Camtasia Advanced Tips

This document assumes some working knowledge of editing in Camtasia Studio 8. What it seeks to share is tips on using Camtasia Studio 8 when editing a video - things that weren’t at first obvious.

Perhaps some of these are covered in Camtasia’s training or there is something I don’t know - in which case please fill me in when you find it out!


How to avoid seeing action you don’t want to show during a transition

Fact: There can be hidden footage either side of a clip. When you use cut, delete or simply use drag shorten either end of a clip that you don’t want to show, that footage is not utterly deleted from Camtasia Studio  - if you drag the clip longer again, there it is!

Consequence: When you add a transition such as fade, the fade uses the hidden footage!

How to avoid: make sure that the hidden footage covered by the transition does not include something you don’t wish to show in the transition. E.g. mouse movement. So, use copy and paste or extend frame to ensure that what is beyond the edges of you clip is what is suitable for being seen during the transition.

Record without audio but include mouse clicks

If you prefer to record silently and then add narration separately using voice narration, there is a way to make your mouse clicks audible! Hooray!

This is done for individual clips.

  1. Use the Cursor Effect feature.

  2. Open the lowest section labelled Click sound effect. (1)

  3. Select mouse click in the list.

  4. I have found I need to use a very quiet setting on that volume control. (As shown below.)

  5. Click ‘Add Animation’ button to add the effect. (2)


Insert Time

Insert time is a useful way to add a gap across all active tracks on the timeline so that you can extend material or add something else etc. It basically adds a gap the length of the amount you select on the timeline. It adds the gap at the location of the left edge of the selection. The beauty of this feature is that it is quick and keeps everything on the various tracks beyond this point in sync. (Unless you have some tracks locked or not visible, in which case they are not affected by this command and will be out of sync.)

Extend Frame - only on that track

Extend frame is a great way to make a frame last longer. The massive snag is that it only pushes that track along, so everything beyond this point can get out of sync e.g. a separate audio track or any callouts you have added beyond here.

Partial Workaround: manually create a gap first by using Insert time or by Splitting the tracks and moving things along.

Fuller workaround: make a copy of that clip and put it in a new track. Use Extend frame up there. Create a gap in the other tracks by using Insert Time. Use Cut and paste to insert the extended frame. Cut any remaining unwanted gap.

Given that extend frame can have these unfortunate consequences, I have also taken to avoiding the problem by using copy and paste instead.


There are times when it is handy to be able to lock a track or tracks so that they are not affected by a cut, insert time, or copy(!) command, etc.

I’ve found it helpful when working on audio and video footage in separate tracks. I can lock whichever one I don’t want to be affected by the cuts I am making, then I can unlock and ensure the narration and footage still line up overall.

Obviously the key thing is not to forget that a track is locked so that unexpectedly it is not edited when it should have been.


Copy and Paste

Fact: The zoom only covers what it goes to, not what from it goes from.

Consequence: you can copy and paste the zoom to use the same setting on other stretches of video, no matter what the previous zoom level was. :-)

  1. Click on the zoom arrow you wish to copy. It goes green.

  2. Use Ctrl+C

  3. Move the playhead to the place where you wish to add the identical zoom level.

  4. Use Cltrl+V.

Adjust zoom level afterwards without making another zoom.

  1. Select the zoom’n’pan by clicking on the arrow on the timeline. It turns green.

  2. Double click on the arrow. This opens the Visual Properties feature.

  3. Click the Zoom’n’pan feature.

  4. Adjust the level of the zoom.

Callouts included or not

The results are different depending on whether there is a callout already there when you add the zoom.

If you add the zoom’n’pan to a playhead location where there is also a fully added callout (not in its fade in/out phase) then an appropriate zoom is added to the callout. This is helpful if the callout was correct at the previous zoom level, so now will be correct at the new one.

However, callouts beyond the playhead where the zoom was added are not adjusted by the zoom so you have to go through and adjust their size for the new zoom level.

If you try to paste a zoom from the video track to the callouts track it doesn’t work in my experience. (What callouts need seems to be something a bit different.)

If you move a callout from one place into the area on the timeline where the zoom changes level, it is not easy to make the zoom work well for the callout subsequently. Probably best to redo the zoom from scratch after you’ve put the callout in the right place on the timeline, or avoid showing the callout during the change in zoom level.


If you stitch two clips together and there was a different zoom level in the first than the second one, Camtasia automatically adds a zoom to go from the one level to the other over the stitching. If you delete the auto-added zoom, then the zoom level will stay the same between the two stitched clips.

(If clips are already stitched when you add a zoom in the first one, no second zoom is added - the new zoom level just carries on into the second clip.)

Continuous zoom between unstitched clips

Given that you can only stitch clips that were originally in the same recording, but you might need continuity between two clips which cannot be stitched, here is how to achieve that without the viewers seeing that second zoom.

  1. Add the zoom to the first clip.

  2. When you come to the start of the second clip, move it up temporarily into another track.

  3. Stretch the moved clip to the left so that you can see hidden footage at the start of it. (If there wasn’t any, use copy and paste to add some and stitch it to the start of the clip!)

  4. Go back to the first clip’s zoom, and copy the zoom arrow.

  5. Move to the new start of the second clip.

  6. Paste the zoom on the second clip.

  7. Make the pasted zoom arrow very short. (Not always needed - depends how much space you have on what will soon again be hidden footage.)

  8. Shorten the start of the second clip again so that it starts where you wanted it to. The pasted zoom should not be hidden.

  9. Drag the clip back to the original track.

  10. You should now have a seamless transition (if your videos were taken with the same screen appearance.)

Copy and paste into new project

It is a bit of a headache to copy and paste material between projects because you can’t have more than one open at a time. If you are pasting into a new/empty project, please add a step:

  1. In the source project select and copy the material you want to copy.

  2. Open or create the target project. If it is a new or empty project

  3. FIRST add something of the right dimensions to timeline, e.g. your saved opening slide or any recording that is 1920x1080 or 1280x720 (or whatever dimensions matches your source project). If you don’t do this, then all the callouts get mis-located when you paste!

  4. You can now delete that temporary item from the timeline. It should have set the canvas to 1920x1080. See diagram below.

  5. Paste the copied material.



Contributors to this page: Robert Clementz and dhigby .
Page last modified on Thursday April 20, 2017 14:46:41 GMT-0000 by Robert Clementz.


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