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One-, Two-, and Three-Point Editing Techniques

This chapter covers the various methods for editing your source footage into your timeline, so I should probably cover some other time-saving techniques. You do not have to always use all four editing marks to edit a shot into your timeline (the in and out points on the source side and the in and out points on the record side):

  • One-point editing—This usually is done during a rough-cutting session. If you are just trying to add clips to your timeline without setting in and out points, you can use the playback indicator as your single mark. Just place the playback indicator anywhere in your timeline and click one of the edit buttons (Insert or Overlay, depending on what else exists in your timeline). The playback indicator acts as the in point in your timeline and carries the full duration of the clip in your Source monitor down into the timeline (because there are no marks in the Source monitor).

  • Two-point editing—This technique is usually used to match up two points—one in the Source monitor and one in the timeline. Two points work well when you're trying to match up a starting point in the Source monitor and a starting point in the timeline (or in the Edit monitor). The rest of the duration, from the mark in point in the Source monitor until where the clip ends, is added to the timeline when you click the Insert or Overlay edit button.

  • Three-point editing—This is the most common method of editing that I have seen editors use. It is quick and convenient (faster than measuring where to put the fourth edit point) while still giving you the accuracy to determine the exact starting and ending frames for either the source clip or the timeline. Premiere automatically edits in the fourth point. Therefore, you can mark any combination of the source clip's in point or out point and the in point or out point in your timeline. With experience you'll learn which circumstances determine which marks to use.


To clear a marker from either the Source monitor or the Edit monitor, rest the mouse cursor on the marker you want to remove, and select Clip > Clear Marker, or press Ctrl-Alt-C (Windows) or Command-Option-C (Macintosh).

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