Use auditions to try out clips in your project

You create an audition to try out the clips within it and find the one that works best for your project. Although the auditioning workflow may differ from project to project, the general process is the same. You create an audition that contains a set of alternate takes, effects, or text treatments, and then you choose the best clip for the edit by making it the pick. When you’re sure of your decision, you finalize the audition, which dissolves it and leaves the pick in the Timeline.

Depending on your workflow, you may try out the clips within your auditions and flatten the auditions as you go, or you may leave the auditions in the Timeline for the purpose of showing alternate edits to a client.

Note: You can use audition commands only with one selected audition at a time. For example, you can’t finalize multiple selected auditions.

Review clips within an audition in the Timeline

  1. In the Timeline, select the audition containing the clips you want to review, and open it by choosing Clip > Audition > Open (or pressing Y).

    Timeline showing Audition window with pick in center
  2. In the Audition window, select the pick and press the Space bar (or press Control-Command-Y) to play it.

  3. To play an alternate clip in the Viewer, select a clip to the right or left of the pick (or press the Right Arrow or Left Arrow key).

    Timeline showing Audition window with alternate selected as new pick

    Tip: To quickly move through and play alternate clips, select a closed audition in the Timeline, press the Space bar, and press Control-Left Arrow to play clips to the left of the current pick, or Control-Right Arrow to play clips to the right.

  4. When you decide on the clip you want to use, make sure it’s selected under the spotlight, and click Done.

  5. If you’re sure of your decision and want to finalize the audition, choose Clip > Audition > Finalize Audition (or press Option-Shift-Y).

    The audition is dissolved, leaving the pick in the Timeline. The clip selected as the pick retains any keywords or markers assigned to the audition.

Try out multiple effects on a clip in the Timeline

You can try out effects on a clip in the Timeline by creating an audition and adding individual effects to duplicates of the same clip. This technique allows you to view each effect in relation to the clips that precede and follow the audition in the Timeline.

  1. In the Timeline, select the clip you want to try different effects on.

  2. Choose Clip > Audition > Duplicate as Audition (or press Option-Y).

  3. Repeat step 2 for each effect that you want to audition.

  4. To open the Audition window, click the icon in the upper-left corner of the audition (or press Y).

  5. To open the Effects Browser, click the Effects button in the toolbar (or press Command-5).

    Effects button in toolbar
  6. In the Audition window, select the version of the clip you want to apply the effect to.

  7. In the Effects Browser, select the effect you want to try out, and drag it to the clip in the Audition window.

    Clip in Audition window with effect applied
  8. Repeat steps 6 and 7 until you’ve applied all the effects you want to audition.

  9. Review each effect’s impact on the clip in the Timeline by selecting a clip to the right or left of the pick.

    Clip in Audition window with effect applied

    Tip: To quickly move through and play alternate clips, press Control-Left Arrow to play clips to the left of the current pick, or Control-Right Arrow to play clips to the right.

  10. When you decide on the effect you want to use, select the clip with that effect in the Audition window, and click Done.

  11. If you’re sure of your decision, and want to finalize the audition, choose Clip > Audition > Finalize Audition (or press Option-Shift-Y).

    The audition is dissolved, leaving the clip with your chosen effect applied to it in the Timeline.

Tip: To save time, you can have Final Cut Pro automatically duplicate a clip in the Timeline and apply an effect to the duplicated clip by holding down the Control key while you drag an effect from the Effects Browser to the clip in the Timeline. You can also apply an effect to every clip in an audition by holding down the Option key and the Control key while you drag the effect from the Effects Browser to the audition in the Timeline. In both cases, you must start dragging the effect from the Effects Browser and then press the keys as you add the effect to the clip.