Removing Audio Tracks From a Video Clip

Posted on by Larry

[ This article was first published in the June, 2010, issue of
Larry’s Monthly Final Cut Studio Newsletter. Click here to subscribe. ]

Brandon Lindquist writes:

So, I have footage that was shot with 4 tracks of audio.

  • First 2 tracks – Cam mic
  • Second 2 tracks – Empty

For the production, they recorded audio on an external device, with 4 tracks.

  • First 2 tracks – Good Audio
  • Second 2 tracks – Empty

When I merge the video and audio clips I get a Merged Clip with 8 tracks of audio.


The useable audio being on tracks 5 and 6. This is of course a huge pain the butt.


Is there anyway in FCP to remove certain audio tracks from the merged clip?


Is there even a way to remove audio tracks from the clips themselves?


I can’t find an answer to that question, so its leaving me to believe there isn’t a way.


I would also much rather not change the original source files, like in some solutions I’ve come across.

Larry replies: Yes and Yes.

Without changing the source clips

Do this for as many audio tracks as you need, then merge the clip

With changing the source files.

Brandon adds:

Thanks – this helps a lot. By the way, I was looking for a way to automate this, and here’s what I found.


  • I synced and merged all my clips(138 of them).
  • Exported them and all their 8 tracks of audio.
  • Then used qtChange 1.2 to delete all my unwanted audio tracks.(It doesn’t transcode them. It “changes” them. It did all 138 in like 10min)
  • I then imported the “changed” clips into FCP, and all my footage was synced with just the 2 tracks I needed.


Heres the link to the qtChange site:

Larry replies: Thanks for the additional information.

By the way, you can also use the Process > Remove tracks option in Soundtrack Pro to remove tracks from a source clip on your hard disk. Here’s a webinar that describes the process.


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