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Disabling/muting an audio file in all compound clips

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John Smith
Disabling/muting an audio file in all compound clips
on May 28, 2013 at 9:23:31 pm

I created a project with 4 audio sources that I synced and put into one compound clip in order to be able to edit them all as one. The compound clip I chopped up added fades and general adjustments. After finishing the edit I wanted to send each of the original 4 audio sources out to individual files. Basically I want to bounce them out as you would in Logic Pro. So I can do this via sharing a masterfile and only sending the audio out. I need to do this as I want to do the final mixing and audio engineering in Logic Pro.

Problem is I need to be able to send out 4 times with only one of each audio source active each time. I can't find a way to disable the audio file across all edits and compound clips that have been subsequently made. I can disable the audio within the event browser on individual files but that doesn't affect the audio file in the present time-line which was previously added.

I did a workaround for this by splitting up the compound clips and selecting all the relevant parts for each audio source and creating new compound clips for each audio source, then only enabled the compound clip I wanted to master. This worked well enough until I realised the next day on reviewing it in Logic that I had inadvertently deleted all the fades and edits I had made to the compound clips when I split them apart. Yes I should have foreseen this, but for some reason I didn't. First time I have worked with more than two audio sources in FCPX so never something I had to anticipate.

So as well as having the problem with disabling audio files across the whole project I realised how crap FCPX is when you need to go back to a previous point in time, this is the exact reason why I've always used "Save As" on documents regularly in my normal workflow. Now with this system where you can't easily take snapshots/duplicate project files I have to redo stuff. Why when FCPX makes the backup it can't just write another backup save file that it keeps every 5 minutes or so with a different filename makes no sense. I always have automated backup saves in Logic Pro, FCP7 and alike so when something goes wrong you can retrace your steps... This is a major floor with FCPX and still a major weakness not having a Save As type feature integrated in the new system. Just because it doesn't need to be saved, doesn't mean there isn't a use for a "Save As" style feature. Duplicate project is just not hands on enough, you can't use it in the moment and it's not easy to effectively have it automated.

Anyway.. rambled a bit... Main issue is the first one, disabling a single audio file that is present in many compound clips without having to go through all the clips and manually disabling it.

Thanks in advance for any help!


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John Smith
Re: Disabling/muting an audio file in all compound clips
on May 28, 2013 at 10:35:06 pm

A work around for the lack of a "Save As" feature that I mentioned above is to export as XML, I've found that if you make a folder that you regularly make XML saves to then this works pretty well, would be as good as Save As if it had a keyboard short-cut. Unfortunately it doesn't. The XML file loads as a new project when double clicked within finder, and are also a lot smaller than project files.


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Bret Williams
Re: Disabling/muting an audio file in all compound clips
on May 28, 2013 at 10:47:48 pm

Doing a save as in legacy wouldn't have been a good solution. Creates a mess of your capture scratch folders. There already was a backup system. If you're looking to version your sequence, just do what would be the way I'd do it in legacy- duplicate the sequence (project now). No need to duplicate render files. Keep editing on the same sequence. The duplicate becomes your "moment in time sequence."

We do need some sort of autosave and restore finction built in, though.

Can't think of a solution to your audio except what you did. But if that doesn't pass down to logic then I guess it's not much use.


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John Smith
Re: Disabling/muting an audio file in all compound clips
on Jun 10, 2013 at 5:09:38 pm

I always transfer anything I need long term out of scratch folders and keep them in a project folder in FCP7, I hate not having everything relevant to a project not located in the same project folder so the there is no risk of me messing up scratch folders. Never liked the communal location of working files in FCP7, glad that was cleared up in FCPX, though having to have all projects and events in the root of the HDD I really haven't grown to like, it makes a mess of my own organisation/file-management. Should be able to select a sub directory for Project and Event locations. I can see why it's probably done, but it's too authoritarian for my liking, and not necessary, seems to be born out of mistrust of the users ablity to deal with their own file management.

I have done what you have said previously for backing up, but I tend to forget to do it in that manner, it just doesn't slot into a smooth work flow for me.


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Disabling/muting an audio file in all compound clips
on May 28, 2013 at 11:46:44 pm

[John Smith] "Anyway.. rambled a bit... Main issue is the first one, disabling a single audio file that is present in many compound clips without having to go through all the clips and manually disabling it."

Duplicate Project works well, you can also duplicate Compounds as new clips.

Select a compound in the timeline and choose Clip > Reference New Parent. It will create a duped compound in the Event to resue as well.

As far as the audio problems, you can choose all of the compound clips, open the inspector, and turn off any channel you want it will apply to all the clips that you have selected.

All of the compounds must have the same number of audio channels for this to work.

You might also start to think abut using Roles on audio components and exporting stems of your Roles (multichannel aiff). Select all the compound clips, choose to Expand Audio Components. Select all of the Channel 1 clips, and assign a Role in the inspector. Repeat for each channel.

You can even make a Share preset for audio only, then assign the Role export in the Export dialog, and you will get a 4 channel Aiff file with all the appropriate stems.


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John Smith
Re: Disabling/muting an audio file in all compound clips
on Jun 10, 2013 at 5:20:52 pm

hmmm Roles sounds interesting I'll have to have a fiddle around with that, thanks... though the selecting all Compound Clips and disabling audio channels I could only get to work in a stereo sense. I could disable left and right channels, but I as I have audio on there effectively in multiple stereo channels it would only disable left and right channels. Which doesn't help, would need it to recognise each mono channel as a separate audio channel. A list of complete audio files present within the selected Compound Clips is what would be most straight forward, then I could just check-box them on or off, or in the actual Event Browser if I could select to disable the audio file and have it affect the audio file within all projects it's present in.


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Disabling/muting an audio file in all compound clips
on Jun 12, 2013 at 4:26:51 pm

[John Smith] "Which doesn't help, would need it to recognise each mono channel as a separate audio channel. "

So then change it to mono instead of stereo pairs. It's easy to do from the inspector.

[John Smith] "A list of complete audio files present within the selected Compound Clips is what would be most straight forward, then I could just check-box them on or off, or in the actual Event Browser if I could select to disable the audio file and have it affect the audio file within all projects it's present in."

The audio configuration must match for all compounds in order for FCPX to be able to display the same config.


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