18 Replies Latest reply on Apr 1, 2010 8:58 AM by the_wine_snob

    Lining up Two Video clips-please help!


      So hi! I've been using premiere for about a year, I came from Sony Vegas Pro.


      Anyway, we had a shoot yesterday, a two camera interview on one subject. (7d &5dmII) both shooting 23.976fps and we recorded our audio with an external recorder.


      So, I lined up the audio by turning the turning the 'Show Audio in Time Units' on. This works great. I can move the audio to perfectly match up between the frames of the video in 1/4800 increments. Lovely. 


      After I lined up the audio I attempted to line up the two video tracks on top of each other (when the clap board strikes) and even though the Show Audio in Time Units is enabled, I can't perfectly line up these tracks. The track snaps between frames, making it impossible to line up. Yes, snapping is turned off. How do I move the video 'between the frames' so to speak? This was quite easy to do in Vegas.


      Thank you!

        • 1. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
          Harm Millaard Level 7

          The best accuracy you can achieve is 1/24 seconds, because that is what you started out with. If you started out with a sequence with 2,400 fps or 48,000 fps you may get better results and accuracy, but not now. Simple logic.


          Consider a lane with 24 trees. You can't take out 0.347 tree and line up the rest in perfect order. It is either remove 1.00 or none. Nothing in between.

          • 2. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
            SethDeming Level 1

            hmm...well that seems odd to me. No disrespect but, I know I was able to do this in Vegas. And I'm there must be a way to do this. Lets say you had two camera operators who press 'record' at nearly the same time, but not exactly. The clapper board strikes, now there must be a way to move those tracks so everything lines up, if their weren't, then every two camera shoot (television, film, etc) would be slightly off.

            • 3. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
              SethDeming Level 1

              Here's a screen grab of what I'm talking about. You can see that it's just the slightest bit off...how can I move this so it's perfect? http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4028/4479491082_92eb3fbbd4_o.jpg

              • 4. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                Harm Millaard Level 7

                It is not odd at all.


                Camera 1 starts at 00;00;00;00 and camera 2 starts 0.34 seconds later, that is 6.667 frames in NTSC with 24P. Since your time line is divided into 24 discrete units you can adjust the camera 2 footage either 6 or 7 frames, but not 6.667. It only works with integers.

                • 5. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                  SethDeming Level 1

                  So only an whole number movement...wont the video look off a bit? Is this true for all editing platforms?

                  • 7. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                    SethDeming Level 1

                    Alright...well thanks Harm.

                    • 8. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                      the_wine_snob Level 9



                      As Harm points out, Video's smallest unit is full Frame. That is as close as it gets. Now, with Audio, you have found and used Audio Units, which is more accurate, as the Audio is NOT divided into Frames.


                      Think about it for a moment. If you were to Cut on a half-frame, or a quarter-frame, how would that look?


                      Good luck,



                      • 9. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                        Level 4



                        I probably don't understand exactly what you want to do, lining up between frames...but I just watched a tutorial on premiere cs3 and it was about using clip markers.

                        If you go to one clip and find the frame where the clapper just touches (closed) and put a clip marker ...and then go to the other clip and find the clapper when it closes, and make a clip marker....  (they might both be marker # 0 if they are the only clip markers you make..)...and then select both clips and choose "synchronize"...your clips will be lined up exactly on those frames...


                        Then you get your audio clapper sound lined up with that...and doesn't that do what you want ??



                        • 10. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                          Level 4

                          ohhhh...I think I get it...you used two clappers...an a camera and b camera slate...not both cameras looking at same slate...


                          if you stuck a still frame (export a still and import it ) and then adjust the duration of the still , would that help?





                          • 11. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                            Level 4

                            gotta test the still duration thing...I never tried that  Rod

                            • 12. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                              Level 4

                              Just in case someone else reads this someday...the still frame idea doesnt work...cant go less than one frame and won't go 1.5 frames, with duration and speed controls



                              • 13. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!

                                Umm im not sure if ur trying to find a technical way to do this or are just having trouble with the tools, but the way that works for me is to find an exact instant in both clips, a frame you can identify from the start or end of something's motion

                                Once you know the frame you want from both of them (objects making contact is the easiest to do this with), snap the start of the clip to it on each of them (but first temporarily seperate them down the timeline from each other so other snaps don't inferfere), then just snap their new start locations to each other. After that you can stretch them back left to get the rest of the footage included again and reposition the first starting video to snap to the beginning of the timeline with the other one selected so their positions relative to each other don't change.

                                Ofcourse if they are at different framerates, you may have an unnoticeable difference I wouldn't complain about it though.


                                I don't know if re-encoding footage to a different framerate would work, perhaps somebody else could give you advice on that if it's vital.

                                • 14. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                                  shooternz Level 6

                                  Not sure if I am full understanding the OP issue but...


                                  Place a marker  (Numeric Pad "*"   - asterisk) on each synch point  of each clip in the source monitor. ( or do first one in the timeline and the second one in the source monitor)


                                  The clips will snap together when you get the proximity of the markers near to each other .



                                  FWIW : Alt and "<  >" keys can nudge a clip 1 frame at a time in each direction

                                  • 15. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                                    the_wine_snob Level 9



                                    I think that I might be with you here. I think that the digital age might be confusing folk too much.


                                    Back in the film days, we knew that we could align A-B rolls by the Frame. That part was very obvious. It was right in front of our noses.


                                    When it came to matching up the Audio to our slates, we could adjust by sprocket holes. Now, things have gotten a lot finer, with Audio Units.


                                    I cannot even imagine the laughter, if someone wanted to try to align the file visuals, beyond the Frame. At 24 FPS, we could nail the slate 100% and then adjust the Audio, one sprocket hole at a time, until it was synced up.


                                    With both Video and film, what part of Frame do people not understand? With the visuals, that is as good as it gets. Sync the multi-cams to that, and then adjust the Audio at a much finer level. This is not "rocket science" here. Given that Video is 25, 29.97, 30, 50, 60, that is as good as it gets. Given that Audio is now digital and probably at a sample rate of 48KHz, with Audio units the adjustment is as fine as any human can perceive. Wishing to go beyond is" joisting at windmills*."




                                    * Maybe read Cervantes?

                                    • 16. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                                      shooternz Level 6

                                      How timely Bill.


                                      I was having this exact conversation with someone today.


                                      I was relating how even in a digital NLE  age.. I still relate (in my head) to a physical/analogue/linear methodology while using digital workflows.


                                      The tail of a piece of film will always be to the left of me and the head to the right ( a la pic synchs and flatbed editors).


                                      The frame will always look like something I can scribble on with a chinagraph or attack with a tape splicer. (Always on the correct side of the frame)


                                      Synching and ganging to slates  was always done with a punch mark or a chinagraph "X"


                                      Fades and dissolves were done with a diagonal chinagraph line.  No problem for me to imagine what I was going to get from the lab when I drew a 48 frame cross dissolve  using a wax pencil


                                      Endless examples and I never regret that what I learnt in film editing was mainly learnt in the wonderful world of "handling the medium" (by hand).


                                      Enough Bill...we are boring the kids with our old guys yakking!!!!!


                                      BTW - I would not go back to what we did.   Digital editing rocks.....

                                      • 17. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                                        Level 4



                                        I think it's just the opposite...not boring the kids at all with


                                        I bet most would have loved to learn editing on film first , by hand...on

                                        flatbeds and movieola's etc...


                                        For one thing there's less chance of getting "distracted" by all the readily

                                        available "fancy" effects and transitions and etc...and would be more apt to

                                        edit cause it made sense to edit at that point, rather than just because

                                        "it's there" to use...


                                        Not to mention all the basic stuff like you mention about sync'ing stuff and

                                        how many frames sound can be off before it becomes noticable...


                                        I wish I had the background. I had to talk on phone for about an hour with a

                                        friend for him to explain to me what an A B roll was ! ...and when he

                                        started talking about sprocket holes and black leader and so on I had to

                                        have him repeat himself about 4 times !  LOL...


                                        Anyway, thanks for your help and have some pity for us dodos who never did

                                        film editing !



                                        • 18. Re: Lining up Two Video clips-please help!
                                          the_wine_snob Level 9



                                          I strongly agree. Back in those days, I never felt comfortable with video, even if we recorded it to 2" tape. I could not hold that up to the light and see my images! It was "the devil's work." Back then, there was no deck-to-deck editing, and only doing a diagonal cut and tape job - but you could not really see where you were cutting.


                                          Regarding NLE work nowadays, like you, I'd only go back for a "trip down memory lane." I can do on a simple laptop, 10,000 more things than I could ever do on an 8-plate Moviola - things that I could not even imagine back then. Had I been given a peak at PrPro in 2010, back in '72, I would never have been able to either believe it, or comprehend it.


                                          You know, every time that I see the word Bin, I can conjure up those laundry "bins," with racks above and either clips or clothes pins. I also remember squinting to try and read the cryptic notes in grease pencil at the head of each in the darkened edit booth. "is that a 5, or an 8? Oh SHOOT, I just smudged it!"


                                          Don't get me started on mixed formats. I'd never have considered mixing 8mm (split-16), S-8, 16mm and a bit of 35mm in an edit. Only recourse was a trip to the lab for prints, and we always knew that quality was going to differ greatly. Now, we just run the stuff through a conversion program, Import and edit happily, or nearly so.


                                          Yes, I will take that random crash/hang, and smile. If the Moviola crashed, we had to fly a tech from Dallas and then hold our breath. Of course we could jump over to our rewinds and splicing block, and still get a bit of work done - the "old fashioned way."


                                          The kids have no idea of easy they have it - right on their desktops. I envy them, 'cause they started with NLE and probably have creative ideas, that I will never have, just 'cause I still have a slightly closed view of things. I envy them!


                                          OK, back to our regularly scheduled programming...