Transitions and FCE: why such a hassle?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by lapino, May 31, 2009.

  1. lapino macrumors regular

    Mar 6, 2009
    I'm experimenting a little with FCE and one thing that seems very hard to do compared to iMovie09 is adding transition. As far as I can tell (hope I'm wrong) the only way to use transitions in FCE is to have a part of the movies cut and the end and/or beginning so there's frames left to insert the transition

    In iMovie, when I import clips and put them together on a timeline, I can simply drag&drop the transitions I want to use. Still, I'd rather use FCE but I have a feeling I'm making this harder then it should be.

    Advice? I just want to import my clips (most of the time without trimming anything) and then use transitions between them.
  2. hvfsl macrumors 68000


    Jul 9, 2001
    London, UK
    That's because FCE gives you more control over your transitions than iMovie, so you have to do more manually.

    I am not quite sure I understand how you are adding transitions at the moment, but I would check your manual to make sure you are doing it the easiest way.
  3. lapino thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 6, 2009
    Well, this is what I *though* I should do, but it doesn't work that way:

    * import clips (ok fine)
    * drag&drop clips into the timeline and put them all next to each other (this gives me a nice, long movie without any effect). I do not trim any clips since it's not needed
    * I then try to drag&drop a transition effect which does not work (cursor has a little x blob)

    So, do I *need* to trim my clips to use transitions then?
  4. huntercr macrumors 65816

    Jun 6, 2006
    There is a very nice PDF manual that comes with FCE, with an extensive section on transitions. Do the tutorials as well.
  5. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000


    Jul 1, 2004
    yes, that's how transitions work... I don't use iMovie, but I imagine that it is trimming the clips automatically for the transition.
  6. ChemiosMurphy macrumors 6502

    Sep 25, 2007
    Warminster, PA
    It's because you need extra frames to make the transition. If you are doing a cross dissolve Video A needs more frames at the end of the clip than are on the timeline because it extends into video B. So say your Cross dissolve is 4 seconds, you would need an extra 2 seconds more of the video on each clip. So just shrink the clips down.

    oh and read the manual or get a book on FCE.
  7. jla930 macrumors member

    May 11, 2009
    Western PA
    In FCE, the frames you need to trim off for a transition are called "handles". It is true that you simply cannot take two untrimmed clips and put a transition between them. I'm not sure about all transitions, but this is true of many, including the default cross-dissolve transition.

    I'm relatively new to both Mac and FCE, having had them for only a few months. I was previously using Windows XP, and Pinnacle Studio for editing. In Studio, it was not required to trim frames (make handles) when inserting any transition. Studio automatically converted the end frames of one clip and the beginning frames of the next clip to make the transition successful. Of course, the clips themselves had to be longer than the transitions.

    After using FCE, I must confess that I was disappointed in the beginning that FCE would not handle the simple chore of adding transitions as easy as Studio would. It made no sense to me. Quite honestly, it still doesn't. But after realizing that transitions are to be used sparingly anyway, it's not a big deal.

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