Command Focus shortcuts in Pro Tools are a set of keystrokes which exist in addition to the standard Pro Tools shortcuts. They offer potential speed increases as they are single keystrokes rather than the more common “modifier + something” format of many of the standard keystrokes. Their focus (no pun intended) is on the common operations an editor will perform over and over again during a session.
Here are a five to consider to get you going:
- Q - Centre Timeline Selection Start
- W - Centre Timeline Selection End
These two shortcuts are often overlooked because when the timeline and edit selections are linked - which they nearly always are) these two shortcuts are identical to the left and right arrows. However, they are not the same. The left and right arrows centre the beginning and end of the edit selection. The Q and W keystrokes centre the timeline selection. Unlink them and try it. If you don’t know the difference between a timeline and edit selection then look at this post which explains it.
- N - Toggle Insertion Follows Playback
In the post explaining link edit and timeline selection linked to above, the significance of Insertion Follows Playback is explained. If you ever get odd behaviour where playback doesn't start from where you'd expect it then you probably need to look at this or your timeline and edit selection linking especially as it is very easy to clip the N key when you are going for the Spacebar to stop and start Pro Tools.
- A - Trim Clip To Insertion Point
- S - Trim Clip End To Insertion Point
When shortening clips I hardly ever use the standard Trim tool any more. Place the insertion point (the flashing vertical cursor) in a clip and hit A or S. This is better than using the Trim tool as if you want to trim in the "wrong" direction using the Trim tool you have to press Option or Alt.
If you struggle to remember the shortcuts you know or would like to learn new ones then maybe consider getting a shortcut keyboard like the ones available from our friends at Editor's Keys.