How to Mute a Clip in After Effects

Updated on: September 19, 2022

Each time you import a new clip into your After Effects project, the program creates a new layer for each one, so you can manage them and add effects to them independently. But what happens when you have two videos on your Timeline and only need the audio from one of them? 

We know you might be just getting familiar with the Timeline and the basics of motion graphics, that's why in this article we'll show you two easy steps to learn how to mute a clip in After Effects. 

Drag your clips to the Timeline

After double-clicking in the Project Panel and importing, from the browser, the clips you will use in your composition, bring your files to the Timeline.

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You will notice that for each video dragged, After Effects will create a layer, so you must pay attention to the order in which they appear on your Timeline, as the one at the top of the list will always overlay the others in your Composition View. With this in mind, move and scale your layers so that you can visualize them in your sequence. 

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Muting a Layer in After Effects

If you have already been experimenting with displaying layers to make your work easier, you may have noticed that in the same list where your layers are placed in the Timeline, right next to where the eye icon is, there is another one that looks like a speaker. This button is the one that controls the audio of your layers, so if you want to mute one, in particular, you only have to do two things:

  1. Select the layer you want to mute and locate the speaker icon to its left.
  2. If the audio box is activated it is because the layer has audio. To deactivate the sound, uncheck the option.
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Remember that if, on the other hand, you want to turn on the audio of one of your layers, you must go to one of them and click on the speaker icon and activate it. 

These steps work the same for the other options that are next to the audio of the layers, such as the Video visibility or the Layer lock.

Andrea Mercado is a tech-focused journalist and copywriter with over 5 years of experience covering innovation, edtech, AI, and internet trends across media outlets. She is passionate about how technology can democratize access to education and is an avid learner when it comes to emerging tech like AI. Her articles and webinars help readers stay informed on the latest tech developments.
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