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Vegas Video 4.0 Tutorial

  • Creating a DVD menu with Vegas Video 4.0+
  • Due to many requests, we've added a Vegas Video tutorial describing the steps to create "Picture in Picture" style menu, like the one contained in the ReelDVD "How-to" tutorial.

1. Download the necessary file from the link above and unzip the folder to your C: drive. (This is necessary, only so Vegas finds the video clips is the correct location.) Visit Sony and download the trial of Vegas, if you've not already done so.

2. The Vegas Video Interface.

  • The Timeline area is where you will determine video and audio track length, FX, fades, transitions, and generally assemble your project.
  • The Track Controls area is where you will control the layering of the tracks, as well as perform adjustments to entire tracks, including motion, velocity, FX, opacity, etc..
  • The Multi-Tool window will be the place to find almost everything. It has an explorer to find your project assets, a trimmer to shorten clips before introducing them to the timeline, a Media Pool to organize your assets, a transitions folder, a Video FX folder, and a few general media formats, like stills and text.
  • The Master Audio window is where you can adjust the master playback volume. You can also make other changes, like add FX, that effect the entire project.
  • The Preview Window allows you see your project as you create it. You can also take still images from this window, and see it in "dual view" mode to compare different FX and adjustments.

3. Open Vegas Video with a new project. It should be starting with a new one already.

4. We need to begin with a background file, or "matte." Go to the Multi-tool area and select the Media Generator tab at the bottom. Click on Color Gradient to the left, and scroll down to find Soft Red Backdrop. Click on the backdrop and drag it onto the timeline area. Vegas will automatically insert a new video track to accommodate the still image.

Note: The "matte" can be almost any photo or image file from any source. Vegas accepts most any type of image file. The "matte" can also be a video stream in itself, similar to the examples available for download on the home page. Vegas has a few built-in media generators that allow you to create some basic backgrounds and text within the application. For simplicity purposes, the background and text within this project will be from the "built-in" Vegas tools.

5. Many users seem to have different opinions on how long a motion menu file should be. For this example, we'll use the long version and make this project one minute in length. At the top of the timeline area, you'll see time labels for frames, seconds, minutes, and hours. If it's not already there, drag the red image file to the far left of the video track to be sure it starts at the beginning. Float your cursor above the right edge of the file until your cursor appears like the example to the right. Click and stretch the file out to the right, bringing it to the one minute mark.

Note: If the 00:01:00:00 mark is not visible, you may need to zoom out. To do so, find the + & - signs at the bottom right of the timeline window. Click the - until you've zoomed out far enough.

6. We now need to import the "window" video files.
Go to the Multi-tool area at the bottom left and find the Explorer tab. Within the Explorer window, go to your C: drive and find the folder you unzipped called VegasTutorialMenuOne. Locate the video file named Wavy Grids.wmv. Click and drag it to an empty area in the timeline window. Be sure to drop it in an area below the red background. As you see, and new video and audio track has been created for this new video stream.

7. Repeat step 5 above three more times, being careful to drop the video files below the previous one. This will ensure that each video stream will be on its own video track. When completed, you should have five total video tracks (one red background and four motion clips,) and four audio tracks. It should appear something like the picture to the right.

Note 1: In the interest in download speed, we'll be using the same short video for each "window." When creating your own, you will simply import four or more different video clips.
Note 2: There will be a corresponding audio track created every time you import the Motion Clip. These can be deleted by right clicking on the audio stream, then selecting delete. By doing the same thing to the empty audio track, you can remove it as well. You will have no need for this audio.

TIP: If you have trouble fitting all five video tracks in an area of screen to see them, you can adjust the viewable track height by dragging on the Track Control area. The Screen Shot to the above right shows all of the tracks minimized.