instruct the
Import Wizard to integrate the individual frames into a
movie, or simply import each frame as a picture, or
both.
36 Pinnacle Studio
The Compression Options window
The options provided in the Mode panel for both DV /
HDV and analog import include access to this window
for fine-tuning compression preferences. If you select
either of the DV and MPEG presets, you can use this
window to review the actual settings used. Editing the
settings here automatically selects the “Custom” preset.
The Compression Options window for digital and
analog video import.
Because some options are contingent on others, not all
will be visible simultaneously.
Video settings
Compression Codec: Use this dropdown list to select
the codec you want to use.
Framesize: This line shows the dimensions of the
captured video.
Quality, Data rate: Some codecs present quality
options in terms of a compression percentage (Quality),
and others in terms of the required data transfer rate in
KB/sec (Data rate).
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 37
Audio settings
Compression: This dropdown shows the codec that
will be used to compress the incoming audio data.
Record audio: Clear this checkbox if you are not
planning to use the captured audio in your production.
The Scene Detection Options window
The options provided in the Mode panel for both DV /
HDV and analog import include access to this window
for configuring scene detection preferences.
The Scene Detection Options window for DV or HDV
import. When importing from analog sources, only
the the last two options are supported.
Automatic scene detection is a key feature of Studio
when working with DV and HDV sources. As video
capture proceeds, Studio detects natural breaks in the
video and divides it up into scenes. A new icon is
created in the Video Scenes section of the Album for
each scene detected.
38 Pinnacle Studio
Depending on which capture device you are using,
automatic scene detection is carried out either in real
time during capture, or as a separate step immediately
after capture is completed.
The four scene detection options are:
Automatic based on shooting time and date: This
option is available only when you are capturing from
a DV source. Studio monitors the time stamp data on
the tape during capture, and starts a new scene
whenever a discontinuity is found.
Automatic based on video content: Studio detects
changes in the video content, and creates a new
scene wherever there is a large change in the images.
This feature might not work well if the lighting is not
stable. To take an extreme example, a video shot in a
nightclub with a strobe light would produce a scene
each time the strobe flashed.
Create new scene every X seconds: Studio creates
new scenes at an interval you choose. This can be
useful for breaking up footage that contains long
continuous shots.
No automatic scene detection: Select this option if
you want to monitor the entire capture process and
decide for yourself where scene breaks should occur.
Press the [Space] key each time you want to insert a
scene break during capture.
The Filename panel
This panel of the Import Wizard is where you specify
the names under which your imported media files will
be stored.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 39
Each type of input source has
a default filename assigned by
Studio. For instance, the
default filename when
importing a Snapshot is “Snapshot”. To change it, click
in the space and type the name you want.
The Import Wizard never overwrites an existing file
when importing. If a file with the same name as the
target name already exists, a sequence number is added
to the name of the incoming file.
When importing from file-
based media, additional file
naming features are available.
By default the naming formula
for a file-based input is given symbolically as
“[original].[ext]”, meaning that the original filename
and extension are used.
If you want a custom name,
enter it into the edit box as
usual; however, in the case of
file-based media the target
filename has two parts: a stem, which you supply, and a
tail, which is generated by one of three simple rules at
the time of import. The default rule adds a unique
sequence number to every filename. While you are
entering your custom name, the edit box shows only the
stem. But when the name is displayed at other times,
the rule for the tail part of appears as well.
To select a different rule for the tail part, click the more
button . This opens a dialog window with two
dropdown lists. The first lets you choose between
“original” and “custom” for the stem. You can use this
if you ever want to revert to importing files under their
original names. The second dropdown, which is
40 Pinnacle Studio
displayed only for custom names, gives the available
rules for generating the tail part:
Number: This is the same rule used by other media
types to avoid name collisions. If your stem is
“Parade”, the first file copied will be named
“Parade” (plus the original file extension), the
second will be named “Parade_001”, and the
numbers then continue in sequence.
Creation time: The time of day when the file was
created, in hours, minutes, and seconds, is used to
generate file names like “Parade_20-30-00” for a file
that was created at exactly 8:30 in the evening.
Time of day: This is like the previous option, but the
time of importing the file is used.
The Import Filename Configuration window.
SELECTING MEDIA FOR IMPORT
Each source supported by the Import Wizard has its
own appropriate set of controls for selecting the
material. When you click the source name in the Import
From panel, the central area of the wizard configures
itself appropriately with the controls you need.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 41
Import from file-based media
Select Other devices in the Import From panel of the
Import Wizard to prepare for importing from file-based
storage media other than local hard drives, including
optical drives, memory cards and USB sticks.
The job of selecting the files to import belongs to the
folder and media file browser in the central area of the
display.
When importing from file-based media, the Import
Wizard provides a folder and file browser in the
central area. This is flanked on the left by the Import
From and Import To panels, and on the right by the
Mode and Filename panels. The Start Import button
at bottom right sets things in motion after the desired
media files have been selected.
A single import operation can take in multiple types of
media file from multiple source folders. Each selected
file will be copied to the correct folder for its media
type (as specified in the Import To panel).
42 Pinnacle Studio
The folder and media file browser
The left hand column of the
browser is a hierarchical
view of all folders on all file-
storage devices attached to
your computer. These
devices include hard drives,
optical disc drives, memory
cards and USB sticks.
Navigation in this “folder
tree” is similar to that in
Windows Explorer and other
programs. Folders containing
other folders are indicated by
a plus sign to the left of the
name when they are closed
and by a minus sign when they are open. Click the sign
to open out (“expand”) or close down (“collapse”) a
folder’s list of subfolders.
Only one entry in the folder tree can be highlighted at a
time. Any media files contained in that folder are
immediately listed in the larger, right-hand division of
the browser. You can preview files on the spot, and
earmark those you intend to import by checking the
box at the top right of corner of each file icon.
Previewing media files
Previewing audio and video: The
media file browser includes built-in
previewing for all supported media
types. Click the play button in the
center of video and audio file icons to
preview the media they represent. For
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 43
quick viewing, video files play back within the icon
frame itself. Click anywhere on the icon to halt
playback; otherwise the entire file is previewed.
Here, the folder video\current is open, revealing
eight video files. To select (or unselect) a file for
import, click the checkbox in the top right corner of
its icon. In the illustration, three files have been
selected.
Full-screen preview: During video
playback, a full-screen viewing button
is displayed at the top left of the file
icon. This button works similarly to
the Player’s full-screen preview button
in Studio’s Edit mode (see page 8).
Full-screen previewing closes automatically at the end
of the video. To close it manually, press the Esc key or
double-click the display during preview.
To view a digital photos or other picture file at full-
screen resolution, double-click its icon.
44 Pinnacle Studio
Scrub preview: Audio and video clips
both provide a scrubber control
immediately below the file icon. Click
and drag the scrubber knob to
manually review any part of the file.
The mouse pointer changes to a two-
headed horizontal arrow when it is correctly positioned
for scrubbing.
Selecting media files for import
To select media files one at a time for importing, click
the selection box at the top right corner of the file icon.
Click the selection box to check or uncheck the file.
Multiple selection: The browser also provides a
method of selecting (or unselecting) simultaneously a
group of highlighted files. To highlight an individual
file, simply click on its name or its icon; the
highlighted state is indicated by an orange border. To
highlight additional files, click icons in conjunction
with either of the Shift and Ctrl keys, as follows:
Click while pressing Ctrl to add or remove the
highlighting from one file without affecting the
others in the group.
Click while pressing Shift highlights the clicked icon
and all those between it and the previously clicked
icon, inclusive. Highlighting is removed from any
icons not within the range.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 45
You can also highlight a range of icons directly with
the mouse, by dragging out a rectangle that intersects
the icons you want to include. Click the first icon and
move to the last one before releasing the mouse button.
Having highlighted some icons you want to import,
click the selection box of any one of them to select or
unselect the entire group at once.
A group of four highlighted video file icons.
Selecting or unselecting any one will affect the whole
group.
Select all and Unselect all: Click these buttons along
the bottom of the media file browser to select for
importing either all or none of the media files listed in
the current folder. They do not affect any files currently
selected in other folders.
Use the Select all button to select all the media files in
the current folder.s
Each time a file is added to or removed from the list of
those to be imported, the media browser updates the
selection status indicator at the bottom of the display.
46 Pinnacle Studio
Customizing the browser
Several controls allow you to configure the media file
browser appropriately for your display hardware and
requirements.
Close the folder tree: To maximize the space for
viewing files, click the left-pointing double-arrow icon
at the top of the folder tree scroll bar. This collapses the
folder tree to a vertical bar down the left-hand side. At
the top of the bar is the right-pointing double-arrow
that will reopen the tree. The name of the current folder
is also shown.
Filter the file list: Another way
to optimize your use of the file
area is to limit the files shown
to include only one media type.
This is the function of the media
filter dropdown at the bottom left of the browser. By
default, all supported media file types appear in the
browser, but you can limit the view to picture files,
audio files or video files by your selection here. To see
exactly which file types are included in a selection,
hover on the item for a second or two to pop up the list.
Hovering over the Audio files option brings up a list
of file types from which audio import is supported.
Set preview size: A final tool for
managing screen real estate is the
preview size slider at the bottom right of the browser.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 47
Move the slider leftwards to reduce, or rightwards to
increase, the size of the preview images in the file
browser. There are three ways of moving this slider
with the mouse:
Click on the slider knob and drag to the left or right.
Click beside the slider knob to nudge itin the
appropriate direction.
Click the minus/plus buttons at the ends of the slider
scale to move the knob by a larger amount.
Set preview volume: To set the playback
volume of audio and video clips for
previewing, hover the mouse pointer in the
area of the audio/mute button in the bottom
bar of the media file browser. A volume slider will
appear beside the button. Drag the knob up and down
to control the volume. Click the audio/mute button
itself to toggle audio muting.
Adjusting the import file date and time
The internal clocks of the recording devices are often
set incorrectly, resulting in incorrectly timestamped
media files. The Import Wizard can correct this kind of
problem by setting the date and time of the imported
files according to your specifications.
To correct the file time or date:
Use the more button on the “Selected Files” lines to
open a window that offers two options for adjusting the
timestamps:
Correct time zone: This slider changes the file
timestamp of any media files you import by up to 12
48 Pinnacle Studio
hours in either direction. You can use this adjustment
to compensate for the time difference when you
bring home video from your travels.
Set date/time: These fields lets you enter an exact
date and time of your choice. The file time of any
media files you import will be changed to this.
Import from DV or HDV camera
To prepare for importing
digital video, switch on your
DV or HDV device in play
mode and select it in the
Import From panel of the
Import Wizard.
You will also need to make
sure that your destination
folder, compression presets, and other options are set
up in the other panels the way you want them. (See
“Import Wizard panels”, page 25.)
Previewing video
The video currently playing on the
source device should now be
visible in the preview area at the
central area of the display. Along
the right edge of the video preview
is a scale showing the moment-by-
moment audio level. Above that
scale, by the top right corner of the preview frame, is a
small button that switches to full-screen previewing.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 49
When a DV or HDV source is selected, the central
area of the Import Wizard provides controls for
previewing and importing the taped material.
Below the preview image is a row of controls for
automating capture by setting mark-in and mark-out
points. See “Recording video and audio” on page 51 for
more information.
Another row of controls, the transport bar, serves as
your navigation console for the source device.
The transport bar for DV and HDV import, with
(from left) jog controls and timecode readout,
transport buttons, a shuttle control, and an audio
button with a pop-out slider for controlling the
preview volume.
The current timecode indicator
shows your playback position
according to the timecode recorded onto the tape when
50 Pinnacle Studio
it was shot. The four fields represent hours, minutes,
seconds and frames respectively. To the left of the
indicator is a pair of arrow buttons; use these to jog the
position one frame back or frame forward at a time.
From left to right, the transport
buttons are play/pause, stop,
rewind and fast forward. These buttons relay
commands to your camera. Using them is equivalent to
using the camera’s onboard controls, but typically more
convenient.
Drag the orange needle on the
shuttle control to the left or right to
change the playback position in the reverse and forward
directions respectively. The motor speed increases as
you drag the needle further off center. When you
release the needle, it homes to the center position and
pauses playback.
Set preview volume: To set the
playback volume for previewing,
hover the mouse pointer in the area of
the audio/mute button in the bottom
bar of the media file browser. A
volume slider will appear beside the button. Drag the
knob up and down to control the volume. Click the
audio/mute button itself to toggle audio muting.
Mark-In/Out: Mark In and Mark Out indicate the
planned starting point and ending point of a video
capture. See page 51 for further information.
Note: DV and HDV sources are also suitable for
snapshots; see page 58 for details.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 51
Recording video and audio
The Import Wizard supports two approaches to
selecting a range of video to be imported.
In the manual approach, you simply watch the preview
playback and press Start Capture at the start of the
desired footage. When you reach the end of the
segment, press Stop Capture. If you have continuous
timecode on the source footage, and have set Stop at
tape end to “Yes” in the Mode panel, you can walk
away and leave the Import Wizard to switch off when
the input is exhausted.
The automatic method of capture is good for setting the
endpoints of your capture (the “mark-in” and “mark-
out”) points with single-frame precision, and for
unattended importing that should halt before the end of
the recorded material.
Sometimes you may want to use set the mark-in time
and leave mark-out blank. When you click Start
Capture the Import Wizard will locate your start time
then capture until you tell it to stop (or at tape end).
You can also set a mark-out time and leave the mark-in
time blank. When you click Start Capture import will
begin immediately, and end automatically at the mark-
out point. Entering a duration and entering a mark-out
time are equivalent. Whichever you specify, the Import
Wizard calculates and displays the other one
automatically.
Note: Before starting the import operation, verify that
the settings on the Import To panel and other panels
(see page 25) have been configured correctly.
52 Pinnacle Studio
To capture manually with the Start Capture and
Stop Capture buttons:
1. Make sure that the mark-in and mark-out points are
not set. If needed, use the button associated with
the field to clear it with one click.
2. Manually start playback of the source tape before
the desired starting point of the capture.
3. Click the Start Capture button when the starting
point is reached.
The button caption changes to Stop Capture.
4. At the end of the segment click the button again.
The captured material is stored in the Album.
5. Manually halt playback (unless automatic shutoff is
in effect as noted above).
To capture automatically by setting mark-in and
mark-out points:
1. Use the time counter controls to set the mark-in and
mark out values – the start and end points of the
desired footage.
To set the mark-in point, either
enter a value directly into the
start field, or navigate to the desired point and click
the Start button. A similar approach can be used to
set the mark-out point.
2. Click Start Capture. Studio positions the source
device to the mark-in point and automatically
begins recording.
3. When the mark-out point is reached, import is
terminated and the source device is stopped.
4. The captured material is stored in the Album.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 53
Import from analog sources
To record analog video (e.g. VHS or Hi8) you need a
converter that you can connect to your computer and
that has the appropriate video and audio connections.
This is also the case when recording from analog sound
sources, such as a record player.
Currently supported devices include Pinnacle and
Dazzle products such as USB 500/510, USB 700/710
and DVC 100, and webcams based on DirectShow
technology.
To prepare for importing from
an analog source, switch on
the device and select it by
name in the Import From
panel of the Import Wizard.
Also choose the applicable
input (e.g. “Video
Composite” or “Video
SVideo”). If you wish to
tweak the incoming analog signal prior to digitization,
click the more button , which provides access to the
Analog Input Levels window. (See page 27 for more
information.)
Before starting the capture, make sure that your
destination folder, compression presets, and other
options are set up in the other panels the way you want
them. (See “Import Wizard panels”, page 25.)
To capture from an analog source:
1. Verify that the correct input is connected (e.g.
“Video S-Video”).
54 Pinnacle Studio
2. Start the playback device just before the point at
which you would like capture to begin.
Video and audio previewing should now be active.
(If not, check cabling and converter installation.)
3. Click the Start Capture button to start recording.
The button caption changes to Stop Capture.
4. At the end of the segment click the button again.
The captured material is stored in the Album.
5. Halt the source device.
Import from DVD or Blu-ray Disc
The Import Wizard can import
video and audio data from
DVDs and BDs (Blu-ray
discs). To begin, insert the
source disc in its drive and
select it in the Import From
panel of the Import Wizard. If
you have more than one
optical drive, choose the
correct device among those listed.
Before starting the capture, make sure that your
destination folder and file name are set up in the other
panels the way you want them. (See “Import Wizard
panels”, page 25.)
Because large files can be involved when importing
from optical discs, selecting the correct import
directory is important. In particular, ensure that the
designated storage location has sufficient space
available (see page 29).
Note: Copy-protected media cannot be imported.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 55
Previewing the disc files
The media on optical discs are accessed through the
computer’s file system. For this reason, the previewing
controls in the central area, the methods for selecting
files, and the procedure for importing, are the same as
for ordinary file-based media (except that the unneeded
folder view starts in the closed position). Please see
page 41 for further information.
Import from digital cameras
Like optical disc drives, the
media on digital cameras is
accessed through the
computer’s file system. The
camera may appear on the
source list as a removable disk
drive. Previewing, selecting
and importing are the same as
for ordinary file-based media (except that the folder
view starts in the closed position). Please see page 41
for further information.
Stop motion
The Stop Motion function of the Import Wizard allows
you to create animated films by stitching together
individual frames grabbed from a live video source,
such as an analog video camera or webcam. The result
of your Stop Motion import will be either a movie at 8
56 Pinnacle Studio
or 12 frames per second, the collection of still images
you grabbed, or both, depending on your Mode panel
settings.
To prepare for Stop Motion
import, make sure the source
device is switched on, then
select it by name under the
Stop Motion heading in the
Import From panel of the
Import Wizard. (See page 27
for more information.)
Before starting the capture, make sure that your
destination folder, options and file name are set up in
the other panels the way you want them. (See “Import
Wizard panels”, page 25.)
If your source equipment is functioning
correctly, you should have a live preview in
the central area of the Import Wizard
window. For a full-screen preview, click the
button at the top right of the embedded preview. To
terminate the full-screen mode, press Esc or click the
close button at the top right of the screen.
When you are ready to capture an
image, click the Capture Frame
button. A thumbnail of the grabbed
frame is added to the Image Tray at the bottom of the
window. (See “Using the Image Tray” on page 60 for
more information.)
Since this is a stop motion sequence, after each image
is grabbed you will generally make small changes to
the scene you are shooting in order to create the illusion
of motion from frame to frame.
To make your task of visualization easier, the Stop
Motion preview includes an “onion skin” effect,
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 57
whereby successive frames are shown simultaneously
in translucent layers so that the differences can be
clearly seen. This feature can be configured on the
control bar.
The number of images shot so far and the duration of
the film (based on the number of images, rounded off)
are displayed to the right below the control bar.
The Stop Motion control bar
This bar provides transport and other functions for Stop
Motion import.
From left to right:
Live and File indicators: These let you switch
between previewing the live video feed and
previewing the captured frames in the Image Tray.
You can review – and if necessary replace –
particular frames without having to undo other work.
Counter: This readout shows your current position
within the animation in hour, minutes, seconds and
frames. The counter value depends on the number of
frames you have grabbed and the animation speed in
frames per second. The up and down arrow buttons
to the left of the counter provide single stepping
when previewing your animation.
Navigation buttons: These buttons are for
previewing your animation. A loop button lets you
cycle the animation continuously for easy checking.
Frame rate: This rate, in frames per second,
determines how many frames you will have to create
in order to amass one second of movie time. This
rate influences the apparent speed of the animation.
58 Pinnacle Studio
Onion skin settings: Click the more button to
open a small window where the onion skin feature
can be configured. The first slider shows the
difference in transparency between successive
frames, while the second controls the number of
frames, in addition to the current one, that will take
part in the effect. Experiment with both settings until
you find the levels that work best for your movie.
Importing the animation
When you have added all the frames you want to the
animation, click the Start Import button. The Import
Wizard adds your animated movie, and/or the
individual frames you captured, to the appropriate
sections of the Studio Album.
Snapshot
The Snapshot function of the
Import Wizard is used to
record individual frames (still
images) from cameras or
players connected to the
system. To prepare, make sure
the source device is switched
on, then select it by name
under the Snapshot heading in
the Import From panel of the Import Wizard. (See page
27 for more information.)
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 59
Before starting the capture, make sure that your
destination folder and file name are set up in the other
panels the way you want them. (See “Import Wizard
panels”, page 25.)
Now start your camera, or roll your tape, and start
monitoring the embedded preview display in the central
area of the Import Wizard window.
For a full-screen preview, click the button at
the top right of the embedded preview. To
terminate the full-screen mode, press Esc or
click close at the top right of the screen.
Capturing snapshots in the Import Wizard. While
previewing live or taped video in the central area of
the window, use the Capture Frame button to grab
still images. Grabbed frames accumulate in the
Image Tray at the bottom of the window until you
click the Start Import button to transfer them to the
Studio Album.
When you want to capture an
image as it goes by, click the
Capture Frame button. A
60 Pinnacle Studio
thumbnail of the grabbed frame is added to the Image
Tray at the bottom of the window.
Capture as many additional frames as are required. The
Import Wizard adds each one in turn to the collection
growing in the Image Tray. In the course of capturing,
you can change tapes, re-aim your camera, and so on as
you see fit. The source video doesn’t need to be
uninterrupted as long as there is signal present when
you actually click the Capture Frame button.
Using the Image Tray
For on-the-spot review of a frame you have already
grabbed, click the thumbnail of any but the most recent
frame in the Image Tray. This switches the preview
display from the video source to the captured file, and
activates the File indicator. You can also activate the
indicator by clicking it directly.
Click the File indicator or any thumbnail in the
Image Tray to review images already grabbed. Here,
thumbnail 3 has been clicked, and the mouse is
poised over the trashcan icon to delete it. The heavy
line to the right of the selected thumbnail indicates
where the next grabbed frame would be inserted.
Chapter 2: Capturing and importing media 61
To delete a captured frame, select it in the Image Tray,
then click the trashcan icon that appears in the top right
corner of the thumbnail.
To switch back to previewing video after reviewing
files in the Image Tray, click the Live indicator beneath
the preview display.
Importing the frames
When you have grabbed all the frames you want from
the video source, click the Start Import button. The
Import Wizard adds the grabbed images to the still
images section of the Studio Album.
Chapter 3: The Album 63
CHAPTER 3:
The Album
The Videos section of the Album in Scenes mode. The
icons shown here represent the scenes within a
particular movie file. Controls are provided (top) for
accessing other movie files anywhere on your system.
Click the tabs down the left side of the Album to
access the materials in the other sections.
With the current explosion of digital media
technologies, it is easier now than ever before to obtain
high-quality media items and incorporate them in your
productions.
Many types of media and resource can serve as
ingredients in Studio movies in addition to just video.
Starting with visual elements, you can include digital
photographs and art, fancy titles and animated
transitions. As for audio, you can spice up, or even
64 Pinnacle Studio
replace, the source video’s own soundtrack with music,
sound effects and voice-overs.
Then there are the special items. For a DVD disc you
will want to include attractive navigation menus, while
for polish and pizzazz in any production you can turn to
Studio’s Montage® theme templates, which let you
recombine other resources into dynamic and creative
video layouts.
Your Studio software installation already includes an
extensive collection of professionally-authored
resources, and numerous bonus packs are available as
well. Further afield there are practically limitless
possibilities for using all kinds of additional media,
whether of your own creation or from other sources.
Managing your media
Keeping track of this abundance of riches could easily
become a challenging task in itself, but Studio provides
two key management tools that let you navigate and
access your media assets with ease.
The Album provides intelligent browsing of your entire
media collection. It lets you quickly locate and preview
any desired item, then introduce it into your production
simply by dragging its icon into the Movie Window.
All your projects share and make use of the Album,
which is a permanent feature of Studio’s Edit mode.
The Project Bin is a special version of the Album
dedicated to handling the resources needed by the
current project. Media items you add to your movie, are
included in the Bin automatically, but you can also add
items directly so that they will be handy later on. The
Bin lets you collect and file all the materials you need
for a production, and keep them at your fingertips
Chapter 3: The Album 65
throughout the editing process, ready to use whenever
your project is loaded.
In this chapter we first cover the Album proper, but
most of the concepts and operations described apply
equally to the Bin, which is described beginning on
page 92.
Accessing Album media
The source materials you need for making a movie are
stored in the various sections of the Album, each of
which is accessed by its own tab as follows:
Video: This section contains video footage you
have shot or otherwise obtained. The supported
video file formats are: avi, mpg, mpeg, mod, mp2,
mp4, m2ts, mt2, m2t, tod, m1v, m2v, mpv, 3gp,
wmv, mov and skm. You can access and preview files
directly, or you can open an individual file to access its
contained scenes, which are represented by thumbnail
icons. To use some of the scenes in your movie, just
drag their icons into the Movie Window. See “The
Videos section”, page 69.
Transitions: This Album section contains fades,
dissolves, slides, and other transition types,
including the elaborate Hollywood FX transitions. To
use a transition, position it next to or between video
clips and graphics in the Movie Window. See “The
Transitions section”, page 84.
Montage® Themes: A Theme in Studio is a set
of matching templates. You can use the
templates to create effective sequences that combine
your video and still images with built-in animations
and effects. See “The Montage® Themes section”, page
86.
66 Pinnacle Studio
Titles: This section contains editable titles,
which you can use as overlays or as full-screen
graphics. You can create your own titles from scratch,
or use or adapt the supplied ones. Studio supports rolls,
crawls, animated motions, and many typographical
effects. See “The Titles section”, page 87.
Photos and Frame Grabs: This is a section of
photographs, bitmaps and grabbed video frames.
You can use these images full-screen or as overlays on
the main video. Most standard image file formats are
supported: bmp, dtl, gif, jpg, jpeg, pcx, png, psd, tga,
tif and wmf. See “The Photos and Frame Grabs
section”, page 88.
Disc Menus: Studio has an extensive collection
of chapter menus to use in DVD, VCD and
S-VCD authoring. You can use these as they are,
modify them, or create your own. See “The Disc
Menus section”, page 89.
Sound Effects: Studio comes ready with a wide
range of high-quality sound effects. You can also
use files that you have recorded yourself or obtained
from other sources. The formats supported are: wav,
mp3, mpa, m4a, wma, avi and ac3. See “The Sound
Effects section”, page 90.
Music: In this Album section you can locate and
use music files stored on your hard drive. The
formats supported are the same as those for sound
effects. See “The Music section”, page 91.
Using the Album
A dropdown list of folders is displayed in all Album
sections. In some, like the Photos and Frame Grabs
section, where the folders represent actual directories
Chapter 3: The Album 67
on your hard drive, additional navigation controls are
also provided.
A dropdown list of folders in the Photos and Frame
Grabs section. Here the current folder contains both
image files and subfolders, one of which has been
designated a ‘favorite’ (starred). Favorite folders
can be quickly retrieved by clicking My Favorite
Folders in the list.
The resources in each folder are represented by icons.
If there are more than will fit the display, a scroll bar
provides access to the rest. At the top right of each
Album page, Studio shows the total number of items in
the folder, and the range that is currently visible.
The readout above the scroll bar shows that the first
18 of 19 icons are currently on display.
All types of Album content can be previewed simply
by clicking on the icons.
68 Pinnacle Studio
This chapter introduces each of the Album sections in
turn, beginning with a detailed discussion of the all-
important Videos section. Actually using the contents
of the Album to create your edited movie will be the
subject of chapters 4 through 15.
Source folders for Album content
Most Album sections contain ordinary media files of
various types, but there are three exceptions. The scene
icons in the Scenes mode of the Videos section
represent segments within a particular video file, while
the icons in the Transitions and Themes sections
represent special resources associated with the Studio
program.
The other five sections, however, and the Files mode of
the Videos section, present the files contained in some
particular disk folder.
The icons in the Titles section represent files stored
in a selected source folder on your hard drive. The
dropdown list at the top of the Album page lets you
select from any of several installed folders of titles.
The folder button beside the list lets you access titles
in folders other than those listed if required. The
Disc Menus section works similarly.
The source folder for each section’s content is listed in
the dropdown list at the top left of the Album, next to a
Chapter 3: The Album 69
small folder button . To change the source of the
current section, either select a folder from the
dropdown list, or click the button, browse to another
folder on your system, and select any file. The file you
select will be highlighted in the repopulated Album
section.
Some Album sections also provide a parent folder
button to facilitate moving around within a group
of folders containing media of the same type.
File-based media in the Album provide a context menu
command, Open Containing Folder, that opens a
Windows Explorer window with the given file selected.
THE VIDEOS SECTION
This is where the editing process really begins –
in the Videos section of the Album with your
captured raw footage and other video source materials.
In a typical production, your first step will probably be
to drag some scenes from the Album down into the
Movie Window (see Chapter 5: Video Clips).
In the Album, scenes are displayed in the order in
which they occur in the video. This order cannot be
changed, since it is determined by the underlying file,
but scenes can be added to your movie in any order you
choose. Similarly, while you can’t trim (edit) Album
scenes themselves, you can use any desired portion of a
scene when it appears as a clip in your movie.
70 Pinnacle Studio
Files mode and Scenes mode
Choosing a particular video scene to use in a movie is a
two-step process. First, you must select the video file
containing the required scene by browsing for it on a
storage device – usually a hard drive – attached to your
system. Second, you choose the scene you want from
amongst those the selected file contains.
To browse for a video file in the Videos section of the
Album, select the Files radio button.
Browse folders and video files on your computer by
selecting Files mode in the Videos section of the
Album. Double-click a video file or select the Scenes
radio button to switch into Scenes mode.
View options
Both the Files and Scenes modes support multiple view
options that let you tailor the display to your needs by
showing more or less information about each Album
item.
Studio provides several methods of accessing these
view options:
Through commands on the View menu.
Through the Album’s right-button context menu.
Through the pop-up menu button that appears
when you click the View button.
Chapter 3: The Album 71
In Files mode, the Videos section supports three
views at varying levels of detail: Icon view,
Details view and Thumbnail view.
The two view options available in Scenes mode are:
Thumbnail view and Comment view.
Interface features
The Videos section offers several special interface
features:
Scenes that have been added to the Movie Window
are distinguished in the Album by a checkmark in
the top right corner of the scene icon. The checkmark
remains as long as any clip in the Movie Window
originates with that scene. A colored background
square in the same corner of the icon indicates that it
has been explicitly added to the Project Bin. Both
indicators can occur together (see below).
72 Pinnacle Studio
To see how a particular Album scene is used in your
current project, use the Album Find Scene in
Project menu command. Studio highlights any clips
in the Movie Window that originate in the selected
scene (or scenes). To go the other way, use the Find
Scene in Album command, which is on the right-
click menu for Movie Window clips.
The symbol in the top-right corner of an icon in the
Album or the Project Bin reveals its status:
unused (no symbol); used in project; added to
Bin; both used in project and added to Bin.
Nearly all menu commands that apply to scenes are
available both on the main Album menu, and on the
pop-up menu that appears when you right-click a
selected scene. When this documentation calls for a
menu command like Album Combine Scenes,
remember that an equivalent command is usually
available on the pop-up “context” menu as well. Many
commands are also available in the Project Bin.
Summary of operations
Because of its central role, the Videos section of the
Album provides an extensive set of operations. These
are covered below in the following topics:
Opening a video file
Viewing video
Selecting scenes and files
Displaying scene and file information
Comment view
Combining and subdividing scenes
Redetecting scenes
Chapter 3: The Album 73
Opening a video file
The default locations for your video files are the
Windows public video folder and the matching folder
in your user account. When you are viewing the Videos
section in Files mode, both of these locations always
appear on the dropdown list at the top of the Album.
You can also choose other hard drive folders to access
stored video files. Studio lets you navigate to the folder
where your files are located by clicking the icons in the
Files mode. You can also select a file directly by
clicking the Browse for file button in either Files or
Scenes mode. Both the current and previous folders are
also listed, if they are different from the two standard
locations, making four different folders that may appear
in the list at any one time.
The final entry on the dropdown list is “My Favorite
Folders”. If you are working with several different
video folders, Studio’s “favorites” feature makes
navigation easy. To designate any folder a favorite, use
the right-button menu command Set as Favorite folder.
Favorite folders are displayed with a star graphic in the
Album. To return to a favorite, select “My Favorite
Folders”, then the particular folder you have in mind.
Selecting ‘My Favorite Folders’. The folder at right
has been designated a favorite, as shown by the star.
See “The Videos Section” (page 69) for details about
modes and view options when working with video
scenes in the Album.
74 Pinnacle Studio
Opening a folder
Folder contents are displayed in Files mode. Both the
subfolders and the digital video files within the current
folder are shown.
Three ways to open a folder:
With the Videos section in Files mode, select the
folder name on the dropdown list, or double-click
any listed folder.
Click the parent folder button in either Files or
Scenes mode.
Click the browse for file button and use the Open
dialog to locate a digital video file in either Files or
Scenes mode. When Studio opens the video file,
switch to Files mode to display the contents of its
parent folder.
Opening a file
When you open a video file, icons are displayed that
represent the scenes in the file:
Chapter 3: The Album 75
Three ways to open a digital video file:
Select the file name on the dropdown list when the
Videos section is in Scenes mode.
Double-click a file listed in Files mode.
Click the browse for file button and use the Open
dialog to locate a digital video file of any supported
type on your hard drive.
Scene detection and thumbnails
When you open a video file, the Album fills with the
file’s detected scenes. Each scene is denoted by a
thumbnail frame – an icon of the scene’s first frame. It
may be that the first frame doesn’t make a good icon
for the scene, so Studio lets you pick a different one if
desired.
To change thumbnails in the Album:
1. Select the scene to be changed.
2. Use the Player to find the frame you want used for
the thumbnail.
3. Click the Album Set Thumbnail menu command.
Video aspect ratios
Most digital video files provide format information that
allows Studio to detect the frame aspect ratio of 4:3 or
16:9 automatically. If the file does not provide aspect
ratio information, Studio defaults to the standard 4:3
format.
The Aspect Ratio 4:3 and Aspect Ratio 16:9 commands
on the Album menu let you manually set whichever
76 Pinnacle Studio
ratio you need. These commands also appear on the
right-button context menu for video in the Album.
Their method of operation is to stretch the original
frames to the new frame size. If you set the ratio of a
4:3 movie to 16:9, for example, people and objects will
appear widened relative to their height.
This is different from the frame-size conversion that
occurs when you add a scene to a movie project with
the “opposite” aspect ratio. In that case, the scene is
scaled in both dimensions equally to fit within the
target frame, and excess area appears as black.
The Aspect Ratio commands become available after the
Studio has opened the file for the first time and indexed
its scenes. Until then the menu items are disabled.
(L) Original 4:3 frame; (C) Same frame with black
sidebars on adding to 16:9 project; (R) Same frame
after Aspect ratio 16:9 command is used. Aspect
ratio mismatches can also be handled in the Movie
Window with the context menu commands ‘Show full
picture’ and ‘Zoom picture to fill frame’.
Note: The movie project’s frame format, which cannot
be changed after the project is created, can be set for
new projects in the Project preferences options panel.
See page 358 for more information.
Chapter 3: The Album 77
Viewing video
Individual or multiple scenes in an open video file can
be viewed at any time.
To view video starting at a selected scene:
1. Click on the scene’s icon in the Album.
The Player displays the first frame of the selected
scene.
2. Click the Play button in the Player.
The Player now plays the selected scenes and any
subsequent ones. Progress is indicated in three
ways.
The scenes highlight successively as they are
played.
The Player scrubber shows the current point of
play relative to the entire movie.
Scene thumbnails display a progress bar during
preview. As you continue to view your captured
video, the progress bar moves from one
thumbnail to the next.
78 Pinnacle Studio
Previewing digital video files
When a video file is selected in Files mode, you can
use the Player to preview the video without actually
opening the file into Scenes mode.
Selecting scenes and files
Studio offers a variety of ways to select scenes, files
and folders in the Videos section of the Album.
Selected video scenes are indicated by a highlighted
border. Selected folders and video files are shown with
text highlighting.
Selected scenes have a highlighted border (center).
Selection techniques follow standard Windows
conventions. Use any of the following, separately or in
combination:
Choose the Edit Select All menu command or
press Ctrl+A to select all the scenes (or files and
folders) currently displaying in the Album, including
those on other pages.
Chapter 3: The Album 79
Shift-click to select a range of neighboring items.
Ctrl-click to add or remove individual items from the
selection.
Starting with the mouse pointer over a blank area of
the Album page, click and drag to “marquee” an
area, selecting all the items that intersect the area.
Use the arrow keys to navigate the Album grid. Use
the arrows in combination with Shift to select items
as you go.
Selected folders and video files have highlighted text.
Note the star on the folder ‘2008’, indicating that it
has been designated a favorite.
Displaying scene and file information
As you move the mouse pointer over
video scenes, the pointer changes to a
grabber symbol. If you pause
momentarily on the scene, the start time
and length is displayed in a pop-up box.
If you leave the grabber on the scene,
the display persists for several seconds. The start time
shown is the timecode from the original source video,
in minutes, seconds, and frames.
80 Pinnacle Studio
For information regarding video
files when the Videos section is
in folder view mode, select
Details view in the Album’s
right button context menu. The file name, resolution,
aspect ratio, duration and frame rate are displayed.
Switch back to a more compact listing with Icon view.
Comment view
In the default view for the Scenes mode of the Videos
section, known as Thumbnail view, each scene is
represented by a thumbnail frame icon. To see more
information about each scene, switch to Comment view
using any of the methods described on page 70.
In comment view, editable captions are displayed for
Album scenes. The usage of these captions is up to
you: they might be search keywords, or scene names,
or text comments describing the scene content. The
default caption is generated from the scene’s sequence
number and duration (e.g. “Scene 3, 7:21”).
If you click on a video scene, an in-place text field lets
you enter a custom name or comment.
Chapter 3: The Album 81
Selecting scenes by name
A related option lets you select video scenes by
scanning for keywords in the comments. Use Album
Select By Name to open this dialog box:
Enter a keyword into the text field and click OK to
highlight all Album scenes whose caption contains the
keyword. The default captions are not searched – only
the ones you have customized.
Combining and subdividing scenes
After previewing your scenes, you might want to
combine or subdivide some into larger or smaller units.
Such adjustments are easily made.
To combine scenes in the Album:
1. Select the scenes to be combined.
2. Select Album Combine Scenes.
The selected scenes are combined into one.
Only selected adjacent scenes can be combined.
Furthermore, they are joined in the order in which
82 Pinnacle Studio
they appear in the Album, regardless of the order in
which they were selected. (Album order proceeds
across rows and then down the page.) To revert,
press Ctrl+Z, or click the undo button.
If the scenes you selected were not all neighbors,
each set of adjacent scenes is combined, but the
different sets are not combined with each other.
Several selected scenes (black) are merged into two
longer scenes. Having no neighbors, scene 4 is
unaffected, even though it was part of the selection.
To subdivide scenes in the Album:
1. Select the scenes to be subdivided.
2. Select Album Subdivide Scenes.
The Subdivide Selected Scenes dialog box appears.
3. Choose the length of the subdivided scenes by
typing in a value.
The smallest allowed subdivision is one second.
Any video remaining after subdivision is added to
the last scene.
Chapter 3: The Album 83
4. Click OK.
A progress bar appears, the scene is subdivided, and
new scenes are added to the Album. To revert,
press Ctrl+Z, or click the undo button.
You can subdivide these scenes still further, if
desired, down to the minimum duration of one
second.
Three selected scenes are subdivided to a duration
of five seconds. The vertical stripes indicate five-
second divisions within each scene. The uneven clip
timings at right occur because time left after
subdivision is added to the final divided scene; that
is also why scene 2 is ultimately unaffected by the
subdivision operation.
Redetecting scenes
If you combine or subdivide scenes and later decide
that you’d prefer to restore them to their original state,
you may redetect any scene or selection of scenes. The
detection results are identical to those originally
obtained, provided the same scene detection technique
is used.
If you have subdivided scenes, you must first
recombine them. Even if you cannot exactly recall the
84 Pinnacle Studio
initial state and so recombine more than is necessary,
the detection process will restore the original scene
sequence.
To redetect scenes:
1. If you need to recombine any scenes, first select the
subdivided scenes, then apply the Album
Combine Scenes menu command.
2. Select the scenes you wish to redetect.
3. From the Album menu, select either Detect Scenes
by Video Content or Detect Scenes by Shooting
Time and Date.
A progress window appears as Studio detects the
scenes and repopulates the Album.
THE TRANSITIONS SECTION
The Transitions section of the Album provides a
large set of drag-and-drop clip transitions. To
keep things manageable, the transitions are divided into
groups. Use the dropdown list to select which group of
transitions you want to view.
To learn about transitions, and
how you can use them in your
movies, see Chapter 9:
Transitions.
Studio’s transitions collection
includes 74 standard
transitions, over 100 Alpha
Magic transitions, and a starting set of unrestricted
Hollywood FX 3-D transitions.
Chapter 3: The Album 85
Obtaining more transitions
Besides those installed with Studio, additional packs of
Hollywood FX transitions are available for purchase
through the Avid web-site.
For more information about purchasing premium
content for Studio, see “Expanding Studio” on page 12.
Displaying the transition name
As you move the mouse pointer over the transition
icons in the Album, the pointer changes to a grabber
symbol (indicating that the transition can be dragged
from the Album to the Movie Window). If you pause
momentarily on the icon, the name of the
transition is displayed. The display persists
for several seconds or until your mouse
pointer moves off the transition.
Previewing transition effects
When you click on a transition icon, the Player
demonstrates the transition using the convention that
“A” represents the original clip and “B” the new clip.
The demonstration cycles for as long as the icon
remains selected.
To see a detailed view, stop the Player and use the jog
buttons (Frame reverse and Frame forward) to step
through the transition one frame at a time.
86 Pinnacle Studio
THE MONTAGE® THEMES SECTION
Editing based on Montage® Themes is a
powerful feature unique to Studio. Each theme
consists of a set of matching templates. Use the
dropdown list to select the Theme whose templates you
want to view.
The templates available
for each theme provide
slots for your own video,
photos, captions and
settings. When you create
a theme clip from the
template (by dragging it
to the Movie Window),
the Theme Editor opens
to accept your
customizations. It can be
reopened at any later time by double-clicking the clip.
Templates give you a fast, easy way to craft visually
effective sequences that combine your own materials
with built-in animations and effects.
For information on using themes in your movies, see
Chapter 6: Montage® themes and theme editing.
Obtaining more themes
Besides those installed with Studio, additional themes
are available for purchase through the Avid web-site.
For more information about purchasing premium
content for Studio, see “Expanding Studio” on page 12.
Chapter 3: The Album 87
THE TITLES SECTION
This section of the Album contains a collection
of text and graphic titles in a variety of styles.
They can be used in your movie as either full-screen or
overlay titles. The difference is that in an overlay title
the transparent background is replaced by other
material (usually a video clip), whereas in a full-screen
title, any transparent areas of the background are
replaced with black.
Studio supports two title formats. Both allow you to
combine decorative text with graphic shapes and
images, but each has specialized properties, and its own
editing tools.
Classic titles are primarily static, but allow simple
animation in the form of text ‘crawls’ and ‘rolls’.
The Classic Title editor also supports advanced text
formatting such as variable character and line
spacing. Most importantly, the Classic Title editor
can also be used for visual editing of disc menus.
Motion titles provide fewer special text operations,
and cannot be used to edit disc menus. As the name
suggests, however, these titles support a rich set of
customizable animation routines, which can be
applied to invidual elements – text or graphic – to
produce dynamic visual compositions. The
thumbnail versions of motion titles are distinguished
by a special symbol in your project.
In the Album, a gray checkerboard is used
to indicate the portion of a title that will be
treated as transparent in overlays. (If you
prefer a black background, use the Album Black
88 Pinnacle Studio
background menu command.) As with video scenes,
titles that have been added to your current project are
indicated in the Album by a checkmark symbol.
With Studio’s built-in title editors, you can readily
create your own titles when needed. However, you may
find it easier still to start with one of the supplied titles,
of either type, and customize it in the corresponding
editor.
The Titles folder: The icons in the Titles section
represent files in the folder named at the top left of the
section. Each folder contains either classic or motion
titles. The special folders “My Motion Titles” and “My
Classic Titles” provide default locations for storing
titles that you have created or modified yourself. You
can also select a different folder to be the source of the
section (see “Source folders for Album content” on
page 68).
For information on using titles in your movie, see
Chapter 12: The Classic Title Editor, and Chapter13:
The Motion Titler.
THE STILL IMAGES SECTION
This section of the Album displays thumbnail
icons of image files, which may include grabbed
video frames, photographs and bitmapped drawings.
Most standard image file formats are supported. As
with video scenes, images that are in use in your
current movie are indicated by a checkmark symbol.
The Still Images folder: The icons in the Still Images
section represent files in the folder named at the top left
Chapter 3: The Album 89
of the section. Images can be added to the section by
storing them in this folder. For instance, you can save
grabbed video frames into the folder from the Frame
grabber tool, copy images using the Import Wizard, or
save your digital photos from a desktop photo-editing
application. You can also select a different folder to be
the source of the section (see “Source folders for
Album content” on page 68).
For information on using still images in your movie,
see Chapter 10: Still images.
THE DISC MENUS SECTION
This section of the Album contains a collection
of artist-designed menus for VCD, S-VCD and
DVD authoring. Menus in Studio are really specialized
“classic” titles: they can be created and edited in the
Classic Title Editor, and either saved from the editor
into a disk folder or incorporated directly into your
movie.
As with video scenes and other visual resources, disc
menus that are in use in your movie are distinguished in
the Album by a checkmark symbol.
For information on using disc menus in your movie,
see Chapter 11: Disc menus.
The Disc Menus folder: The icons in the Disc Menus
section represent files in the folder named at the top left
of the section. Menus can be added to the section by
storing them in this folder. You can also select a
90 Pinnacle Studio
different folder to be the source of the section (see
“Source folders for Album content” on page 68).
The motion background symbol: Some of the menus
supplied with Studio incorporate a background of
moving video rather than a static picture, and you can
also create such menus yourself. This “motion
background” can help give a professional look to your
finished disc.
Availability: The motion background feature is
available in Studio Ultimate only. See “Adding a
motion background” on page 258 for information on
creating or editing a moving video background.
Menus with motion backgrounds are indicated by a
small symbol in the bottom right-hand corner of the
Album icon.
Obtaining additional disc menus
Besides those installed with Studio, additional disc
menus are available for purchase through the Avid
web-site. For more information about purchasing
premium content for Studio, see “Expanding Studio”
on page 12.
THE SOUND EFFECTS SECTION
Studio comes with a wide range of ready-to-use
sound effects. These wav files are installed into a
number of folders, covering categories such as
“animals”, “bells” and “cartoons”.
Chapter 3: The Album 91
The Sound Effects folder: This section of the Album
displays the sound files contained in one disk folder,
named at the top left of the section. You can display the
sounds in a different folder – not necessarily one of
those installed by Studio – by selecting that folder to be
the source for the section (see “Source folders for
Album content” on page 68).
Besides wav (Windows “wave”) files, files in mp3
format, avi animation files, and other types are also
displayed in this section of the Album, and may be
drawn upon for supplemental audio in your
productions.
Any sound clip can be previewed simply by clicking its
name or icon.
For information on using sounds in your movie, see
Chapter 14: Sound effects and music.
Obtaining more sound effects
Besides those installed with Studio, additional sound
effects are available for purchase through the Avid
web-site.
For more information about purchasing premium
content for Studio, see “Expanding Studio” on page 12.
THE MUSIC SECTION
This section of the Album displays the music
files in a folder on your hard drive. To use a file
drag it onto the Music track or another audio track on
the Movie Window Timeline.
92 Pinnacle Studio
The Music folder: The wav, mp3 and other audio files
come from the folder named at the top left of the
section. Other music files can be added to the section
by storing them in this folder. You can also select a
different folder to be the source of the section (see
“Source folders for Album content” on page 68).
For information on using background music in your
movie, see Chapter 14: Sound effects and music.
THE PROJECT BIN
When you begin working with the Project Bin, you will
notice a strong family resemblance between it and the
Album. The essential differences between the two are
the scope and source of their collections. Whereas the
Album is a central library of available resources, the
Bin contains only those items that either already belong
to the current project or that you have specifically
earmarked for possible inclusion. It therefore does not
need or have the Album’s system of source folders and
file navigation. However, it is still possible to introduce
material from the file system directly into the Bin by
drag-and-drop, as described below.
The button to the left of the project name opens the Bin.
An empty Bin is automatically created for each project,
and its contents are loaded and saved along with the
project thereafter. To open the Bin and inspect its
Chapter 3: The Album 93
contents, click the folder button near the left end of the
Movie Window title bar, or use the Toolbox Show
Project Bin menu command.
While open, the Project Bin appears as a panel in the
screen area usually allotted to the Album. A single tab
on the left side bears a folder icon identifying the panel
as the Bin, while tabs along the top provide access to
your project’s resources in four groups:
Videos: Like the corresponding section of the
Album, this tab can house video files of all kinds,
and allows previewing and selecting material in both
file and scene views.
Photos: Again like the Album section, this tab is for
your bitmapped image files, including digital photos
and frame grabs.
Audio: All types of music and sound files can be
stored here.
The Videos section of the Project Bin presents an
almost identical interface to that of the same section
of the Album, lacking only the folder navigation
controls. The checkbox at top left, ‘Show timeline
media/content’, allows you to temporarily hide items
that are already in use by your project.
94 Pinnacle Studio
Other: This tab is for miscellaneous resources –
classic titles, motion titles, disc menus and Montage®
themes.
Adding to the Bin
As noted above, every time you add content items to
your project, the items are also added to the Bin for
further use. You can also add items directly to the Bin
only, leaving for later their possible inclusion in the
project. If you like to begin your projects with a
“gathering” phase in which you assemble the needed
materials prior to editing, the Bin can significantly
streamline this task.
When new items are added, they are automatically
sorted into the appropriate Bin sections, and will be
available the next time the Bin is opened.
The items in the Bin are not new copies of the media
files concerned, but simply references to existing files,
so you can add as many as you like without worrying
about using excessive amounts of storage. If the actual
files corresponding to a Bin item is deleted or moved
from its location, it will no longer be available in the
Bin either.
To add one or more selected items to the Bin, use
any of these methods:
Drag items from the Album onto the Bin button. A
standard drag-and-drop mouse pointer confirms the
operation.
Drag media items from Windows Explorer and
similar applications onto either the Bin button, or the
Chapter 3: The Album 95
Bin itself if it is open. All media types supported by
Studio are allowed, and will be appropriately
classified.
Select the context menu command Add to Bin or Pin
to Bin on any Album item. “Pinning” applies only to
items that are already part of your movie project. An
item that is “pinned” to the Bin will not be removed
from there even if you delete it from the project.
Once an item is in the Bin, you can use the same
techniques for adding it to your project as you would
from the Album, by dragging the icon to the Movie
Window, or right-clicking and selecting Add to project
from the context menu.
A symbol in the top-right corner of an Album or Bin
icon shows both whether the item is currently used in
the project, and whether it has been explicitly added to
the Bin. See page 71 for details.
Removing from the Bin
As just noted, there is a distinction between items that
are added automatically to the Bin only because they
are used in your current movie project, and those that
you have added explicitly. “Pinned” items are those for
which both conditions are true.
To remove an automatically-added item, delete it
from the project.
To remove an item not in the project, click the
Remove from Project Bin command on the item’s
context menu in either the Album or the Bin.
To remove a pinned item, click the Unpin from
Project Bin command on the item’s context menu in
either the Album or the Bin, and also delete the item
from the project.
Chapter 4: The Movie Window 97
CHAPTER 4:
The Movie Window
The Movie Window, where you build your movie from
the raw materials in the Album, occupies the bottom
half of the screen in Studio’s Edit mode. To access the
Movie Window, first switch to Edit mode if you are not
already there:
The Movie Window title bar contains several important
controls and displays. The toolbox buttons at the left of
the title bar open the Video toolbox and the Audio
toolbox, which are discussed on page 108.
Next to the toolbox buttons is the button for the Project
Bin, represented by a folder icon. This button also
serves as a target for material dragged to the Bin from
the Album and from Windows Explorer. See “The
Project Bin” on page 92 for details.
To the right of the Bin button is a text area where the
project file name is displayed. Status and warning
messages are also displayed in this area when required.
The next controls relate to clip markers, which are like
bookmarks attached to clips in your project. In a new
project, the only visible clip marker control is the Add
98 Pinnacle Studio
Marker button. When you add your first marker, more
controls appear.
The Add Marker button (top) creates a new clip
marker at the Timeline scrubber position. After you
add a marker to your project, controls for naming
and selecting them become visible (bottom). See
“Clip markers” on page 105 for full information.
Further still to the right are the Audio scrubbing, Clip
split and Clip delete buttons, then three view selection
buttons (see “Movie Window views” on page 101), and
finally a compact version of the Volume and balance
tool’s output level meter (see page 322).
Audio scrubbing button
By default, your project’s audio is previewed
during playback only. Studio’s audio scrubbing
feature, which is turned on and off by the loudspeaker
button, provides audio preview when you are scrubbing
through your movie as well.
Chapter 4: The Movie Window 99
Audio scrubbing makes life much easier when making
editing decisions that depend on sound cues.
Split clip/scene button – the razorblade
Click this button to split the currently-selected
clip in the Movie Window, or the currently-
selected scene in the Album.
No information is lost. If the item is an Album scene, it
is split at the indicated point into two shorter scenes. If
the item is a clip in the Movie Window, it is duplicated
and automatically trimmed to the split point.
The razorblade button can be used in conjunction with
the track-locking buttons in the Movie Window’s
Timeline view to carry out special operations such as
insert editing, and edits in which the audio leads or lags
behind the video. See “Advanced Timeline editing” on
page 132.
Splitting a clip: The placement of the edit line in the
original clip determines the split point. When you
apply the razorblade tool, Studio duplicates the clip
and trims away the portion after the split point in the
first copy and up to the split point in the second.
Delete Clip button – the trashcan
This button deletes the currently-selected
content in any of the Movie Window views. By
default, when video clips on the main video track of
100 Pinnacle Studio
your project are deleted in any view, the gap in your
movie that would otherwise be created by the deletion
is automatically closed up, and clips on other tracks are
removed or shortened as required to keep everything in
sync.
If you delete clips on other tracks, the default behavior
is that gaps between them are not automatically
removed, so the timing of other clips is not affected.
If you press the Ctrl key while clicking the delete
button, or pressing the Delete key, the default behavior
for the current track is reversed. That is, on the main
video track, Ctrl+Delete leaves a gap when the clip is
removed, while on the other tracks, the gap on the track
is closed up. In neither case are other tracks affected.
You can also access the delete operations through the
right-button context menu for clips on the Timeline.
The delete options on the right-button menu for
Timeline clips are not the same for clips on the main
video track (L) as for those on other tracks (R). The
menus summarize the context-dependent keyboard
shortcuts.
Positioning: edit line, scrubbers
The current position is the frame showing in the Player
when you are working with a clip in the Movie
Window. In the Timeline view, it is indicated by the
edit line. The current position can be changed by
moving either the Timeline scrubber (to which the edit
line is attached) or the Player scrubber.
Chapter 4: The Movie Window 101
When the Clip properties tool is open, a third
scrubber, the trim scrubber, is available for
adjusting the current position within the clip during
trimming.
MOVIE WINDOW VIEWS
The Movie Window provides three different views of
your project: Timeline, Storyboard and Text. Select the
one you want to use by clicking the view selection
buttons in the upper right corner of the Movie Window.
Storyboard view
Storyboard view shows the order of
video scenes and transitions. It uses
thumbnail icons for quickly structuring a movie. You
can choose to work with large or small thumbnails with
the Show large storyboard thumbnails checkbox on the
Project preferences options panel.
102 Pinnacle Studio
Timeline view
Timeline view shows the positions and
durations of clips relative to the
Timescale. This view also displays up to eight tracks
on which you can place various types of clip:
Video, plus full-screen disc menus, titles
and graphics: The video track contains the
primary visual material in your production. See
Chapter 5: Video clips, Chapter 10: Still images and
Chapter 11: Disc menus for more information.
Original (or “synchronous”) audio: The
original audio track contains the audio that
was captured along with the video from your camera.
You can manipulate the audio clips on this track to
achieve various effects using insert-editing and split-
editing techniques. See “Insert editing” (page 134)
and “Split editing” (page 136) for more information.
Overlay video and audio: Video and images
placed on the overlay track can be used with
the Picture-in-picture and Chroma key tools
to give your video productions a professional
appearance. Original audio for overlay video
is stored on the linked audio track. See Chapter 8:
Two-track editing for details about the overlay track.
Title and graphic overlays: Images placed
on the title track will be rendered as overlays
upon the main video, with transparent backgrounds.
See Chapter 10: Still images and Chapter 11: Disc
menus for more information.
Sound effects and voice-overs: The audio
clips on this track are mixed with the original
Chapter 4: The Movie Window 103
audio track and the background music track to create
the final soundtrack for your movie. See Chapter 14:
Sound effects and music for full information.
Background music: The background music
for your movies can be created to any desired
duration with the ScoreFitter tool (page 309) or
imported with the CD audio tool (page 308). Your
soundtrack can also make use of mp3 and other
music files (see page 303).
Disc menus, chapter marks and return-to-
menu links: This is an extra track that
appears above the video track whenever the movie
has at least one disc menu. See Chapter 11: Disc
menus for information.
Because many editing operations can be carried out
only in Timeline view, you should choose it whenever
extensive, detailed or advanced editing is required.
Track locking
The video track normally takes precedence over all
other tracks for trimming or deleting. This has several
consequences:
When you trim a video clip, clips running
simultaneously on other tracks are also trimmed.
104 Pinnacle Studio
When you delete a video clip, the time segment it
used is also removed from any parallel clips.
Clips that fall entirely within a deleted video clip’s
span are also deleted.
These behaviors can be bypassed when necessary with
a feature that allows you to “lock” any track indepen-
dently of the others, thereby excluding it from editing
and playback operations.
The padlock buttons along the
right edge of the Movie
Window, can be clicked to
toggle locking for the
corresponding track. Track-
locking gives Studio insert-edit
and split-edit capability (see
Chapter 5: Video clips).
Track muting and hiding
The audio tracks can be
individually muted with the
mute buttons at the right edge
of the Movie Window. These
buttons have the same function
as the mute buttons in the
Volume and balance tool. (See
page 322 for more
information.)
The equivalent operation for
video tracks is effected with
the hide buttons, which can be
used to temporarily omit a
track’s video from your project.
This is especially handy to see
what’s really going on while
editing overlay video.
Chapter 4: The Movie Window 105
Placement feedback
Studio gives you several types of feedback about your
actions as you place clips in the Timeline view.
The status line: The status line area on the left of the
Movie Window title bar displays messages as you place
clips and perform other actions.
Placement symbols: While you are dragging a clip
into position on the Timeline, Studio provides feedback
to tell you whether the current placement of the clip is
valid. The mouse pointer shape and the colors of the
vertical placement lines indicate what you can and
cannot do.
For example, if you attempt to drag a sound onto the
video track, the placement guidelines turn from green
to red, the mouse pointer changes from “copy” to
“unavailable”, and the status line tells you, “Only
scenes, titles, photos, menus and transitions on video
track.”
Green placement lines with the “copy” pointer mean
that an action is valid; red placement lines with the
“unavailable” pointer show that it is not.
Clip markers
Studio’s straightforward system of clip markers can
simplify navigation within a project, especially one that
is long or complex.
106 Pinnacle Studio
Markers can also be used to define start and end points
for outputting a portion of your movie as a file or to the
Web. See “Create between markers” on page 339 for
details.
Controls relating to clip markers appear in the Movie
Window title bar. In a new project, the only visible
control in the group is the add marker button. The
remaining controls appear only after the first marker
has been added.
In a new project, the only visible clip marker control
is the Add Marker button . Clicking the button (or
pressing your ‘M’ key) creates a marker at the
position of the Timeline scrubber.
Once a marker has been added, the Add Marker
button changes to Delete Marker, and the remaining
controls appear . Notice marker tab ‘01’ at the
scrubber position .
As more markers are added, the Previous Marker
and Next Marker buttons are enabled as needed .
Studio renumbers markers to keep them in
sequence , but leaves unchanged the name you
provided, if any .
Chapter 4: The Movie Window 107
A clip marker represents a particular frame in a
particular clip. Even if that clip is moved around within
the project, or trimmed, the anchor location remains
unchanged. However, the marker itself can be moved,
even to a different clip, by dragging it with the mouse.
The clip marker controls include:
Add marker, Delete marker: In Timeline
view, the add marker button is enabled
whenever a clip is selected, provided there is
not already a marker at the scrubber position.
If a marker is present, the delete marker button
appears instead.
Previous marker, Next marker: These
buttons allow you to step through the
markers in your project. Unlike the add marker and
delete marker buttons, these buttons are enabled in
all Movie Window views, not just Timeline view.
Clip marker title: If there is a clip marker at the
Timeline scrubber position, its number and name are
displayed in this text field (otherwise the field is
uneditable). The displayed marker number is
assigned automatically, and cannot be changed, but
the optional name can be modified at will.
Clip marker title list: Click the arrow button at the
right of the clip marker title to open this list, which
shows the number and name of each marker in your
project. Selecting a marker moves the Timeline
scrubber to the corresponding position.
108 Pinnacle Studio
Note: Once you have more than a very few markers in
your project, managing them becomes simpler if you
give them meaningful names. However, names are
optional and, as noted above, Studio helps out by
automatically keeping the list in time order.
Text view
The Movie Window Text view is a list
showing the start and end times of
clips, as well as their duration. In addition, custom
names for clips are visible in this view.
THE TOOLBOXES
The toolboxes provide a convenient point-and-click
interface for editing operations – adding clips to your
movie, modifying existing clips and applying special
effects. Studio provides separate toolboxes for video
and for audio operations.
The toolboxes are available only in Edit mode. They
are opened and closed with the buttons at the top left of
the Movie Window.
Chapter 4: The Movie Window 109
Select the toolbox you want to open by moving your
cursor over the icons. The individual buttons highlight,
indicating which toolbox will open when you click.
The Album is then replaced by the toolbox display,
which contains two main areas:
Tool selector buttons in a panel on the left. Clicking
one of these opens the corresponding tool.
The currently-selected tool on the right. Double-
clicking a clip in the Movie Window also displays
the corresponding tool (except for title clips, which
are opened directly in the appropriate title editor
when you double-click).
All the tool-selector buttons, except the top one in each
set, open specialized tools. The top button in both
toolboxes is the Clip properties tool. It displays a tool
appropriate for trimming and otherwise editing the type
of clip currently selected in the Movie Window.
The title editors
Studio includes a pair of powerful tools that are not
directly accessed through the toolboxes. These tools,
110 Pinnacle Studio
the Classic Title Editor and the Motion Titler, let you
combine text, images and other graphic resources to
make titles and disc menus for your Studio productions.
Access the title editors through the Title and Disc menu
tools, or with the Go to Classic Title/Menu Editor and
Go to Motion Title Editor commands from the right-
button context menu in the Movie Window. See
Chapter 12: The Classic Title Editor, and Chapter 13:
The Motion Titler for full information.
The Video toolbox
The seven tools in this toolbox modify or create visual
clip types, including video clips, themes, titles, still
images and disc menus.
Clip properties: The Clip properties tool adjusts
the start and end times of any type of clip. This is
called “trimming”. The tool also allows you to type in a
descriptive name for the clip. The tool also presents
additional interface components appropriate to the type
of clip being edited. See “Trimming with the Clip
properties tool” on page 128 for more information.
Chapter 4: The Movie Window 111
Themes: The Theme editor tool lets you
customize clips created from “theme templates”.
The tool includes a mini-Album from which you can
import video and photos to be used in the theme clip.
Some theme templates also provide text captions or
other parameters that allow customization. See Chapter
6: Themes and theme editing for more information.
Titles: This tool lets you edit the names and
lengths of titles. Depending on the type of title
you select, the Edit Title button provides access to the
Classic Title Editor or the Motion Titler, where you can
change the text and appearance of the title. See Chapter
12: The Classic Title Editor, and Chapter 13: The
Motion Titler for more information.
Disc menus: The Disc menu tool has a number
of controls for editing the links between the
buttons on a disc menu and entry points into your
movie called chapter marks, which are represented on
the menu track in the Movie Window. The Edit Menu
button opens the Classic Title Editor, where you can
modify the visual appearance of a menu. See “The Disc
menu tool” on page 241 for more information.
Frame grabber: This tool takes a snapshot of a
single frame from your movie. You can use the
grabbed frame in your movie, or save it for use in other
applications. See “The Frame Grabber” on page 225 for
more information.
SmartMovie: This tool automatically combines
your source footage with the digital song file of
your choice to create a music video in any of a variety
of styles. See “The SmartMovie music video tool” on
page 140 for more information.
112 Pinnacle Studio
PIP and chroma key tool: The PIP and Chroma
Key controls occupy separate tabs on the same
tool window, so this can be thought of as really two
tools in one. It provides an alternative, graphical
interface to the Picture-in-picture and Chroma key
effects. See “The Picture-in-picture tool” (page 190)
and “The Chroma key tool” (page 196) for more
information.
Video effects: Studio provides numerous plug-in
video effects with this tool. Each video clip,
theme clip or still image in your project can use effects,
whether alone or in combination.
Along with its basic library of useful effects, Studio
provides some “locked” premium effects that you can
try out. See Chapter 7: Video effects for details about
this tool. For information about purchasing premium
content for Studio, including varied collections of video
effects, see “Expanding Studio” on page 12.
The Audio toolbox
The six tools in this set operate on or create audio clips
– “original” audio, voice-overs, sound effects and other
audio files, CD tracks and ScoreFitter background
music.
Chapter 4: The Movie Window 113
Clip properties: The Clip properties tool lets
you adjust (“trim”) the start and end times of any
type of clip. You can also enter a descriptive name for
the clip to replace the default name if desired. (Clip
names are displayed when the Movie Window is in
Text view.) The tool’s other controls vary depending
on the type of clip. See “Trimming with the Clip
properties tool” on page 314 for more information.
Volume and balance: This tool gives you
master volume controls for each of the three
audio tracks: original audio (audio captured with
video), sound effects and voice-overs and background
music. It also enables you to mute any or all of the
tracks, and to add real-time volume fades. Use the
balance and surround control to position each track
independently of the other two in a one-dimensional
stereo or two-dimensional surround-sound space.
When the overlay track is open, the tool provides a
fourth set of controls, which affect the overlay audio
track. See “The Volume and balance tool” on page 322
for more information.
Availability: Surround sound is supported in Studio Ultimate only.
Record voice-overs: To record a voice-over,
simply click the Record button and begin
speaking into your microphone. See “The Voice-over
tool” on page 311 for more information.
Add CD audio: Use this tool to add tracks, in
whole or in part, from an audio CD. See “The
CD audio tool” on page 308 for more information.
Background music: This tool lets you add
background music using ScoreFitter, Studio’s
powerful music generator. Choose a style, song, and
114 Pinnacle Studio
version. Studio will create a musical soundtrack that
matches the duration of your movie. See “The
Background music tool” on page 309 for more
information.
Audio effects: This tool lets you apply plug-in
effects to any audio clip. The popular VST
standard for audio plug-ins is supported, enabling you
to augment your library with add-on and third party
effects. A configurable noise reduction filter is supplied
as a standard effect. Effects available in Studio
Ultimate also include both graphic and parametric EQ,
reverb, chorus and others.
Some “watermarked” premium effects may also be
included for you to try out, with others available
through the Avid web-site by clicking the More
effects… “category” in the audio effects browser. See
Chapter 15: Audio effects for details about this tool.
For information about purchasing premium content for
Studio, see “Expanding Studio” on page 12.
Chapter 5: Video clips 115
CHAPTER 5:
Video clips
The cornerstone of most Studio video projects is the
Album section containing your captured video scenes.
To create your edited movie, you drag scenes from the
Album into the Movie Window, where they are treated
as editable video clips.
This chapter explains how to set the “in” and “out”
(start and end) points for each clip. The Movie
Window’s editing interface makes this “trimming”
process simple, rapid and precise. The methods covered
in this chapter for trimming video (“Trimming video
clips”, page 123) can for the most part also be applied
to the other types of clip (such as titles and sound
effects) that are covered in later chapters.
A later section of the chapter covers more advanced
editing techniques, including split edits and insert edits,
that you can use to give your movies a more
professional look. See “Advanced Timeline editing” on
page 132.
And finally we’ll explore SmartMovie, Studio’s
automatic movie generator. SmartMovie intelligently
combines a music soundtrack with your video footage
to create a beat-synchronized music video, or with a
series of still images to create a slideshow. Both modes
support a variety of style options.
116 Pinnacle Studio
VIDEO CLIP BASICS
The first step in creating a movie is to introduce some
video scenes from the Album into the Movie Window,
where they become editable clips. At some point you
will probably also add some transitions, titles, audio
and other extras, but a set of video scenes is the starting
point for just about any project.
This section explains how to add scenes to your movie,
and how to work with scenes from multiple capture
files. It also covers some interface features that provide
useful feedback as you work.
Adding video clips to your movie
There are two ways to add a video clip to your movie:
Drag and drop: Drag a scene from the Video Scenes
section of the Album and drop it into the Movie
Window. This is normally the easiest and quickest way
to put together a rough cut of your movie. You can drag
multiple scenes simultaneously if you wish.
The clipboard: The standard clipboard operations
(Cut, Copy and Paste) can be used with video clips in
the Movie Window. The Copy operation works on
Album scenes also.
When a scene or clip is pasted into the Movie Window,
it is inserted at the first clip boundary starting at the
edit line position. You can use the standard keyboard
shortcuts for clipboard operations (Ctrl+X for cut,
Ctrl+C for copy, Ctrl+V for paste), or select the desired
operation from the right-button menu.
Chapter 5: Video clips 117
When the Movie Window is in Timeline view, you can
drop a video scene or clip onto any of the following:
The main video track. If the clip has associated
audio, it is added to the original audio track. This
video will serve as the background for any overlay
video or titles on the lower Timeline tracks.
The overlay track. Video on this track is
superimposed on the contents of the video track. The
picture-in-picture and chroma key effects are used to
make a portion of the overlay frame transparent so
that some of the main video can be seen.
The title track. If the overlay track is hidden,
dropping a video clip on the title track causes the
overlay track to open and the clip to be placed upon
it. In other versions of Studio, or when the overlay
track is already displayed, the title track does not
accept video clips.
The sound effects track or the background music
track. Attempting to drop a video clip on either of
these tracks actually drops the clip’s original audio.
Working with multiple capture files
For some projects you may want to incorporate scenes
from multiple source tapes, or from different capture
files made from one tape. To achieve this, load in each
of the files in turn and drag whichever scenes you want
from each file into your movie.
To use multiple capture files:
1. Drag scenes from the first capture file into the
Movie Window.
118 Pinnacle Studio
2. Using the dropdown list or the folder button in the
Video Scenes section of the Album, open the
second capture file. Studio displays scenes from
only the current file in the Album. See “Opening a
video file” on page 73 for detailed information on
this step.
3. Drag scenes from the second captured file into the
Movie Window. Continue in this manner until you
have gone through all the files.
Handling multiple capture files is made easier by use of
the Project Bin, where the files whose scenes you add
to your movie are automatically included. See page 92
for details.
Mixing frame formats
Because any given movie can be in only one of the
standard (4:3) format and the widescreen (16:9) format,
Studio does not let you mix frame formats in the Movie
Window. By default, the first video clip you add to a
movie determines the movie’s frame format, and later
clips are modified as necessary to conform to it. See
“The project video format” below for further
information.
The project video format
The video scenes you add to a project need not all
originate with the same device or be in the same file
format. They need not even have the same frame size,
aspect ratio or frame rate.
When video is played back within Studio, however, a
common frame format must be used. The Project
Chapter 5: Video clips 119
format box on the Project preferences options panel
lets you specify the format for new projects either
explicitly (e.g. “NTSC Widescreen”) or implicitly,
from the format of the first clip you add to the project.
The current project format is displayed as a tooltip over
the project title in the Movie Window.
The project format applies to all video and image clips
in the Movie Window, and to the preview of those clips
in the Player. Visual content in the Album, such as your
captured video scenes, is shown by default in its
original format, whether or not that matches the project
format.
If you want to avoid black bars (“letterboxing”) in your
project video, but still want to use scenes shot in the
wrong aspect ratio, there are several approaches you
can consider:
Use the Aspect ratio commands on the Album menu.
These let you stretch the Album scenes to conform to
the proportions of the project frame, at the cost of
some distortion. Please see “Video aspect ratios” on
page 75 for more information.
120 Pinnacle Studio
The Zoom Picture to Full Frame context menu
command for clips in the Movie Window expands
the central portion of the original image enough to
fill the frame in the project format. Proportion is
maintained with this method, but some material is
lost.
For a fine-tuned version of the same approach, use
the 2D Editor effect with keyframing to create a
“pan and scan” version your video. Studios often use
this technique to make their movies fit a standard
television screen when they are transferred to
videotape or DVD. A portion of each frame is still
lost, but you have some control over which portion
that is. Careful tracking of the action with the aid of
keyframing generally allows you to obtain
acceptable results despite this problem.
Availability note: The 2D Editor effect and the keyframing feature
are provided in Studio Ultimate only.
Compensating for source video in the “wrong”
aspect ratio by adding black bars (L), stretching to
the full frame (C), and zooming (R). Each method
has its own drawbacks.
Background rendering
The project format is also used as the target format for
rendering, which is the process of generating video for
footage in which HFX transitions, effects or other
Chapter 5: Video clips 121
computationally demanding features are used. Until
such video has been rendered, it may not display
smoothly and with full detail during preview.
Studio is able to carry out rendering behind the scenes
while you work. This feature is controlled from the
Background rendering box on the Video and audio
preferences options panel.
Following the dialog’s advice regarding the codec to
use for background rendering may help reduce the
rendering time when your final movie is output.
If you are planning to preview your video on an
external device (Studio Ultimate only), you may need
to set the project format and the background rendering
codec to match that device. For instance, if you are
previewing on an analog monitor plugged into your DV
camcorder, you should do your background rendering
in DV.
Interface features
Studio provides a variety of visual cues regarding the
video clips in the Movie Window:
When a clip is added to the Movie Window, a green
checkmark appears on the Album’s icon for the
122 Pinnacle Studio
corresponding scene. The checkmark remains as
long as any clip in the Movie Window belongs to
that scene.
To see the original location of a clip in your source
video, use the Find Scene in Album command on the
right-click menu for Movie Window clips. Studio
highlights the Album scene from which the selected
clip is drawn. To go the other way, use Album
Find Scene in Project to show how a particular
Album scene is used in your current project.
When neighboring scenes from the Album are placed
in sequence in the Movie Window, the border
between the clips is displayed as a dotted line. This
is to help you keep track of your clips, and does not
affect how they can be manipulated in the Movie
Window.
In Timeline mode, any special effects you have
applied to a clip are indicated by small icons along
the bottom of the clip. These correspond to the effect
groups shown on the Video effects and Audio effects
tools. You can open the tool for parameter editing by
double-clicking any of the icons.
The star icon below this video clip shows that at least
one effect in the “Fun” category has been applied.
Chapter 5: Video clips 123
TRIMMING VIDEO CLIPS
In general, captured video scenes contain more material
than you actually require for your movie. “Trimming”
– the process of adjusting the in and out points of a clip
to remove unwanted footage – is a fundamental editing
operation.
No data is lost by trimming: Studio sets new start and
end points for the clip in the Movie Window, but the
source of the clip – the original Album scene – remains
intact. This means you can always reset clips to their
original state, or select different trim points.
Studio offers two ways to trim any clip (video scenes,
transitions, titles, still images, audio clips and disc
menus):
Directly on the Timeline (see “Trimming on the
Timeline using handles” below).
Using the Clip properties tool (see “Trimming with
the Clip properties tool” on page 128).
A video clip can be trimmed to any desired in and out
points within the limits of the original scene.
Trimming on the Timeline using handles
The quickest way to trim is by dragging the edges of
clips directly on the Timeline. Watch the Player as you
trim, so you can find the frame on which you want to
begin or end.
124 Pinnacle Studio
Let’s first consider the simplest trimming case, in a
movie with only one clip. Then we’ll turn to the more
usual situation of trimming a single clip that is
surrounded by other clips.
To trim a single clip on the Timeline:
1. Delete all but one clip from the Timeline. If the
Timeline is empty, drag a scene in from the Album.
2. Expand the Timescale to make fine adjustments
easier.
Position the mouse pointer anywhere on the
Timeline except directly over the edit line. The
pointer becomes a clock symbol. Click-drag it to
the right to expand the Timescale.
This illustration shows maximum expansion, where
each tick mark represents a single frame:
3. Position your mouse pointer over the right edge of
the clip. The pointer becomes a left-pointing arrow.
4. Click-drag to the left while keeping an eye on the
Player, which updates continuously to show the last
frame in the trimmed clip.
As you shorten the clip, the arrow cursor becomes
two-directional, indicating that the clip edge can be
Chapter 5: Video clips 125
dragged both left and right. You can reduce the clip
to as little as a single frame, or increase it up to the
end of the source scene.
5. Release the mouse button. The clip is now trimmed.
Multiple clips
The secret to trimming a clip when multiple clips are
on the Timeline is that you must first select the clip to
be trimmed by clicking on it with the mouse.
To trim with multiple clips on the Timeline:
1. Set up the Timeline with two short clips.
2. Adjust the Timescale until the clip you want to
adjust is a convenient size for editing.
3. Click the second clip. The video track should now
look something like this:
You can trim the right-hand edge of the clip just as
in the single-clip example above. As you do so, the
last frame of the clip is displayed in the Player. As
long as the second clip remains selected, you can
continue to trim more video by dragging the edge to
the left, or restore some of the trimmed video by
dragging the edge to the right.
126 Pinnacle Studio
4. With the second clip still selected, move your
mouse pointer over the left edge of clip until the
pointer changes to a right arrow.
5. Drag the left edge of the second scene to the right.
As you drag, the first frame of the clip is displayed
in the Player. As long as the clip remains selected,
you can continue to trim more video by dragging
the edge to the right, or restore some of the trimmed
video by dragging the edge to the left.
6. Release the mouse button. The clip you trimmed
snaps back against the right edge of the first clip.
Gaps and fills: Trimming with the Ctrl key
As we have seen in the example above, when you
shorten a clip on the video track, the clip and any clips
to the right of it move leftwards as necessary so that no
gap is left. At the same time, clips on other tracks are
shortened to keep the whole Timeline in sync. When
you trim a clip on any other track, however, gaps are
not automatically closed up, and no other track is
affected.
Chapter 5: Video clips 127
This default trimming behavior simplifies editing under
most circumstances, but Studio also gives you a way to
invert the behavior when needed. If you press the Ctrl
key before you begin trimming a clip on the video
track, neither that clip nor any other will be
repositioned, and gaps are not closed up. There is no
effect on other tracks.
Meanwhile, using Ctrl when trimming clips on other
tracks again inverts the normal behavior. The clips on
the track will close in to fill any gap left by the trim.
Clips on tracks besides the one being trimmed are again
unaffected.
Note: See page 99 for a description of the parallel
behavior of Ctrl when deleting clips.
Clip-trimming tips
If you are having difficulty manipulating the edges of
clips during trimming, try the following:
Verify that the clip you wish to trim is selected, and
that it is the only one selected.
Expand the Timescale until it is easier to make fine
adjustments.
Avoid expanding the Timescale too far, which makes
clips appear very long. If that happens, undo until the
scale is the way you want it; or reduce the scale by
dragging it towards the left; or select an appropriate
value from the Timescale’s context menu.
128 Pinnacle Studio
Trimming with the Clip properties tool
Although it is possible to trim video clips directly
on the Timeline with full frame accuracy, rapid,
precise trimming is often easier to achieve with the
Clip properties tool. To access this tool, select the clip
you want to change, then use the Toolbox Modify
Clip Properties menu command, or click one of the
toolbox buttons at the top left of the Movie Window.
(Clicking the same button a second time will close the
tool.)
In the case of video clips – in fact, any clips other than
titles – you can also open and close the Clip properties
tool by double-clicking the clip in any Movie Window
view.
The Clip properties tool can be used to modify any
kind of clip. It offers an appropriate set of controls for
each type.
The Name text field: For a video clip, most of the clip
property controls are for trimming. The only exception
is the Name text field, which lets you assign a custom
name to the clip to replace the default one assigned by
Studio.
The Name field is provided on the Clip properties tool
for all clip types. Clip names are used by the Movie
Window’s Text view, and can also be viewed as fly-by
labels when your mouse moves over clips in the
Storyboard view.
Preview areas: Separate preview areas show the in and
out frames of the trimmed clip, together with a counter
Chapter 5: Video clips 129
and jog buttons. The layout of each preview area is
similar to that of the Player during normal editing.
Setting playback position: A scrubber control across
the bottom of the tool lets you set the playback position
anywhere within the clip. You can also set the playback
position using the counter and jog buttons located
between the two preview areas.
Using the counters: The positions reported by all three
counters are relative to the beginning of the clip, which
is position 0:00:00.0. As with the counter on the Player,
you can adjust the counters in the Clip properties tool
by clicking in one of the four fields (hours, minutes,
seconds, frames) to select it, then using the jog buttons.
When none of the fields is explicitly selected, the jog
buttons apply to the frames field.
Transport controls: While the Clip properties tool is
in use, the transport controls in the center area
substitute for those that normally appear on the Player.
These special transport controls include a Loop
play/Pause button that can be used to cycle
repeatedly through the trimmed portion of the clip
while the trim points are being adjusted.
Setting the trim points: The left bracket button
beside the counter in the left preview area, and the right
130 Pinnacle Studio
bracket button beside the counter in the right
preview area, set their respective trim points to the
current position.
You can also adjust either trim point by:
Entering a value directly into its counter
Adjusting a counter field with the jog buttons
Dragging the corresponding trim caliper
The Duration text field: This field shows the length of
the trimmed clip in hours, minutes, seconds and frames.
If you modify the value, either by editing the numbers
directly or by clicking the associated jog buttons, the
effect is to change the out point of the clip. Of course,
you cannot reduce the duration to less than a frame, or
increase it beyond the limits of the original video scene.
Usage tip: If you want to switch from trimming one
clip on the video track to trimming another, just click
on the new clip while the Clip properties tool remains
open, or drag the Timeline scrubber to the new clip.
Resetting trimmed clips
If you change your mind about a particular trim
operation (or group of operations) after previewing,
either use the Undo button (or Ctrl+Z) or manually
reset the trimmed clip using one of these methods:
Drag the clip’s right edge directly on the Timeline
until it stretches no further,
In the Clip properties tool, drag the trim calipers to
the ends of the clip.
Chapter 5: Video clips 131
SPLITTING AND COMBINING CLIPS
If you want to insert one clip on the video track into the
middle of another clip, split the latter into two parts
then insert the new item. “Splitting” a clip actually
results in it being duplicated. Both clips are then
automatically trimmed so that the first ends at the split
point and the second begins there.
To split a clip in Timeline view:
1. Choose the split point.
You may use any method that adjusts the current
position, such as moving the Timeline scrubber,
clicking Play and then Pause, or editing the counter
value in the Player.
2. Either right-click within the clip you wish to split
and select Split Clip from the pop-up menu; or,
make certain the edit line is positioned where you
wish to split the clip, and click the Split clip/scene
(razorblade) button (see page 99).
The clip is split at the current position.
To restore a split clip:
Use the Undo button (or press Ctrl+Z). Even if you
have performed other actions since you split the clip,
the multilevel undo allows you to step back as far as
needed. Or,
If undoing is not desirable because of intervening
actions that you don’t want to discard, you can
replace both halves of the split clip with the original
from the Album. Or,
Delete one half of the split clip, and trim out the
other.
132 Pinnacle Studio
To combine clips in the Movie Window:
Select the clips you wish to combine, then right-click
and choose Combine Clips.
The operation is allowed only if the combination of
clips will also be a valid clip – that is, a continuous
excerpt of the source video. On the Timeline, clips that
can be combined meet along a dotted edge.
ADVANCED TIMELINE EDITING
Note: Other approaches to the kinds of edit described here, making
use of the overlay track, are covered in Chapter 8: Two-track editing.
During most editing operations, Studio automatically
keeps the clips on the various Timeline tracks
synchronized. For instance, when you insert a scene
from the Album onto the video track, the relative
positions of all clips to the right of the insertion remain
unchanged.
Sometimes, though, you might like to override the
default synchronization. You might want to insert a
new video clip into your project without displacing any
clips of other types. Or you might want to edit video
separately from its accompanying original audio – a
valuable technique with several variations, discussed
below.
Such special edits are possible using the track lock
buttons along the right edge of the Movie Window in
Timeline view. Each of the standard tracks (all except
Chapter 5: Video clips 133
the menu track) provides a lock button. See “Track
locking” on page 103 for more information on track
locking.
A locked track is grayed out in the Timeline view,
indicating that the clips on the locked track cannot be
selected or edited in any of the three views; nor are
they affected by editing operations on unlocked tracks.
Apart from the menu track, any combination of tracks
can be locked.
Locking the title track, for example, prevents the
duration of a title from being changed even when you
trim clips on the main video track at the same time
index.
When the title track is unlocked, trimming the main
video clip above it automatically trims the title.
134 Pinnacle Studio
Insert editing
In ordinary Timeline editing, a video clip and the
original audio that was captured with it are treated as a
unit. Their special relationship is symbolized in the
Movie Window by the line connecting the video track
indicator with the original audio track indicator,
showing that the latter is dependent on the former.
The track lock buttons make it possible to deal with the
two tracks independently for operations like insert
editing, which typically means replacing part of a clip
on the video track while the original audio track
continues uninterrupted.
Note: Insert editing may also be carried out on the overlay video and
audio tracks, using analogous methods to those described here. See
Chapter 8: Two-track editing for details.
For instance, in a sequence that shows someone
recounting a story, you might wish to insert a shot of an
audience member smiling (or sleeping!) without
breaking away from the main audio.
To perform an insert edit on the video track:
1. In the Timeline view of the Movie Window, click
the original audio track’s padlock button to lock
the track.
The lock button is highlighted, and the track
itself is grayed to show that its contents will not
be affected by editing operations.
2. Clear space on the video track for the video clip you
want to insert. Position the Timeline scrubber at the
point you want the insertion to start and use the
Chapter 5: Video clips 135
Split clip/scene button. Now move to the point
where the insertion should end and again split the
clip. Finally, delete the portion of video that will be
replaced by the insertion.
Because the audio track is still intact, having been
locked, the video to the right of the insertion point
does not move leftwards to fill the gap you have
made in the Timeline, for the video and audio
would then no longer be synchronized. If you were
to preview your video now, you would see a black
screen as the gap portion played back, but the
soundtrack would be normal.
3. Now all that remains is to place the clip you want to
insert. Drag the clip (whether from the Album, the
Project Bin, or elsewhere on the Timeline) into the
hole in the video track that you’ve just opened up.
If the inserted clip is too long for the space you
created it is automatically trimmed to fit the space.
You can adjust the trimming with the Clip
properties tool.
136 Pinnacle Studio
Insert editing on the original audio track
The converse insert-editing operation, in which a sound
clip is inserted into the original audio track over
unbroken video, is needed less often but is also readily
performed in Studio.
The procedure is analogous to the one for inserting
video: simply reverse the roles of the two tracks at
every step.
Split editing
In “split editing”, a clip’s audio and video are
separately trimmed so that the transition to one occurs
before the transition to the other.
Note: Split editing may also be carried out on the overlay video and
audio tracks, using analogous methods to those described here. See
Chapter 8: Two-track editing details.
In an “L-cut”, the video precedes its sync audio; in a
“J-cut”, the audio comes first.
Tip: For faster, more precise trimming, you may find it
helpful to have the Clip properties tool open when
following the procedures in this section. To open the
tool, just double-click one of the video clips before you
begin.
Chapter 5: Video clips 137
The L-cut
In an L-cut, the cut to new video comes before the cut
in the audio.
Imagine a videotaped lecture in which the video
periodically cuts away from the speaker to show travel
or nature scenes illustrating the lecture topic.
Audio and video cut simultaneously.
Instead of cutting the audio and the video
simultaneously, you might decide to let the speaker’s
voice overlap into the following scene. This makes it
clear to the audience that the new scene they are now
watching illustrates whatever explanation the speaker
has been providing.
Notice that the video and audio clip boundaries in the
completed cut form an L-shape.
Audio cuts after video. The resulting “L” shape is
outlined in this illustration.
There are many effective uses of this technique. It can
be considered whenever the second clip’s video serves
to illustrate the first clip’s audio.
138 Pinnacle Studio
To perform an L-cut:
1. Adjust the Timeline so you can easily count off the
number of frames or seconds you want to overlap.
2. Select the left-hand clip and trim its right edge to
the point where you want the audio to end.
3. Lock the audio track. Now drag the right-hand edge
of the same clip’s video leftward to the point where
the following clip’s video should start.
4. With the audio track still locked, drag the second
clip’s video to the left until it meets the original
clip.
If there isn’t enough excess video at the start of the
second clip to make this trim possible, you will first
need to trim off a sufficient amount from both its
video and audio then try again.
Chapter 5: Video clips 139
5. Unlock the audio track.
The video now cuts away to the second clip ahead
of the audio. Video has been trimmed from the end
of the first clip, and audio has been trimmed from
the start of the second clip.
The J-cut
In the J-cut, the new audio cuts in before the video
switches. This can be effective when the second clip’s
audio prepares the viewer for the material in the scene.
Returning to the videotaped lecture example, let’s say
we are now going to switch back to the speaker at the
end of the interpolated footage. If we let the next part
of the lecture appear on the soundtrack a few moments
before the video shows us the podium again, the change
will be much less abrupt.
This time the clip boundaries outline the letter J:
Audio cuts before video. The resulting “J” shape is
outlined in this illustration.
To perform a J-cut:
1. Adjust the Timeline so you can easily count off the
number of frames or seconds you want to overlap.
2. As before, trim back the right edge of the left-hand
clip, both video and audio, by the overlap interval.
140 Pinnacle Studio
3. Lock the audio track. Now drag the right-hand edge
of the same clip’s video back to the right by the
overlap interval.
4. Unlock the audio track.
The audio now cuts away to the second clip ahead
of the video.
Note: The procedures described above for performing
the L-cut and the J-cut are not the only possibilities.
With the J-cut, for example, another method would be
to trim the right-hand clip to the desired start point of
the video then, with the video track locked, drag the
audio portion leftwards to overlap the audio of the left-
hand clip.
THE SMARTMOVIE MUSIC VIDEO TOOL
Creating a music video seems like a big job, even with
the convenient editing features of Studio. Dozens of
brief clips must be carefully aligned to the beat of the
soundtrack, in order that the music and video are
properly coordinated.
With Studio’s SmartMovie tool, however, you
can construct a dynamic, beat-synchronized
music video almost instantly, in your choice of styles
and using any combination of video footage and music.
You can make slideshows, too. SmartMovie can create
an instant slideshow from any set of still images, in a
choice of styles and with synchronized music.
Tip: The Timeline view of the Movie Window is
recommended when working with audio clips.
Chapter 5: Video clips 141
The SmartMovie tool walks
you through the creation
process with simple step-by-
step instructions. To begin, use
the Album to locate the video
scenes or still images you want
to include, and drag them onto the Movie Window.
With the visuals in place, add a ScoreFitter, CD audio
or digital music (wav, mp3) clip to the background
music track. The duration of this clip – and not the
amount of visual material you supply – determines the
length of your music video. If you don’t supply enough
visual material, SmartMovie will use your video clips
or images multiple times in order to achieve the
required duration. Conversely, clips or images will be
omitted if you provide more than can be used within
the duration of the song.
Exception: When making a slideshow with the Use all
images option checked (see below), it is the number of
images you provide that determines the length of the
finished project, not the duration of the music clip.
SmartMovie styles
Select a style from the dropdown list at the top of the
SmartMovie tool window. A variety of styles is offered
for both music video and slideshow projects.
For video styles, you will get the best results if the
starting duration of your video footage is about double
the length of the soundtrack. Each of the slideshow
styles has its own ideal ratio
between the number of
pictures and the length of the
song. The status balloon
provides guidance for getting
the proportions right.
142 Pinnacle Studio
A brief description of each style is displayed in the
status balloon as you scroll through the style list.
SmartMovie options
The Use clips in random order option lets you mix up
the visual material without regard to its initial
sequence. This option is the default with some styles. It
tends to give a finished product with a relatively
uniform texture, but sacrifices narrative continuity.
Check the Use all images option when you want to
ensure that all the still images you have added to your
project are actually used in the slideshow, regardless of
the length of music you have provided. Studio will
repeat or trim the music clip as required to match the
number of images you have chosen.
Note: The Use all images option affects SmartMovie
slideshows only, not music videos.
The Relative volume slider adjusts the prominence of
the background music track relative to the other audio
Chapter 5: Video clips 143
tracks. Move the slider all the way to the right if you
want to hear only the music track in the finished video.
The last configuration step is to enter the text to use for
the opening and closing titles. Each text line consists of
two edit fields. Use Tab and Shift+Tab to jump
between the left and right fields.
The big moment…
Finally, click the Create SmartMovie button and sit
back while Studio generates your movie.
Chapter 6: Montage® themes and theme editing 145
CHAPTER 6:
Montage® themes and
theme editing
Studio’s customizable Montage®
“themes” provide a powerful but
easy to learn method of
achieving slideshow, animation
and multitrack editing effects.
With themes you can quickly
give your videos a more professional look while
maintaining a coherent structure. Each theme consists
of a set of templates that can be added to your project
as “theme clips”. You can create attractive, visually
consistent sequences that integrate artist-created titles
and animations with your own photos and video.
Note: “Titles” created from a Montage theme are not
related to those in the Titles section of the Album, or
created with Studio’s title editors. Themes are easier to
use, and can provide effects not available in ordinary
titles. On the other hand, the title editors give you
much finer control over the appearance of the titles.
The themes provided are each designed to cover a
typical need. Within each theme, the available
146 Pinnacle Studio
templates are designed to complement one another
when used in the same project. For instance, most
themes provide an Opening template and a matching
Ending template. Many themes also provide one or
more Segue templates for transitioning from one video
or image clip to another.
The appearance of a theme clip’s Timeline icon
reflects its structure. Here, from left to right, are an
Opening, a Segue, and an Ending icon. The zig-zag
edges correspond to the placement of full-frame
video in the clip. The video at the end of the
Opening, and at the start of the Ending, can be
edited to match that of a Segue; thus the zig-zag also
indicates graphically how the templates can be used
together.
Each template defines a video or graphic sequence with
blanks to be filled in by you. Most templates provide
one or more slots for video or image clips. Many let
you supply text captions for titles, and some have
additional parameters for other special properties.
Theme templates are stored in their own section of the
Album. The first step in using a chosen template is to
bring it into your project as a theme clip. As usual, this
is done by dragging the icon from the Album to the
Movie Window.
In the Movie Window, the theme clip is treated as an
ordinary, self-contained video clip. To customize the
clip – to fill in the template’s blanks – you will use the
Theme Editor tool.
Chapter 6: Montage® themes and theme editing 147
USING THEMES
Theme templates are stored in the Themes section of
the Album. The Album displays all the templates in a
given theme, as selected from a dropdown list. To use a
template, simply drag its icon from the Album into the
Movie Window.
Pick a theme from the dropdown list (L) to show the
templates available (R). To use a template, drag its
icon down into the Movie Window.
When the Movie Window is in Timeline View, theme
clips can be trimmed and edited much like ordinary
video. You can elaborate them with transitions and
effects, adjust their audio, and so on.
The theme clip (selected in illustration) is treated as
a unit in the Movie Window. Its special properties
can be modified with the Theme Editor tool (double-
click the clip to open).
148 Pinnacle Studio
Like disc menus, themes are configured with a special
editing tool, which opens automatically when the clip is
added to the project, or when it is later double-clicked.
The Theme Editor tool allows the user to
customize a theme clip by adjusting its built-in
settings or specifying video and audio subclips for it to
use. The editor can also be accessed with the Toolbox
Edit Theme menu command.
The Theme Editor tool lets you specify theme
elements such as video or image clips, property
settings, and text captions. Clips are added by
dragging them either from the editor’s own mini-
Album (left side of tool) or from the Movie Window.
Theme backgrounds
Some themes have built-in graphical
backgrounds, a selectable background
color, or both. Many of these also provide a
Background checkbox in the Theme Editor tool, which
when checked makes the background transparent. This
allows the theme to be used on the overlay track, with
the video track as its background.
Chapter 6: Montage® themes and theme editing 149
The Themes section of the Album
In the Album, the templates for one theme may
be viewed at a time. As with video scenes, you
use the mouse to select, play or add a theme template:
Single-click loads the template to the Player, where
it can be played back with the transport controls.
Double-click loads the template to the Player and
begins playback immediately.
Dragging the template to the Movie Window, or
right-clicking its icon and clicking the Add To Movie
context menu command, inserts it into your project.
As with menus, a special editor tool opens
automatically when a theme clip is added to the
movie.
Creating theme clips
To create a theme clip, use any of the standard methods
of adding content to your project:
Drag an icon from the Themes section of the Album
to the Movie Window.
Select Add To Project in a theme template icon’s
right-button context menu.
Paste the contents of the Windows Clipboard after
you have cut or copied an existing theme clip.
Each theme is configured to appear on the track that is
appropriate to the theme’s content type:
Themes whose content is a graphic overlay with
transparent background, such as a title or PIP frame,
are usually added to the Title track.
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Themes with full-frame video, such as opening
sequences, can be added to the Main video track
(Studio) or the Overlay video track.
The default length of a theme clip depends on the
design of the individual template.
If you drop a new theme clip onto an existing one on
the Timeline, the new clip either is inserted beside the
old one or simply replaces it. The choice of operation
depends on the position of the mouse pointer relative to
the target clip when you release the button.
Inserting a theme clip before or after an existing
clip: If you drop the new clip near the start or end of an
existing theme clip, it is accordingly inserted before or
after the existing clip. The placement lines that show
the position of the new clip on the Timeline are drawn
in green.
A new theme clip, represented by the ‘copy’ mouse
pointer, is dragged near the beginning of the left-
hand clip. Green placement lines indicate where the
new clip will be inserted.
In the illustration above, the placement lines show the
boundaries of the clip that would be created by
releasing the mouse button at the current position,
based on the template’s default length. All existing
clips would be moved rightwards to accommodate the
new one. If you were instead to drop the new clip near
Chapter 6: Montage® themes and theme editing 151
the right-hand edge of the same existing clip, it would
be inserted after the clip.
Replacing an existing clip: If you drop a new theme
clip onto the middle of an existing one, the new clip
replaces the old one. The new clip also takes over any
existing customizations of the old clip. The placement
lines, drawn in blue, show the boundaries of the clip to
be replaced; regardless of its designed default length,
the new clip will inherit these boundaries.
A new theme clip is dropped onto the middle of the
left-hand clip, replacing it. The positions of other
clips are not affected.
Working with theme clips on the Timeline
Theme clips behave like ordinary video clips when it
comes to operations like trimming and adding
transitions.
When a theme clip is trimmed...
Although trimming operations on the Timeline are the
same for theme clips as for video clips, the actual result
produced by trimming depends on the nature of the
clip.
152 Pinnacle Studio
In an all-animated theme, such as a fancy rolled title,
the animation runs to completion at whatever speed the
current clip duration dictates. Shortening the clip thus
causes the animation to run faster, but does not truncate
the sequence.
Clips that include video, in contrast, can be trimmed in
the usual way. Many themes include a variable-length
video subclip. When one of these is present, the clip
can be expanded as far as the length of the subclip will
allow – indefinitely, if the subclip is a still image.
Interior trimming of themes
When a theme clip’s template begins or ends with a
user-settable amount of full-frame video, as many do,
the Timeline provides handles for adjusting the amount
of “lead-in” and “lead-out” times – the durations of the
full-frame portions. Click a handle and drag left or right
to adjust either duration separately. The duration of the
center part of the clip – the animated part – will shorten
or lengthen accordingly. If you want to balance the
lead-in and lead-out without affecting the duration of
the center portion, click between the handles and drag.
Click and drag the adjustment handle to trim the
lead-in or lead-out portion of a theme clip. The
duration of the center portion will increase or
decrease accordingly. Click between the handles
to drag both at once, thereby repositioning the center
in the clip without changing its duration.
Chapter 6: Montage® themes and theme editing 153
For a detailed explanation of theme structure, see
“Anatomy of a theme” on page 153.
Transitions and effects
Transitions can be used at the beginning and end of
theme clips in the same way as with other clip types.
Video and audio effects can also be added to theme
clips as usual, and apply to all the content the clip
embodies. However, a few effects, such as Speed, are
not available for use with theme clips.
Anatomy of a theme
For examples of how themes work, let’s examine the
included “50s Modern” theme, which contains five
templates.
All the templates in this particular theme use the same
backdrop design – an abstract, scrolling pattern. It is
continuously visible except during full-frame video
segments. The coloring of the pattern is set using a
parameter control available in the Theme Editor for
each of these templates.
Now let’s look at each template in turn to see how it is
constructed from the elements – clips and captions –
that you supply in the Theme Editor.
Opening: An Opening template
usually starts with some sort of
animation, including titles, and ends
with full frame video. Our “50s Modern” example
follows that pattern.
The scrolling background animation runs through most
of this sequence. Within the animation, two
154 Pinnacle Studio
customizable captions are displayed. They are
represented in the diagram below by lines on the
“Animation” bar. Both captions are flown into and out
of the frame (dark line color), with a one and a half
second pause for stationary display (light line color) in
between.
Schematic representation of the Opening template in
the ‘50s Modern’ theme, at its default length of about
14 seconds.
Just as the second caption is leaving the frame, an
animated panel containing the running video subclip is
launched. The video zooms to full frame by 11:18 in
the theme clip, and remains so through to the end (the
white portion of the “Video” bar in the diagram).
By default, the length of this theme clip is 13:29. The
embedded video clip starts at a fixed offset of 7:03 and
runs to the end; its length is therefore 6:26. If your
video subclip is long enough, you can lengthen the
overall clip, extending the full-frame video portion.
This capability is indicated in the diagram above by the
arrow at the end of the “Video” bar.
Segue A: Segue templates connect two
full-frame video sequences by means
of some kind of animation. This first
Segue example begins with two seconds of full-frame
video, then zooms out to reveal a formation of multiple
video panels running simultaneously. Zooming in on
the final subclip leads to an expandable section of full-
frame video.
Chapter 6: Montage® themes and theme editing 155
Segue A integrates multiple video sources.
Segue B: This Segue achieves the
basic aim of connecting two video
clips more simply than the previous
one. The first subclip starts at full frame, then zooms
out while rotating away from the viewer. When the
reverse side of its rotating panel comes into view, the
second subclip has replaced the first. The panel zooms
in to fill the frame towards the end of the clip.
Segue B creates a simpler transition.
Once again, the full-screen segment of the second
subclip can be extended by expanding the theme clip
on the Timeline.
Segue C: This is similar to Segue B,
except that the flying video panel takes
an extra spin in the middle to admit
one more subclip into the sequence.
Segue C includes a bridging video subclip.
The final subclip is again expandable.
156 Pinnacle Studio
Ending: The purpose of an Ending
template mirrors that of an Opening
template, and in this example the
internal structure is also mirrored almost exactly. Full-
frame video recedes to a flying panel that gives way to
animated captions – exactly the opposite of the
Opening sequence described above. The one difference
is that in this case the full-frame video portion of the
clip is not extendable.
The Ending theme is essentially a mirror image of
the Opening theme.
Opening the Theme Editor tool
The Theme Editor tool allows you to customize a
theme clip by specifying your own subclips and
other customizations. The tool can be invoked from a
theme clip in the project in either of these ways:
Double-click the clip in the Movie Window.
Select Open With Theme Editor on the clip’s context
menu.
You can also open the tool directly:
Click the Theme Editor tool button.
Select Theme Editor in the Toolbox menu.
With these two methods, if a theme clip is currently
selected in the Movie Window, it is automatically
loaded into the editor upon opening.
Chapter 6: Montage® themes and theme editing 157
While the editor is open, clicking on a different theme
clip in the Movie Window changes the preview to that
clip without closing the editor.
Using the Theme Editor tool
Each theme template has its own set of slots for video
and photo content, represented by “drop zones” in the
Theme Editor. Most templates have at least one of
these; the maximum is six. Some also provide text
captions and other parameters as required to customize
special features.
The Theme Editor is split down the middle into two
parts. On the left, a mini-Album provides access to
your video and still image libraries; on the right is a
customization panel. Here are the drop zones for your
video and images, along with any text fields or other
controls required by template parameters.
The left side of the Theme Editor tool contains a
mini-Album with tabs for Videos and Photos only.
The right side contains the theme clip’s drop zones,
and controls for setting its parameters. Drag video
or image clips onto a drop zone from either the mini-
Album or the Movie Window. If necessary to create a
longer subclip, you can also select multiple clips of
contiguous video and drag them to the zone as a unit.
158 Pinnacle Studio
Working with drop zones
Clearing drop zones: To delete a subclip from its drop
zone, right-click the zone and select Delete from the
pop-up menu.
Copying subclips to the Movie Window: To copy a
subclip from a drop zone in the Theme Editor to the
Timeline (or other Movie Window view), right-click
the zone and select Add to Timeline from the menu.
This is normally used to add or modify an effect on the
subclip before dragging it back into the theme clip.
Muting subclip audio: Some drop zones are marked
with an audio symbol , indicating that the audio
portion of any video in that zone will be included in the
theme clip’s audio. If you don’t want the audio to be
used, click the audio symbol to mute the subclip.
To set the start frame of a subclip, hold down the left
mouse button while the pointer is over the drop zone,
then drag horizontally. To allow fine trimming, the
amount of change produced by a given mouse
movement is at first small then becomes rapidly
greater with increasing distance. A relatively large
mouse gesture may therefore be required to get the
desired adjustment.
Aligning subclips: Video in a drop zone can be
positioned relative to the zone’s time window with the
mouse. When the mouse pointer enters a drop zone
with excess video available, it changes into a double-
Chapter 6: Montage® themes and theme editing 159
headed arrow. Click and hold the left mouse button
now to control the start of clip slider below the zone.
Move the mouse back and forth to set the starting frame
of the subclip.
As you scroll the start of clip slider, the icon in the
drop zone is updated to show the new starting frame.
At the same time, the Player shows the frame at the
current scrubber position. If the drop zone you are
working with is active at that time index, the preview
will reflect any changes to the start frame. When you
are fine tuning the start frame of a subclip, it’s a good
idea to set the scrubber position to the location where
the Player preview will be of the greatest assistance.
Using the start of clip slider changes neither the
position of the subclip within the theme clip, nor its
duration. Rather you are only choosing which excerpt
of the subclip is used. The Theme Editor does not allow
you to set the start of the subclip so late that the video
would run out while the drop zone is still active. For
example, if you drop a six-second segment onto a drop
zone requiring five seconds of video, you will be able
to set the start point no further than one second into the
subclip.
If the subclip is actually shorter than the drop zone’s
duration, or of equal length, no adjustment of its start
frame is possible. When the theme clip displays, the
last frame of the subclip is frozen if necessary to fill the
time allocated to its drop zone.
Adding effects within drop zones
It is not possible to apply video or audio effects to a
subclip within the Theme Editor itself. Instead, right-
click the drop zone and select Add to Timeline from the
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pop-up menu. Locate the clip on the Timeline (at the
scrubber position). From this point in, it’s just another
clip: trim it to taste, and add or edit effects in the usual
way. Finally, drag it back to the drop zone, overwriting
the previous contents. The copy of the clip on the
Timeline can now be deleted.
Chapter 7: Video effects 161
CHAPTER 7:
Video effects
Most video editing consists of selecting, ordering and
trimming video clips, of connecting clips with
transition effects and combining them with other
materials such as music and still images.
Sometimes, though, you also need to modify the video
images themselves, manipulating them in some way to
achieve some desired effect. Studio’s Video effects tool
provides an extensive set of plug-in video effects that
can be applied either to video or still images. See page
172 for descriptions of the basic set of effects supplied
with Studio.
The Video effects tool is the eighth tool in the
Video toolbox. It has two main areas: at the left,
an effects list showing which effects are already
attached to the currently-selected clip(s), and at the
right, a parameters panel where you can tune the effect
as required.
162 Pinnacle Studio
Video effects vs. audio effects
In most respects, the Video effects tool and the Audio
effects tool work identically, except for the type of
material they apply to.
Copying and pasting effects
Once you have added an effect to a clip, and configured
it through its parameters panel, Studio provides the
ability to apply it to other clips on the Movie Window
Timeline as well. This is a time-saver when you are
working on a complex project that makes heavy use of
effects, especially if you take advantage of the
available keyboard shortcuts.
To copy an individual effect from a clip that has
multiple effects, right-click directly on its clip icon and
select the applicable command (Copy ‘Magnify’ Effect
in the illustration.) The effect, along with all of its
parameters and keyframes (if any), then becomes
available to be pasted to other clips in the project.
Working with the effects list
Each video or image clip in your project can be
modified by one or more video effects. Each effect is
Chapter 7: Video effects 163
applied to the original image in turn, in the order in
which they are listed on the Video effects tool.
The checkboxes next to each effect name allow you to
enable and disable effects individually without having
to remove them from the list (which would cause any
customized parameter settings to be lost). In the above
illustration, the “Water Drop” effect has been disabled
while the other two effects on the list remain in force.
Adding and deleting effects
To add an effect to the list for the
currently-selected clip (or clips),
click the Add new effect button, which opens an effects
browser on the right-hand side of the tool window.
Click an item in the browser’s Category list to display
the names of the individual effects in that category.
Select the effect you want, then click the OK button to
add the effect.
To remove the currently-selected effect from
the list, click the delete effect (trashcan) button.
Premium video and audio effects, like other locked
content in Studio, can be used freely, but cause a
“watermark” graphic to be added to the video when
played back. If you want to use the effect in an actual
production, you can purchase an activation key without
leaving Studio. For information about purchasing
locked video and audio effects, and other premium
content for Studio, see “Expanding Studio” on page 12.
164 Pinnacle Studio
The Video Effects browser is open here to the Studio
Ultimate RTFX page, which contains an additional
set of effects for Studio Ultimate. The other packs
listed contain other premium effects requiring
separate purchase. The last ‘category’, More Effects,
opens a page on the Avid web-site where additional
premium effects are available.
Changing the order of effects
The cumulative result of using more than one
effect on the same clip can vary depending on the
order in which the effects are applied. With the up and
down arrow buttons to the right of the effects list, you
can control the position of each effect in the processing
chain. The buttons apply to the currently-selected
effect.
Changing effect parameters
When an effect is selected in the effects list, the
parameters panel on the right-hand side of the Video
Chapter 7: Video effects 165
effects tool window provides controls for adjusting the
effect’s parameters, if any.
The controls for the basic library of effects supplied
with Studio are described below (beginning on page
174). Add-on effects are described in their own on-line
documentation, which you can access from the
parameters panel by pressing function key F1 or
clicking the help button at the top left of the
parameters panel.
Note: Some plug-in effects may provide their own
parameter windows with specialized controls. In those
cases, the parameters panel on the effects tool displays
a single Edit button, which accesses the external editor.
Using parameter presets
In order to simplify the use of parameters, many effects
offer presets that let you configure an effect for a
particular use simply by selecting a name from a list.
In Studio Ultimate, there are two kinds of preset: static,
which store a single set of effect parameters, and
keyframed, which store multiple sets of parameters in
the form of keyframes (see below).
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In versions of Studio that do not support keyframing
only static presets are available.
Often, the quickest way to configure an effect is to start
with the preset that comes closest to what you want,
then fine-tune the parameters by hand.
Resetting effects: A special type of
preset is the factory default setting of
each effect. The default can be restored at any time by
clicking the Reset button at the bottom of the
parameters panel.
If Reset is clicked when keyframing is in use, the
default parameter values are assigned only to the
keyframe at the current movie position. That keyframe
is created if it did not already exist.
Keyframing
The parameters for Studio video effects are ordinarily
applied at the first frame of the video clip and continue
unchanged to its end. This is the standard behavior for
each effect you add to the clip.
Ordinarily, an effect’s parameter values do not vary
throughout the video clip the effect belongs to.
Chapter 7: Video effects 167
Keyframing – the ability to change parameter values
smoothly within a video clip – opens a wide range of
new possibilities for using effects in your movies.
Availability note: The keyframing feature described here is provided
in Studio Ultimate only.
Each keyframe stores a full set of parameter values for
the effect, and specifies at which frame within the clip
those values should be fully applied.
With keyframing, new sets of parameter values can
be applied as often as desired throughout the clip.
Between keyframes, numeric parameter values are
automatically adjusted from frame to frame to connect
the keyframe values smoothly.
A graphical view of the keyframes in the example
above. The values of Zoom (Z), Horizontal Position
(H) and Vertical Position (V) are set by keyframe 1
at the start of the clip, by keyframe 2 about a third of
the way in, and by keyframe 3 at the end. The values
change smoothly over intermediate frames.
168 Pinnacle Studio
Most effects support keyframing. A few do not, either
because they have no parameters or because, as with
the Speed effect, keyframing doesn’t readily apply.
Keyframing scenarios
For each applied effect, a clip may theoretically have as
many keyframes as it has frames. In practice, you
usually need only a few.
Two keyframes are enough to smoothly vary parameter
values from one setting to another throughout the clip.
Keyframing gives you sensitive control over the way
the effect is applied to the clip. It becomes a simple
matter to ease an effect in and out, for example.
With a set of four keyframes you can ease in one or
more parameter values at the start of a clip and ease
them out again at the end.
Chapter 7: Video effects 169
A pan-and-zoom slideshow like that described in
under “Editing image clip properties” (page 218)
can be created using the Pan-and-Zoom effect on a
single still-image clip. Two keyframes with identical
parameters define the start and end of each view –
however many are required – within the show.
Using keyframing
In the parameters window for any effect that supports
keyframing, locate and check the Use keyframes box.
Until you do this, the effect maintains a single set of
parameter values throughout the clip.
When you switch on keyframing for an effect, two
keyframes are created automatically. One is anchored
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to the start of the clip, and the other to its end. The
parameters for both are set to the non-keyframed value.
On the Movie Window timeline, a keyframe appears as
a numbered flag on the video clip. The keyframe flags
are displayed as long as the effect’s parameter window
remains open.
Keyframes for the effect currently open in the effect
parameters window are shown as numbered flags
over a vertical line. The current keyframe, if any, has
a highlighted flag, like that of keyframe 3 here.
At the same time, additional controls are displayed at
the bottom of the parameters window: the Add and
Delete buttons, the Current keyframe indicator with
forward and back arrows, and the Keyframe time
counter with jog arrows.
New controls appear at the bottom of the parameters
window when keyframes are enabled.
The Current keyframe indicator shows the
number of the keyframe attached to the frame you are
viewing in the Movie Window. Use the arrows to
advance from keyframe to keyframe. As you click, the
Movie Window scrubber jumps to the next keyframe
position.
Chapter 7: Video effects 171
When you are viewing frames of your movie for which
no keyframe has been defined, the indicator shows a
dash. The displayed parameter values are those that
will apply to the current frame during playback.
To create a keyframe at any such point, click the Add
button, or simply start to adjust the parameters: when
you do, Studio adds a keyframe automatically.
Keyframes are numbered in sequence from the start of
the clip. When a new keyframe is inserted, or an old
one is deleted, those that come after are renumbered to
correct the sequence.
The Delete button is available whenever the current
frame has a keyframe; that is, whenever the Current
keyframe indicator shows a number rather than a dash.
The Keyframe time counter shows the time offset
within the clip of the current movie time – the frame
showing in the Player. The first keyframe is therefore at
time zero, and the last is at an offset equal to one frame
less than the duration of the clip.
When the current frame has a keyframe, its time offset
can be changed with the counter’s jog arrows. The
positions of the first and last keyframes cannot be
adjusted. Others can move freely between the current
positions of their neighboring keyframes.
Setting the time of keyframe 3.
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Previewing and rendering
While you are working with the Video effects tool,
choosing effects and adjusting parameter settings, the
Player gives a dynamically-updated preview of the
current frame in your movie. Previewing a single frame
may not be very revealing when you are working with
effects that evolve over the duration of the clip (like the
Water drop effect, page 183).In those cases, you will
need to play back the clip to see the full impact of the
effect you are applying.
Because many effects require intensive calculation, a
fully smooth and detailed preview of the full clip won’t
be instantaneously available in most cases. Each time
effects are added or removed, or settings are changed,
Studio commences “rendering” the clip – recalculating
its final appearance – in the background without
interrupting your workflow. A colored bar appears in
the Timescale above the clip while background
rendering is in progress.
Background rendering is optional. You can disable it, if
required, in the Project preferences options panel
(Setup Project Preferences).
VIDEO EFFECTS LIBRARY
The plug-in video effects installed with Studio are
divided into six categories, each symbolized by an
icon:
Cleaning effects help correct defects in the
source video, such as noise and camera shake.
Chapter 7: Video effects 173
Time effects, like Speed, change the tempo of
playback without affecting the appearance of the
video frames themselves.
Style effects like Emboss and Old film let you
apply distinctive visual styles for added impact.
Overlay effects support the overlay features of
Studio, such as Picture-in-picture and Chroma key.
Fun effects like Water drop and Lens flare
provide extra scope for creativity and fun in your
movies.
Color effects let you modify the coloration of a
clip, whether subtly or dramatically.
Plug-in effects are organized into packs of one or more
effects each. In this manual, we cover the nine effects
in the Studio HD RTFX pack (see page 174), which is
included with all versions of Studio. Further on, we
briefly describe each of the more than 20 additional
effects in the Ultimate RTFX pack (page 178), which is
included with Studio Ultimate.
Full documentation of the parameters for the Ultimate
effects is included in their context-sensitive on-line
help, which can be viewed by clicking the help
button at the top left of the parameters panel for each
effect, or by pressing the F1 key when the panel is
open.
Building your effects library
Studio’s plug-in architecture means that you can
continue to add new effects to your video effects
library as they become available. Expansion packs of
effects from Avid and other vendors will integrate
seamlessly with the program.
174 Pinnacle Studio
Some expansion effects are shipped with Studio as
locked, premium content. These include Avid’s RTFX
Volume 1 and 2 packs. Such effects can be previewed
in Studio as usual, but are “watermarked” with a
special graphic during playback.
Purchasing an activation key will remove the
watermark. This can be done without leaving Studio.
For more information about obtaining premium content
for Studio, see “Expanding Studio” on page 12.
Warning: Studio’s plug-in video effects are computer
programs. They are theoretically capable of actions
with the potential to damage or disrupt your system,
such as modifying or deleting files and editing the
system registry. Avid advises against installing third-
party plug-ins except those from trusted vendors.
STANDARD EFFECTS
This section describes six of the effects included in the
Studio HD RTFX group at the top the Studio effects
browser. The others are covered elsewhere: Chroma
key on page 199, Pan and zoom on page 224, and
Picture-in-picture on page 194.
Cleaning effects
Auto color correction, Noise reduction and Stabilize are
classified as cleaning effects, which help correct
defects in the source video, such as noise and camera
shake. Keep in mind that these are effects are general-
purpose filters designed to reduce the most common
Chapter 7: Video effects 175
problems found on a wide range of material. They are
not a panacea. Your results will vary depending on the
original material and the severity and nature of the
problems.
Auto color correction
This effect compensates for incorrect color balance in
your video. The idea is similar to the “white balance”
setting on a camcorder.
Brightness: Color correction may affect the brightness
of the image. You can apply a manual correction, if
needed, with this slider. (Technically, the control
modifies the “contrast gamma” of the image rather than
its actual brightness.)
Note: The Auto color correction effect may introduce
video noise into the clip as a side-effect of processing.
If this happens to a troublesome degree, add on the
Noise reduction effect described below.
Dream glow
Applied to the right material, this effect suffuses the
scene with a spectral glow suggestive of altered reality.
Adjustable Blur and Glow parameters let you fine tune
the appearance. Glow is a uniform brightness boost. As
its level increases, the lighter parts of the image are
replaced by expanding whited-out regions as the
maximum brightness level is reached or exceeded.
176 Pinnacle Studio
An outdoor scene with (L) and without (R) the
Dream glow effect.
Rotate
This effect allows rotation of the entire video frame,
and also provides controls for independent horizontal
and vertical scaling.
Full-frame 180° rotation (L); rotation with differential
scaling, to produce a simple perspective effect (R).
Noise reduction
This plug-in applies a noise-reduction algorithm that
may improve the appearance of noisy video. In order to
minimize artifacts (image defects caused as a side-
effect of image processing), noise reduction is only
performed in areas of the frame where the amount of
motion falls beneath a certain threshold value.
Chapter 7: Video effects 177
Motion threshold: This slider governs the threshold
value. Moving the slider rightwards increases the
amount of motion the effect will tolerate, thus tending
to increase the proportion of the image that will be
affected. At the same time, the danger of introducing
unacceptable artifacts into the video is also increased.
Stabilize
Like the electronic image stabilization feature in many
digital camcorders, this effect minimizes any jerkiness
or jitter caused by camera movement. The edge areas of
the image are discarded, and the central portion is
magnified by about 20% to fill the frame. By adjusting
the boundaries of the selected region on a frame-by-
frame basis, Studio is able to compensate for the
unwanted camera motion.
Stabilize works by expanding a selected area (inner
lines) to full-frame size. The area is adjusted from
frame to frame to compensate for slight aiming
differences caused by camera shake.
Speed
This sophisticated effect allows you to set the speed of
any video clip over a continuous range from 10 to 500
percent of normal, in either forward or reverse motion.
The length of the clip changes as you vary its speed.
178 Pinnacle Studio
If the clip contains audio, that too is sped up or slowed
down. The option of maintaining the original pitch lets
you avoid the sudden introduction of cartoon voices
into your soundtrack.
ULTIMATE EFFECTS
The Studio Ultimate RTFX pack of video effects is
included with Studio Ultimate. Users of other Studio
versions can obtain the effects by upgrading to Studio
Ultimate.
This section gives a brief description of each effect in
the group, except:
Two of the Overlay effects are covered elsewhere
(Chroma key on page 199, and Picture-in-picture on
page 194).
The HFX Filter effect, which allows you to create
and edit animated 3D transitions with Avid’s
Hollywood FX software, opens externally to
Studio, and provides its own on-line help. HFX
Filter uses a special Pinnacle Studio category icon.
The effects appear here in the same order as they do in
the effects browser, where they are sorted by category
(see page 172). Full descriptions, including all
parameters, are available in the context-sensitive help
when the effect parameters window is open in Studio
Ultimate.
Chapter 7: Video effects 179
Blur
Adding blur to your video produces a result similar to
shooting out of focus. Studio’s Blur effect allows you
to add separate intensities of horizontal and vertical
blurring over the whole frame or any rectangular region
within it. You can easily blur out only a selected
portion of the image, such as a person’s face, an effect
familiar from TV news coverage.
Emboss
This specialized effect simulates the look of an
embossed or bas-relief sculpture. The strength of the
effect is controlled by the Amount slider.
Emboss can often be enhanced by adjusting contrast
and brightness with the Color Correction effect (right).
Old film
Old movies have a number of traits that are usually
considered undesirable: grainy images caused by early
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photographic development processes, spots and streaks
from dust and lint adhering to the film, and intermittent
vertical lines where the film has been scratched during
projection.
The Old film effect lets you simulate these defects to
lend your pristine video the appearance of movies that
have suffered the ravages of time.
Soften
The Soften effect applies a gentle blurring to your
video. This can be helpful for anything from adding a
romantic haze to minimizing wrinkles. A slider controls
the strength of the effect.
Stained glass
This effect simulates the appearance of viewing the
video through a pane of irregular polygons arranged
into a mosaic.
Sliders let you control the average dimensions of the
polygonal “tiles” in the image and the width of the dark
Chapter 7: Video effects 181
edging between neighboring tiles from zero (no edging)
to the maximum value.
Three variations of the Stained Glass effect
Luma key
This overlay effect works very similarly to Chroma
Key (page 199), but in this case the transparent areas of
the foreground image are defined by luminance rather
than color information.
2D Editor
Use this effect to enlarge the image and set which
portion of it will be displayed, or to shrink the image
and optionally add a border and shadow.
Earthquake
The Studio Ultimate Earthquake effect jiggles the
video frame to simulate a seismic event, whose severity
you control with sliders for speed and intensity.
182 Pinnacle Studio
Lens flare
This effect simulates the flaring seen when direct bright
light overexposes an area of a film or video image.
You can set the orientation, size and type of the main
light. The first option of those shown below lets you
remove the light, though its secondary effects – rays
and reflections – are still generated.
The eight Type options.
Magnify
This effect lets you apply a virtual magnifying lens to a
selected portion of the video frame. You can position
the lens in three dimensions, moving it horizontally and
vertically within the frame, and nearer to or further
from the image.
Motion blur
This effect simulates the blurring that results when a
camera is moved rapidly during exposure. Both the
angle and the amount of blurring can be set.
Chapter 7: Video effects 183
Water drop
This effect simulates the impact of a drop falling onto
the surface of water, producing expanding, concentric
ripples.
Stages in the Water Drop effect (“Big drop” preset).
Water wave
This effect adds distortion to simulate a series of ocean
waves passing across the video frame as the clip
progresses. Parameters allow you to adjust the number,
spacing, direction and depth of the waves.
Black and white
This effect subtracts some or all of the color
information from the source video, with results ranging
from partly desaturated (the “Faded” preset) to fully
monochrome (“Black and white”). The Amount slider
controls the strength of the effect.
Color correction
The four sliders in the parameters panel for this effect
control the coloration of the current clip in terms of:
Brightness: The intensity of light
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Contrast: The range of light and dark values
Hue: The location of light on the spectrum
Saturation: The quantity of pure color, from gray to
fully saturated
Color map
This effect colorizes an image using a pair of blend
ramps, or color maps. Stylize your footage with bold
color treatments, add duotone and tritone style
colorization, or create striking editorial transitions.
Color map can be used for anything from fine control
of monochrome images to psychedelic color
transformations.
Invert
Despite its name, the Invert effect doesn’t turn the
display upside-down. Rather than the image itself, it is
the color values in the image that are inverted: each
pixel is redrawn in its complementary light intensity
and/or color, producing a readily recognizable but
recolored image.
This effect uses the YCrCb color model, which has one
channel for luminance (brightness information) and two
channels for chrominance (color information). The
YCrCb model is often used in digital video
applications.
Chapter 7: Video effects 185
Lighting
The Lighting tool enables correction and enhancement
of existing video that was shot with poor or insufficient
lighting. It is particularly suitable for fixing backlit
outdoor sequences in which the subject’s features are in
shadow.
Posterize
This Studio Ultimate effect lets you control the number
of colors used to render each frame of the clip, all the
way from the full original palette down to two colors
(black and white) as you drag the Amount slider from
left to right. Regions of similar color are coalesced into
larger flat areas as the palette shrinks.
RGB color balance
RGB Color Balance in Studio Ultimate serves a dual
role. On the one hand, you can use it to correct video
that suffers from unwanted coloration. On the other, it
allows you to apply a color bias to achieve a particular
effect. For example, a night scene can often be
heightened by adding blue and slightly reducing overall
brightness. You can even make video shot in daylight
look like a night scene.
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Sepia
This Studio Ultimate effect imparts the appearance of
antique photography to the clip by rendering it in sepia
tones rather than full color. The strength of the effect is
controlled with the Amount slider.
White balance
Most video cameras have a “white balance” option for
automatically adjusting their color response to ambient
lighting conditions. If this option is switched off or not
fully effective, the coloration of the video image will
suffer.
Studio’s White balance effect corrects the problem by
allowing you to specify which color should be taken as
“white” in this image. The adjustment needed to make
that reference color white is then applied to every pixel
of the image. If the reference white is well chosen, this
can make the coloration seem more natural.
Chapter 8: Two-track editing 187
CHAPTER 8:
Two-track editing
Studio provides the power of multitrack video editing
to Studio through an auxiliary video track on the Movie
Window Timeline called the overlay track. With it you
can use advanced picture-in-picture and chroma-key
effects while retaining the convenience of Studio’s
streamlined and intuitive user interface.
Introducing the overlay track
Upon installation, the Timeline displays the five tracks
familiar to long-time Studio users: the video track with
its original audio track, and the title, sound effect and
music tracks.
To open the overlay track, drag a video clip from the
Album into the Movie Window and drop it on the
title track . The overlay track instantly appears with
the clip properly positioned upon it .
Drop video on the title track to open the overlay track.
188 Pinnacle Studio
Along with the overlay track, Studio adds an overlay
audio track to accommodate the video clip’s original
audio information.
Once the overlay video and audio tracks have been
opened, Studio no longer accepts video clips on the title
track. Drag clips from the Album directly onto either
the video or overlay track as required.
Video clips on the video and overlay tracks.
Displaying and hiding the overlay track
As we have just seen, the overlay video and audio
tracks are displayed when you add your first overlay
clip. Similarly, when you remove the last clip from
these tracks, Studio again hides them from view.
This default behavior help keep the Movie Window
uncluttered, but if you are making frequent use of
overlay video, you might prefer to have the track
visible at all times. This can be achieved by activating
the Always show overlay track command on the pop-up
“context” menu that appears when you click on the
Movie Window with your right mouse button.
Chapter 8: Two-track editing 189
A/B editing
The second video track in Studio Ultimate often
simplifies the editing tasks – insert edits, L-cuts and J-
cuts – discussed under “Advanced Timeline editing” on
page 132.
An insert edit, for instance, becomes a trivial operation:
simply drag the clip to be inserted onto the overlay
track, and trim it as desired. (See “The Picture-in-
picture tool” below if you want the second video to
appear at reduced size so that only part of the main
video is obscured.)
An insert edit on the overlay track. The main video is
obscured while the B clip is playing.
In the J-cut and the L-cut, the audio portion of a clip
begins a little before (J) or a little after (L) the video.
They are often used together to soften the start and end
of an inserted clip.
190 Pinnacle Studio
Split editing on the overlay track. The overlay video
track has been locked, allowing the B clip’s audio to
be trimmed. The main audio can be reduced or
muted as needed.
The Picture-in-picture tool
Picture-in-picture (often abbreviated to “PIP”) – the
inclusion of an additional video frame within the main
video – is a versatile effect familiar from its use in
professional TV productions.
Picture-in-picture with optional border, shadow and
rounded corners (left). Split-screen effects, like the
vertical split at right, are among the variations that
show off the versatility of the PIP tool.
Chapter 8: Two-track editing 191
To use picture-in-picture, start in the usual way by
dragging some video clips onto the Movie Window
Timeline. Drop the clips you want for background
video onto the video track. The foreground clip – the
PIP clip – goes on the overlay track underneath the
main clip.
Note: If you are planning a split-screen effect, like the
one shown at right in the illustration above, it doesn’t
matter which of the two clips goes on which track.
With the clips in place, select the foreground clip
and open the Picture-in-picture and Chroma key
(PIP/CK) tool. It is the seventh tool in the Movie
Window’s video toolbox. We usually refer to the two
aspects of the tool separately as the Picture-in-picture
and the Chroma key tools.
The Picture-in-picture and Chroma key (PIP/CK)
tool is really two tools in one. Because they are used
independently, we treat them as separate tools. This
illustration shows the PIP side of the tool. Click the
Chroma Key tab at the top of the tool to switch.
192 Pinnacle Studio
Picture-in-picture tool controls
Most of the left-hand side of the PIP tool is taken up
with an interactive layout area where you can both
view and modify the dimensions, placement and
cropping of the overlay video. The adjustments that
you make are reflected in the Player preview as you
work.
The layout area has two modes, selected by the Scale
and Crop radio buttons.
Scale mode: The gray, checked region in the layout
area represents the transparent portion of the overlay
frame, through which any underlying video can be
seen. In typical PIP usage, this accounts for most of the
screen, the overlay being sized small enough that the
main video is not unnecessarily obscured. You can
modify the PIP frame in three ways:
Click on the PIP frame and drag it within the layout
area to reposition it within the main video frame.
Use the center control points on the edges of the PIP
frame to change its dimensions arbitrarily.
Use the control points at the corners of the PIP frame
to change its size but not its proportions (“aspect
ratio”).
Crop mode: In this mode the layout area represents the
entire overlay frame, regardless of its actual dimensions
as set in Scale mode. The rectangle defined by the
control points shows which portion of the frame is
visible. Outside the visible area, the frame is semi-
transparent, letting the checked pattern show through.
As in Scale mode, the side control points allow for free
adjustment of the crop rectangle, whereas the corner
control points preserve its aspect ratio.
Chapter 8: Two-track editing 193
The PIP tool in Scale (L) and Crop (R) modes.
Presets: Choose a preset name to set up all the PIP
controls at once to the predetermined values associated
with that name. You can choose a preset as a first
approximation to your desired settings, then adjust
them manually until you get exactly what you want.
Transparency: Use this slider if you want the
underlying video to show through the overlay itself.
Moving the slider to the right makes the overlay, with
its border and shadow, increasingly transparent.
Border: These controls set the
color, width and transparency of
the border that will be drawn
around the overlay frame. Set the
width to zero (slider all the way
to the left) if you don’t want a
border at all. See page 202 for
information on how to use the
color controls.
The Softness slider controls the amount of blurring on
the outside edge of the border. Move the slider left for a
hard edge, or right to blend the border with the
background video. Check the Rounded corners box if
you want to round off the corners of the PIP rectangle.
194 Pinnacle Studio
Shadow: These controls set the
color, width, angle and
transparency of the drop shadow
effect that gives the illusion of
the overlay frame floating above
the background video. Set the
width (using the Distance slider)
to zero if you don’t want a shadow to appear.
The dial-shaped shadow-angle control gives you eight
choices for the placement of the shadow relative to the
frame.
Enable picture-in-picture: This checkbox allows you
to turn the PIP effect on and off.
Apply to new clips: This option is handy when you
want to set up the same PIP settings for a number of
different clips. As long the option is checked, PIP will
automatically be applied to each new clip that you drag
onto the overlay track, using the same settings that
were displayed the last time the tool was open.
The PIP effect interface
If you prefer to enter your PIP parameter settings
numerically rather than graphically, you can turn to an
alternative interface provided by the Video effects tool.
You can also combine the two methods, using the PIP
tool’s graphical interface to specify the initial settings,
then fine tuning them with the numerical effect
parameters.
The available parameter settings of the Picture-in-
picture effect are almost identical to those offered by
the PIP tool:
Position: The Horizontal and Vertical sliders set the
offset of the center of the PIP frame from the center of
the background frame.
Chapter 8: Two-track editing 195
Parameter settings for the Picture-in-picture effect.
Size: The Width and Height sliders set the size of the
PIP frame as a percentage of its original dimensions.
Cropping, if used, can further reduce the final size of
the PIP frame on the screen.
Cropping: The four sliders in this group trim away a
percentage of the original PIP video frame, allowing
you to remove unnecessary portions of the image and
focus on the main subject.
Video: The Transparency slider lets the background
video show through the PIP overlay to any desired
degree.
Border: The parameters in this group are equivalent to
the Border settings on the PIP tool, allowing you to set
the overlay border’s color, thickness, transparency and
edge softness, and to select the rounded corners option
if desired. One bonus of the effect interface is that there
are separate Width and Height controls to control the
border thickness, rather than the single setting provided
by the tool.
Shadow: As with the Border group, these parameters
are essentially the same as those on the PIP tool, except
that the Horizontal offset and Vertical offset parameters
afford slightly more flexibility in positioning the
shadow than do the tool’s Distance and Angle settings.
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The Chroma key tool
Chroma key is a widely-used technique that allows
foreground objects to appear in a video scene even
though they were not present – and often could not
have been present – when the scene was shot. When an
action star tumbles into a volcano, or battles a giant
cockroach, or saves the crew with a daring space-walk,
the chances are that chroma key or a related technology
was involved in the scene.
Chroma key effects are often called “blue-screen” or
“green-screen” effects because the foreground action is
shot in front of a uniform blue or green background.
The background is then electronically removed, leaving
only the foreground action to be superimposed on the
actual background of the final scene, which has been
separately prepared.
Blue and green are the generally-preferred colors for
chroma key use because their removal from an image
will not affect human skin tones, but in principle any
hue can be used with Studio’s chroma key tool.
Creating a scene with chroma key: A clip on the
video track (L) is chosen as the background for a
green-screen clip on the overlay track (C). Chroma
keying removes the green to complete the scene (R).
As with picture-in-picture, the first step in using
chroma key is to drag some video clips onto the
Chapter 8: Two-track editing 197
Timeline. Drop the clips you want for background
video onto the video track. The foreground clip, which
should have a uniform, highly-saturated background
like the center clip in the illustration above, goes on the
overlay track below the main clip.
With the clips in place, select the foreground clip
and open the Picture-in-picture and Chroma key
(PIP/CK) tool. It is the seventh tool in the Movie
Window’s video toolbox. Select the Chroma key tab to
display the controls you will need.
The chroma key side of the PIP/CK tool.
Chroma-key tool controls
The chroma key tool constructs a “mask”, shown in the
Key channel graphic on the left side of the tool, where
the transparent part of the frame is drawn in black, and
the opaque part – the part you will see in the final video
– is drawn in white. Most of the remaining controls are
used to define exactly which areas of the frame will be
included in the transparent part of the mask by setting
the “key color” and related properties.
Transparency: Use this slider if you want the
underlying video to show through the normally opaque
overlay. Moving the slider to the right makes the
overlay, with its border and shadow, increasingly
transparent.
198 Pinnacle Studio
Presets: The tool provides two presets, called “Green
screen key” and “Blue screen key”. These provide good
starting points for setting up the tool if you are using
one of the standard chroma key colors.
Key color: Use the color swatch or eye dropper buttons
to select the color that will be removed from the video
frame leaving only the desired foreground. See page
202 for information on how to use the color controls.
Rather than an actual color, you are really selecting
only a hue, without regard to the other properties –
saturation and intensity – that in combination with hue
make a complete color specification. The chosen hue is
shown by the position of the highlighted region on the
circumference of the color circle display.
The color circle on the Chroma key tool highlights a
range of hues (around the circumference) and color
saturation values (along the radius). Any pixel in the
overlay frame whose hue and saturation fall within
the highlighted region will be treated as transparent.
Color tolerance: This slider controls the width of the
range of hues that will be recognized as belonging to
the “key color”. Moving the slider to the right increases
the angle of the arc covered by the highlighted region
on the color circle.
Saturation minimum: Saturation is the amount of hue
in a color. A pixel with zero saturation (corresponding
to the center of the color circle) has no hue: it falls on
Chapter 8: Two-track editing 199
the “gray scale”, whose extremes are white and black.
Chroma key works most effectively when the
background is highly and uniformly saturated, allowing
a high setting of this slider. In the real world, vagaries
of lighting and apparatus often result in a background
that falls short of the ideal. Moving the slider left
allows a wider range of saturation values to be
matched, indicated by a highlighted region that extends
farther towards the center of the color circle.
Softness: This slider controls the density of the
underlying video. When it is positioned all the way to
the left, the main video is entirely black. As you move
the slider to the right, the main video is brought up to
full density.
Spill suppression: Adjusting this slider may help
suppress video noise or fringing along the edges of the
foreground object.
Enable chroma keying: This checkbox allows you to
turn the chroma key effect on and off.
Apply to new clips: This option is handy when you
want to set up the same chroma key settings for a
number of different clips. As long as the option is
checked, chroma key will automatically be applied to
each new clip that you drag onto the overlay track,
using the same settings that were displayed the last
time the tool was open.
The chroma key effect interface
If you prefer to enter your chroma key parameter
settings numerically rather than graphically, you can
turn to an alternative interface provided by the Video
effects tool. You can also combine the two methods,
using the chroma key tool’s graphical interface to
specify the initial settings, then fine tuning them with
the numerical effect parameters.
200 Pinnacle Studio
The Chroma key plug-in provides parameter settings
almost identical to those offered by the chroma key
tool, but provides one more option, Invert Key. When
this option is activated, the normally opaque parts of
the key are treated as transparent, and the transparent
parts as opaque, so that the underlying video shows
through everywhere except for the area masked by the
colored screen.
Parameter settings for the Chroma key effect.
The chroma key tool provides a special view of the
transparency key it has generated. To get this view in
the Player while working with the effect parameters,
click the Show Key checkbox.
Using Show Key: At left the key, at right the real thing.
Chapter 8: Two-track editing 201
Chroma key tips
No matter how good your software may be, successful
use of chroma key depends on carefully setting up your
shot, and may require experimentation to get the details
just right. Here are some tips to get you started:
Light the backdrop as evenly as possible: Very often,
background coloring that looks flat to the naked eye
will prove on playback to have areas that are too dark
or too washed out to work well for chroma keying,
which favors even, saturated color. Use multiple lights
on the backdrop to ensure that it is well-lit across its
whole area and without hotspots. Diffuse sunlight, as
produced by a light overcast sky, can work well when
shooting out of doors is an option.
Don’t let the subject shadow the screen: Arrange
your subject and foreground lighting so that no
shadows fall across the backdrop. The subject should
be not less than one meter (three feet) in front of the
backdrop.
Setting up a chroma key shot. The backdrop is well
and evenly lit, and positioned well behind the subject
so that shadows do not interfere. The lighting of the
subject should be arranged to suit the background
that will be keyed into the shot.
202 Pinnacle Studio
Choose foreground colors carefully: Don’t have your
subject wear green if you are shooting on a green
screen, or blue for a blue screen; those areas will be
removed if they are taken to match the key color. You
have to be especially careful about this when working
with less even backdrops that require you to set a wider
color tolerance in the chroma keyer.
Make a smooth profile: Chroma keyers do better with
a smooth edge than a jagged or complex one, so try to
have your subject present a smooth profile to the
camera. Hair is particularly tricky, and should be
slicked down if possible. If the subject can wear a hat,
so much the better.
Use tight framing: The wider your frame, the larger
your background needs to be, and the more difficult it
is to control your shot. One way to keep things simple
is to shoot your subject from the waist up rather than in
full view.
Note: A professional background cloth for chroma key
work is available as an inexpensive purchase at the
Avid web-site.
Selecting colors
To select colors in tools and effects that
provide a color parameter, click either on the
color swatch (left) or the eye dropper button. The first
Chapter 8: Two-track editing 203
opens a standard color picker dialog; while the second
lets you choose a color by clicking anywhere on the
screen.
Two ways to set colors: The Windows color picker
dialog (L) opens when you click the color swatch
button provided in some tools and effects. Click the
eye-dropper button to select a color from the Player
preview window or elsewhere using a mouse pointer
in the form of an eye-dropper (R).
Chapter 9: Transitions 205
CHAPTER 9:
Transitions
A transition is an animated effect that eases – or
emphasizes – the passage from one clip to the next.
Fades, wipes and dissolves are common types of
transition. Others are more exotic, and may even
involve sophisticated 3-D graphics.
Transitions are stored in their own section of the
Album (see “The Transitions section” on page 84). To
use a transition, drag it from the Album into the Movie
Window and drop it beside any video clip, theme clip
or still image. (You can also apply transitions directly
to audio clips. See “Transitions on the audio tracks” on
page 322.)
A series of transitions (the icons between the video
clips) in Storyboard view.
In Timeline view, you can drop the transition on either
the main video track, the overlay track, or the title
track. On the video track, the transition provides a
206 Pinnacle Studio
bridge between two full-screen clips (or between one
clip and blackness if the transition has only one
neighbor, as at the beginning of the movie). On the
overlay and title tracks, the transition bridges two
neighboring clips (or one clip and transparency).
Diagram: Five snapshots from the life of a 2-second
diagonal wipe transition.
If a transition is to last for two seconds (the default
transition duration in a fresh Studio installation), the
second clip begins to run two seconds before the first
clip is finished. At the outset, only the first clip is
visible; by the end, the second clip has completely
replaced the first.
The details of what happens in between, as the first clip
is gradually removed and the second gradually appears,
depend on the transition type. Since the video clips
overlap, the total duration of the pair of clips is reduced
by the duration of the transition.
Here is the same transition as above, this time using
actual video. For clarity, the transition boundary in
the three center frames has been emphasized in
white. Both clips continue to run while the transition
is in progress.
Chapter 9: Transitions 207
Transition types and their uses
Like all effects, transitions should be used not for their
own sake but to serve the overall needs of your movie.
Well-chosen transitions can subtly reinforce the
meaning of the movie and how it plays without
drawing attention to themselves. Observing the way
transitions are used in professionally-produced video
on television will suggest many ways to improve your
own movies. Generally, it is advisable to refrain from
overusing transitions that cause abrupt changes or
otherwise draw attention to themselves: there’s a big
difference between a subtle dissolve and a heart-shaped
wipe.
The basic transitions discussed below – fades,
dissolves, wipes, slides and pushes – are all among the
first group of standard transitions (the “2D transitions”)
in the Album.
A set of more elaborate transitions is found in the
Alpha Magic group, which is the second entry in the
dropdown list of transition groups in the Album.
The many other groups on the list all belong to the
Hollywood FX, a large set of complex transitions
featuring three-dimensional graphics. The Hollywood
FX transitions are discussed at the end of this section
(page 209).
Cut: A cut is the minimal transition – an instantaneous
shift from one scene to the next. In Studio, it is the
default transition. A cut is appropriate when there is a
strong inherent connection between one clip and the
208 Pinnacle Studio
next; for instance, when the camera changes position or
angle within a scene.
Fade: This transition fades into the beginning of
a video clip from a black screen, or from the end
of a clip to a black screen. A fade dropped between two
clips creates a fade down followed by a fade up. The
fade transition is the first transition icon in the Album.
A fade is usually used at the beginning and end of a
movie, or when there is a large break in continuity, as
when a new section begins. For example, a movie of a
play might benefit from inserting a fade between acts.
Dissolve: A dissolve is similar to a fade, except
that the new scene begins to fade up even while
the old one is fading down. The visual overlap this
produces is less dramatic than a fade, but less abrupt
than a cut. A short dissolve can take the edge off a cut,
while a long dissolve is useful to suggest the passage of
time.
Wipe, slide and push: In each of these
standard transition types, the incoming
video is gradually revealed behind an edge that moves
across the frame in a certain direction. The Album
icons shown with this paragraph represent a leftward
wipe, a down-and-left slide and a rightward push
respectively.
In a wipe transition, both the old and new video occupy
their normal position in the frame throughout the
transition. The new video comes into view as the
transition edge crosses the frame, rather like new
wallpaper being rolled on over old.
A slide is similar to a wipe, but in this case the frame of
the new video slides across the screen until it reaches
Chapter 9: Transitions 209
its home position. The effect is reminiscent of a blind
being pulled down over a window.
A push is similar to a slide, except that the old video is
pushed out of the frame as the new video enters, like
advancing a filmstrip from one frame to the next.
Hollywood FX for Studio
Avid’s Hollywood FX includes a large number
of dramatic 3-D transitions and effects. These
are ideal for opening sequences, sports and action
footage, or music videos. Hollywood FX satisfies
professional expectations for quality without sacrificing
ease of use.
A basic set of fully-functional Hollywood FX is
included with Studio, and many more are available for
purchase online. For more information, see “Expanding
Studio” on page 12.
Also available for purchase on-line is the HFX Creator
editing tool for Hollywood FX. This software lets you
customize your Hollywood FX, or create new ones
from scratch. HFX Creator includes advanced
keyframe editing for flight paths and all parameters,
powerful warp plug-ins, and a 3D text
generator. You can also create a wide
range of 3D MultiWindow Effects
using external video sources, and add
real-life 3D objects and lighting.
To initiate the purchase of HFX
Creator, click the Edit button in the
Clip properties tool for any Hollywood
FX transition.
210 Pinnacle Studio
Previewing transitions in your movie
Studio lets you preview transitions in the Player. Just
drag and drop a transition into the Movie Window,
click the Play button (or hit [Space]) and see how the
transition works with your material.
You can also preview transitions by scrubbing through
them in the Player or on the Timeline of the Movie
Window.
Background rendering of Hollywood FX
Background rendering is an optional feature in which
the computation needed to create a detailed preview of
Hollywood FX transitions and other effects is carried
out as a “background task” with no interruption of your
workflow. You can configure background rendering on
the Video and audio preferences options panel (Setup
Video and Audio Preferences). See “Video and audio
preferences” on page 358 for details.
Until the rendering of a transition is complete, the
Player will preview it at reduced resolution and frame
rate. A colored bar appears in the Timescale above the
clip while background rendering is in progress.
Audio transitions
Video clips in the Movie Window normally have
synchronous audio. In the absence of a transition, both
video and audio cut from one clip to the next. When a
Chapter 9: Transitions 211
transition is placed between two clips, the audio cross-
fades (the audio equivalent of a dissolve).
The only exception to this rule is the Fade transition,
which takes the audio completely out then back in
again.
Normal transitions cause a cross-fade in
the audio (left). In a Fade transition
(right), the audio fades down then up
along with the video.
The Ripple Transition command
This Studio feature is especially useful for creating a
quick slideshow from a set of still images, or a video
pictorial from a set of short clips. Such a presentation is
more interesting if you connect each pair of clips with a
transition. Ripple Transition gives you a quick and easy
way of achieving that.
Begin with a set of a clips on the Timeline, then add a
transition of the desired type between the first two
clips.
Now select all the clips except the first, click on any of
them with the right mouse-button, and select Ripple
Transition from the pop-up menu.
212 Pinnacle Studio
Studio inserts a duplicate of the original transition
between each pair of selected clips.
TRIMMING TRANSITIONS
Although transitions are not true clips, they are handled
very similarly to clips within Studio’s editing
environment. Like clips, you can trim transitions either
directly on the Movie Window Timeline, or by using
the Clip properties tool.
See “Trimming on the Timeline using handles” on page
123 for a discussion of the first method. The maximum
allowed duration of a transition is one frame less than
the shorter of the neighboring clips.
Chapter 9: Transitions 213
Trimming with the Clip properties tool
The Toolbox Modify Clip Properties menu
command invokes the Clip properties tool for the
selected clip. For all transition types, this tool provides
previewing controls, and the ability to set two
properties:
To set the duration of the transition, change the value
in the Duration counter. A transition’s duration must
always be less – if only by a single frame – than the
shorter of its neighboring clips.
The Name text field lets you assign a custom name to
the clip to replace the default one assigned by Studio.
The Name field is provided on the Clip properties
tool for all clip types. Clip names are used by the
Movie Window’s List view, and can also be viewed
as fly-by labels when your mouse hovers over clips
in the Storyboard view.
Many transition effects also support a “reverse
direction” option, which causes the transition animation
to run backwards, allowing a rotary wipe, for example,
to be either clockwise or counterclockwise. The
Reverse checkbox is enabled when the current
transition supports this option.
If you have purchased the HFX Creator application,
you can open it within Studio by clicking the Edit
button on the Clip properties tool for Hollywood FX
transitions. HFX Creator is an external editing program
with many options, whose use is described in its
accompanying documentation.
214 Pinnacle Studio
Previewing in the Clip properties tool
The Clip properties tool provides previewing controls
for transitions similar to those for video clips. See
“Trimming with the Clip properties tool” on page 128
for more information.
The preview areas show the last full frame of the
outgoing clip and the first full frame of the incoming
one. The preview frames update as you edit the
Duration field.
The transport controls let you preview the transition
effect in the Player either frame by frame or at full
speed. The Loop play/Pause button cycles through
the transition repeatedly at normal playback speed.
Both the counter (with its associated jog buttons) and
the scrubber give you direct access to any desired point
within the transition.
Chapter 10: Still images 215
CHAPTER 10:
Still images
Video usually means images in motion, but most
productions also include stationary titles or graphics,
and may include other types of still image as well.
The still images you can use in your movies include:
All types of text captions and graphics, including
scrolling credits and “crawled” messages.
Photos or drawings stored in disk-based image files.
Individual video frames obtained with the Frame
grabber tool.
“Disc menus” for DVD, BD and VCD authoring.
These specialized images are covered in Chapter 11:
Disc menus.
Any of these still image types can be treated in either of
two ways, depending on which track you drop them
onto in the Movie Window Timeline:
To add a full-screen image with a solid background,
add the image to the video track.
To add an image so that it appears in your movie
with a transparent background, superimposed over
the clips on the video track, place it on the title track.
To be used in this way, the image must be in either
TIFF (tif) or PNG (png) format, with the transparent
216 Pinnacle Studio
area defined by means of an alpha channel as this
format allows.
Note: Studio provides an additional option, the overlay
track, for adding your images to the Timeline. See
Chapter 8: Two-track editing, for details.
The Album has separate sections for titles, bitmapped
images and disc menus. All these resources are stored
as separate files on your hard drive. You can also create
titles and disc menus of your own in one of Studio’s
title editors and add them directly to your movie
without first saving them as separate files (see Chapter
12: The Classic Title Editor, and Chapter 13: The
Motion Titler). Similarly, still video frames can be
added directly from the Frame grabber tool (see “The
Frame Grabber” on page 225).
Full-screen images
A full-screen image is one that is placed on the video
track. It fills the entire screen, replacing the video.
When the preceding video clip ends, Studio plays the
still image clip. The visual effect is that the video ends,
and is replaced by the graphic until the next clip begins.
Overlay images
An overlay image is one that is placed on the title track.
It is superimposed on the current video clip, without
Chapter 10: Still images 217
replacing the video. The transparent area of the image
must be defined by means of an alpha channel.
Making a slideshow
If you would like to assemble a quick slideshow of still
images or video clips, you may want to take advantage
of Studio’s Ripple Transition feature to quickly insert a
chosen transition between each pair of clips or images.
See page 211 for details.
Applying effects
Most of Studio’s plug-in video effects can be applied to
still images. (The exceptions are effects like Speed that
only make sense for moving video.) See “Using video
effects” on page 161 for detailed information.
EDITING STILL IMAGES
As with other types of clip, you can trim still images
directly on the Movie Window Timeline, or by using
the Clip properties tool.
See “Trimming on the Timeline using handles” on page
123 for a discussion of the first method. The difference
with a still image clip is that you can extend it to any
218 Pinnacle Studio
duration you choose, whereas a video clip can be no
longer than the original Album scene.
Effects like Blur, Posterize and Color correction can be
applied to still image clips in the same way as to video
clips. See “Video effects – the basic set” on page 172.
Editing image clip properties
The Toolbox Modify Clip Properties menu
command opens a version of the Clip properties
tool appropriate for the type of the selected clip. The
topmost tool icon in the video toolbox can also be used.
With bitmapped images, including ordinary photos and
image files, and with disc menus, double-click the clip
for a third way to access the tool. Double-clicking a
title, however, opens it into the appropriate title editor.
All versions of the Clip properties tool allow you to set
the duration and name of the current clip, as follows:
To set the length of time the still image is displayed,
change the value in the Duration counter.
The Name text field lets you assign a custom name to
the clip to replace the default one assigned by Studio.
Clip names are used by the Movie Window’s Text
view, and can also be viewed on the fly-by labels
that appear when your mouse hovers over clips in the
Storyboard view.
The Clip properties tool for disc menus is described in
Chapter 11: Disc menus. See Chapter 12: The Classic
Title Editor and Chapter 13: The Motion Titler for
details about editing the properties of titles.
Chapter 10: Still images 219
Editing photos and graphics
The Clip properties tool for editing bitmapped images
allows you to perform several important image-
processing tasks:
Zoom in on your pictures and photos in order to crop
away unneeded material and focus on only the
essential part of the image;
Rotate the image in 90-degree increments to permit
the use of photos taken in “portrait” mode;
Remove the “red-eye” effect that can occur when the
subject of a photograph looks directly into the
camera when the flash goes off;
In Studio Ultimate, put together “pan-and-zoom”
animations in which a high-resolution image is
viewed as a succession of smoothly-connected close-
ups at various degrees of magnification. This
technique is closely associated with the well-known
documentary filmmaker Ken Burns.
The Clip properties tool for photos has pan-and-
zoom controls for focusing on an area of interest. In
Studio Ultimate, pan-and-zoom can be animated to
create the effect of traversing the image from one
focus to another. Animated ‘P&Z’ can be obtained in
other versions by upgrading to Studio Ultimate.
220 Pinnacle Studio
If an image needs rotating by 90 degrees to
bring it into “landscape” mode (wider than
high), start by clicking one of the image
rotation buttons. If needed, click the button more than
once until the clip is properly oriented.
If you want to reframe the image, click directly on
the tool’s preview window and, while holding the left
mouse-button down, drag the image in any direction
until it is properly positioned. Release the button to
complete the operation. Next, use the Zoom slider to
magnify or reduce the image size as desired. Adjust the
position and magnification with these controls until the
image is cropped and framed to your satisfaction.
The Reset button removes all your position and zoom
changes, restoring the original framing of the image.
The red-eye reduction feature helps restore
a natural appearance to photos in which the
subject’s eyes are tinged with red. (This
problem is caused by light from the flash unit bouncing
off the retina of the eye when the subject is looking
directly into the camera.)
To activate red-eye reduction, click the left button in
the red eye group. The button stays down when clicked.
Now click the image preview with the left mouse-
button above and to the left of the area in which red-
eye reduction should be applied. While holding the
button down, drag down and to the right until the area
is fully enclosed. When you release the mouse-button,
the red-eye reduction effect is instantly applied within
the rectangle you have outlined.
It is usually not necessary to be highly precise when
marking out the red-eye reduction area. In fact, a larger
rectangle may even yield a better result than a smaller
Chapter 10: Still images 221
one that encloses the eyes and no more. If the red-eye
reduction does not clear up the problem entirely on the
first attempt, try again with a different rectangle size.
Studio’s red-eye reduction algorithm provides excellent
results with a wide variety of photos. However, some
photos are better-suited to the process than others.
To remove red-eye reduction once applied, click the
right-hand button in the red eye group.
Animating Pan-and-zoom in Studio Ultimate
If you own Studio Ultimate, or purchase an activation
key by clicking the activate button on the pan-and-
zoom controls, you can create effective animations
from your photos and graphic images. Use the highest-
resolution images available with this technique, since
they allow greater magnification levels before there is
perceptible loss of quality.
Start creating a pan-and-zoom
animation by clicking the
Animate from start to end
checkbox to activate the animation feature for the
current clip. This enables the Set start and Set end radio
buttons, with Set start initially selected. Use the pan-
and-zoom controls to set the framing you want to see at
the start of the clip. Finally, click the Set end button,
then use the controls to set up the framing you want for
the end of the clip.
When the clip is played back, Studio will generate the
intervening frames to connect your start and end views
in a smooth animation.
222 Pinnacle Studio
The procedure above describes the simplest form of
pan-and-zoom animation. Effective uses include:
Moving from a full-frame photograph to a detail
view of a person or thing somewhere in the image.
This gives a similar result to zooming in while
shooting video. This might be used to prepare the
viewer for a sequence of shots exploring the same
close-up subject in multiple views, or providing
further close-ups of different parts of the same scene.
Moving out from a detail to the full-frame view, as
though zooming out with the video camera. In the
above scenario, this returns the viewer to the original
context, perhaps closing a chapter or episode within
your movie.
Panning across a wide scene to absorb its details one
by one. This technique can be used to impart a sense
of discovery when a dramatic or humorous detail
finally comes into view.
Complex pan-and-zoom animations
When you apply pan-and-zoom to a number of copies
of the same image in succession, it is as though you are
taking your viewer on a guided tour. In effect you are
telling a story, one that gradually unfolds as you draw
attention to one detail after another.
Story-telling may be difficult or not, but implementing
your story in Studio is very simple. Once you have set
up the first clip, with the first pan-and-zoom “camera
move”, simply copy it as often as necessary, and
change the end setting for each clip.
You almost always want the start framing of a new clip
in the sequence to match the end framing of the
Chapter 10: Still images 223
previous clip, in order that the sequence of moves will
be smoothly connected. On the second clip, and all
those that follow, click the Match previous clip button
wherever you want continuity.
In order to allow the movie to dwell on each detail for a
while after you pan to it, insert a non-animated copy of
the image between each move. Connect these static
clips into the sequence as usual with the Match
previous clip button.
The pan-and-zoom controls are used here to focus in
turn on four vignettes in the satirical painting “An
Election Entertainment” by English artist William
Hogarth. A fifth view pulls back to show as much of
the entire canvas as will fit in a wide-screen frame
without black sidebars. The tool automatically
generates smooth motion from one view to the next,
panning and zooming simultaneously as needed.
224 Pinnacle Studio
Animating pan-and-zoom with keyframes
Studio Ultimate users have another option for
animating their pan-and-zoom productions:
keyframing. The use of this feature enables a string of
pan-and-zoom movements to be associated with a
single clip, instead of having a single movement on
each of a series of clips. See “Keyframing” on page
166.
The pan-and-zoom effect interface
As an alternative to pan-and-zoom with the Clip
properties tool, you can enter the framing properties
numerically with the Pan and zoom video effect. This
alternative interface is provided by the Video effects
tool. You can also combine the two methods, using the
tool’s graphical interface to specify the initial settings,
then fine tuning them with the numerical effect
parameters.
The Pan and zoom effect is found in the Fun Effects
group. The parameters for pan-and-zoom are exactly
parallel to those offered by the tool interface: you can
use the sliders to set Zoom, Horizontal position and
Vertical position. The “red-eye reduction” controls of
the tool interface do not have equivalent parameters,
however.
Parameter settings for the Pan-and-zoom effect.
Chapter 10: Still images 225
THE FRAME GRABBER
The Frame Grabber can capture a single frame from
any video clip in your current project. The grabbed
frame can be added directly to your movie or saved out
to disk in any of a number of standard graphics
formats.
Once you have saved a grabbed frame to disk, you can:
Use it in other software applications.
Manipulate it in image-editing software.
Import it back into your movies as a still image via
the Album or one of the title editors.
The Frame grabber tool
Use the Frame grabber tool in conjunction with
the Player. To access it, open the Toolbox and
click the Frame grabber button.
Scrub or play through your movie or source video until
the frame you want is displayed in the Player, then
click the Grab button. The grabbed frame appears in
the tool’s preview area, ready to be added to your
movie or saved as a file on disk.
Reduce flicker: If the source video of the frame grab
contains a large amount of motion, the grabbed frame
may show flickering, which can be reduced or
eliminated by checking the Reduce flicker option.
Because Reduce flicker also reduces resolution
226 Pinnacle Studio
somewhat, you should not use the option if the overall
result is undesirable for a particular image.
The Frame grabber tool after grabbing a frame from
the movie. The grabbed frame can now be added as a
still image to your movie or saved as a picture file.
Grab: Click the Grab button when you have located
the frame you want to grab in the Player and configured
the Reduce flicker option. The grabbed frame is
displayed in the tool’s preview area, and the two output
buttons (Add to Movie and Save to Disk) are enabled.
Add to movie: This button inserts the grabbed frame
into the Movie Window video track ahead of the
currently-selected clip.
Save to disk: This button opens a Save As dialog so
that you can select a folder, file name and image format
for the file in which the grabbed frame will be stored.
The dialog also provides controls that let you set the
resolution of the saved image to any of several standard
sizes, to the original size of the grabbed frame, or to a
custom size that you enter.
If the “aspect ratio” (the ratio of the width to the
height) of the size you choose is different from that of
the grabbed frame, the image is stretched as necessary.
This can introduce visible distortion of shapes; for
instance, people may appear either unnaturally thin or
unnaturally squat.
Chapter 11: Disc menus 227
CHAPTER 11:
Disc menus
When movies are designed for the DVD, Blu-ray Disc,
VCD or S-VCD disc formats, video becomes an
interactive medium, with new possibilities for both
videographer and audience.
Developing – “authoring” – a disc in one of these
formats means going beyond the old idea of creating a
movie to be viewed in strict sequence from beginning
to end. Now the audience can decide which parts of the
movie to view, and in what order.
The essential new feature that makes disc authoring
possible is the menu. A particular disc may have one, a
few or many menus, each consisting of a still image or
short video sequence. Areas within the menus, called
buttons, can be selected by the viewer to activate links
to other content on the disc. Activating a link causes an
immediate transfer to any of:
A normal video sequence, which in this context is
called a “chapter”. Chapter buttons often show a
thumbnail frame from the video to which they link.
Another page of the same menu. Multiple pages, with
the same page design but different chapter buttons,
are used when a menu has too many buttons to fit on
a single page.