Timing audio on base layer multiple layers

Mar 21, 2017

I'm pretty new to Storyline2, but am experienced with Captivate8 in building online courseware. What I like about SL2 is that I can create multiple layers for the different screens of information that I want to present on a slide. That way, I don't have all of the objects for the slide on top of each other. This makes it easy to place objects and arrange them without having to hide the other objects. However, it creates problems when it comes to adding the audio to the base layer and then timing the objects on the different layers with the audio on the base layer.

What I am doing now is to set cue points on the base layer for each of the layers, duplicate the audio file, paste it onto the other layers, then cut the audio that doesn't go with that layer, time the objects on that layer, and then delete the audio segment on that layer. That way, when the slide plays from the base layer, the audio is just on the base layer and the layers are triggered at specified cue points. This works well, but is tedious.

Is there a better way to do this, where I can have each "screen" of information on a separate layer and not have to waste so much time cutting the audio, adding it to the layer for timing, then deleting it from the layer? Or, is my other option just to stack the objects on the base layer and hide them for editing purposes like you do in Captivate?

2 Replies
Walt Hamilton

The way you are doing it sounds pretty clever, but I find that using SL to review and trying to set points is really inefficient. Maybe I'm just bad at it, but I can never get much accuracy without 4 or 5 attempts. Set cue point, review, reset, review, etc.

What I do is play the audio in Audacity (free). I can pinpoint timings to .01 sec with great ease, then transfer the time to SL. In your case you would need maybe 1 other step - Animation starts at 30 sec and layer shows at 18, so animation needs to start at 12 sec on layer timeline.

I listen to the audio and record all the time spots. When I transfer them to the objects on SL, I seldom have to change any of them. For me, setting cue points just contributes to the inaccuracy. Right click the object on the timeline, go to timing, and set the start and duration all at once, to within as much accuracy as you want.

Vickie Burnett

I've never worked with Audacity, but I like the pricing! =)  I can look into that.

Setting cue points hasn't been an issue. I just listen to the audio on the base layer and watch the wave file. Then, when I get to the place where the corresponding screen text starts, I insert a cue point there. I repeat this process until the starting points of all the layers are set. Then, I create triggers that show/hide each layer with the corresponding cue points. I find that much easier than identifying the #sec.

I just wish there was a way for the other layers to be overlapped on the base timeline so that I could arrange the layer objects that way instead of having to copy/cut/paste the audio. 

Thanks so much for your help!

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