Fade out audio . . . to a point, not to silence

Hi, guys. Can anyone help me with this? I have a clip that is silent, followed by one that has people talking that I want to be heard, followed by another silent clip. So, what I’d like to do is have a music track behind all the tracks with full volume in the first silent clip, fading out to a quieter level for the voice clip, and then from that level, fading in smoothly to the full volume again for the last silent track. I hope I’m explaining this in a way that is easy to understand. I know how to fade-out audio to silent, but I’m not sure how to (or even if it is possible) fade out to a level above silent.

Thanks in advance for any help. :slight_smile:

P.S. I’m so grateful for Shotcut. Such an awesome programme!

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Apply a gain filter to the music track and use advanced keyframes. All you then have to do is set the gain (volume) at the start, then again at the same level where you want it to start fading, once more at the end of the fade, and so on.

Thanks for the reply, QDSOV. Is there a tutorial that can explain this in detail? I’m a bit of a newbie to editing and I have no idea what some of that terminology means. :slight_smile:

Let me see what I can do…

Thanks so much. :slight_smile:

OK - I’ve put together a short tutorial video which I’ll upload shortly. Just editing it now :slight_smile:

I think I’ve figured it out. I’m sorry to have put you to the trouble. However, if you’re happy to finish editing, I’ll still be grateful to be able to watch it as I’m sure there are things that you’ve got in there to show the process more thoroughly than I could know at this time. :slight_smile:

Well done Michaela. I finished the tutorial anyway - always like to finish what I start :wink:


You need to make a Tutorial or Made with Shotcut post of this video. Very well done!

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You can also use simple keyframes. After adding the simple keyframes simply put the playhead in the middle, between the simpler keyframes and lower the level. Use filter trimming to limit the range of the filter.

FYI, this technique is called “ducking.”

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Thank you @Hudson555x but I didn’t think I’d done a great job. Adequate, but It would have been a lot better if I’d taken my time.

Excellent, thank you so much, Quinn. That was definitely worth doing! I’m saving that one for reference. Your method is definitely more practical, clear and less hassle than the way I did it!..lol. Cheers, and thanks again. :slight_smile:

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Hey, Quinn, while I’ve got your attention here in this thread, can I just quickly another question? I noticed, when I was viewing your video, that your project playback is super smooth. Mine is terrible! Admittedly, mine is full of transitions and photos and music, but should that make the difference? If not, what do you think I might be doing wrong? Thanks, Quinn. :slight_smile:

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Hi Michaela

There are three main factors that affect your playback in preview mode, which you probably know or have worked out for yourself.

  1. The hardware you are running SC on (processor, memory etc.)
  2. How much you have going on at once (tracks, filters, transitions)
  3. The resolution you are working with

The PC I do my editing on is adequate but it’s no powerhouse. 4 yr old 8 core CPU & 16GB RAM. I have plenty of chop when I normally do preview playback, especially since I use multiple layers and copious filters on most videos.
The piece I used in the tutorial was cut from the video I’ve just finished and uploaded so it was pre-rendered. I just picked a section I thought would be about the right length, muted the narration and added the music track. It means I only had two tracks on the go and the only filter being used was gain/volume.
Sorry if that’s disappointing. I’d love a way of smoothing out my preview playback other than beefing up my workstation but for now the only method I can use is muting/blanking tracks occasionally so I can work on others that I need accurate timing on.
Some things I also pre-render. Chroma key is particularly CPU intensive so if I’ve a long keyed sequence I usually do that first, export it in high quality, then use that file as the basis for the rest of the video for me to overlay titles, gfx etc…
If you’re interested, I just uploaded the video I took an excerpt from and I’m about to start putting the word out in appropriate channels. It’s linked below :slight_smile:

Thanks for that info, Quinn. I figured as much, but it’s good to hear from someone who knows. That video is excellent, both in design and information about autism. Being that you wanted to put the word out, I shared the video on my FB page. Perhaps some of my friends will do the same and it will help in some small way.

I appreciate your time. God bless.


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Thanks Michaela :slight_smile:

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