I recently got a note from a #Video Nation reader who wanted to know how to sync separate video and audio tracks for editing on a multi-camera shoot. He was disappointed that in the book, I showed how to do this technique via Apple software. Jim, from Kentucky, uses Window computers.
Sorry about that Jim–let’s see if I can help you via this post.
The easiest solutions to sync multi-cam video and separate audio are with Apple’s Final Cut Pro X ($299.99) and plug-ins.
FCPX can do this in less than a minute or so, using its acclaimed Multi-cam feature. And the beloved plug-in, Plural Eyes ($149,) from Singular Software, can do this nicely with older versions of Final Cut, as well as Premiere Pro (Windows and Mac, $799.99) Sony Vegas Pro (Windows only, $599.99), and professional only EDIUS (Windows.)
So how to do this with a consumer Windows video editing program?
Here’s some solutions, looking at Premiere Elements, a $99 program that works with both Windows and Mac computers.
1. If you’re willing to spend $149, pick up Singular Solutions’ program, Dual Eyes, the younger cousin of Plural Eyes. With Dual Eyes, you can combine the video and audio track with a few clicks. If you have multiple video tracks, repeat this step with each track–insert the audio over and over until you’re done. Then place the tracks that Dual Eyes created onto the Premiere timeline, (Video 1, Video 2, Video 3, etc.) Now you’ll want to keep only one of the video tracks–delete the others by right-clicking on each video track (Video 1, Video 2, etc.) and selecting the “delete audio” option.
2. The other solution is more complicated, but it’s free! Do it by hand.
Put your video onto the timeline, and then place the audio track on another portion of the timeline, far away from the video track. Here’s where the fun begins. Find the spot on the video where a specific sentence is said at the beginning of the shoot. Say it’s “Hello, testing 1-2-3.” Split the clip to that exact moment by using the Scissors tool. Next, do the same thing with the audio clip, on another portion of the timeline, so you’ll be able to listen to the audio clearly. After “Hello, testing 1-2-3,” split the clip, and the audio and video should start now at the same point.
Good luck with this–any issues, just e-mail me here.