Publishers of technology books, eBooks, and videos for creative people

Home > Articles > Digital Audio, Video > Final Cut Pro

  • Print
  • + Share This
This chapter is from the book

Using Markers

Markers are reference pointers you attach to a clip, and they have a variety of uses. Over the course of your work, you may find that you need to identify specific moments in your footage. You might want to mark an area of a clip that is out of focus, or you might want to mark the specific frame where a car door closes and a sound effect is required. Any time you want to add a note for yourself or your collaborators, you can simply add a marker. And markers can contain text, so you can explain why you put it there.

Markers appear both in the Event Browser and the Timeline and can be one of three colors:

04_mc_figure_38.jpg Blue Marker: Normal markers

04_mc_figure_39.jpg Red Marker: Uncompleted To Do Item

04_mc_figure_40.jpg Green Marker: Completed To Do Item

Markers act as snap points. By adding a marker on a specific frame, you make it very easy to align another clip right to that frame. For example, if you add a marker exactly where you want a title to appear, when you connect the title, you can snap it right to that marker and ensure the precise placement you desire red_circle-a.jpg.


red_circle-a.jpg Use markers and Timeline snapping to help you align your clip elements and make precision editing easy. In this example, the first frame of the audio clip is snapping to the marker in Shot_01.

Markers stay locked to the specific frame where you place them. As you insert or delete other clips in your edited project, any clip markers you’ve placed will ripple along with the clip they’re attached to—moving earlier or later in time to stay aligned with the marked frame.

If you delete a clip that contains a marker, Final Cut Pro will delete that marker as well.

Markers are just tools to aid in your editing work. They have no impact on the playback of your video. They do not appear in the Viewer or when you export or share your finished work.

To add a marker

  1. Move the playhead to the frame you want to mark red_circle-b.jpg; then press M.


    red_circle-b.jpg Position the playhead or skimmer on the frame where you want the marker to appear.

    A marker appears at the specified frame. If skimming is on, the marker will be placed at the skimmer’s position, not the playhead’s.

  2. To add comments to the marker, press M a second time to open the Modify Marker window red_circle-c.jpg.

To add or modify marker text

  1. Move the playhead to the marker you want to modify red_circle-d.jpg. Then press Shift-M.


    red_circle-d.jpg Move the playhead to the marker. Markers get a little bit bigger when you position the pointer directly over them.

    The Modify Marker window opens.

  2. Type descriptive text in the Marker name field red_circle-e.jpg. Then click Done.

red_circle-e.jpg The Modify Marker window points to the marker that it controls.

The text is saved with the marker.

To delete a marker

  1. Position the playhead or skimmer directly over the marker you want to delete; then press Shift-M.

    The Modify Marker window opens.

  2. Click Delete red_circle-f.jpg.

red_circle-f.jpg To delete a marker, you can also right-click it and choose Delete Marker from the shortcut menu.

The Modify Marker window closes, and the marker is deleted.

To delete all markers in a selection

  • Select a clip or range in which you want to delete all markers red_circle-g.jpg, and then do one of the following:


    red_circle-g.jpg Select the markers you want to delete.

  • Press Control-Shift-M.
  • Choose Mark > Markers > Delete Markers in Selection.

All markers within the selection are removed red_circle-h.jpg.


red_circle-h.jpg You can select a whole clip, a portion of a clip, or multiple clips as shown here.

To Do Items

One of the most common uses for markers is to identify tasks that need to be completed. Editors often go through a project and mark each location where a sound effect (or an audio fix) is needed. You can use markers to take notes during a screening, adding markers at edit points that need finessing. FCP offers a special type of marker called a To Do Item.

To Do Items act just like regular markers except they appear red. To Do Items you’ve marked as completed appear green, so you can see, at a glance, which tasks have been addressed and which are still outstanding. This can be especially helpful when collaborating with another editor.

To add a To Do Item

  1. Position the playhead or skimmer over the frame where you want to mark a To Do Item red_circle-i.jpg.


    red_circle-i.jpg Identify a spot where some work still needs to be done.

  2. Press Option-M to add a marker and simultaneously open the Modify Marker window.

    The Modify Marker window opens.

  3. Add text to explain what task needs completing red_circle-j.jpg.


    red_circle-j.jpg Type your To Do Item in the text field. Any existing marker can be converted into a To Do Item in the Modify Marker window.

  4. Click the Make To Do Item button on the left side of the window; then click Done.

    The button turns into a Completed checkbox and the marker turns red red_circle-k.jpg.


    red_circle-k.jpg To Do Item markers are indicated by their red color.

  5. Click Done.

The Modify Marker window closes.

To convert a regular marker to a To Do Item

  • Right-click the marker, and choose To Do from the shortcut menu red_circle-l.jpg.

red_circle-l.jpg To turn a To Do Item back into a regular marker, open the shortcut menu and uncheck To Do.

To mark a To Do Item as completed

  • Right-click the marker, and choose Completed from the shortcut menu red_circle-m.jpg.

red_circle-m.jpg Quickly mark a To Do Item as completed using the shortcut menu.

Completed To Do Items appear as green markers.

Moving Markers

Markers can be moved frame by frame, or they can be relocated from one place to another. You can also copy a marker to create a duplicate in a new location.

To nudge a marker

  1. Position the playhead or skimmer directly over the marker you want to move.
  2. Press Control-< to nudge the marker to the left or Control-> to nudge the marker to the right.

The marker is moved one frame at a time red_circle-n.jpg.


red_circle-n.jpg This figure shows the blue marker before and after being nudged. Note that you can’t nudge a marker across clip boundaries, but you could cut and paste it in a new location.

To move a marker to a new location

  1. Right-click the marker, and choose Cut Marker from the shortcut menu red_circle-o.jpg.


    red_circle-o.jpg Choose Cut Marker from the marker’s shortcut menu. Cutting a marker copies it to the clipboard and replaces any other data currently stored there.

  2. Position the playhead or skimmer on the frame where you want the marker to be moved.
  3. Press Command-V.

The marker is pasted in the new location red_circle-p.jpg.


red_circle-p.jpg The marker is pasted in the new location. Cut and paste is the only way to move a marker across a clip boundary.

To duplicate a marker

  1. Right-click the marker, and choose Copy Marker from the shortcut menu red_circle-q.jpg.


    red_circle-q.jpg Choose Copy Marker from the shortcut menu. Copy a marker when you want to duplicate it.

  2. Position the playhead or skimmer at the frame where you want to place your duplicate marker; then press Command-V.

The duplicate marker appears at the new location red_circle-r.jpg.


red_circle-r.jpg Press Command-V, and the duplicate marker appears at the new location. In this example, a To Do Item marker has been copied and then pasted several times.

Navigating to Markers

FCP offers a variety of ways to find and navigate to your markers both in the Event Browser and in the Timeline.

If you typically use markers to identify specific moments in the raw footage (before you’ve added clips to a project), you’ll want to be able to find those frames in the Event Browser.

To find a marker in the Event Browser

  1. In the Event Browser, type a search term in the search field in the upper-right corner red_circle-s.jpg.


    red_circle-s.jpg Searching for clips, tags, or markers containing the word stretch. FCP filters the view so that only items with the search term appear in the Event Browser list. Clips that don’t match your search are hidden until you reset the search field.

    FCP applies your search terms and filters the Event Browser display to show only clips, markers, and keywords that contain the selected text.

  2. Click the marker item in the Event Browser to select it.

The clip containing the marker is selected and displayed in the Viewer red_circle-t.jpg.


red_circle-t.jpg When you select a marker in the list, the clip opens automatically, and the playhead jumps to the marked frame.

To find a marker in the Timeline

  1. Make the Timeline window active by clicking in it; then press Command-F.

    The Timeline Index opens (if it’s not already showing) with the search field automatically activated red_circle-u.jpg.


    red_circle-u.jpg You’ll find the Timeline search field at the top of the Timeline Index.

  2. In the Timeline Index search field, type any of the text that’s labeling the marker you want to find; then click the Tags button to open the Tags pane.

    A list of markers and keywords that contain the search term appears in the Timeline Index red_circle-v.jpg.


    red_circle-v.jpg Just like in the Event Browser, the view is filtered to show only the items with the search text. Here there are several markers and keywords that all have the word stretch.

  3. Click the marker you searched for in the Timeline Index.

The Timeline playhead jumps to the selected marker red_circle-w.jpg.


red_circle-w.jpg The selected object in the Timeline Index is also selected in the Timeline.

To jump from marker to marker

  1. Make the desired window active, and then do one of the following:
  • Press Control-‘ (apostrophe) to move the playhead to the next marker.
  • Press Control-; (semicolon) to move the playhead to the previous marker.

The playhead moves to the next or previous marker in the selected window.

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account

Peachpit Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from Peachpit and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about Peachpit products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information

To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.


Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites; develop new products and services; conduct educational research; and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.


If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information

Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at and we will process the deletion of a user's account.


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by Adobe Press. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive:

Sale of Personal Information

Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents

California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure

Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact

Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020