Advanced Video Camera and Editing

Numerical Trimming

In time, as you continue to edit more and more, you'll get a sense of knowing how many frames it takes to trim a certain edit. In this case, there is a way for you to modify an edit by simply entering a number. 

When you type a + (plus) or a - (minus), followed by a number, FCP interprets the entry as a numerical trimming instruction. If the edit is selected as a roll, the number of frames you enter will roll the edit by that amount. If the edit is selected as a ripple, you’ll ripple the edit by the number of frames that you enter.

  • Navigate the playhead to the edit point by pressing either the Up or Down arrows.
  • Press V to select the edit point
  • Press U to toggle between ripple and roll – select either ripple outgoing or ripple incoming.
  • Type + or – followed by the number. An information box appears in the Timeline, identifying the type of edit and the value you entered.

  Ripple incoming with -6 frames entered in the Ripple box above


  • Press Enter or Return to perform the edit
  • Play around the edit to see how it looks (use the backslash (\) key.
  • Once you’ve got the timing right, then toggle to a roll edit
  • Type a + or - and then the numerical value
  • Play around the edit again.