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Working with external Timecode in LiveEdit

To keep every department in a show working in sync, LiveEdit uses a common time reference known as Timecode. Think of Timecode as a super-precise digital clock that shows hours, minutes, seconds, and frames. It's usually displayed like this: HH:MM:SS:FF. So, 03:30:17:11 would mean 3 hours, 30 minutes, 17 seconds, and 11 frames.

In most shows, the Timecode is generated by the audio department using software like ProTools or Cubase. This ensures that the timing stays perfectly aligned with the show's music.

Each song in the show gets its own unique Timecode. For example, the first song might be 01:00:00:00, the second 02:00:00:00, and so on. This Timecode helps all the equipment, like cameras, lights, and special effects, to stay perfectly coordinated with the music.

LiveEdit can connect to this Timecode to make sure your scenes are perfectly in sync with the show.

Enabling External Timecode Chasing

To enable external timecode chasing in LiveEdit, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Scene Properties by clicking on the scene name located in the top bar.
  2. Locate the Timecode Chase menu at the bottom of the window.
  3. Select "ON" from the menu to enable external timecode chasing.
  4. Press Enter to close the Scene Properties window.

Note: You can also enable external timecode chasing for all scenes by default via the Project Properties.

Adding a Timecode Chase Point

Once external timecode chasing is enabled in your scene, the next step is to set the specific timecode value you want to synchronize with. This is where the LTC Chase Point comes into play. The LTC Chase Point allows you to pinpoint the exact timecode you want to chase from a specific point on your timeline. For example, if your scene needs to sync with a timecode starting at 07:00:00:00, you simply add an LTC Chase Point with that value. Here's how:

  1. Position your timeline at the point where you want to add the LTC Chase Point. The playhead will indicate this location.
  2. In the Menu Bar, go to Modify > New Timecode Chase Point.
  3. The Timecode Chase Point will be created at the playhead's position and an input window will automatically open.
  4. Enter the desired Timecode value into the input field.
  5. Click Ok to confirm and save the LTC Chase Point.

Edit a Timecode Chase Point

To modify the timecode value of a Timecode Chase Point, double-click it and then change the numbers. Click OK to confirm the change.

Offset a Timecode Chase Point

Sometimes you'll need to adjust the position of your Timecode Chase Point to sync the music perfectly with your LiveEdit scene. This is called an "offset."

To adjust the position, click and hold the Timecode Chase Point you wish to move. Then drag it the number of frames you wish to compensate. A small tab will display the number of frames that you're adding or removing from the position of the Chase Point.

Tip: Your brain might be boiling over whether to move the Chase Point forward or backward. Here's an easy memo to help:
  • If your timeline scene seems behind the beat of the music, advance the Chase Point to anticipate the start of the timecode. In this case, remove frames and move it to the left.
  • On the other hand, if your cuts (which should be perfectly in rhythm) are ahead of the music, move the Chase Point back to delay the start of the timecode. In this case, add frames and move it to the right.


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