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How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?

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Simon ReichelHow to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 11:05:27 am
Last Edited By Simon Reichel on Apr 15, 2015 at 11:15:12 am

Hey guys, urgent request here. I'm editing a piece and it was filmed and recorded with master timecode from the sound guy set to the actual time of day. So sound guy and camera guy were hitting record and stop whenever they liked, not clapping or worrying about each other. Now I'm sitting in the edit and need to find out which parts were recorded with both sound and camera running because there's talking heads in some places. So what I would need is a way to pull both the video clips and sound clips onto the timeline where all of them are inserted at the exact time when they were recorded. So I'd start my timeline at 08:00:00:00 because they started filming at 8 am and then it should all just be put into place accordingly. Is there a way to do that? There must be, right? Thanks for your help!

Reason why I'm posting this is that all I'm finding on the web or in this forum are simple solutions for one audio and one video clip or the Multicam solution which is impractical for me because there was only one camera, it just didn't do one continuous take.

I know I could do it manually but we're talking 100s of video clips and ca. 80 audio clips here. They literally blazed through an entire day on their timecode.


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Oki PienandoroRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 12:34:55 pm

Hahaha,..i feel you, i was (and still) in your shoes. All the tutorial and workflow in the forum/web is a simple one isn't ? One continuous take, single audio, etc...ahh..i wish life were that simple.

Back to your question:
If the camera and the sound recording were not synced PERFECTLY before recording, well..they will not have the same timecode, isn't it ?

Good news is, there's a chance you can offset the timecode, and everything will fall perfectly. But ONLY if the timecode on BOTH devices were consistent. It doesn't matter if they were not started / sync from the start, as long as they were consistent, you can offset the timecode.

BUT, there are also an audio drift issue, usually noticeable in a long take (depends on the hardware).
This may turn ugly.

If there's a chance to work with them again,make suggestion to them to consider using a timecode lock.
https://www.google.com/search?q=sync+lock&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8#q=timecode+lock
They can do anything they want, jumping up and down for all i care, timecode will be locked, and our life as editor is much easier.

You also might consider using Pluraleyes, as long the camera also recording sufficient sound, you pretty much very lucky in this case. It's very easy to sync.

Btw, if the camera is Canon DSLR (even C series), you pretty much in bad situation. Canon camera is not running the timecode all the time. Even if they were sync at the very beginning, their timecode will drift everytime the camera is turn off/changing battery/something like that (Canon states this even in the user manual). Using timecode lock in multiple take with separate audio is a must for Canon camera.

Btw, 100 is small. Last time i deal with this i have to do 1000+ unsync clip with no timecode, no clapper (T__T)
And it was rhythmic music event, similar sound throughout the event, PluralEyes is a no go, only manual adjustment for each and every single clip, and it super haaaaarrddd !

Sorry for the long post and unnecessary story :(

------------------------------------------
Sorry for the english, not native speaker.


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Simon ReichelRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 12:37:52 pm

Hey, what do you mean by offset the timecode?

It is consistent and on a Sony F5, no ref sound.


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Oki PienandoroRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 12:56:47 pm
Last Edited By Oki Pienandoro on Apr 15, 2015 at 1:05:01 pm

No ref sound, i feel you buddy !
Honeslty it's been a year since last time i do timecode related job, so i'm a bit rusty.
So take my suggestion carefully.

Find the first/2nd/any clip that you were confident that it is the video-audio "pair". Make note of the timecode difference. Subtract/add them, you will get the offset value (time difference).

From here on, there are couple of route, pick one :
1. Batch offset timecode with the offset applied. I forgot with what i do the batch, probably using WaveAgent or something else, i forgot, just google for similar tools. But be aware, this will override the current timecode. Make a duplicate/backup just in case there are drifting, and you want to get back to original timecode.

2. No need batch edit, you can simply force the clip to jump in your specified time (highlight the clip, hit + on numeric, type the offset). To ease the process, you can do this automatically with macro.

3. Did you have access to FCP 7 by any chance ? I believe FCP 7 has some automated feature to solve this exact problem (but honestly i forgot how to do that). But i remember one of the experiment i do in the past involving FCP (import on FCP, do the timecode offset there, export as xml to premiere).

Like i said, sadly none of the workflow above actually applies on my case, in the end i must do all the clip manually because audio drifting and messed up timecode.
But if you have a perfect sync, that workflow above i think is the way to go.

EDIT :
I type that in a rush, i clearly misssing some of the steps, but i hope you will get what i mean.

------------------------------------------
Sorry for the english, not native speaker.


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Simon ReichelRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 12:59:34 pm

Sorry, I don't think that would actually help me because there are times when neither the audio nor the video were running but the timecode was progressing because of the time of day. so there are actual gaps and stuff. it would need to be an automated process. Does Premiere really not have that included??


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Tero AhlforsRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 1:11:14 pm

[Simon Reichel] " it would need to be an automated process."

You can't sync by audio if you don't have reference audio. You can't sync by timecode if the gear wasn't genlocked and you can't sync by TOD if if you don't have a TOD timecode track. You'll have to do this manually and probably tell the crew some pro tips about how not to shoot.


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Simon ReichelRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 1:45:19 pm

Sorry, what do you mean by genlocked in this case? It's a 25fps timecode that was projecting from the sound guy's TOD onto the audio recorder and the video cam. So it does line up. TOD timecode track? Like a continuous reference track or something? How would I use that to have it all automatically lined up in a sequence?


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Oki PienandoroRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 1:40:44 pm
Last Edited By Oki Pienandoro on Apr 15, 2015 at 1:49:45 pm

Ah very sorry, i misread your original question, i thought you have one continuously AUDIO, and 180 clip of video

However, you can put the video automatically according to their time code
Do a "multicam".
Premiere will put the clip under in the timeline according to timecode.
Sadly premiere cannot put audio clip automatically
The audio however,..hmmm...let me think about it...

There HAS to be away..

Okay,..Maybe you can do semi automatically using macro.
[Macro Start]
Highlight the audio clip, Clip|Modify, Press tab couple of time, Ctrl+C in the timecode field, escape.
Alt+W, T couple of time, highlight the timeline sub menu, right arrow, choose timeline, enter.

Now you're in the timeline:
Tab couple of times, highlight the timecode, Ctrl+V, enter.

Shift+1
Now you're back in the project windows
Alt+C+I (to insert the audio)
[Macro End]

This way the manual thing you have to do is just to select the audio clip that you want to place in the timeline.
Basically you just have to do : Down Arrow + Your Hotkey for your macro.

I'm bet it's gonna be less than 15 min to place all the files if you do this.

Edit :
Get it ?
The purpose of video multicam is just to place the video according to their timeline, you can expand the multicam, do select all, then paste the video after the audio (macro assisted) is in place.

This way all is sync perfectly, according to their timecode (unless i miss something else)

------------------------------------------
Sorry for the english, not native speaker.


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Simon ReichelRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 3:07:05 pm

Sorry, what is macro?


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Oki PienandoroRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 3:37:50 pm
Last Edited By Oki Pienandoro on Apr 15, 2015 at 3:42:40 pm

Macro is a set of key combination that you do repetitively. You make a "hotkey".

Hmm..let me rephrase that.
Let say you often do a repetitive task:
You save, you close the project, then you open another one.

With macro, all of this can be done with single button you choose, a hotkey.

Let's say the hotkey is [Insert], so everytime you press insert, the macro were executed orderly (Ctrl+S,Ctrl+W, Ctrl+O).

To make macro (easily) there are many freeware available. There's no need to know about the scripting behind all of that.

All you have to do is open the macro program, then tell them to start recording macro. Then you do your usual workflow (preferably a keyboard shortcut rather than mouse), stop recording macro.

After that, you set a hotkey you prefer to execute macro.

I simplified things, there are couple of steps before you execute macro.
Almost all macro program also recording how long you do the task (how fast are you pressing the keyboard key). So if you record slow keyboard key, macro will playback with the same speed.

A good macro program can edit the duration of each keyborad stroke AFTER you finished recording.
This way, you can record carefully, and then you can edit the duration of keystroke at much faster rate on during macro playback.


What i wrote above is just an automatic way using macro.
The point is:
[repeat]
You highlight the audio clip, and choose intrepret timecode. You copy that audio clip time code, switch to the timeline, go to the timeline timecode, and paste the timecode you copy earlier. This will move the playhead to the correct spot. Then you can do audio source insert edit. This will place the audio into their correct timeline.
[Repeat]

Get it?
Choose next clip (down arrow), and press the macro hotkey.
The macro will perform all the steps inside the [repeat].

Also check my answer below, there are audio workaround that didn't involve macro (but you have to deal with hundreds of tracks ; yet easily solved with keyboard shortcut, a bit repetitive; and yet even faster if you want to do it with macro.)

------------------------------------------
Sorry for the english, not native speaker.


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Alex UdellRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 1:33:36 pm

So you're asking about...

assembling video and separate audio clips to a master sequence where media start of each clip is Sequence in when you perform the edit

each with their own media start times...

so you'll end up with a sequence with a lot of gaps just due to the stop downs in the shooting and recording process

and the stop downs between the video and auxiliary audio won't match...so the gaps won't align.

do I understand the problem correctly?

I'm not sure about automating to sequence at matching media start.

However purely from an organizational stand point...

it might be helpful to copy and paste all the audio and video in a single bin...then sort that bin by media start...

at the very least you can get the general order in which the elements ought to occur and you can see where the overlap between your video and audio events coincide.


I'd probably then go ahead and cut in the video 1st (with it's corresponding audio where it's available)

then go back and cut in the aux audio on a separate track.

one problem I can predict is that I'm sur they probably each set the "time of day" manually in each device manually at the start of the shoot. so audio and video may not match exactly, even when the TOD timecode does. remember though, once you figure out the offset...all you aux audio clips can be selected and shifted by that equal amount (assuming they are running by the same frame rates)...

I know this isn't much help....

but at the moment it's what I could come up with....

I'll keep thinking....

Alex Udell
Editing, Motion Graphics, and Visual FX


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Simon ReichelRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 1:49:18 pm

Hey, yeah I do think you understand it correctly, though I'm not sure what you're saying with "media start of each clip is Sequence in when you perform the edit".

What I want is one sequence that has all the audio and video clips in it, each at the exact time it was recorded. Then I'll have the bits with talking heads and the audio will be in sync and I can just select from there, delete gaps and stuff I don't need and end up with a nicely trimmed and synced select sequence to grab stuff from.

The cut needs to be structured around the interviews, so I need to take care of the talking heads first.

They didn't each set it manually. It was projected from a master source by the sound guy, probably his recorder or a timecode device.


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Alex UdellRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 2:14:41 pm

[Simon Reichel] " though I'm not sure what you're saying with "media start of each clip is Sequence in when you perform the edit"."


if you look at the bin as sorted by the media start column

the first frame of any clip is timecode media start of that media clip

so in your sequence...your MARK IN timecode (in point) for each edit would be equal to the MEDIA start timecode of the clip.

that way your events in your sequence as edited would align with time of day when edited to the sequence, and gapping accordingly where there was nothing recorded.

does that help?

I agree, with some scripting or a utility to edit XML could be done pretty easily.

Alex Udell
Editing, Motion Graphics, and Visual FX


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Simon ReichelRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 2:17:50 pm

Yeah that's exactly what I'd need, sorry for the confusion. But there's no way to just pull all the clips onto the timeline and have them line up that way, is there? Do you know of a free utility that can do it?


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Alex UdellRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 3:00:06 pm

See Oki's response

https://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/3/965124


this will get you a lot of the way there.

Alex Udell
Editing, Motion Graphics, and Visual FX


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Simon ReichelRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 1:57:43 pm

I think we can possibly shorten this by one very simple question that I came across here: http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/adobe-creative-suite/509575-auto-sequencing-usi...

Is it possible to Auto-Sequence by Timecode in Premiere Pro CC? If not, is there another program, preferrably free of charge, where I can do that and then export an XML for Premiere?

It sounds like such an easy fix, how can they not have included that yet!?


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Oki PienandoroRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Apr 15, 2015 at 2:19:11 pm
Last Edited By Oki Pienandoro on Apr 15, 2015 at 5:46:42 pm

You didn't read my answer above ?
You can auto-place the video; The video are placed automatically according to their timeline (using Multicam hack). This solve half the problem. You will have multiple video track (100), but you can put them in one track using shotcut key, repetitive, but it was fast.

The audio in the other hand have to do a "manual" thing. But since you can make a macro, so it was semi automatic.

Then all you need to do left is to join the video and audio under one sequence.

Other than that,,..the other solution is to edit the XML project files. Then again, you need to intrepret the timecode, since in Premiere XML, it's was not plainly written in SMTPE format (CMIIW)

Edit :
Here's another workaround with the audio.
Merge the audio with timecode as sync point.
You will have multiple audio track, but it was sync according to their timecode, just like the video multicam hack.
Place them under one track with shortcut key, repetitive, but it was fast.

So there you have it, a full automatic workaround (with or without macro).
The only manual thing left is you have to manually put them under one track.

Edit 2 :
I know you already said you use Sony F5, but i came across this :





Looks like what you need.
Their site is down, but there are copy of their software (freeware)
http://www.videohelp.com/software/DSLRsync/old-versions
https://www.facebook.com/DSLRsync (inactive)
http://www.dslrsync.com (dead)

During install they suggest to install K-Lite, don't install K-Lite ;its unnecessary (bloated ?) codec pack

Be aware they states that it will override tc, make sure backup your file first before attempting this.
It may not actually work for footage from Sony F5, or maybe it's just for continuous audio.
I just put it here just in case it works.

Note : I never test this at all, i held no responsibility on any damage of using this software.

Last note, good luck with the syncing, let us know what path you finally took/found !
I'm curious about this myself.
------------------------------------------
Sorry for the english, not native speaker.


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Simon ReichelRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Sep 28, 2015 at 5:38:39 pm

I read your answers. I don't have time to learn macro hacks or to wreck my shortcuts that I've built customly. All I want is an automated way to do this, if necessary then outside of Premiere through another editing prog or a little tool. Thanks for the effort though.


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Jo HermannRe: How to insert clips on timeline according to timecode?
by on Jan 16, 2016 at 10:26:04 am

Hey Simon,


check out SequenceLiner by Andreas Kiel - it might need some work (as it only is working with FCP7 AND there is only a 10.6-version of it) but you might give it a try:

http://www.spherico.com/filmtools/sequenceLiner/

I always find Andreas' XML-handlers very useful!


gl

quick, cheap, good - pick any two


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