Working with Video. AUTOHELM ABLETON

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Working with Video. AUTOHELM ABLETON | Manualzz


Chapter 20

Working with Video

Live's exible architecture makes it the perfect choice for scoring to video. You can trim video clips to select parts of them and use Warp Markers to visually align music in the

Arrangement View with the video. You can then


your edited video le along with your audio.

Before diving in, you will want to be familiar with the concepts presented in the


Control and Warping


If you are interested in syncing Live with external video equipment, you'll also want to read the chapter on

synchronization .


Importing Video

Live can import movies in Apple QuickTime format (.mov) to be used as video clips. Movie les appear in Live's File Browser alongside audio les and Live Sets, and can be imported in the same way, by simply dragging them into the Live Set.

Note that Live will only display video for video clips residing in the Arrangement View.

Movie les that are loaded into the Session View are treated as audio clips.



The Appearance of Video in Live



Video Clips in the Arrangement View

A video clip in the Arrangement View looks just like an audio clip, except for the sprocket holes in its title bar.

Live also displays a movie le's QuickTime markers, if present, in the Arrangement View and

Clip View. QuickTime markers are created by external video authoring applications, and although they cannot be selected or edited in any way by Live, they do provide visual cues that can be helpful when scoring. Note that these markers are always read from the original movie le, and are not stored in the Live Set or video clip.

For the most part, video clips in the Arrangement View are treated just like audio clips. They can be trimmed, for example, by dragging their right or left edges. However, there are some editing commands that, when applied to a video clip, will cause it to be replaced by an audio clip (which by de nition has no video component). This replacement only occurs internally your original movie les are never altered. The commands which will cause this are: Consolidate, Reverse and Crop.

A Video Clip with a

QuickTime Marker.



The Video Window


The Video Window is a separate, oating window that always remains above Live's main window. It can be dragged to any location you like, and it will never get covered up by

Live. You can toggle its visibility with a command in the View menu. The Video Window can be resized by dragging its bottom right-hand corner. The size and location of this window are not speci c to the Set, and will be restored when you open a video again. The video can be shown in full screen (and optionally on a second monitor) by double-clicking in the

Video Window.


(PC) /


(Mac) double-click in the Video Window to restore it to original size of the video.

Movies with Partial Tracks

In the QuickTime le format, the audio and video components do not have to span the entire length of a movie; gaps in playback are allowed. During gaps in video, Live's Video

Window will display a black screen; gaps in audio will play silence.




Clip View

Soundtrack composers will want to note the Tempo Master option in Live's Clip View. When scoring to video, video clips are usually set as tempo masters, while audio clips are left as tempo slaves. These are, therefore, the default warp properties of clips in the Arrangement

View. In this scenario, adding Warp Markers to a video clip de nes hit points that the music will sync to. Note that a video clip's Warp switch needs to be activated in order for

the clip to be set as the tempo master.

Remember from the

Tempo Control and Warping

chapter that, although any number of warped Arrangement clips can have the Tempo Master option activated, only the bottommost, currently playing clip is the actual tempo master.

This also means that it is possible for video clips that are not the current tempo master to become warped, resulting in warped video output in the Video Window.

Setting a Video Clip as

Tempo Master.

Warp Markers

While dragging a Warp Marker belonging to a video clip, you will notice that the Video

Window updates to show the corresponding video frame, so that any point in the music can be easily aligned with any point in the video clip.

Since Live displays a movie le's embedded QuickTime markers, they can be used as convenient visual cues when setting Warp Markers.



Matching Sound to Video


In Live, it takes just a few steps to get started with video. Let's look at a common scenario matching a piece of music to edits or hit points in a video:

1. Make sure that Live's Arrangement View is visible. Your computer keyboard's key will toggle between the Session View and Arrangement View.

2. Drag a QuickTime movie from Live's File Browser and drop it into an audio track in the Arrangement View. The Video Window will appear to display the video component of the movie le. (Remember that you can move this window to any convenient location on the screen.)

3. Now that the video clip is loaded, drag an audio clip into the Arrangement View's drop area. A new track will automatically be created for it. Unfold both tracks so you can see their contents by clicking the buttons to the left of their names.

4. Double-click on the video clip's title bar to view it in the Clip View. In the

Sample box, make sure that the Warp button is enabled. Warped clips in the

Arrangement View can be set as tempo master or slave. We want the Master/

Slave switch set to Master, which will force the rest of the clips in the Live Set to adapt to the video clip's tempo (i.e., its normal playback rate).

5. Now add

Warp Markers

to the video clip, and adjust them to your liking. The locations of the Warp Markers de ne the synchronizing points between our music and our video. Notice how the video clip's waveform in the Arrangement View updates to re ect your changes as you make them.

6. If desired, enable the

Arrangement Loop

to focus on a speci c section of the composition.

7. When you have nished, choose the Export Audio/Video command from Live's

File menu. All of your audio will be mixed down and saved as a single audio le.

You can also export your video le using this command.



Video Trimming Tricks


Commonly, composers receive movie les with a few seconds of blank space before the real beginning of the action. This pre-roll ( two-beep ) serves as a sync reference for the mixing engineer, who expects that the composer's audio les will also include the same pre-roll. While working on music, however, the pre-roll is in the composer's way: It would be more natural for the movie action to start at song time 1.1.1 and SMPTE time 00:00:00:00.

This can be accommodated by trimming video clips, as follows.

First, we drop a movie le at the start of the Arrangement (1.1.1).

Next, we double-click on the video clip's title bar to display its contents in the Clip View.

There, we drag the Start Marker to the right so the video clip starts at the beginning of the action.

A Video Clip at the Start of the Arrangement.

Now, both the action and the music to be composed start at 1.1.1 / Once the music is done and ready to be

rendered to disk , we need to bring back the pre-roll:

Dragging the Start

Marker behind the




In the Arrangement View, we select all materials (Edit menu/Select All), then drag the entire composition a few seconds to the right:

Now, we click on the video clip's title bar (to deselect everything else), then drag the video clip's left edge to the left as far as possible to reveal the pre-roll again.

The Video Clip and the

Final Clip of Music.

The Export Audio/Video command, by default, creates sample les as long as the Arrangement selection; as the video clip is still selected, the exported sample le will have the exact same duration as the original movie le, including the pre-roll.

The Video Clip with

Pre-Roll Restored.


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