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Add zooms

❓ What is it?

Videos made with a single-camera setup can seem boring and monotonous. Adding zoom-in at key moments in the video is a popular way of adding some motion to this setup.
This FireCut feature uses AI to figure out these key moments in your video, and adds zooms automatically on a new video track using Adjustment Layers.

🤔 How does it work?

This feature works by:
  • Breaking your sequence (or the selected scope if using in/out points) into smaller chunks for processing, typically 1 minute each
  • Analysing these chunks one at a time for key moments based on what is being spoken
  • For each chunk, adding one or more zoom-in Adjustment Layer clips

⚙️ Settings

There are a number of settings for adding zooms:
  1. 1.
    Zoom frequency: This lets you decide how often FireCut should add a zoom. You can pick a value you're comfortable with in this scale
    • Low frequency is for slow-paced (typically long-form) content, and will add ~1 zoom per minute of video
    • The middle (default) setting will add ~2 to 4 zooms per minute of video
    • High frequency is for fast-paced (typically short-form) content, and will add ~7 zooms per minute of video
  2. 2.
    Zoom style: What the zooms look and feel like...
    • Scale: How far in to zoom. This works exactly like the Scale property on any video, where 100 is 1x size (or no scaling), and 200 is 2x size. A good starting point is 120
    • Center point: Pick where in the frame to zoom in to. The default is the center of the frame, but you might want to adjust it if you want to specifically zoom in to speaker's face.
    • Animated: Whether to gradually zoom in with an animation (Animated = selected), or add a sharp zoom cut wihout an animation (Animated = unselected). If animated, this applies keyframes to the Adjustment Layers that are added
    • Animation duration: If "Animated" is selected, this controls the duration of the animation. You should try it out to find the best value. A good starting point is 0.2 to 0.5 sec
  3. 3.
    Animation: Whether to gradually zoom in with an animation (Animated = selected), or add a sharp zoom cut wihout an animation (Animated = unselected). If animated, this applies keyframes to the Adjustment Layers that are added
    • Duration: This controls the duration of the animation. You should try it out to find the best value. A good starting point is 0.8 sec
    • Easing function: This controls the easing / timing function for applying the zoom. The left-most option is a linear curve, which means your zoom will increase at a constant rate over the zoom duration you select. The right-most option has the smoothest ramp. A good starting point is the middle option.
  4. 4.
    Scope: You can decide whether to run the operation on your Full sequence or only on a certain portion that you specify with In / Out points (you can place these in your sequence using the I and O hotkeys)
  5. 5.
    Language: We are constantly adding support for new languages. However, please note this is experimental and may create unpredictable results when compared with English. This is the case for every AI tool even if they don't mention it, because training sets for AI tend to be in English. On occasion, this might cause the operation to fail -- please do let us know ([email protected]) if this happens, so we can improve it for you!

💡 Tips for best outcomes

  • Try your settings on a small portion of your sequence before processing hours of footage
  • Be mindful of usage, as this feature counts towards your AI quota
  • Remove any repetitions / multiple takes in your video first
  • Ensure your audio is clear and loud
  • Mute any tracks with music / sound effects that might obscure the sound of the speaker
  • Don't work in the timeline while FireCut is working in the background

🙋‍♂️ Common questions, issues, watch-outs

  • "I can't see the zoom clips / Adjustment Layers" --> These are always added to a new video track at the top of your sequence - this can often be hidden at the top of your sequence, so try scrolling up to make sure it's not hiding from you!
  • "It didn't work on my non-English video" --> Please drop a note at [email protected]. We are keen to make sure this feature works reliably on all supported languages!
  • "The zooms were not placed at sensible points" --> Make sure you have a clear, single speaker in the audio so that your script can be picked up and analysed. If there are any sound effects, multiple speakers, music, noise, etc., this can throw off the analysis in some occasions