Adobe’s Audition has had a makeover along with the rest of the CS suite in version six, and amongst many other new features it has some great new workflow tools and techniques to make working with audio a breeze. Let’s dive in and find out what’s new…
The new Media Browser presents you with a Finder / Explorer-like way to browse through your hard drives. Select a subfolder and any compatible content is displayed, and you can play it manually or activate autoplay and looping at the base of the window. Right click on any folder in the Browser and you can leap straight to it in the Finder or add a shortcut to it.
Drag and drop audio straight to a session or assign it to be placed into an available multitrack session.
When you have located a compatible file or multiple files you can choose them in the Browser then either drag and drop them into a Multitrack Session or use the Insert Into Multitrack button at the top, and select from any open sessions.
Clips can now be grouped to make them easier to work with en masse…
You can work with multiple clips at once in a Multitrack Session. Simply Shift-click and select several clips, or draw around them with the mouse to select them. Now select Clip > Groups > Group Clips or press Command-G. The clips change color to show that they have been grouped. Now, certain changes that you make on one clip will apply equally to the other. Try for example picking up the edge of one and dragging it to stretch it and change its tempo. Do it on one, and the others will follow by the same amount. This is great for quickly conforming files to a new visual edit for example.
One thing you can do with grouped clips is change their gain all at the same time, independently of mixer channels.
If you go to the clip properties viewer at the bottom left of the screen, you will find that changing the clip gain for one grouped clip will do the same for the others. This is a great way to quickly change multiple clips’ volumes by the same amount, without using the mixer channels, for total control over levels.
Temporarily suspending grouping gives you more flexibility without having to permanently ungroup clips.
Sometimes you want to make an edit to just one grouped file but only briefly, and not actually unlink the clips permanently. To do this, go back to the Clip menu and choose Suspend Grouping. This allows you to change for example a clip’s volume independently of the other grouped clips, but then deactivate the suspension of grouping and have them all controllable as one again.
Batch processing audio files can save a lot of time if you need to get a lot of files from one format into another.
There’s a great batch processor available from the Edit menu. Call this up and you are able to drop in groups of audio files from the Finder, specify output settings using the Settings window, set a destination and then fire and forget. It’s a great way to convert formats, sample rates and even deal with difficult files like FLAC or Monkey’s Audio that might otherwise be tricky to work with.