Suggestions for VSE UI cleanup and default settings in 2.8


As I understand it, part of the workspace overhaul is cleaning up functions and defaults related to the individual workspaces.

I been thinking about the VSE defaults and initial settings for best performance and ease of use (also for newcomers). I can see that some of these things have already been changed in 2.8. Anyway, here’s my list for inspiration, based on 2.79:


Import Filedialog(settings):

  • Sort: Modification Date (or reel name & time code)
  • Display type: Thumbnail
  • Display size: Tiny
    (Already in 2.8, but it would be great if the filedialog could remember the settings from last time it was opened).

(Better auto-setting options:)
Import Filedialog(checkboxes):

  • copy ratio setting from source to preferences - default: on.
  • copy framerate setting from source to preferences(existing) - default: on.
  • copy colorspace setting from source to preferences - default: on.
  • Warning if variable frame rate(vfr) detected because it will cause out of sync playback.

Import Filedialog(button to auto-set ‘VSE defaults’):

  • Av-sync: on (both in the Timeline header and in Preview menu)
  • Audio scrubbing: On (Preview Menu)
  • Frame Dropping: On
  • Waveform Drawing: Waveforms On
  • TimeCode Style: SMPTE(compact)
  • Render Settings - Post-Processing - Sequencer: check
  • Set the final frame to the total duration of the imported clips(inc. the existing duration of the existing clips in that channel).

Render settings:

  • Display: Keep UI.
  • Separate ‘Render Percentage Scale’ from ‘Preview Percentage Scale’: The “render percentage scale” should not affect the video preview playback. So maybe this should be two different functions? Add a “preview percentage scale” slider in the preview settings and let the render setting only affect renders? The preview default setting should be as low as the hardware specs demand it.(Hmm, I see this function is gone in 2.8 - but it worked as an alternative for more accurate playback without having to make proxies on low specs)
  • Output: Ffmpeg
  • Color RGB
  • Encoding - Preset: h264 in mp4
  • Encoding - Audio: Ac3
    (YouTube friendly settings)

Preview area:


User Preferences:

  • Cache memory limit set to, maybe 2/3 of available RAM?


  • Please, consider a footer or left toolbar for edit functions accessed by buttons like in the 3d view. Strip editing functions do not belong in the Header menu or in the strip properties.

These ideas were partly based on this video by Mikeycal Meyers:

Call for Content: Workspaces
The Video Sequence Editor - Reworked (a ready to patch suggestion)

I’m assuming you are referring to resolution settings as well, aspect ratio alone is not enough.

This would be a sequence setting, not a scene setting, and I’m not sure if this is even encoded in video files in a standardized way.

Definitely dont think this one is a good idea, that length will most likely change anyway, and if I have my timeline set to a specific length, id rather not have blender constantly changing it…
Maybe I could see this being a render option tho, auto-set timeline or something.

I’m a bit confused about what you are wanting here, are you talking about the render percentage scale affecting the size of the vse preview? 'Cause yeah, that one is annoying…
What do you want a preview percentage scale for tho? We already have a preview percentage scale essentially - display proxy size.

I don’t much like the idea of changing the render settings either, as that would affect all usage of blender, and most people will want to render an image sequence.

Not a fan of the JKL shortcuts, as they are completely useless on other keyboard layouts (I use dvorak), I would much prefer using the numpad for that.

DEFINITELY want the spacebar start/pause tho, thats almost essential for a video editor…
And I REALLY love the idea of adding a tools panel, would allow a lot better organization of addon panels.


Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Some of these suggestions are in the combination of this suggestion: Call for Content: Workspaces

Like a one button to set up in the file browser to set up the scene/sequencer/timeline properties for best performance for the casual/newcommer user. The button could be enabled when a clip is selected, so the data from this clip could be extracted for the setup of VSE settings.

On colorspace, 2.8 has a lot of colorspace/colorhandling options. The default 2.8 colorsetting gives me a 1.4 FPS playback of 720x480 footage. So a mismatch will give very bad FPS.

Preview area, I’m just thinking that new users will be puzzled by only being able to view the first 250 frames, as standard NLEs do not have a limited preview area set as default. Maybe the preview area should be optional and the default setting should be off?

Render Percentage Scale, does work like a render free proxy in 2.79, where a lower setting will give a better playback rate in preview. Seems odd, but it does…

Rendersettings, if you’re an advanced user I can understand why you would want to render pngs without sound, but for casual users/ newcommers they would, I guess, prefer a video-file with audio, ready for YouTube or Vimeo upload.

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That… isnt normal… I get a performance hit on 2.79 as well, tho not nearly THAT bad, it seems to be more related to using any color space that isnt srgb.
Example: I have a lot of video recorded in panasonic vlog (which i have an addon color space for), and setting that footage even to the correct color space results in reduced performance over srgb.

Also, looking at the exif data of these files, I can’t find anything relating to the actual color space, and in fact, they reference BT.709, which is apparently almost srgb (and definitely NOT vlog).

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There is some sort of color handling problem in 2.8 which causes playback problems:

Sounds really cool that you have managed to deal with vlog with an addon. :+1:

I know Rudolf Ortner considered finding a solution to work with luts.