9 Replies Latest reply on Sep 9, 2009 5:47 AM by Colin Brougham

    Some newbie question Adobe Premier CS4 [Black bars]


      Hello everybody! I work with Ulead Video Studio and Sony Vegas studio before but when I begin to work with huge projects these produts start to work very unstable and now I am trying to make a project in Premier CS4.

      And I have one question:

      I have some photos from my photo camera. These photos have such parameters: 2816x2112 [This is 5 megapixels camera].

      And my video has parameters: 640x480 , 30 fps.

      Then I created my project with Custom settings which I made according to my video file properties [640x480,30 fps].

      When I put some photos on the timeline , premier doesn't try to scale an image to resolution 640x480 and I just see part of my photo.

      (It was very frustrating for me because Vegas and Ulead did so automatically).

      But I found an option which calls 'Scale to frame size'. It works but black bars appear on top and bottom of my photo.

      What should I do to remove these bars? It is very strange because in Ulead and Vegas the bars don't appear with the same video settings and photo resolutions.


      I suppose that maybe I made some incorect settings but I am really don't understand what I should do.


      Thank you for you attention! Thanks in advance!

        • 1. Re: Some newbie question Adobe Premier CS4 [Black bars]
          Colin Brougham Level 6

          Scale to Frame Size can be problematic, because it adjusts the size of your clip to completely fit inside of the video "aperture" you're using, without distorting the aspect ratio. This means that if a clip (or in your case, a photo) has a ratio that doesn't match your sequence settings, you can potentially see black bars. Your photos have 1.33 pixel aspect ratio (2816/2112), and that's what your 640x480 sequence should have--unless you're using non-square pixels. Try creating a new sequence that's 640x480 and be sure your pixel aspect ratio is set to "Square Pixels". This will ensure a 1:1 relationship between your sequence's width and height.

          • 2. Re: Some newbie question Adobe Premier CS4 [Black bars]
            the_wine_snob Level 9

            You might want to look at this ARTICLE on resizing your still images, prior to Import to PrPro.


            There are many benefits to doing this outside of PrPro.


            Good luck,



            1 person found this helpful
            • 3. Re: Some newbie question Adobe Premier CS4 [Black bars]
              superchel Level 1

              Thank you so much ! It works !!!

              • 4. Re: Some newbie question Adobe Premier CS4 [Black bars]
                Colin Brougham Level 6

                Excellent--and you're welcome. Unless you're planning on animating your photos (ie. zooming in or out or panning around), you might consider following the advice posted by "the_wine_snob"/Hunt and resize your photos externally before bringing them into Premiere. Depending on the number of photos you have in a sequence, PPro can sometimes get quite sluggish.


                Also, if you DO plan to animate the photos, be sure to NOT use "Scale to Frame Size". You should use the manual scale parameters in the fixed Motion effect as in this screenshot:



                If you use "Scale to Frame Size", you'll notice that your Scale value remains at 100%; if you increase the Scale value (as if to zoom in) you'll see degradation of the image quality. This is because "Scale to Frame Size" is sort of a "pre-processor" that affects your photos/clips before they're placed in a sequence. If you scale one photo, you can copy and paste the Motion effect to other clips in order to affect them as well, or you can save the Scale as an effect preset that you can apply to any photo or clip later on. Many choices...

                1 person found this helpful
                • 5. Re: Some newbie question Adobe Premier CS4 [Black bars]
                  the_wine_snob Level 9



                  Good points and I will also include those into my article.


                  As I resize to my exact needs for each image, I usually end up with maybe four folders of images, with different sizes and purposes. If I am not 100% positive, then I do allow for a bit more.


                  Thank you for the comments,



                  • 6. Re: Some newbie question Adobe Premier CS4 [Black bars]
                    superchel Level 1

                    Thanks a lot !

                    But I have some other problem . Yes of course I will use pan & zoom but many of my photos will be static.

                    Although I want to set 'Scale to frame size' as a default feature for each photo. [ For example : I want to drag&drop a photo to the timeline and then this feature must engage automatically to each photo]


                    How can I do this ?


                    I tried like this Edit->Preferences->General..->Default scale to frame size and also I want to set still image default duration from 150 frames to 90.

                    But this settings don't work. I don't know why. After these actions when I drop some image to the timeline the default duration of my image is still 150 frames and the same situation with scale to frame size.


                    What should I do to cope with this problem ?


                    Thank you!

                    • 7. Re: Some newbie question Adobe Premier CS4 [Black bars]
                      Harm Millaard Level 7

                      These settings only work for new imports into the project. Remove the stills from the project and reimport again.

                      • 9. Re: Some newbie question Adobe Premier CS4 [Black bars]
                        Colin Brougham Level 6

                        The "Scale to Frame Size" default option that you set in the preferences can be overridden manually once your clips/photos are imported; there is no need to turn off the preference, remove clips that are already set to scale, and then reimport them. If your clips are in the Project panel, select them and then go to Clip > Video Options > Scale to Frame Size; this is a "toggle" and you'll see a check-mark originally when you go to this option. Unchecking it will turn "Scale" off, so that when you drop them in a timeline they will be at their original size.


                        You can also select one or several clips already in use in your timeline, right-click them, and uncheck "Scale to Frame Size". You can also use this same process to turn on scaling, if you have the default preference turned off. Ultimately, it's for you to decide whether it's easier to turn on this setting for individaul clips/photos, or turn it off. Set the preference accordingly, and manually change those photos that do or do not need scaling.


                        You can do much the same with the duration of your clips/photos. Select those you want to change in your Project panel, and select Clip > Speed/Duration. Enter a new duration, and select OK. The duration of the clips in the bin will change, but note that this won't affect clips/photos that are already in use in a sequence. However, you CAN affect in-use clips by selecting them in the sequence, and then using Speed/Duration again. This time, check the "Ripple Edit, Shifting Trailing Clips" to change the duration of the clips and simultaneously prevent any gaps from appearing between clips.