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How to Add Sound Effects in iMovie (iMovie'11)

Cute sound appears at the right time of your video can make your video alive. iMovie offers a number of sound effects for you to apply to your video clips and project. With the iMovie sound effects, you can add fun to your videos and adding sound effect in iMovie is very simple.

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How to add sound effect to iMovie videos and project

Step 1. Open your iMovie project.

If you haven't got a project, start one by going to File > New Project. If you haven't added videos to iMovie Event browser, load videos by going to File > Import > Movies or import videos to iMovie from your camcorder which is connected to your Mac.

When adding movies and videos to iMovie, note that iMovie just supports MP4 video format and some DV video format. If your videos are not in MP4, iMovie may not accept them. When this happens, you can use a Mac Video Converter to convert the videos to iMovie MP4 on your Mac, and then import the converted videos to iMovie with ease.

Tips: iMovie doesn't support DVD, either. If you want to edit your favorite DVD movies in it, you can use a Mac Video Converter Ultimate to help you convert the DVD to iMovie compatible videos. In just a few clicks, you can load DVD to iMovie easily.

Step 2. Select a sound effect

Click the Music and Sound Effects button to open the Music and Sound Effects window. Here you can see lots of sound effects that you can use. You can choose from iMovie Sound Effects and iLife Sound Effects. Click the play button in the left to preview any sound. In the search field, you can type in the name of the sound effect to quickly find it out.

imovie sound effects

Choose the one you like, and drag it to the video clip in the Project at where you want the sound to begin. Then sound effect will appear in green beneath the video clip. You can drag the slider to change the length of the sound effect.

 add imovie sound effects

Step 3. Adjust the sound effect

Double click the sound clip and the Inspector window opens. You can adjust the sound clip duration manually and set audio effects. Hit "Audio" tab to find more customization functions.

apply imovie sound effects

You can also add background music to iMovie to add more flavor and add video effects to iMovie videos.

Product-related questions? Speak directly to our Support Team >>

Hi, Tamara, iMovie provides these free templates, and it's legal to apply it into your video, don't worry.
Are we allowed to use imovie sound effects if we upload them to Youtube? Is there any copyright infringement? I would like to use a sound, but not if Im going to get in trouble for it. Thank you!