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Setting Chapter Markers

In the following exercises, you will learn how to navigate through the Track Editor and set two chapter markers to permit faster navigation through your video track. Typically, chapter markers will already be set at a specific spot in Final Cut Pro (or Final Cut Express or iMovie) and exported to DVD Studio Pro. In this exercise, you will learn how to set these chapter markers in DVD Studio Pro using three different methods. Also you will learn how to move your playhead in the Track Editor.

Resizing the Track Editor

Before you begin working with tracks and adding markers, you may want to adjust the Track Editor window and its timeline to make them easier to view.

  1. If the Track Editor is not already open, click the Track tab to open it.
  2. Choose the SwissMovie video from the View pop-up menu.
  3. Click the clip in the timeline to select it. Then press Shift-Z to resize the video and audio tracks to fit the entire timeline into the Track Editor.

    You can also use the Track Editor zoom controls, located in the lower-left corner of the Track tab, to resize the track contained in the timeline. Adjust the slider controls until the window looks like the one shown here.

    Notice that there is already a marker named Chapter 1 at the beginning of the track. DVD Studio Pro automatically creates a start marker for every track, which is a requirement of the DVD specifications.

Importing Marker Lists from a Text File

You will now import some markers from a text list. A text list is a convenient way to quickly add markers in DVD Studio Pro. The list you import should be a plain text file (TextEdit or another ASCII file without formatting applied). Once you’ve imported the markers, you’ll use them to view the Swiss Tourism movie in the Track Editor.

If you want to set up your own chapter marker list, use Apple’s TextEdit application and just type in the timecode, set a tab as a delimiter, and type the name of the chapter marker. The result is a file that looks similar to the Swiss_Markers.txt file. Once you import this file, chapter markers will be set at the timecode specified, and these markers will be named according to the text you have entered.

  1. Ctrl-click in the dark gray marker area of the Track Editor, and choose Import Marker List from the shortcut menu.
  2. Navigate to the Swiss_Docs folder inside the Media > Swiss folder, and select the text file called Swiss_Markers.txt.
  3. Click Import to import the text file with the marker names and the timecode, then click OK.

    DVD Studio Pro displays a message that states how many markers were imported. Your new markers should appear automatically in the timeline.

  4. In the Track Editor, press the down arrow key on your keyboard to move the playhead to the next chapter marker.
  5. Navigate to the marker called Living in Switzerland, and press the spacebar to play this section in your Viewer window.
  6. Press the spacebar again to stop playing the track in your Viewer window.
  7. Check out the other chapter markers you have created by pressing Ctrl–right arrow and pressing the spacebar to start and stop playback.

Creating Chapter Markers Manually

At this point, you need to manually add two more chapter markers. The positions of these two chapter markers will be 00:06:13:05 for the marker named Wintersports and 00:08:08:03 for the marker named Explore the Mountains. You will move to the correct marker positions for these chapters using two different techniques.

  1. Press Ctrl–right arrow to move the playhead to the Winter Wonderland chapter marker in the Track Editor timeline.
  2. Click the playhead and drag it to the approximate location where you want to place a new chapter point—at about 00:06:13:05.

    You can view the current timecode to the left of the Start field in the Track tab (directly above the timeline).

    If you want to move the playhead one frame at a time, use the right and left arrow keys on your keyboard, and find the exact frame for your marker.

  3. Press the right arrow or left arrow key to navigate to the exact position for this chapter marker, represented by the timecode numbers 00:06:13:05.
  4. When you arrive at the exact position for your marker, press M on your keyboard, which sets a new chapter marker.

    When you place a new marker, a thumbnail image of the frame is created in the timeline track.

  5. Name the new chapter marker Wintersports in the Name field at the top of the Marker Inspector window.

    Properties for the marker you have created should be displayed in the Inspector window. If you accidentally deselect your marker, you can easily select it again by clicking its purple pointer above the timeline.

    Now let’s use the second method for locating the spot for the next marker—entering the marker position in the current timecode field.

  6. Select all the text in the current timecode field, enter 080803, and press Return.

    When you enter a new time in the timecode field, DVD Studio Pro adds the appropriate colon separators—08:08:03—and moves the playhead to that position.

  7. Press M once to create a new chapter marker.
  8. Name the chapter marker Explore the Mountains in the Marker Inspector window.
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