HomeAudio Production→ How to Add Transitions in Premiere Pro: Step by Step Guide

Marco Sebastiano Alessi

22 November, 2022

How to Add Transitions in Premiere Pro: Step by Step Guide


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Premiere Pro offers many effects you can use to enhance your video and audio clips, and among the most practical ones is the transition effect, which can dramatically improve the quality of your content.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to adding transitions to your clips in Adobe Premiere Pro. As important as learning how to fade out audio in Premiere Pro, video transitions can make your content look more professional and smooth, so mastering this effect is crucial if you want to upscale the quality of your videos.

Let’s dive in!

What Are Transitions in Premiere Pro?

How to Add Transitions in Premiere Pro

Transitions are effects provided by Premiere Pro to add at the beginning or the end of a clip, to create a fade-in or fade-out effect, or to place between two clips for a gradual shift from one scene to the other. The amount of transition effects available in Premier Pro range from a default transition effect to more theatrical transitions like zoom, 3D transitions, and others.

Transitions help us change between clips seamlessly, especially if your edit has too many cuts, providing a more pleasant visual experience. I’m sure you’ve seen transitions everywhere: in music videos, documentaries, vlogs, movies, and commercials.

When the transition is between two clips, it will merge the end of the first clip with the beginning of the second clip, creating a perfect fusion between the two.

Types of Transitions in Premiere Pro

There are three different types of transitions in Adobe Premiere Pro.

  • Audio transition: Effects to create a crossfade between audio clips or fade-in and fade-out in a single audio clip.
  • Video transitions: Transitions for video clips. In Premiere Pro, you have effects like Cross Dissolve transition, Iris, Page Peel, Slide, Wipe, and 3D Motion transitions. Essentially, the video fades from one clip to the next clip.
  • Transitions for immersive videos: If you’re working with VR and immersive content, you can also find specific transitions for these projects, such as Iris Wipe, Zoom, Spherical Blur, Gradient Wipe, and many more.

Default audio transition and default video transition are two simple techniques to add transitions that’ll make your video look more professional in no time. After you familiarize yourself with the effect, you can apply double-sided transitions or single-sided transitions directly from the effect controls panel.

Single-sided transitions.

We call it a single-sided transition when used on a single clip. It shows in the Timeline divided diagonally into two halves: one dark and one light.

Double-sided transitions

These are the default video transitions placed between two clips. When a double-sided transition is in place, you will see a dark diagonal line in the Timeline.

How to Add Transitions for a Single Clip

Follow these steps to add a video or audio transition to a single clip from the effect controls panel.

Step 1. Import One Clip

Bring all the media you want to use and add transitions to your Premiere Pro projects.

1. Open the project or create a new one.

2. In the menu bar, select File, then Import videos, or press CTRL + I or CMD + I on your keyboard to open the import window.

3. Search for the clips you want to edit and click open.

Step 2. Create a Sequence in the Timeline Panel

We need to create a sequence to start editing in Premiere Pro. Creating one is easy once you have imported all the media to Premiere Pro.

1. Select a clip from the project panel, right-click it and select Create a New Sequence from the clip, then drag all the clips you will be working with.

2. If no sequence was created, dragging a clip to the Timeline will make one.

Step 3. Find the Effects Panel

In the Effects panel, you can find all the built-in effects pre-installed in Premiere Pro. To make the Effects panel available, you must first activate it.

1. Select Window in the menu bar.

2. Scroll down and click on Effects if it doesn’t have a checkmark.

3. You should see the Effects Tab in the Project panel. Click on it to access all the effects in Adobe Premiere Pro.

4. Click on Video transitions or Audio transitions, depending on which type of video clip you have on the Timeline.

5. Click on the arrow next to each category to display more available options.

Step 3. Apply Transition Effect

1. Go to Effects panel > Video Transitions or Audio Transitions if you’re working with audio clips.

2. Expand the categories and select the one you like.

3. To apply the transitions to your Timeline, simply drag the desired transition and drop it on the clip’s beginning or end.

4. Play the sequence to preview the transition.

How to Add Transitions on Multiple Clips

You can add single-sided transitions to multiple clips or add double-sided transitions between two clips.

Step 1. Import Clips and Create A Sequence

1. Go to File > Import and bring all the clips to your project.

2. Drag the files to the Timeline and ensure they’re all on the same track without empty spaces.

3. Preview the sequence and edit as needed.

Step 2. Localize and Apply Transitions

1. Go to the effects panel and choose either Audio or Video transitions.

2. Expand the categories and select one.

3. Drag and drop the transitions between the two clips right in the cut line.

You can change the transition length between the clips by dragging the transition edges in the Timeline.

Step 3. Apply Transitions to All Selected Clips in the Timeline

You can apply transitions to multiple clips simultaneously. The transitions applied to all clips will be the default transition.

1. Select the clips in the Timeline using the mouse to draw a bow around the clips or select them with Shift+Click.

2. Go to the menu bar Sequence and choose Apply Default Transitions to Selection.

3. The transitions will apply where there are two clips together.

4. Preview the sequence.

Default Transitions

You can set a specific transition as a default when using the same transitions effect repeatedly.

1. Open the Transitions effects in the Effect panel.

2. Right-click the transition.

3. Click on Set Selected As Default Transition.

4. You will see a blue highlight in the transition. It means that’s our new default transition.

Next time you want to apply a transition, you can select the video clip and use the keyboard shortcut CTRL+D or CMD+D for video transition, shift+CTRL+D or Shift+CMD+D for audio transitions, or Shift+D to add a default audio and video transition.

Change the Duration of a Default Transition

The standard transition duration is 1 second, but we can adjust it to fit our projects. There are two methods to do it:

From the Menu:

1. Go to the menu Edit on PC or Adobe Premiere Pro on Mac.

2. Scroll down to Preferences and select Timeline.

3. In the Preferences window, adjust the video or audio transitions default duration by seconds.

4. Click OK.

From the Timeline:

1. After applying a default transition, right-click on it in the Timeline

2. Select Set Transition Duration.

3. Type the duration you want in the pop-up window and click OK.

How to Remove Transitions

Removing transitions in Premiere Pro is very simple. Just select the transitions in the Timeline and press the backspace or delete key.

You can also remove it by replacing the transition.

1. Go to Effects > Video Transition/Audio Transition.

2. Select the effect you want.

3. Drag and drop the new transition into the old one.

4. The new transition will reflect the duration of the previous one.

5. Play the sequence to preview it.

Tips on How to Add Transitions in Premiere Pro

Here’s a brief list of tips to get the best transitions in Premiere Pro.

  • Avoid using too many transitions. Stick to using ones that fit the project or specific scenes where something crucial is about to happen.
  • Make sure the length of the clips is longer than the transition. You can fix this by changing the transition’s length or the clip’s duration.
  • Set as default transitions you’ll use more during the project to save time.

Final Thoughts

Learning how to add transitions in Premiere Pro can embellish every project, as it improves the flow of your visuals when moving from one scene to the next. Play around and try all the transition effects available until you find the one that works best for you.

Good luck, and stay creative!

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