Setting Sequence In and Out Points in the Canvas or Timeline

Once you’ve set In and Out points for a clip in the Viewer, you need to specify an In or Out point in your sequence before you can complete a three-point edit. (As mentioned earlier, for faster editing, you can simply drag a clip to the Timeline without setting any In or Out points.)

Setting In and Out points for a sequence in the Timeline is similar to setting In and Out points for a clip in the Viewer. You can set In and Out points while the sequence is playing or when it’s stopped. Sometimes it’s easier to set In and Out points while your program is playing, so you can set an edit point immediately when you hear or see the frame you want.

You have several options when setting sequence In and Out points. Each choice has certain ramifications, so make sure you understand the outcome when setting your In and Out points.

When No Sequence In or Out Points Are Set

If you don’t set any In or Out points in the Canvas or Timeline, Final Cut Pro uses the playhead as an In point to determine the outcome of your edit.

Figure. Timeline window showing that the position of the playhead determines the In point if you haven't set any edit points.
Figure. Timeline window showing that an inserted clip starts where the playhead was prior to the edit.

When You Set One Sequence In or Out Point

If you set only one In or Out point, that point determines where the clip being edited into your sequence will start or end:

  • If you set a sequence In point: The In point of the source clip is placed at the sequence In point, and the clip extends from the In point to the right for the duration of the source clip.
    Figure. Timeline window showing a sequence In point.
    Figure. Timeline window showing a clip starting at the sequence In point.
  • If you set a sequence Out point: The Out point of the source clip is placed at the sequence Out point, and the clip is “backtimed” for the duration of the source clip, extending from the Out point to the left.
    Figure. Timeline window showing a sequence Out point.
    Figure. Timeline window showing that a clip ends at the sequence Out point.

When You Set Both Sequence In and Out Points

Setting both sequence In and Out points limits the duration of your edit to the duration between these two points. How the source clip lines up within this duration depends on which clip In and Out points have been set in the Viewer:

  • If you set an In point for the source clip: The clip’s In point lines up with the In point in your sequence, and the clip extends to the right for the duration defined by the sequence In and Out points.
    Figure. Timeline window showing sequence In and Out points.
    Figure. Timeline window showing a new clip's duration defined by the sequence In and Out points.
  • If you set only an Out point for the source clip: The clip’s Out point lines up with the Out point in the sequence, and the edit will be backtimed for the duration defined by the sequence In and Out points.
  • If you set both In and Out points for the source clip: The sequence In and Out points take precedence. Final Cut Pro lines up the source clip’s In point with the sequence In point in the Timeline, and the source clip’s Out point is ignored.

Note: If your source clip is not as long as the duration between the sequence In and Out points, then you’ll get an “Insufficient content for edit” message.

Setting Sequence In and Out Points

You can set sequence In and Out points in the Canvas or Timeline. The In and Out points in the Canvas are the same as the ones in the Timeline—they refer to the same timecode values and affect the same part of your sequence. If you set In and Out points in the Timeline, they also appear in the Canvas, and vice versa.

To set In and Out points in the Canvas or Timeline
  1. Make the Canvas or the Timeline active by doing one of the following:

    • Click in the appropriate window.

    • Press Command-2 to make the Canvas active.

    • Press Command-3 to make the Timeline active.

    • Press Q to switch between the Viewer and the Canvas.

  2. Move the playhead to the point in your sequence where you want to place the In or Out point.

  3. Do one of the following:

    • Choose Mark > Mark In or Mark > Mark out (or press I to set an In point or press O to set an Out point).

    • Control-click in the scrubber bar of the Canvas (or the ruler of the Timeline), then choose Mark In or Mark Out from the shortcut menu.

      Figure. Shortcut menu showing the Mark In and Mark Out commands.
    • Click the Mark In or Mark Out button.

      Figure. Mark In button and Mark Out button in the Viewer.

Setting In and Out Points to Match a Clip or Gap

When you want to replace one clip with another using exactly the same location and duration in the Timeline, you can set both In and Out points simultaneously. This also comes in handy if you want to quickly set In and Out points to fit the boundaries of a gap in your sequence.

To set In and Out points at the beginning and end of a clip or gap in the Timeline
  1. Place the Timeline playhead over a clip (or gap) in your sequence.

    Figure. Timeline window showing the playhead positioned over a clip.

    Note: Make sure the clip items beneath the playhead are on the destination tracks. For more information, see Specifying Destination Tracks in the Timeline.

  2. Select the Auto Select control for the track (or tracks) containing the clip or gap you want to mark.

    Figure. Timeline window showing Auto Select turned on for three tracks.

    Note: If the clip items have different durations in the video and audio tracks that have Auto-Select turned on, video clip items take precedence over audio clip items. Also, clip items take precedence over gaps. For more information about Auto Select controls, see Using Auto Select to Specify Tracks for Selections.

  3. Do one of the following to set In and Out points:

    • Choose Mark > Mark Clip (or press X).

    • Click the Mark Clip button in the Canvas.

      Figure. Canvas window showing the Mark Clip button.

In and Out points are set at the boundaries of the clip or gap.

Figure. Timeline window showing In and Out points set at a clip's boundaries.

Setting In and Out Points Based on a Selection in the Timeline

You can use the Final Cut Pro selection tools to select a group of whole or partial clips in the Timeline, and then use the duration of the selection to set In and Out points using the Mark Selection command. For more information, see Direct Methods for Selecting Content in a Sequence.

Note: If you do not have contiguous items selected in the Timeline, this command sets your In and Out points using the selected clips farthest to the left and farthest to the right as the outer boundaries.

To set In and Out points based on the current selection in the Timeline
  1. Select clip items in the Timeline.

    You can select part of a clip, several clips, or parts of several clips using the Selection, Group Selection, or Range Selection tools. For more information on how to use these tools, see Finding and Selecting Content in the Timeline.

    If you want to set only video or only audio In and Out points, select only video or audio items in the Timeline. You can also select a combination of video and audio clip items to set split In and Out points. For more information, see Split Edits.

    Figure. Timeline window showing a selected clip.

    Note: Make sure the selected clip items are on the destination tracks. For more information, see Specifying Destination Tracks in the Timeline.

  2. Choose Mark > Mark Selection (or press Shift-A).

    Figure. Timeline window showing sequence In and Out points set for a selection.

Both In and Out points will be set using the boundaries of your selection. If the durations of the audio and video items you select are different, you’ll see split In and Out markers. For more information, see Split Edits.

Setting In and Out Points Using Markers

Using the Mark to Markers command, you can quickly set sequence In and Out points using markers in the Timeline. The Mark to Markers command sets the In point at the marker immediately before the sequence playhead position and sets the Out point at the marker immediately after the playhead position. This command is particularly useful for three-point editing techniques. See Three-Point Editing for more information.

To set In and Out points based on the previous and next markers in the Timeline
  1. If there are no existing markers in Timeline, set markers where you might want to add In and Out points (and a clip).

  2. In the Timeline, position the playhead between two markers.

  3. Choose Mark > Mark to Markers (or press Control-A).

The In and Out points are set using the previous and next markers in the Timeline. (The In point is set at the marker immediately before the sequence playhead position, and the Out point is set at the marker immediately after the playhead position.)

Optionally, you can quickly add a clip between the In and Out points using an overwrite edit.