9 Replies Latest reply: Dec 17, 2008 12:27 AM by Keith Rodan
Keith Rodan Level 1 Level 1 (85 points)
I'm trying to learn some useful keyboard commands, but have difficulty with the F (function) keys at the top of the keyboard. For instance, when I press F9 to insert a clip from the viewer to the timeline the result is that the desktop open windows are shown. Other desktop actions occur with F10, 11 and 12, and the other F keys have no effect.

I have looked for help in the Manual, but can't find it. In FCP there is keyboard layout mapping, but in FCE it seems the Function keys are default programmed. Is there a way to assign functions in the FCE app, or to correct this apparent issue?

thanks!

PS I note that some on this forum have v.3.5.1 Is that a free update? If so, I don't find it in Apple Downloads.

Dual 1.25 GHz PM/G4, Mac OS X (10.4.11), FCE 3.5
  • Camelot Level 8 Level 8 (46,440 points)
    The Fn keys along the top of your keyboard serve two functions.

    They either serve as regular function keys (e.g. F1, F2, F3) where the application defines the action, or they trigger system-level functions such as adjusting the screen brightness, volume control, Exposé, etc.

    Whichever mode you're in the fn key on your keyboard switches to the other. Since it sounds like you're in the system-level mode you can hold the fn key while pressing the appropriate Function Key in order to send the keystroke to the app. If you switch the mode then pressing the Function Key on its own would go to the app and you'd need to hold the fn key to use the system functions.

    You can use System Preferences -> Keyboard & Mouse -> Keyboard to switch the mode.
  • Tom Wolsky Level 10 Level 10 (112,720 points)
    Using an aluminum keyboard or a laptop? Go to system preferences and make sure the use F keys in applications is checked on.
  • Keith Rodan Level 1 Level 1 (85 points)
    It's a regular white, Apple keyboard that came with my PMG4. I checked System prefs and there doesn't seem to be a way to assign functions for the F keys. Well, there is, but it doesn't seem to apply to the FCE application.

    Looks like I have some experimenting to do. I will try the suggestions as best I can.

    Isn't Fn (fn key) the same as F? I'm confused about pressing one to get something else.

    FCE says to use F9 to insert the clip in the Viewer to the Timeline. Doesn't do it.

    thanks
  • Camelot Level 8 Level 8 (46,440 points)
    Isn't Fn (fn key) the same as F? I'm confused about pressing one to get something else.


    Yes, and no.

    The function keys on the keyboard are dual-mode - they either function as Fn keys or they function as system keys. One mode is the default and you hold the fn key on the keyboard to switch to the other mode.

    It sounds like your keyboard is set to the system commands by default, so pressing F9 shows your desktop and fn + F9 should send the appropriate function key command to the application.
  • Tom Wolsky Level 10 Level 10 (112,720 points)
    Doesn't do it. What happens? Anything? Check Expose and Spaces and make sure those keys are reset to something else. Try holding the Option key and selecting F9 to change it. Change them all.
  • Keith Rodan Level 1 Level 1 (85 points)
    It seems that Command + F9 does the clip insert.

    Must be a setting somewhere in my system. Would like to know if anyone else has this situation, and/or why such settings aren't explained in the FCE manual.

    +One mode is the default and you hold the fn key on the keyboard to switch to the other mode.+

    BTW, Is there such as thing as an fn key? Can't find it on my Apple extended keyboard.
  • Camelot Level 8 Level 8 (46,440 points)
    BTW, Is there such as thing as an fn key? Can't find it on my Apple extended keyboard.


    I guess the question is which keyboard do you have? Apple have made many models over the years, with varying degrees of functionality.

    If you have the current generation of keyboards you'll see the fn key in the cluster above the arrow keys on the standard keyboard, and in the lower-left corner in the case of the bluetooth keyboard.
  • Michel Boissonneault Level 5 Level 5 (4,765 points)
    Keith Rodan wrote:


    PS I note that some on this forum have v.3.5.1 Is that a free update? If so, I don't find it in Apple Downloads.


    Hi(Bonjour)!

    Try software update in system pref panel. It should find 3.5.1 for you.

    Michel Boissonneault
  • Keith Rodan Level 1 Level 1 (85 points)
    Thanks, I guess that solves that. I have an older keyboard - but not all that old. The image of Apple's $50 aluminum keyboard doesn't show detail, so I can't see the fn key. What's curious is that my version of FCE was current with the keyboard I use, so I wonder why the F9 key doesn't do what the manual says it should.

    Again, (with a tip from Tom Wolsky) I've discovered that +F9 will do the desired insert. Changing this and other Function Keys could also be a setting in the System Preferences I imagine.

    Also: Thanks Michel, I see that I have already downloaded FCE v.3.5.1 as of my last software check. Not sure what improvements it offers, but have no complaints to date.