A Note on Terminology: Since the editor is primarily designed for video editing, this article uses the term "video" for the media being edited. However, the information and procedures also apply to any audio-only files you may have. It does not apply to interactive media (videos with polls embedded in them). You cannot currently edit the video portion of interactive media; you can only add, remove, or edit the embedded polls, and as such the Edit Media command for interactive media is disabled.
Echo360's video media editor allows you to identify and cut segments out of a video, as well as allows you to insert a different video file into the video you are editing.
This article discusses cutting segments and inserting media specifically. See Using the Echo360 Video Media Editor for an overview of the buttons and commands available in the editor. See Trimming and Splitting Videos for instructions on removing the beginning and end portions of videos or splitting videos into multiple separate videos.
Before you begin using the Insert Media feature described here, we recommend you refer to the Known Issues section at the bottom of this page. It lists some issues you may run into if you are not aware of them first. As the issues are addressed, they will be removed from that list.
Finally, if you find you need to remove a great deal of any given video, and especially if the intent is to then insert a different video, you may find it easier to simply replace the entire track with a track from the other video. See Adding, Removing, and Replacing Video or Audio Tracks for more information.
Cutting Segments From a Video
You may find that you have some recordings that could be made better and easier to watch by removing some segments from them. Perhaps it was a longer class with a break in it, but the recording continued during the break. Or something happened during the session being recorded that you do not want to keep in the posted version of it.
Cutting segments involves identifying each end of the location you want to remove, making cuts at those locations, then selecting and deleting the segment between them. All cuts are editable and temporary until you choose to Save (or Save As), which applies your edits. And you can always revert to the original if things don't go as well as you'd planned.
Once the cuts are in place, and you delete the segment, you can review the edited video in the playback panel. The playback will skip over any removed segments, so you can see how the recording will look when it is saved.
Moving the playhead/cut marker: Remember, the cut marker is always in sync with the playhead in the playback panel at the TOP of the editing page.
There are several ways to move the playhead/cut marker to the location you want:
- Play the video to the location you want to work with.
- Use the Skip Forward/Back buttons in the video player to move the playhead by 10 seconds in either direction.
- Click on the playhead and use your right and left arrow keys skip forward or back 10 seconds.
- Click and drag the playhead to any location in the video.
- Click ON the playback timeline to move the playhead to that location.
- Click and drag the cut marker to an approximate location. You can then use the player to play or scrub and fine tune that location.
Furthermore, the timestamp box will also be in sync with the playhead, and provides location granularity up to 100ths of a second. You can TYPE into this box to move the playhead and cut marker to a very precise location that you cannot get to via scrubbing or playback.
To cut a segment from the video
- Using any of the methods listed immediately above, move the playhead/cut marker to the FIRST cut location, which is the beginning of the segment you want to remove.
- Click the cut marker menu icon and select Split Clip.
- Move the playhead/cut marker to the SECOND cut location, which is the end of the segment you want to remove.
- Click the cut marker menu icon and select Split Clip.
- Click into the area between the cuts to select it (this also moves the cut marker into that area; this is fine and you can ignore it).
- Click the trash can icon (delete) to remove that segment from the video.
Remember: No cuts are permanent until you save; and even if you save, Restore to Original is always available.
- To check your edits, in the editing panel, move the cut marker to a location somewhere before the removed segment, then click Play in the playback panel. The playback will skip the deleted areas and play the remaining segment(s).
- Repeat the above steps to remove additional segments if necessary.
- If you are happy with the changes, click Save or Save As from the Actions menu as appropriate.
- If you cut too much or too little, see the below instructions for changing segment length.
The below figure shows a video with multiple cut segments.
Changing segment length
This feature is useful if you cut too much or too little out of a particular area, and need to lengthen or shorten the remaining segment.
The Trim Handles allow to you drag either end of the segment in either direction, to change where it begins or ends. This can be particularly useful when used with the "zoom in" feature, to place the cutouts exactly where you want them.
- Click into a segment on the timeline (a location that has cutout portions on either side).
- Click-and-drag the trim handles on either side of the segment to change the duration of the segment.
Notice the timestamp of beginning/end of the segment appears immediately below each trim handle. You CAN enter this location into the timestamp location box, then press Enter, to show that location in the playback panel.
- To check your changes, in the editing panel, move the cut marker to a location somewhere before a removed segment, then click Play in the playback panel. The playback will skip the deleted areas and play the remaining segment(s).
- Repeat the above steps to make additional changes if necessary.
- If you are happy with the changes, click Save or Save As from the Actions menu as appropriate.
Inserting Media into Other Media
The Echo360 video editor provides an option to insert any video you own into another video. You can add a video into some portion of the original video or you can insert one or more other videos at the beginning and/or end of an original video to stitch multiple media together into one.
Some of the use-cases for this feature might include (or you may already have your own ideas):
- Creating a short introduction to add to many different videos. For example, you make a Universal Capture: Personal recording introducing yourself and the materials to students. You can keep that recording and add it to any lectures you want.
- You can make an introduction video for another user's video and share it with them, which they can then copy and add to their media as needed.
- You created a video but somewhere in the middle, you made a mistake, OR the pet (...or child...or spouse) behind you took that opportunity to do something ridiculous. Instead of having to re-do the entire capture, you can re-record just the portion that needs it, then remove the part you don't want and insert the recording you do want.
- You have a lecture related to current events, and are later able to obtain and upload a video of breaking events (news story or supreme court ruling or whatever might apply). You can add the new video to the end of the lecture as related material, making it a single video.
- There is a lecture or a large presentation that was recorded in segments. You can insert all of the segments together, creating a single viewable piece of media.
All of these may include removing one or more sections of the original to replace with different media. Or just adding media to the end of another. As noted in the procedure below, removing anything to replace it with something else is optional. Inserting other media into a video will simply lengthen the resulting video by the appropriate duration.
NOTE: Media duration is limited to 8 hours. If you attempt to stitch together media and the resulting file is LONGER than 8 hours, the Save/Save As option will not be available. Make the resulting media shorter than 8 hours. The expected duration is shown below the media title above the editing panel.
And once again, we encourage you to practice using this feature, in conjunction with the Save As command, to create a new and distinct video file. That way you can make further edits to the new file if needed, or discard it if you don't want to keep it.
To insert a video into a different video
- Find the video you want to start with, and select Edit Media to open the editor. For these instructions, this will be called the "original video" or "original media".
If necessary, use the Cutting Segments from a Video instructions above to REMOVE any portions of the original video you may be replacing. This isn't required; but if you plan to do that, we recommend you do it first. The figures below show a clip being inserted into a location where a segment was removed first.
- Using any of the methods listed earlier on this page, move the playhead/cut marker to the insert location for the other video.
- Click the cut marker menu icon and select Insert Clip.
- From the Insert Media list that appears, shown below, select the item you want to insert. The list includes media from your library that you own. Use the Search or Filter options at the top, also identified in the below figure, to find the item you want.
- Click Insert.
When the editor reappears, the new media is showing in the editing panel. The cut marker should be located where you left it, which is now at the beginning of the new, inserted segment.
If you removed a section first, as the figure in the above procedure shows, then inserted media, notice there are "blank spots" around the inserted segment. These are circled in the below figure. You can leave these in, as playback will skip over those, and when the changes are processed, the resulting media will have the remaining segments stitched together.
You will also see changes in the timeline (likely) where the duration of the newly created video has changed. In the above screenshots, notice that the original video was just under 5 minutes long. The inserted video was 20 minutes long. The resulting video is just under 25 minutes long.
Side note: The change in duration is also why those blank spots circled in the above figure look so much smaller than the original area cut. The duration of the cuts didn't change; the timeline ratio did.
Review the "edges" around the inserted media by placing the cut marker/playhead to just before each transition location, then click Play in the playback panel. Playback will show what users will see, playing through the original, directly to the inserted part, then back to the original. OR if you inserted media at the end (or beginning) of the original video, playback shows the end of one then moves seamlessly into the other.
See Known Issues! There are a few things in the Known Issues section below that are important to know when inserting media. Briefly, they are:
- Playback in the editor will buffer when playing back across original/inserted segments.
- You cannot select-then-delete your insert if it is the wrong one; use Undo to "un-insert" it instead.
If you are happy with the result, click Save or Save As as appropriate. REMEMBER: if you Save instead of Save As, the original media is changed. You can always come back and revert to the original (shorter) media, but you will lose all of your changes from any editing session.
Finally, as with any media, processing may take some time, especially if you created a very long video by inserting smaller ones into the same original. Furthermore, if you clicked Save, you will NOT see your changes to the original media until processing is finished. Be patient.
Other Things to Know about Inserting Media
Here are a few more tidbits about Inserting Media that you may want to be aware of. These are all "options" that you can try as you learn to use the Insert Media feature.
Remember: Save As is your friend. Experiment all you like, and save the results as new media, so you can review it, edit it again, or delete it if you don't need to keep it.
You can insert a dual-media video into a single-media video and vice-versa
That's right, we don't restrict you to "single into single" or "dual into dual" when it comes to inserting media. You might have a physics lecture and want to add a segment you got from a Calculus instructor explaining how to do a certain relevant equation. The Calculus instructor's video shows them talking while also showing the display on the computer. When you insert that video into yours, the resulting video will now be dual stream. Keep in mind though, that for the single-stream video segments, one panel simply shows a placeholder. When the inserted segment appears, both streams are shown to the user viewing it.
You can insert Audio-only into a Video and vice-versa
You can insert an audio only file INTO a video. AND you can insert a video file into Audio only media. For the portion of the resulting media that is playing the audio-only part (whether it's the original or the inserted part), the video panel shows a placeholder.
NOTE however, that you cannot REPLACE the audio of a video file by inserting an audio file. NOR can you replace any segment of an audio file with video+audio media (unless you remove the segment you want to replace first). That process is called "overlay" and is not part of the insert media feature.
There is no need to remove a segment to insert a video
As indicated in the description and the procedure above, removing a segment to insert another video is wholly optional. When you insert a video, the original and the new media are automatically stitched together, and the resulting media is simply lengthened by the duration of the insertion.
BE CAREFUL: Echo360 has an 8-hour limit to videos that can be processed by our system. If you are using the Insert Media feature to stitch together multiple videos, and your resulting file is longer than 8 hours, you cannot Save/Save As; the options are grayed out until the media is 8 hours or less. The expected duration of the new media is shown below the title, above the editing panel.
You can edit the duration and remove segments from the inserted video
In some cases, you may want to edit the video you want to insert first. Then save it (or save as) and select the edited version to insert. But you do not have to. Once the media is inserted into the original video, it acts just like any segment of the original. You can cut segments out of it, or use the trim handles to trim in or out the ends of the inserted item. The instructions for these features are also on this page, so review those and give that a try. You might find it more convenient than having two separate editing sessions.
AND editing the inserted segment after inserting it has NO EFFECT on the media file you selected to insert; it remains in your Library untouched. The inserted media is more like a "copy" of that selected media, and is just seen as a portion of the video you added it to. For example: You select a 20 minute video to insert into another video. You edit the inserted segment down to only the 10 minutes you want. The originally selected 20 minute video is the same as it ever was. Your edits only apply to that media as a segment of the video you added it to.
We are aware of several issues surrounding the Insert Media feature. We are working to address these, but in the event you spend time practicing with the feature, we wanted to make you aware of them.
Existing Media Editor Limitations
The existing video editor limitations also apply to the Insert Media features, and we are listing them here because you may be MORE likely to encounter them when inserting other media.
You cannot delete the last/only clip in a segment
The brief important part of this if you insert media, then decide it isn't the one you wanted, you cannot just select it and delete it. You have to use Undo to "un-insert" it. Furthermore, if you split a video by inserting something into it, you cannot now delete those separate segments. If you want to remove those, cut them out first.
Here's a more thorough explanation (with pictures!):
Editor Standard: The media editor will not allow you to edit media into nothingness. You cannot clip media and remove all of the segments until there are none left.
Scenario: If you insert media into the MIDDLE of an existing piece of media or a segment, like the procedures above show, the original video/segment is now TWO. They are no longer seen as a single unit that has simply been separated. And the inserted media is a third separate segment.
Reusing the image from the procedures above, the below figure shows a video inserted into another video. In this case, there are THREE separate and distinct segments to this media now, and they are labeled. The example happens to have cutouts on either side of the insert, but there would still be three separate and distinct segments to this media even if there were not cutouts and the media had just been inserted without cutting first.
To delete media you just inserted, USE THE UNDO BUTTON TO UNDO THE INSERT. You cannot select it and delete it. The Trash Can icon will not be available.
Furthermore, you are also not able to delete the entirety of any segment BEFORE or AFTER the inserted media, because they are now separate segments (even though they came from the same original). If you select either segment, the Trash Can icon will not be available.
Using the above figure as an example, you cannot select segment 1 and delete it, nor can you select segment 3 and delete it. If you don't want one of these in the final product, delete it first, then insert your media. You can shorten the ends segments as needed but you cannot remove them altogether.
NOTE that this IS NOT true for just cutting segments from a video (without inserting). In that case, they are seen as separate parts of a whole, and those individual cutouts can be deleted (as long as you don't try to delete all of them).
In the figure below, the video has been cut into separate segments by removing some portions between them. THIS is a SINGLE segment (as far as the editor is concerned) because it is from a single original piece of media.
Media has an 8-hour Duration Limit
This is noted above, but the media processor cannot process video/audio media longer than 8 hours. This means that if you insert media to move duration past the 8-hour boundary, you cannot click Save/Save As; the options are grayed out until the media is 8 hours or less. Check the expected duration shown below the title, above the editing panel.
Known Issues Specific to Media Inserts
Most of the items listed below are being addressed. When they are no longer an issue, they will be removed from this list.
Video Only (no Audio) media cannot be processed - Attempting to process edits for something that is video-only will fail. This applies to media that legitimately does not have an audio track - NOT that it has an audio track but it is silent. Unusual but not impossible. This is important because initial processing of the media (on capture creation where the audio was missing) succeeded. However, the editor will not allow for processing of this media.
You can get around this by inserting media with any audio. As long as the finished product has some audio, processing will succeed.
The placeholder image from the timeline does not appear in the player - When inserting a single-track recording into a dual-track media, the playback panel will drop down to one source rather than showing both sources with the placeholder. Alternately, when inserting a dual-track recording into a single-track media, the playback panel will expand into showing both sources for that segment and then drop back down to one again.
Once processed, the final product will NOT exhibit this behavior.
Inserting media then deleting the inserted media from your library will cause processing failure - If you edit Capture A and insert Capture B, but then Capture B is deleted from the system (not from the edited capture), processing the edited Capture A at any point after that will fail.