24 Replies Latest reply on Apr 3, 2013 10:19 AM by the_wine_snob

    Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?

    TedOz

      Hi, I'm running Adobe Premiere Pro cs 5.5. When I import several clips into the timeline, some of them become very very dark, almost black. When I play them in Media player, they are fine, but in the timeline they are almost black. They are hi-def clips, 5.1 sound from a Sony camera (HDRCX550V).

       

      Thanks in advance!

        • 1. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
          John T Smith Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          Does your project exactly match your video?

           

          If you have a red line above your timeline when you put the video on the timeline... you have a mismatch

          • 2. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
            TedOz Level 1

            Hi John, Thanks for your reply. There isn't a mismatch - for example, I took several videos at an engagement party; when I bring them into the timeline, some of the clips are very very dark but the rest are fine. When I play the dark ones through Windows Media Player, they play fine.

             

            Any other thoughts?

            • 3. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
              aebmke Level 1

              Probably highly unlikely, but did you accidentally adjust the opacity bar while grabbing clips and moving them around once they were in the timeline?  (It's that thin yellow line that runs thru the clips).

              • 4. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                Jim_Simon Level 8

                How do those dark clips look in the Source Monitor?

                • 5. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                  TedOz Level 1

                  Hi all, thanks for your responses and I have solved the issue - I noticed that there was the word 'opacity' in the timeline next to the title name of the clip in question - somehow I had inadvertantly changed the opacity to 13% - no idea how I did that (this is the first project I have done with cs5.5 after upgrading from Premiere Pro 1.5).

                   

                  I'm putting this resolution up here so that if anyone else has this issue they can see how to solve it.

                   

                  Just noticed a response earlier that suggested this - many thanks - although I discovered this myself, I appreciate your response which was correct.

                   

                  Thanks to all who responded - much appreciated.

                  • 6. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                    shooternz Level 6

                    ....somehow I had inadvertantly changed the opacity to 13% - no idea how I did that (this is the first project I have done with cs5.5 after upgrading from Premiere Pro 1.5).

                     

                    I'm putting this resolution up here so that if anyone else has this issue they can see how to solve it.

                     

                     

                    This is the issue known as "OPACITY DROPPINGS"  ( ie Crap)

                     

                    It drives me crazy ( I have feature requested a  change a number of times ..totally ignored without explanation)  but I have come to accept it as unfixeable thru 3 versions!.

                     

                    OPACITY DROPPINGS are the result of key frames that are automatically being set as soon as one even touches the Opacity in the Clip FX WIndow.

                     

                    This is despite the fact that no other effect key frame in the entire ADOBE Platform behaves (automatically this way.)

                     

                    Its dumb..but we have live with it.

                     

                    Sorry you got bitten ...but I get bitten by it so regularly... its a way of life.

                    • 7. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                      Jim_Simon Level 8

                      This issue has never happend to me.

                       

                      Why are you touching the Opacity effect if you don't plan to set a keyframe?

                      • 8. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                        shooternz Level 6
                        Why are you touching the Opacity effect if you don't plan to set a keyframe?

                         

                         

                        Many , many reasons Jim.

                         

                        Key Frames are for Temporal or Spatial animations.  There is no other reason for key frames.  Animation!! Period!

                         

                        Primarily.  You dont need to set a key frame in any other Premiere or AEFX Effect ...just to apply it to a clip.

                         

                         

                        Examples

                         

                        I always apply opacity to text graphics ( especially white ones).  One needs to get the level correct and it is bg dependent.  There maybe  is no intention of animating it, but there is a need to get the level correct.

                         

                        I often apply Blend Modes as effect. You may need to incorporate opacity with a blend mode.  ( same as above but far more complex).  Who can use a blend mode without testing Opacity.  They work hand in hand.

                         

                        I frequently apply Opacity to multi layer video ( often combined with blend modes or Key scenes).  Its a CC and Grade technique.

                         

                        I occasionally use Opacity ( Key framed for transitions of scenes and graphics.)

                         

                        In short. I use Opacity a lot as do many editors, compositors.  Its a "fundamental".

                         

                        You  may very well intend to set a key frame...eventually. if you intend to animate it.. but often you simply need to trial what level to set the opacity to,  before you do.   This may involve scrolling to see the effect on more than just a single frame.  Premiere assumes that you will be animating the Opacity from any pint you trial it.  The Opacity Effect  always sets a key frame (automatically) where ever you happen to be in the clip.  This the trap and where the droppings are left.

                         

                         

                        The base of the issue is ..Why is OPACITY, the ONLY  effect  that AUTOMATICALLY sets a Key frame in Premiere  when it doesnt even do likewise in  After Effects.

                         

                        No one can explain this illogical key frame behaviour that results in an inefficient time wasting workflow, prone to error.

                         

                         

                         

                         

                         

                         

                         

                         

                         

                        • 9. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                          Ann Bens Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                          There was a time when opacity keyframes were turned off, but they produced serveral

                          unwanted side effects, so they were turned on again.

                          • 10. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                            Averdahl Level 3

                            There was a time when opacity keyframes were turned off, but they produced serveral
                            unwanted side effects, so they were turned on again.

                             

                            And thankfully they brought an option to turn them off again into the Preferences in CS4, so it can be turned off for video and/or audio. Thats one of the very first things i change in a new install to avoid the mentioned issues with video and audio. Edit > Preferences > General. Change New Timeline Audio Tracks and New Timeline Video Tracks to Hide Keyframes to fix the issue. I begged for this and probably others as well, and Adobe listened to it.

                             

                            This Preference setting do not affect excisting Timelines though.

                             

                            Yes, the issues shooternz mentiones wont get solved by this, but unwanted opacity changes done by mistake will be less or none.

                             

                            /Roger

                            • 11. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                              the_wine_snob Level 9

                              Ted,

                               

                              The Opacity can be accidentally altered, if one clicks on the yellow-orange "rubberband" in the Clip, when they just want to click+drag on the Clip. Though I know where to click, and where not to click, if I get in a hurry, I have still done it.

                               

                              One quick, visual check is to look at the rubberband for all Clips. Do they match up completely, and near the top of the Clip? If not, then Opacity has been accidentally altered.

                               

                              Glad that you found the cause, and also the fix. Though disconcerting, when the apparent brightness of the Clip has changed, the fix is very easy.

                               

                              Good luck,

                               

                              Hunt

                              • 12. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                Jim_Simon Level 8
                                This may involve scrolling to see the effect on more than just a single frame.

                                 

                                I get it.  Thanks, dude.

                                • 13. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                  shooternz Level 6

                                  There was a time when opacity keyframes were turned off, but they produced serveral

                                  unwanted side effects, so they were turned on again.

                                   

                                  Hi Ann

                                   

                                  I have had this mentioned to me more than once but never seen or heard the evidence of what the "side effects" were.

                                   

                                  That notwithstanding... it is not the issue whether they are on or off.

                                   

                                  Its simply that they Automatically become key frames.

                                   

                                  Imagine if that was the keyframe behaviour in After Effects.   'Nightmare on Opacity Street'

                                  • 14. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                    Averdahl Level 3

                                    Its simply that they Automatically become key frames.

                                     

                                    To avoid it, don't use the Pen Tool.

                                     

                                    If you use the Selection Tool keyframes will never automatically be created. Once you actually want to cretae a keyframe, continue to use the Selection Tool in conjunction with the Ctrl-key. Holding down the Ctrl-key and clicking with the Selection Tool creates a keyframe. This gives you the control you need.

                                     

                                    (You can adjust Bezier's with the Selection Tool as well.)

                                     

                                    If that's not the solution, how do you actually do to automatically create keyfeames and what tool do you actualy use?

                                     

                                    /Roger

                                    • 15. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                      Colin Brougham Level 6

                                      To avoid it, don't use the Pen Tool.

                                       

                                      ...

                                       

                                      If that's not the solution, how do you actually do to automatically create keyfeames and what tool do you actualy use?

                                       


                                      Roger,

                                       

                                      I think shooter is referring to when you adjust opacity "by the numbers" in the ECP, and not in the Timeline panel. You're correct: dragging the opacity rubberband on the clip/in the sequence does not automatically drop keyframes. However, that's kind of a kludgy way to adjust opacity, especially since a great many of us turn off the rubberbands/keyframes in the sequence since its just messy.

                                       

                                      When you try to adjust opacity in the ECP, even if you want to change the opacity for the whole clip, a keyframe is automatically created because the animation stopwatch is enabled by default for every clip placed in a sequence. That's fine (well, not really, but relatively) if you get your opacity right the first time, but if you move the playhead somewhere else and then adjust opacity, you'll inadvertently create an opacity ramp. You want this if you're creating a dissolve; you don't want this if you just want to super one clip over another.

                                       

                                      I'm with shooter: this is one of the most annoying gotchas in all of PPro.

                                      • 16. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                        Averdahl Level 3

                                        I think shooter is referring to when you adjust opacity "by the numbers" in the ECP, and not in the Timeline panel.

                                        Yes, you are right. I had almost forgot about that issue since i always set opacity keyframes on the timeline, to avoid that very issue. But i do it when adjusting position, so i know how frustrating it is...

                                         

                                        /Roger

                                        • 17. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                          Jim_Simon Level 8

                                          I guess the solution then is to turn off the stopwatch before adjusting Opacity.

                                          • 18. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                            shooternz Level 6
                                            I guess the solution then is to turn off the stopwatch before adjusting Opacity.

                                             

                                             

                                            I dont think that works Jim... but will take a look anyway. (I am sure it will just set automatically anyway.)

                                             

                                            BTW: It is possible to disable Opacity on a clip by clicking off the FX box.

                                             

                                            Keep in mind though that all clips have a fixed Opacity Effect so this could kind of get tedious and may lead to other gotchas...and of course the idea is one is trying to set opacity.

                                            • 19. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                              Jeff Bellune Adobe Community Professional
                                              I dont think that works Jim... but will take a look anyway. (I am sure it will just set automatically anyway.)

                                              Nope.  Once you turn off the stopwatch, no keyframes will be set until you turn it back on again.

                                               

                                              -Jeff

                                              • 20. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                                Colin Brougham Level 6

                                                Keep in mind though that all clips have a fixed Opacity Effect so this could kind of get tedious and may lead to other gotchas...and of course the idea is one is trying to set opacity.

                                                 

                                                That's why I created an Opacity Keyframe Killer. Just create an effect preset for Opacity with the keyframe stopwatch disabled. Select all your clips, and drag the preset to the selection. No more opacity keyframes!

                                                • 21. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                                  shooternz Level 6

                                                  Now....That I really must try Colin.

                                                   

                                                  Pity we have to go those extra steps... but real cool if it saves some grief and angst!

                                                   

                                                  FWIW:

                                                   

                                                  Heres a simple single example from the many ways  where I get bitten.

                                                   

                                                  I regularly apply a  lower frame,  left or right,  client logo as a watermark thru the body of a TVC .  Logo is a psd on its own video layer.

                                                   

                                                  It usually runs at 28- 36% opacity.  It is dependent on the BGs how I set the opacity level.  This means I apply it then need to run the TVC (preview) to see how the watermark reads over the various BGs.

                                                   

                                                  Frequently I need to re set it and occassionally I need to ride it a little (via keyframes) for scene changes.

                                                   

                                                  Then at the end of the TVC ..for the pack shot ...I usually bring it up to 96-98% ( full readabilty).

                                                   

                                                  I think anyone can see how involved and time consuming that can be with the Keyframe droppings the way they are.

                                                   

                                                  One can just imagine how the  frustration ramps up  if one is also using blend modes as well as opacity.

                                                  • 22. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                                    JimmyFunGuy9 Level 1

                                                    I have CS6 and find the opacity bar to be the perfect way to slow down the process of getting your edit done on time. I like to work fast and cut to music on the fly, using markers, grabbing and moving clips. Seeing how there are a ton of clips in any given timeline, I would like to see this feature gone. I only change the opacity and use other effects when I am done cutting.  Who does effects while cutting? Whoever came up with putting an effects tool in the beginning stage of cutting must have been high on crack.  Is is Adobe hiring Third World labor and not checking the work?  Can't tell you how much time I have lost with this piece of crap "tool." Looks like I'm going back to Apple editing tools.

                                                     

                                                    Looking forward to hearing the excuses by the Adobe "geniuses" at NAB. I am sure they will come up with their usual "solution" like "what kind of system are you running, how much RAM do you have, what kind of processor is installed, when is your girlfriend's birthday?" etc.

                                                     

                                                    Just simply get rid of it.

                                                    • 23. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                                      Jeff Bellune Adobe Community Professional

                                                      Wow.  Pretty antagonistic post for someone who hasn't been here very long.  I can only assume the same can be said for the length of time you've spent exploring the interface and the help files.

                                                       

                                                      Click on the keyframe icon in the track header and choose "Hide Keyframes" to make the Opacity rubber band go away.

                                                       

                                                      Here's the relevant Help topic.  It has pictures and everything:

                                                       

                                                      Adobe Premiere Pro * Adding, navigating, and setting keyframes

                                                       

                                                      Jeff

                                                      • 24. Re: Why do normal clips become very dark in the timeline?
                                                        the_wine_snob Level 9

                                                        Like you, I do not like the "rubberbands," and actually bypass their use, preferring the Effects Control Panel instead.

                                                         

                                                        However, I use the adjustments to the display, that Jeff outlines.

                                                         

                                                        Having those various rubberbands is a production boon to many, and their default display has been around (not just in Adobe NLE's) for decades. Some love 'em and use 'em, in their workflows. You and I do not. Luckily, Adobe offers a way to "hide" them, until needed. Some NLE's do not allow that - kudos to Adobe.

                                                         

                                                        Good luck, and Jeff's directions will get you what you want.

                                                         

                                                        Hunt