Share a shortcut

Posted by Jude Cotter 
Share a shortcut
February 21, 2011 06:46PM
So, following on from the 'my essential apps' list, what is your favourite (and possibly not well known) keyboard shortcut?

I'm gonna start with option-drag.

I often option-drag a transition from one place to another to create an exact copy of a custom transition. Holding option in FCP almost always creates a duplicate of something.

I also use it to copy a clip from one place to another in the timeline. If you are doing this, however, hold option, click and drag the clip you want to duplicate on the timeline, then make sure you let go of option before you drop the clip. If you don't let go, the clip will be 'inserted' into the timeline, pushing everything ahead of it down to make room and therefore breaking up your timeline.

What's your favourite?

Re: Share a shortcut
February 21, 2011 07:03PM
Repeated Ctrl clicking on the scopes in fcp 5.1. It gets Bruce up and moving.
Re: Share a shortcut
February 21, 2011 10:45PM
a personal fave of mine that gets other editors asking "how did you do that?":

use the HAND tool to grab and shift the timeline view.

my particular twist is i use Z+Command to summon the hand tool.
this is default behaviour,
and it's good because i don't have to reach all the way across to H!
be wary of hitting and holding Command+Z: you'll undo all your good work... Shift+Command+Z will re-do it all of course.

Re: Share a shortcut
February 21, 2011 11:20PM
Oh, I also love shift - z. Use that all the time to see the whole timeline, or canvas or viewer.

Re: Share a shortcut
February 21, 2011 11:37PM
One of my favourite self-invented tricks is to use the Group Selection (GG) as a pointer. I can select and open individual clips as well as transitions much faster this way, since there's no fear of accidentally moving things.

Memorizing the shortcuts for marker editing (m, CONTROL-`, SHIFT-`, OPTION-`) as well as colour labels (OPTION-APPLE-1, 2, 3...) has also saved me a great deal of time.

OPTION-APPLE-L (Modify - Levels) is a vastly underused one. For quick sound mixes, it's faster to use it combined with Cross Fades than to muck with the overlays ("rubberbands"winking smiley, where you can't get accurate numbers without stepping into the Viewer, and created nodes take forever to create, move and delete. Especially since I only ever use Small and Reduced track sizes, so that I can see as many elements as possible at any given time.
Re: Share a shortcut
February 21, 2011 11:43PM
Nobody thought the yak was cool? Sheesh. Nerds!

>I can select and open individual clips as well as transitions much faster this way,
>since there's no fear of accidentally moving things.

That's also very useful to group select in a crowded timeline. Then there is ggg, which let's you select a portion of the clip to render.
Re: Share a shortcut
February 22, 2011 12:29AM
speaking of Shift-Z,

i have Zoom= 800% mapped to the asterisk key on the number pad.
great for a quick pop-in to the timeline for a close up view.
(i'm a right-handed mouse user, so number pad is very close to my hand

Shift-Z comes next to get back out,
although my last assistant also mapped that to the / key on the number pad, right next to *

Re: Share a shortcut
February 22, 2011 04:26AM
Nothing beats Command Z ... I bloody love it. Best shortcut ever.
Re: Share a shortcut
February 22, 2011 05:29AM
? "Select Track Forward" 't'

and then the modifier

? "Select All Tracks Forward" 'shift+t' - rather than pressing 'tttt'

? 'ctrl v' to use the blade tool at the playhead without having to select the tool or press 'b'

? using copy and paste to copy and paste attributes

? 'ctrl t' to show/hide up the TC Viewer

? 'cmd t' adding the Default Video Transition

? 'alt cmd t' adding Default Audio Transition

? 'cmd +' or 'cmd -' to zoom in and out of the timeline or viewer/canvas

Mr Michael Wohl wrote a fantastic article "THE KEYS TO THE KINGDOM" on using the keyboard for FCP for the SuperMag v4 (Las Vegas 2010) - I highly recommend everyone here goes and reads it! Put together by Dan Berube and some random English guy (and his graphic designer redheaded girlfriend) winking smiley

Oh yeah it was the first ever publication optimised for viewing on the iPad.

You can get your free copy here: []

For instant answers to more than one hundred common FCP questions, check out the LAFCPUG FAQ Wiki here : []
Re: Share a shortcut
February 22, 2011 07:37AM
I also like moving things by frames with the + or - keys.

Select any clip or group of clips on the timeline and press +15 and they move forward 15 frames. -15 moves them back 15 frames. I often use shift -t and +10. to move the entire timeline from that point on ten seconds forward while keeping everything in sync. The . (period) counts for a double zero - so it's really 10 00, which FCP interprets as ten seconds.

You can also just type a timecode to move the playhead to that timecode, if you have nothing selected. Or move the playhead forward or backwards by an amount by typing +(number) with nothing selected. Great for leaving gaps you are aware need to be filled later, like, say, a twenty second upsot.

Re: Share a shortcut
February 22, 2011 08:09AM
I love every one of 'em. And thank you, Gerard for the Bruce tip-- I could never find him.

Great thread, Ms. Jude.

I also map the new Zoom to Playhead in Timeline command, unwired by default,
to Shift-Y to get me to the playhead regardless of which clip is selected.
Otherwise you zoom to the clip. I hate that.

Might as well make sure everyone's seen these-- there's other stuff over at Focal's YouTube channel.

For beginners:

And here, for intermediate:

My favorite shortcut that doesn't yet exist?

Export still image using Quicktime Conversion.

- Loren

Today's FCP 7 keytip:
Play from Playhead to Out Mark with Shift-P !

Your Final Cut Studio KeyGuide? Power Pack.
Now available at KeyGuide Central.
Re: Share a shortcut
February 22, 2011 04:31PM
1. Control B which switches on and off any highlighted area in the timeline. Particularly cool if you turn off, say, one sound effect - then highlight that (OFF) sound effect and an alternative sound effect which is ON. So now one is ON and the other is OFF. Control B will then toggle between the two for comparison.

2. Throw mouse against wall in despair. This is a shortcut to "regret" mode.

Re: Share a shortcut
February 22, 2011 05:08PM
After getting fast on Final Cut Pro shortcuts, I found out that I had neglected OS shortcuts. Just the simple SHIFT-APPLE-A (Applications), SHIFT-APPLE-U (Utilities) and SHIFT-APPLE-H (User Home) saved me loads of unnecessary mouse work.

It's also funny to me how few people realize that they don't need to make their OS into the awkward "web browser" style (forward and back in one window, etc.). You can see and access the whole folder down to its root by holding APPLE and clicking on the icon beside the folder/item name. File navigation became much faster for me -- I could just use a file as a "waystation" to get me to a file location, rather than mess with clicking on multiple folders.
Re: Share a shortcut
February 22, 2011 05:42PM
These are all great... in addition to Derek's OS topic, does anyone here use Finder replacements like A Better Finder or Quicksilver? All the Mac "jedis" I know (none of them editors) SWEAR by these, and it's true that they can work crazy-fast with them, but I've never gotten into them. Anyone else?

BTW, my favorite shortcut is to map "Zoom to Playhead IN" to the ";" key (just right of the L key), and the zoom-out version to the H key. That way, when I am J-K-L-ing around, I just move my forefinger one key to the right to zoom in, and my pinky one key to the left to zoom out. I think I doubled my speed once I hit upon this...
Re: Share a shortcut
February 22, 2011 10:43PM
I have messed around with the Finder replacements but I found, in that period of my career where I was mostly still a hired gun sitting in other seats on different systems, that having different muscle memories for AVID on Mac , AVID on Windows and FCP on Mac was enough. Having multiple variations of Mac OS based muscle memories was slowing me down getting acquainted with new systems. All I take with me is one of my trusty MacAlly trackballs (got a drawer full of them) and whatever keyboard I need. (I have two Mac white keyboards, one with AVID keys, one with FCP keys). Reduces the familiarization time.

Sleeplings, AWAKE!
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