Adding Audio to Video Using QuickTime 7

Posted on by Larry

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


Most of the time when I send a mix from Final Cut to Soundtrack, then export it back to Final Cut, everything stays in sync and sounds great.

However, with many of my webinars, I’ve discovered that the audio sync tends to slowly slip out of sync. I suspect this has to do with the frame rate that I record the webinars, which is 30 fps. I’ve tried a lot of different things to fix it, but haven’t found a solution.

So, whenever I have a problem like this, I fall back to an old technique that allows me to combine audio and video using QuickTime, which works perfectly every time.

Here’s how.

  1. Export your sequence from Final Cut as usual (File > Export > QuickTime movie)
  2. Export your audio from Soundtrack Pro as usual (File > Export Settings: AIF 48kHZ 16-bit).
  3. Open both files using QuickTime 7
  4. Select the audio file and type Command+A (Edit > Select All) to select the entire audio file.
  5. Type Command+C (Edit > Copy) to copy the entire file to the clipboard.
  6. Select the video file. Make sure your playhead is at the start of the video file.
  7. Choose Edit > Add to Movie. This add the new audio file to the existing video file. You now have two audio files associated with this movie.
  8. Select the video file and choose Window > Show Movie Properties (Command+J)
  9. This window lists all the components of the QuickTime file. In this case, the new soundtrack is listed at the bottom as Sound Track 2.

    Now is a good time to play your movie to make sure everything sounds right. To disable an audio file, uncheck the checkbox at the left side of the audio file you don’t want to hear.

    Once you decide everything sounds correct, there is still the older soundtrack (Sound Track 1) to delete.

  10. Select the soundtrack you don’t want, which is the one listed first, and click the Delete button in the top left corner.
  11. Finally, select File > Save as to save the file. Be sure to save it as a Self-Contained file.


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19 Responses to Adding Audio to Video Using QuickTime 7

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  1. Erin says:

    I’m trying to use this workflow and having some difficulty! When I add my mono audio tracks, the clip duration seems to change (as if adding the audio tracks back to back instead of adding one on top of the other). Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

    • Larry says:


      You can only add one track at a time, adding multiple tracks places them end to end.

      Also, be sure to select the entire audio track as described in the article. I keep forgetting that and, again, my tracks go end-to-end.


  2. Erin says:

    Just answered my own question above – You have to make sure the play head of your video is at the beginning of the clip before adding each audio track! Thanks again for the post!

  3. jim mac says:

    Very concise and easy to understand Thanks! Here’s a followup question: after adding the audio track and deleting the old one, and then saving as……the new resulting file’s metadata info shows the new audio tracks ID#as ID# 4, rather than the original track’s ID#2. This is important when playing files thru a hardware playback device….do you know of any way to remedy that and reassign the ID#?

    • Larry says:


      I don’t know – which is not the same as “it can’t be done.” I seem to remember we could drag tracks around. However, I no longer have QT7 on my system, so I don’t have a way to test this.


    • David says:

      Hi Jim,

      Did you find a way to do this? I’m in a similar pickle now> Thanks!


  4. David G says:

    THanks Larry, You’re the best. Related question- how do I re-order the track’s IDs, so my video track is ID 1? Thanks

    • Larry says:


      I am not sure. My guess would be to drag it. But, if that doesn’t work, you’ll need to Google the answer. I no longer remember it.


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