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Trimming in the Viewer

The Final Cut Pro Viewer is used for more than just viewing source material. For example, you can also edit clips, transitions, filters, motion effects, and titles from the Timeline in this window. To work with a clip that has already been edited into a sequence, you must first open it from the Timeline.

To open a sequence clip into the Viewer:

In the Timeline, do one of the following:

  • Double-click the clip you want to trim
  • Select a clip you want to trim and press Return.

    You can tell whether a clip has been opened from the Timeline by looking at the Viewer scrubber bar under the image. If two lines of dots (“sprocket holes”) appear, the clip is a sequence clip and has been opened from the Timeline. (These dots appear in the Trim Edit window scrubber bars, as well.) If the bar is clear of dots, you are viewing a source clip that has not yet been edited into a sequence.

To trim a clip in the Viewer:

  1. Choose a trimming tool from the Tool palette or press the keyboard shortcut for the desired tool. You can choose the default Selection tool (A), the Roll tool (R), or the Ripple tool (RR).
  2. Drag an edit point in the Viewer scrubber bar.

    The pointer will turn into the tool you have selected, and the edit point or points will adjust according to the normal behavior of the selected tool.

    With the Ripple tool, like Avid’s single-roller, you can make the clip longer than it currently is in the Timeline; all clips that follow are affected by the trim amount. Using the default Selection tool, if a clip is between two other clips in the Timeline, you can only trim that clip shorter. If you try to trim a clip beyond the boundary of a neighboring clip in the Timeline, a Media Limit note will appear, and you won’t be able to trim beyond that point. On the one hand, this may seem limiting. But on the other hand, you know you will not affect any other clips with your trim adjustment.

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