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Steve CookAfter Effects CS5.5
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 8:44:23 pm

When doing a ram preview, absolutely every single time it shows this in the info panel:"mixing audio for preview". This lasts for up to 15 seconds before even starting to go into:"background process status: loading projects...". Why must it mix the audio every single time, especially when I haven't made any changes to the audio, or sometimes to anything else for that matter. I need to hear the audio because the mood I'm trying to set(memorial/tribute video)involves lining up the audio with footage or animations, etc. Am I just using the wrong program to achieve this most efficiently? I have a pretty good computer, but it has factory graphics, unable to buy a video card yet. Is this what is causing me so much wasted time? Thank you.

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Erik LindahlRe: After Effects CS5.5
by on Feb 16, 2012 at 11:57:38 pm

Not sure if this is still an issue in After Effects but in previous versions using either highly compressed audio (i.e mp3) or audio that had a different sample rate than your preview settings (i.e. 44KHz vs 48KHz) would cause audio previews to become very slow.

But, I haven't noticed this for quite some time - given I'm far more strict with media preparation these day so it could be one still has this issue.

You could also in the past change the duration of the audio preview, this would with the above greatly affect render times for audio previews.

Erik Lindahl
Freecloud Post Production Services

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Dave LaRondeRe: After Effects CS5.5
by on Feb 17, 2012 at 12:29:22 am

It sounds like you're trying to use AE like it's an editing application, which is just about the worst idea in the world.
The reason: AE is just about the worst editing application in the world. Okay, Microsoft Word is worse.

Do yourself a big favor: do this kind of work in a REAL editing application, lay things out the way you want, create your mood and save AE for the effects work. Export an audio track from your editor if you need an audio reference. Your work will go a lot smoother.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA

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Steve CookRe: After Effects CS5.5
by on Feb 17, 2012 at 2:56:15 am

Thanks Dave. I've been using AE for about three months and have learned a lot through tutorials, posts like this, and I always look for your answers in particular when scrolling through the forums. Could you give me some examples of what are "REAL" editing apps? I have Premier Elements, but haven't really dove in to know what it does or how to use it, since I've been spending countless hours making this memorial video in AE. Is it what I need, and what other programs do you or can you recommend? And real quick, what do you mean export an audio track from my editor? I'm trying to line up a building moment in the song with the animations, or just certain pic's in AE. This happens several times throughout the song. Can I use a NLE to do that? Thanks!

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Dave LaRondeRe: After Effects CS5.5
by on Feb 17, 2012 at 3:43:43 am

If you're in this far, you sort of have to stick with it, I'm afraid. I don't have any good news nor easy ways out for you.

Note for the future: secure a copy of Adobe Premiere Pro, Apple Final Cut Pro, Avid Media Composer, Sony Vegas, or even some cheapo video editing application you can pick up for 59 bucks at Best Buy.

Any one of them will do a far better & faster job at tasks like this than AE.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA

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Walter SoykaRe: After Effects CS5.5
by on Feb 17, 2012 at 9:27:23 am

Like Dave, I generally try to rough out my timing in an NLE.

However, if you must sync to audio in AE, here are a few quick tips:
  • Reveal an audio waveform by selecting your audio layer, and tap LL -- that's the 'L' key, twice.
  • Preview audio in AE by hitting the period key on the numeric keypad. While AE is previewing audio, hit the asterisk key on the numeric keypad to add markers in real time.
  • To scrub audio in AE, hold down Cmd and Opt on a Mac (Ctrl and Alt on Windows) while dragging the CTI around the timeline. To scrub audio and video together, hold Cmd on a Mac (or Ctrl on Windows) while dragging the CTI.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events

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