With Adobe’s update to all its Creative Cloud applications, I wanted to share some of the new features in Adobe Audition CC 2014.
It’s no secret that I like Audition for doing any serious audio work – whether I’m editing in Premiere Pro or any version of Final Cut. Audition just does more, and more easily, than any video editor.
Audition’s new features fall into two broad categories: Improved codec and audio file support, and improved multi-track editing.
IMPROVED CODECS AND AUDIO FILES
Audition now supports encoding to and decoding from (import and export) Dolby Digital and Dolby Digital Plus formats without using any external plug-ins or third-party technology.
Not only does Audition successfully import AC3 and EC3 files, but it also supports exporting stereo and 5.1 surround files using Dolby encoding. (The New Features webpage, listed in Extra Credit below, provides step-by-step instructions on how to do this.)
Audition also lets us create custom channel configurations. Not just mono, stereo, or surround, but any combination of channels – up to a limit of 32 channels per media clip.
Configure these using File > New > Audio file then, select Custom.
IMPROVED MULTI-TRACK EDITING
A new high-contrast preference in Audition (Preferences > Appearance) makes it easier to see the waveforms and tracks you are working with.
The old waveform display is on the left, while the new high-contrast version is on the right. As well, the selected track itself now has a more obvious light gray highlight making it much easier to spot.
The earlier version of Audition allowed us to change track colors. This version allows us to randomize those colors each time you create a new track. You can change track colors by right-clicking on the color strip on the extreme left side of each track. You can also use this a a “thumb” to drag tracks up or down inside the Timeline.
Additionally, track colors are reflected on the right side of the Timeline in the vertical scroll bar. The small color chips also make it easier to see which track is selected, because that color chip has a brighter color.
The vertical scroll bar, on the right containing these new track colors, remains a navigation bar that we can use to quickly move between tracks. These small color chips show ALL the tracks in the timeline, so even if we are zoomed into a track, as we are here, the small colors show all tracks with the ability to quickly move between them.
And, if you look closely, starting with the second purple clip, you see a lighter area which represents that vertical part of the Timeline that you are currently viewing. We can move vertically by dragging this highlight, clicking anywhere in the vertical scroll bar, or dragging an area we want to view inside the vertical scroll bar.
Thinking of sizing tracks, a really useful feature is the ability to quickly minimize a track. While we’ve been able to minimize tracks by dragging for a while, what’s new with this version is that minimizing is now a keyboard shortcut and a track stays minimized until you manually release it, rather than resizing whenever you click one of the resize buttons in the lower-right corner of the Timeline.
To minimize a track, select the track in the Multitrack editor and select Multitrack > Track > Minimize Selected Track (Shortcut: Shift + ).
To restore a minimized track to its original height, select Multitrack > Track > Restore Minimized Selected Track (Shortcut” Ctrl+Shift+ (Win) or Cmd+Shift+ (Mac).
Finally, there’s an trimming tool video editors have been using for a long time that finally made the transition to Audition: we can now cut all clips on all tracks under the position of the Playhead. Choose Clip > Split All Clips Under Playhead.
It doesn’t have a default keyboard shortcut, but you can easily add one using Edit > Keyboard Shortcuts.
Adobe continues to evolve Audition. Dolby support is a big win for many of us, and the improved Timeline editing and display features make working with our mixes easier than ever. This isn’t a huge update, but the features that were added make the application more fun and functional. Both of which I appreciate.
Adobe offers several documents to help you learn more:
New Features Summary: https://helpx.adobe.com/audition/using/whats-new.html
Audition Blog: blogs.adobe.com/audition/
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