Once clips have been loaded to the palette, you can drag and drop them in order to the timeline. The toolbar above the timeline includes buttons to expand the timeframe, which is useful for removing ‘Ums’ and ‘Errs’ from a soundtrack; you can select very small time elements and delete them.
One of the major new features in Camtasia Studio 6 is SmartFocus. When you’re illustrating things like selecting menu options in a video, it’s useful for the viewer to be able to see the detail of the action, not the whole screen. Camtasia senses when the mouse moves around and zooms the screen in on that area for a close-up. It refocuses pretty much whenever a significant move is made and does it automatically, as clips are added to the timeline.
It’s not perfect and, in use, we found it was refocusing rather too often, but each adjustment is shown in the zoom track between the video and audio tracks in the timeline. You can delete a refocus marker or edit it to change the size and position of the zoom. It’s a very versatile technique and improves the quality of the finished video, but it’s easy to become too much of a perfectionist and spend far too long adjusting markers.
There’s another type of marker you can add to the timeline, which is more general-purpose and is used to be able to move quickly around a video. They can be inserted at any position on the timeline and given names for easy identification. The playhead is a special marker which shows the current playback position and this can be dragged around to play any part of a video and to select portions for editing.