October 25, 2017

Watch: The Quickest and Easiest Way to Edit Clips to Music (Seriously)

This technique will basically let you do an hours-long job in mere minutes.

Editing is a long, drawn-out process that takes days, weeks, and even months to do, and yeah, there are many different ways to shave off your work time by making your workflow more efficient, but for the most part, you're in it for the long haul. That is unless you're wanting to edit clips to music. Usually, the process of matching up your clips to the beat would take hours, requiring you to zoom in close to your audio waveform, pinpoint each peak, and then snap every clip to those exact places on your timeline. This was painfully tedious, but in this video, Peter McKinnon shows you a freakishly fast way to edit your footage to music in Adobe Premiere Pro.

Right!? This technique is bound to change the way you edit to the beat on every project you work on from here on out, whether it's a music video, b-roll montage, or whatever. Now, you might have to go in and adjust your clips a little if you didn't manage to nail the beat on your keyboard, but it still beats the alternative: dragging all of your clips over to the timeline, listening and re-listening to the music, scrubbing to all hell, finding the beat on the waveform, lining up each and every clip, blah blah blah. Seriously, this method is a lifesaver.      

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13 Comments

...really?

October 25, 2017 at 10:38PM, Edited October 25, 10:38PM

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Ash Tailor
Cinematographer
261

Unlike you apparently I didn’t know this technique, so sorry that this post inconvenienced you.

Thank you so much V! This video helped. I recently the other day was wondering how I could do something similarly to this.

October 25, 2017 at 11:10PM, Edited October 25, 11:14PM

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Zachary Lewis
Cinematographer
93

No, is more to do with the language used making it seem like this is the only technique you'll need to match cuts to a beat.

'This technique is bound to change the way you edit to the beat on every project you work on from here on out, whether it's a music video, b-roll montage, or whatever'

October 26, 2017 at 7:06AM

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Ash Tailor
Cinematographer
261

Can't believe this is considered a good way to edit.

October 26, 2017 at 2:30PM

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B.D. Sharples
Cinematographer and Director
266

3 minutes 37 fucking seconds to present the good old way to sync clips to the music as if revolutionary (seriously) !
Yet another video of the only youtuber left on this planet for filmmaking: Mr McKinnon ! (Nothing against him. More against all those blogs like NFS that seem to post only videos from Peter lately ... and nobody else anymore).

October 26, 2017 at 8:35AM, Edited October 26, 8:36AM

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ron fya
34

Is there any way to replicate this in Davinci Resolve?

October 26, 2017 at 8:51AM, Edited October 26, 8:51AM

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Daniel Jek
Editor/Colorist
147

If there isn't a way to use shortcuts to place a marker, use a shortcut to split the audio track at each beat (you can join it back later) and use snapping to place your clips quickly.

October 26, 2017 at 4:18PM

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It's possible to place a marker with shortcut, but what I haven't found is how to import the selected clips from the bin and down to the timeline, according to where the markers are set.

October 27, 2017 at 6:07AM

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Daniel Jek
Editor/Colorist
147

October 26, 2017 at 9:33AM, Edited October 26, 9:33AM

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John Carlo Rocchetti
Content Creator
68

I've never used the automate to sequence feature - looks like it could be useful, but I can't see myself using it like this... Surely this only works if you only need one part of each clip, as you can only set one in and out point? That pretty much never happens.

And also you'd need to order everything in the bin in the order you want it to appear on the timeline, otherwise it's just going to be a random mess?

I'm not convinced that a good end result from this is any quicker to achieve than a standard workflow like: a) spin through your footage and make a 'selects' sequence, b) stack that sequence on top of your 'cut 1' sequence, c) copy and paste from selects to cut. Trim a bit. Review. It's basic, but it works.

October 26, 2017 at 9:36AM

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Alex Richardson
Director
3151

Love it.

As someone new to editing, I think it's great, from the POV that it gets me thinking that there must always be faster, easier, more efficient ways to edit.

October 26, 2017 at 10:08AM

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Sean Chandler
photographer
8

Quickest? maybe, but there's still a lot of steps.

Just choose your music, edit it to the correct length, choose the desired clips from all available footage, make your markers using the music track, pre-edit your footage to correct lengths, pre-plan the order of all your clips, select them in that order, then the software does the rest... except transitions, titles, fades, coluor correction, grading, and exporting.

I think "automate to sequence" is useful, I just think they're overselling it.
Really really over selling it.

October 26, 2017 at 3:51PM

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Steven Falconer
Maker of Stuff
84

This video could've been a one minute Monday.

October 28, 2017 at 6:51PM

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Craig Swanson
Editor
50