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  1. #1

    joeyboots's Avatar
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    Synching up audio in iMovie 09
    Hey all. I've played with snap to beats and I love it, but there's this other audio synching problem that I'm having and I wonder if anyone can tell me an easier way to accomplish this in iMovie 09.

    I've recorded audio through the line in on my laptop and I want to use that track to replace all of the audio that my video camera caught. I've found it tedious but doable, to simply put the video in a project, disable its sound, and then drag the audio to the project and drop it so that it appears behind the video track. I then line it up using trial and error (the tedious part) by using the clip trimmer on the audio track (which is longer, because I pressed record on my laptop first).

    In this scenario, marking the parts of the audio to help me line things up easier has just lead to frustration, as whenever I mark a location (by pressing m) it puts an undesired cut in my video.

    The other problem that I'm having is that I then have to take the whole huge clip and export it so that I can re-import it and edit it. Basically this is because I would have to re-synch the audio at every cut that I make (not a whole heck of a lot of fun) if I didn't.

    Is it possibly maybe to 'nest' a project within another?

    Are there any tricks out there that anyone else knows of for doing this kind of thing?
    For the synching in general?
    For replacing the audio for editing easily?
    I'm not a Mac. I'm not a PC. I'm a person.

  2. #2

    xstep's Avatar
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    You might try using Garage Band. There is a way to bring in a video track. I believe it brings in it's audio too, but you perhaps you can remove that and use your other track. Export and see what happens. Sorry I don't know the details.
    CameraTime - Time lapse photography for novice and advanced users.

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  3. #3

    joeyboots's Avatar
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    OK, I answered my own question...
    I did try Garage band before, I was confused at where to start. Here's what I ended up doing using just iMovie 09 and Quicktime Pro:

    1. I took my audio in Quicktime and exported it as an AIFF then imported it into iTunes so it would show up in my audio list in iMovie (does it annoy anyone else that you can't just directly import audio)

    2. In iMovie, I made a new project and placed my entire raw video clip into it.

    3. Right click the video track and select "Seperate audio..." and then I selected and deleted the purple audio track that this created.

    4. Drag my audio to a point on the video track, as opposed to the empty grey space behind the video track (this was my first problem). This puts the audio under the video track instead of behind it.

    5. Make sure snap to beats is turned off. This will put unwanted cuts in your video. Open the Audio Track in the Clip Trimmer and find an easily identifiable sound in the wave form and mark it by pressing 'M'.

    6. Exit the clip trimmer adjust the clip preview length to something like 5 seconds to gain some more precision.

    7. Grab the audio where the marker is and slide it around until you have it lined up with its proper position on the video clip.

    8. Test the position by playing it a few times and then drag the beginning and ends of the audio out to match the beginning and ends of the video clip.

    9. Share > Export using Quicktime...
    Select Audio to AIFF, use 48khz 16bit stereo and this is important, save it in the event folder with your video clip. This is just for convenience.

    10. Quit iMovie when this is done and open your new audio and your raw video in seperate windows in Quicktime Pro.

    11. On the video, hit COMMAND-J and uncheck the audio track, or delete it if you're brave, I was. Then just close this window.

    12. Move to the window of your AIFF and click in the time line. COMMAND-A, COMMAND-C.

    13. Move back to the video window and DO NOT hit COMMAND-V. Hit COMMAND-A to select the entire clip. Then go to the menu and hit Edit > Paste to Selection and Scale.
    Don't worry, nothing is being scaled, your clips should be exactly the same length.

    14. Scrub to a few locations and test the synch. Should be just perfect. Or as perfect as you synched it in iMovie.

    15. Simply close the video and save it. It'll be really fast because the audio is reference into the movie. Be careful, deleting this seperate audio file you made will remove the sound from your movie. This is why I saved the audio next to the video file in iMovie.

    16. Go back to iMovie 09 and edit away with your nice high quality audio.

    One little note about this, I think that this little hack breaks the ability to hear sound when adjusting the clip's playback speed. I have yet to see if its just the preview or if it won't work in the final output either.
    I'm not a Mac. I'm not a PC. I'm a person.

  4. #4

    xstep's Avatar
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    From QuickTime Pro, you could save your creation as a self-contained file. That way you won't have to worry about accidently removing the audio portion of the file. It should also fix playback speed problem you mention at the end.
    CameraTime - Time lapse photography for novice and advanced users.

    When asking questions, post the version of your software. You'll receive better answers.

    Please post your results to the thread as it is good feedback.

  5. #5

    joeyboots's Avatar
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    Good point
    Quote Originally Posted by xstep View Post
    From QuickTime Pro, you could save your creation as a self-contained file. That way you won't have to worry about accidently removing the audio portion of the file. It should also fix playback speed problem you mention at the end.
    Yeah! How do I do exactly that. And yes, I think this IS the reason I have no sound when changing the speed of a clip.

    I just closed and saved the file which, as I said was lightning fast, so I realized that it was just referencing, but I was also certain that I wasn't re-encoding anything.

    Will simply doing a "Save As..." do what I want, or is there something more to it?
    I'm not a Mac. I'm not a PC. I'm a person.

  6. #6

    xstep's Avatar
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    Yes, that option is in "Save As...". Choose the "Save as a self-contained movie" option before saving.

    I think the reference movies are suppose to work as self contained one do. Apparently not.
    CameraTime - Time lapse photography for novice and advanced users.

    When asking questions, post the version of your software. You'll receive better answers.

    Please post your results to the thread as it is good feedback.

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