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Mix audio and adjust volume with Adobe Premiere Elements

  1. Adobe Premiere Elements User Guide
  2. Introduction to Adobe Premiere Elements
    1. What's new in Premiere Elements
    2. System requirements | Adobe Premiere Elements
    3. Workspace basics
    4. Guided mode
    5. Use pan and zoom to create video-like effect
    6. GPU accelerated rendering
  3. Workspace and workflow
    1. Get to know the Home screen
    2. View and share auto-created collages, slideshows, and more
    3. Workspace basics
    4. Preferences
    5. Tools
    6. Keyboard shortcuts
    7. Audio View
    8. Undoing changes
    9. Customizing shortcuts
    10. Working with scratch disks
  4. Working with projects
    1. Creating a project
    2. Adjust project settings and presets
    3. Save and back up projects
    4. Previewing movies
    5. Creating video collage
    6. Creating Highlight Reel
    7. Create a video story
    8. Creating Instant Movies
    9. Viewing clip properties
    10. Viewing a project's files
    11. Archiving projects
    12. GPU accelerated rendering
  5. Importing and adding media
    1. Add media
    2. Guidelines for adding files
    3. Set duration for imported still images
    4. 5.1 audio import
    5. Working with offline files
    6. Sharing files between Adobe Premiere Elements and Adobe Photoshop Elements
    7. Creating specialty clips
    8. Work with aspect ratios and field options
  6. Arranging clips
    1. Arrange clips in the Expert view timeline
    2. Group, link, and disable clips
    3. Arranging clips in the Quick view timeline
    4. Working with clip and timeline markers
  7. Editing clips
    1. Reduce noise
    2. Select object
    3. Candid Moments
    4. Color Match
    5. Smart Trim
    6. Change clip speed and duration
    7. Split clips
    8. Freeze and hold frames
    9. Adjusting Brightness, Contrast, and Color - Guided Edit
    10. Stabilize video footage with Shake Stabilizer
    11. Replace footage
    12. Working with source clips
    13. Trimming Unwanted Frames - Guided Edit
    14. Trim clips
    15. Editing frames with Auto Smart Tone
    16. Artistic effects
  8. Applying transitions
    1. Applying transitions to clips
    2. Transition basics
    3. Adjusting transitions
    4. Adding Transitions between video clips - Guided Edit
    5. Create special transitions
    6. Create a Luma Fade Transition effect - Guided Edit
  9. Special effects basics
    1. Effects reference
    2. Applying and removing effects
    3. Create a black and white video with a color pop - Guided Edit
    4. Time remapping - Guided edit
    5. Effects basics
    6. Working with effect presets
    7. Finding and organizing effects
    8. Editing frames with Auto Smart Tone
    9. Fill Frame - Guided edit
    10. Create a time-lapse - Guided edit
    11. Best practices to create a time-lapse video
  10. Applying special effects
    1. Use pan and zoom to create video-like effect
    2. Transparency and superimposing
    3. Reposition, scale, or rotate clips with the Motion effect
    4. Apply an Effects Mask to your video
    5. Adjust temperature and tint
    6. Create a Glass Pane effect - Guided Edit
    7. Create a picture-in-picture overlay
    8. Applying effects using Adjustment layers
    9. Adding Title to your movie
    10. Removing haze
    11. Creating a Picture in Picture - Guided Edit
    12. Create a Vignetting effect
    13. Add a Split Tone Effect
    14. Add FilmLooks effects
    15. Add an HSL Tuner effect
    16. Fill Frame - Guided edit
    17. Create a time-lapse - Guided edit
    18. Animated Sky - Guided edit
    19. Select object
    20. Animated Mattes - Guided Edit
    21. Double exposure- Guided Edit
  11. Special audio effects
    1. Mix audio and adjust volume with Adobe Premiere Elements
    2. Audio effects
    3. Adding sound effects to a video
    4. Adding music to video clips
    5. Create narrations
    6. Using soundtracks
    7. Music Remix
    8. Adding Narration to your movie - Guided Edit
    9. Adding Scores to your movie - Guided edit
  12. Movie titles
    1. Creating titles
    2. Adding shapes and images to titles
    3. Adding color and shadows to titles
    4. Editing and formatting text
    5. Motion Titles
    6. Exporting and importing titles
    7. Arranging objects in titles
    8. Designing titles for TV
    9. Applying styles to text and graphics
    10. Adding a video in the title
  13. Disc menus
    1. Creating disc menus
    2. Working with menu markers
    3. Types of discs and menu options
    4. Previewing menus
  14. Sharing and exporting your movies
    1. Export and share your videos
    2. Sharing for PC playback
    3. Compression and data-rate basics
    4. Common settings for sharing

About audio mixing

Mixing audio involves adjusting volume levels so that they maintain a good range within each clip, and then adjusting them in proportion to other clips used in the movie. For example, you might first adjust the volume of a narration clip so that there is little variance between its softest and loudest sections; then raise the narration’s overall volume so that it is clearly audible over background sounds or music included in other clips.

In Premiere Elements, volume changes are measured in decibels. A level of 0.0 dB is the original volume (not silence). Changing the level to a negative number reduces the volume, and changing the level to a positive number increases the volume.

To control a clip’s volume, you can use the Volume graph—the yellow line running horizontally across the audio track of each clip (sometimes referred to as the volume rubberband)—or the Audio Mixer. You can use the Audio Meters window to view the overall audio volume for your project.

Consider the following guidelines when adjusting volume levels:

  • If you combine particularly loud audio clips on multiple tracks, clipping (a staccato distortion) may occur. To avoid clipping, reduce volume levels.

  • If you need to adjust the volume separately in different parts of a clip (for example, one person’s voice is faint, while later another’s is too loud), you can use keyframes to vary the volume throughout the clip.

  • If the original level of a clip is much too high or low, you can change the input level. However, adjusting the input level will not remove any distortion that may have resulted from recording the clip too high. In those cases, it is best to re-record the clip.

Adjust volume and mix audio in the Audio Mixer

Use the Audio Mixer to adjust audio balance and volume for different tracks in your project. You can adjust the balance and level of audio contained within your video clips, and within soundtrack and narration audio. For example, you may want to increase the volume of the narration and decrease the volume of the soundtrack at different points for emphasis or so that quiet voices can be heard above the music.

You can adjust settings while listening to audio tracks and viewing video tracks. Each track in the Audio Mixer corresponds to an audio track in the Expert view timeline, and is named accordingly. As you make adjustments, keyframes are added to the track. You can specify a default minimum interval for keyframes in the Audio preferences.


Ideally, you should mix the volume for one track from beginning to end before moving on to the next track. Same for mixing balance.

  1. (Optional) Choose Edit > Preferences > Audio / Adobe Premiere Elements 13 > Preferences > Audio, and set a value between 1 and 2000 milliseconds for Minimum Time Interval Thinning to limit keyframes to intervals larger than that value. If you don’t want to hear audio while you scrub audio, deselect Play Audio While Scrubbing.

  2. In the Expert view timeline, click the Tools panel and select Audio Mixer option or choose Tools > Audio Mixer.

    To hide or display tracks, choose Show/Hide Tracks from the Audio Mixer panel menu; then specify which tracks you want displayed.

  3. Drag the current-time indicator to where you want to start mixing audio.
  4. Click Play in the Monitor window and adjust the controls in the Audio mixer to automatically add keyframes to the track:
    • To adjust balance for a track, turn (drag) the Balance control left or right.

    • To increase the volume for a track, drag the Level control up or down.

      note: You can specify the spacing of keyframes in the Audio preferences.

      To mute a track while mixing, click Mute. This option does not mute the track permanently—only while mixing.


Sometimes the background music is loud and the dialogs in a clip are not audible. To ensure that the dialogs are easily heard, the volume of the background music must be lowered. SmartMix enables automatic adjustment of the volume of the background music. For best results, place dialog clips on the Audio 1 track or the Narration track (Foreground tracks) and music on the Soundtrack track (Background tracks). Premiere Elements analyzes clips on all Foreground tracks for dialogs. Keyframes are then smartly/automatically created to lower the volume level to ensure that the dialog in the Foreground track is audible. SmartMix adjustments apply to all audio clips on the Expert view timeline, not just on the selected clip. When you use SmartMix on an audio track, keyframes you applied previously on the Soundtrack are deleted.

Change foreground and background tracks

By default, when you create a track, it is a Foreground track. You can change the track type per your requirement. You can also disable a track to ensure that the track is ignored when you perform a SmartMix.

  1. Select Tools > Smart Mix.
  2. In the Smart Mixer panel, and select one of the following options from the menu below the track name.
    • Foreground

    • Background

    • Disabled

      note: Select the option Disabled to ignore the track when you perform Smart Mix.

Change Smart Mix preferences

To change SmartMix options, select Edit > Preferences > Audio / Adobe Premiere Elements 13 > Preferences > Audio. You can change the following options:

Track Default Criteria

Specify the type of track. The available options are: Foreground, Background, and Disable. When you create a track, by default, it is a Background track.

Merge Pause Of

Specify the threshold, in seconds.

Lower Background

Specify the percentage by which you want the volume to drop.

Normalize Dialog

Normalize the dialogs to ensure that the volume remains constant throughout the duration of the clip.

Adjust volume in the Expert view timeline

You can adjust clip volume directly on an audio track in the Expert view timeline. By dragging the Volume graph up or down, you can, for example, make the volume of a clip match that of its neighbors, or mute it entirely.


You can also raise and lower volume with keyframes.

  1. To resize an audio track for better visibility, position the pointer between two tracks in the track header area so that the Height Adjustment icon appears, and then drag up or down.
  2. Select Volume in the upper left corner of the clip. Then, select Volume > Clip Volume.
  3. Position the pointer over the Volume graph: the yellow line running horizontally across the audio track of the clip. The pointer changes to the white double‑arrow icon.
  4. Drag up or down to adjust the level uniformly. Drag any existing keyframes to move them.

    As you drag, the decibel level is displayed. A positive number indicates an increase in volume; a negative number indicates a decrease.

Adjust the input level of clips

If the original volume of the clip is too high or low, change the input level, or gain, before adjusting to the output levels. However, if the level of source audio was set too low when it was recorded, increasing the gain amplifies noise. For best results, record audio at a high volume level that is not so high as to cause distortion. Without adjustment, well-recorded audio peaks between 0 dB and -6 dB in the Audio Meters panel. Recording audio above 0-dB results in clipping.

  1. In the Expert view timeline, select the clip. To work with multiple clips, do one of the following:
    • To select non-consecutive clips, Ctrl-click/Cmd-click each clip.

    • To select consecutive clips, click in the Project Assets panel and drag a marquee around the selected clips.

    • To select all the clips, press Ctrl-A/Cmd-A.

  2. Select Clip > Audio Options > Audio Gain.
  3. Do one of the following:
    • Click the zero value and type gain value (0 dB equals the clip’s original gain).

    • Click Normalize to automatically boost gain where it’s too quiet or reduce gain where it’s too loud. Premiere Elements displays the amount required to reach maximum gain without clipping.

Mute a clip

  1. Do one of the following in the Expert view timeline:
    • If the clip is linked to video, Alt‑click the audio track of the clip in the Expert view timeline to select just the audio portion.

    • If the clip is not linked to video, click the clip to select it.

  2. Choose Clip > Enable. (When you disable a clip, the check mark disappears next to the option in the clip menu, and the clip name dims in the track.)


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