Video | Organize clips, subclips, and sequences in Prelude

Video | Organize clips, subclips, and sequences in Prelude
Learn to organize your clips in Prelude
Jeff Sengstack

The video and audio from a file-based camcorder are contained in digital files. Ingest is the process of transferring data from the recording media and optionally transcoding to other formats.

You create a project before you ingest movie clips into Adobe Prelude. Prelude creates a project (.plproj) file for every project that you create.

A project file stores only references to the source files that you ingest. For this reason, project files remain fairly small.

Supported file formats for ingest

You can ingest video, audio-only (AIFF, mp3, and WAV), and still files (Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, Bitmap, GIF, JPEG, PNG, TIFF, and icon files) into Prelude.

Note:

Only static metadata is associated with still images in Prelude. For inclusion into rough cuts, still images are assigned a default duration of 150 frames. You can adjust this default duration in your preferences (Preferences > General). No markers are associated with still images in Prelude.

The Panasonic P2 format

Prelude supports the Panasonic Op-Atom variant of MXF, with video in DV, DVCPRO, DVCPRO 50, DVCPRO HD, or AVC-I formats.

The root of the P2 file structure is a CONTENTS folder. Each essence item (an item of video or audio) is contained in a separate MXF wrapper file. The video MXF files are in the VIDEO subfolder, and the audio MXF files are in the AUDIO subfolder. XML files in the CLIP subfolder contain the associations between essence files and the metadata associated with them.

For your computer to read P2 cards, it needs the appropriate driver, which you can download from the Panasonic website. Panasonic also provides the P2 Viewer application, with which you can browse and play media stored on a P2 card.

Note:

To use certain features with P2 files, you first change the file properties from read only to read and write. For example, to change the timecode metadata of a clip using the Timecode dialog box, you first set the file properties to read and write. Use the operating system file explorer to change file properties.

XDCAM and AVCHD formats

You can find the video files from XDCAM HD camcorders in the CLIP folder, written in the MXF format. XDCAM EX camcorders write MP4 files into a folder named BPAV.

XMPilot is an optional add-on from Sony for some of their XDCAM HD cameras. Prelude translates Planning metadata in XMPilot to static metadata. Essence markers are converted to comment markers. Metadata collected and added to the XMPilot system during production is now maintained through post-production.

When using AVCHD files, ensure that you maintain the folder structure. Raw MTS files cannot be logged in Prelude.

HEVC format Prelude CC supports HEVC file formats.

High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) is a video codec that compresses video files using the H.265 format.

Create a project / Open an existing project

Use the options on the Welcome screen to create a project, or open an existing project.

If your project is already open in Prelude, choose from the following options:

  • To create a project, select File > New Project. Alternatively, press Ctrl+Alt+N (Windows), or Cmd+Opt+N (Mac OS). Specify a name and location for the project file.
  • To open an existing project, select File > Open Project. Alternatively, press Ctrl+Shift+O (Windows) or Cmd+Shift+O (Mac OS). Navigate to the location of the project file, and open it.

Ingest movie clips

You can ingest entire movie clips or a selected portion of the movie clips (partial ingest). You can also transcode the selected movie clips using more than one encoding option.

  1. Select File > Ingest. Alternatively, press Ctrl+I (Win) or Cmd+I (Mac OS).

    Note:

    To ingest the files to a specified bin, select the bin in the Project panel before you click Ingest.

  2. Navigate to the folder containing media, and click the folder. The contents of the folder are displayed in the center panel.

    Note:

    Tip: To access folders from which you previously ingested content, use the menu above the panel.

  3. Do the following based on your requirements:

    • To view content as Thumbnails, click the Icon View button.
    • To view content as a list, click the List View button.
    • To quickly preview the contents of a movie clip, drag the cursor across the thumbnail. You can also click the thumbnail and use the playhead to scrub the movie. Alternatively, use the JKL keys to control playback of the selected thumbnail.
    • To change the thumbnail size of movie clips in the panel, use the Zoom slide bar.
    • To view files of a specific file type, select an option from the Files Of Type menu. Repeat the procedure to choose more than one option. By default, all file types that Prelude supports are displayed.
    • To view files from a specific source, select an option from the View As menu. If ingesting from a device, ensure that it is connected to your computer.
    • To select clips for ingest, click the corresponding check box. Click Check All to select all clips for ingest.
  4. To ingest a specific portion of a clip (partial ingest), click its thumbnail. Use the JKL keyboard shortcuts, or drag the playhead to navigate through the clip. Press I and O at the desired positions to set the In and Out points.

    When using this feature, ensure that you enable the Transcode option. Transcoding is required for partial ingest.

  5. To specify a location for the ingested files, select Transfer Clips to Destination, and do the following:

    1. To change the folder for the transferred files, select Browse For Location in the Primary Destination menu, and select a destination folder.
    2. (Optional) To create a subfolder for the transferred files in the selected folder, click Add Subfolder. Specify a name for the subfolder. Creating a subfolder helps accidental overwriting of files with the same name.
  6. To transfer media files without transcoding, leave the Transcode option deselected.

    To ensure that the copied files match the original, select Verify. This option is available only for the Primary Destination, and when the Transcode option is disabled.

    MD5 Comparison: Performs an MD5 check and ensures that the source file is the same as the ingested file.
    File Size Comparison
    : Checks whether the file size of the ingested file is the same as the size of the original movie clip.
    Bit by Bit Comparison: Does a CRC check and verifies whether the checksum of the source file is the same as the ingested file. If the files are different, the checksums don't match, and the test fails.

    MD5 verification for ingested files

  7. To specify transcoding settings for the ingested files, select Transcode. Use the submenus to specify presets for transcoding the files. To specify more presets, add presets in Adobe Media Encoder. The presets are reflected in Prelude.

    If you have Adobe Premiere Pro installed on your computer, select Stitch Clips Together to combine several selected clips into a single movie clip. Specify a name for the movie clip. After ingest, the newly stitched clip is displayed in the Project panel.

  8. To transcode the selected files in more than one format or to transfer files to multiple locations, click Add Destination. Repeat the procedure.

    Note:

    Only files transferred to the primary destination appear in the Prelude project panel when ingesting is complete.

  9. Click Ingest.

Files are transcoded using Adobe Media Encoder. The transcoded files are displayed in the destination folder after the transcoding process is complete.

To pause or cancel transcoding, use the corresponding buttons in the progress bar.

Renaming files during ingest

Before you rename files, you create a preset based on various parameters provided by Prelude. You then use the preset to rename selected files during ingest.

Renaming of files on disk works as intended with simple files like QuickTime, and when Transfer Clips to Destination is enabled.

Files that are a part of a complex folder structure (like P2) are not renamed. In such cases, the new name appears in the Prelude project because the new name is saved in metadata (Dublin Core > Title) and displayed as the clip name.

  1. In the File Rename panel of the Ingest dialog, select Rename Files.

  2. Do one of the following:

    • To apply the new renaming preset to the movie clips copied to the primary destination and copies in more destinations, select Apply to All Destinations.
    • To apply the new renaming preset to only the clips ingested to the primary destination, select Apply to Primary Destination Only.
  3. To create a preset for naming files, do the following:

    1. Click the downward arrow icon next to the list of renaming presets, and choose New Preset.
    2. Click "+" to add an element to your custom naming preset. Select one of the following:
      • Autoincrement increments the number associated with the name as files are named. You can choose to increment names by increments of 1, 01, 001, or 0001.
      • In Custom Text, enter text based on your requirement. For example, the text can correspond to a project name or a separator between two elements.
      • Date uses the timestamp associated with the files to name the files.
      • File Name uses the original file name (without the extension), as an element in the new name.
    3. Click Save to save the preset. Enter a name for the preset. Ensure that the name doesn't contain spaces.
    4. To add other elements, click the "+" button again.
  4. To go back to the File Rename panel without saving changes, click "x". To delete a preset, click the Trash icon.

Edit file naming presets

  1. Select the preset in the menu.
  2. Click the downward icon next to the menu, and select Edit.
  3. Edit the values as required, and click Save.
  4. To save the preset with a different name, select Save As. Enter a new name for the preset.

Note:

You can store your File Metadata preset in a system-wide location that prevents other users from modifying the preset. The shared location is C:\Users\Public\Documents\Adobe\Prelude\3.0\Presets\Metadata (Windows) and /Users/Shared/Adobe/Prelude/3.0/Presets/Metadata. (Mac OS) .

Share file naming presets

Consistent naming conventions can be useful in collaborative workflows. After creating a preset at a specified location, you can share it with multiple users. The people you shared the preset with can import the preset file into Prelude. After import, Prelude copies the preset to an appropriate location on the computer. 

To import a preset, click the downward arrow next to the Preset menu, and select Import Preset. Select the presets that you want to import and click Open.

All the presets are stored at a specific location on your computer. To locate the presets on your computer, click the downward icon next to the Preset menu, and select Show in Explorer or Show in Finder.

Add metadata to the files being ingested

You can add metadata to movie clips before ingesting them in Prelude. The metadata is reflected in the Metadata panel.

Similar to renaming files during ingest, you create a custom form (or schema) to be applied to each ingested clip as XMP metadata. The metadata presets can be shared and imported. Sharing metadata helps establish consistent sets of metadata your teams can use when organizing assets and content. 

  1. In the File Metadata panel of the Ingest dialog, select Add File Metadata.

  2. Do one of the following:

    • To apply the new preset to movie clips copied to the primary destination and copies saved to other destinations, select Apply to All Destinations.
    • To apply the new preset to only the clips ingested to the primary destination, select Apply to Primary Destination Only.
  3. To create a preset, do the following:

    1. Click the downward arrow icon next to the list of metadata presets, and choose "New Preset".
    2. Click "+" to add a metadata field.
    3. Enter a name for the metadata field. Ensure that the name doesn't contain spaces.
    4. For mandatory fields, click the check box next to the asterisk (*).
    5. Optionally, in Input Metadata Value, enter the value for the preset.
    6. Click Save to save the preset.
    7. To add more fields, click the "+" button again.

    Note:

    The metadata name and the metadata value together are called the metadata pair or key-value pair. You can choose to provide a default value to the name or add the value dynamically during ingest. 

  4. To edit a preset, do the following:

    1. Select a preset in the menu.
    2. Click the downward icon next to the menu, and select Edit.
    3. Edit the values as required, and click Save.
    4. To save the preset with a different name, select Save As. Enter a new name for the preset.
  5. To import a preset, click the downward arrow next to the Preset menu, and select Import Preset. Select the presets that you want to import and click Open.

    All the presets are stored at a specific location on your computer. To locate the presets on your computer, click the downward icon next to the Preset menu, and select Show in Explorer or Show in Finder.

    Note:

    When collaborating, you can share presets with other editors.

  6. To go back to the Metadata panel without saving changes, click "x". To delete a preset, click the Trash icon.

Note:

You can store your File Metadata preset in a system-wide location that prevents other users from modifying the preset. The shared location is C:\Users\Public\Documents\Adobe\Prelude\3.0\Presets\Metadata (Windows) and /Users/Shared/Adobe/Prelude/3.0/Presets/Metadata (Mac OS).

Relinking files moved to another location

The project file contains references to the location of ingested files. If you move these files to a different location on your computer, they are no longer available to your project. To continue using the moved files in your project, relink them using the options in Prelude.

When you open a project containing files that have moved since you last opened the project, a list of such files is displayed. Click Yes to relink the files by specifying their current location. If you choose to not relink the files, you can manually relink the files later.

  1. In the Project panel, right-click the file with the offline icon , and select Relink. To select multiple files that exist at the same location, use Ctrl-click/Cmd-click or Shift-click.
  2. Navigate to the folder containing the files and select a file. Prelude uses this location to relink all the other files in your selection.
  3. Click Open.

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