after effects Tutorial

After Effects: Adding Audio to Animations

Laura Kramer
|4 min read
Written by Laura Kramer

In this After Effects tutorial, Laura Kramer, covers how to add audio in after effects, opposed to adding it in premiere pro after animating is done.


So for the most part, I used basically all the regular keyframes, position, opacity, rotation, and things like that, that I already knew how to do. So when I was deciding on how to approach this animation, I knew I wanted sound and I specifically wanted it in the places where the alarms should've been going off, the clock was ticking, and the toast popping up. At first, I thought that you had to do this in Premiere Pro because that's what I'm used to, but I found out a way on how to add audio in after effects and so I wanted to teach you how to do that.

I saw that there was an audio button at the top right section and so I went ahead and imported my audio files. I just picked the ones I knew I wanted to use;; the clock ticking, the bleep sound and the toaster pop up. Then, I went ahead and found where I wanted to place them in my composition. I chose to scroll way to the bottom, just so I knew that the sound was at the bottom of my composition rather than somewhere in between all my other layers. I found the exact point that I wanted the audio to be at, which was right there at one second 17 frames. The first noise to happen is the alarm going off and so I imported that. I knew I wanted it to start at a certain point, so I went ahead and dragged that to where it needed to be.

Then I found out where the bleep would technically end and edited it so that it would end at that point. You can also change the level of sound compared to everything else. This clip did not need that, however, the other ones did. I got my bleep sound and then I wanted a clock ticking to increase anticipation. And so I wanted the clock tick to start after the bleep, so I went ahead and dragged that in. This one was a little more difficult because it was so long and it was also a lot louder than the bleep sound and so I wanted to make sure it was quieter.

You can use keyframes on this as well if you wanted it to be loud at one point and lower at another. I did not need that, so I went ahead and just changed it all together to negative 16 decibels. Then what I did was I found where I wanted it to stop, which was right there right before the toast popped up and then I wanted to use a marker. So I added a marker, so I knew that's where the sound needed to end. As you can see, it goes all the way to the very end of the composition and I can't even see the end of the audio, as it's so long.

I went ahead and zoomed out if it'll let me, and then dragged that piece to the very... So I could see the very end. There's probably a more efficient way to do this, but this is what I found works for me. If you know of any other ways, please let me know. I know in Premier you can use just a cut tool, however, I couldn't find the equivalent to that.

Then I dragged it to that marked spot, so now I have it where it needs to end and it's where it needs to start as well. I went ahead and locked that layer because I'm done with it and then after the clock ticked, I wanted the toaster sound to pop up. This one was a little easier. It still was a little loud, so I needed to edit it, but it wasn't as loud as the first one so I did about negative eight decibels. Then it has a little more audio than I need and that extra audio causes a little bit of a weird sound that makes it less believable that the toast is popping up, so I wanted to cut that part out. Then I went ahead and locked it and the audio was done.


motion design
after effects

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