After Effects CC2018 won't let me reassign keys in custom keyboard window

Engaged ,
Oct 22, 2017

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One of the things I was most looking forward to in the latest version of After Effects (CC 2018) was the ability to reassign keys. For example, I'd like to reassign "Show/Hide Opacity" from the "T" key to the "O" key and reassign "in" and "out" to other keys. But AE CC 2018 won't let me do that. What am I doing wrong?

Thank you in advance for any help.

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by Szalam | Adobe Community Professional

Some of the keyboard shortcuts are protected and will not be allowed to change. If you would like to see this behavior changed, I'd recommend filing a bug report/feature request.

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After Effects CC2018 won't let me reassign keys in custom keyboard window

Engaged ,
Oct 22, 2017

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One of the things I was most looking forward to in the latest version of After Effects (CC 2018) was the ability to reassign keys. For example, I'd like to reassign "Show/Hide Opacity" from the "T" key to the "O" key and reassign "in" and "out" to other keys. But AE CC 2018 won't let me do that. What am I doing wrong?

Thank you in advance for any help.

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by Szalam | Adobe Community Professional

Some of the keyboard shortcuts are protected and will not be allowed to change. If you would like to see this behavior changed, I'd recommend filing a bug report/feature request.

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Oct 22, 2017 0
Engaged ,
Oct 22, 2017

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Sorry my bad. It just worked after I deleted old shortcut for the "O" key which was the in point function.

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Oct 22, 2017 0
Engaged ,
Oct 22, 2017

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What's interesting though is that if i try to delete the keyboard shortcut for "show/hide opacity" from the "T" key (default), AECC 2018 says "can't be reassigned". I don't understand that because this isn't the default keyboard setup, it's my own custom version. Surely I should be able to reassign any key.

Screen Shot 2017-10-22 at 2.26.29 PM.png

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Oct 22, 2017 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 23, 2017

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Some of the keyboard shortcuts are protected and will not be allowed to change. If you would like to see this behavior changed, I'd recommend filing a bug report/feature request.

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Oct 23, 2017 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 05, 2017

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There is a list of shortcuts (single keys) that are protected - you cannot reassign them. However, you can assign shortcuts in place of the Commands these shortcuts apply to. Here's the list of protected single-key shortcuts.

More info here -
After Effects keyboard shortcuts reference

After Effects does not allow you to reassign the following keys:

  • A
  • AA
  • E
  • EE
  • F
  • FF
  • L
  • LL
  • M,
  • MM
  • P
  • PP
  • R
  • RR
  • S
  • SS
  • T
  • TT
  • U
  • UU
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Nov 05, 2017 2
Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 05, 2017

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The shortcut editor is a little funky. It took me quite a while to figure out how to add anything new. I'm not about changing the default keys and I think that is a really bad idea for several reasons. First I have been using the default shortcuts as long as there have been shortcuts. Second, if somebody else ever needs to use your system they will be screwed up. Third, when learning new techniques most good trainers will give you keyboard shortcuts and if you change the default shortcuts, like t (transparency) for o (out point now becomes opacity) then you will get fouled up. Number three is probably the most important reason not to change the default shortcuts for new users. 

I have added a bunch of shortcuts to help me get to things that didn't have shortcuts, and I think that is very helpful but messing with the default shortcuts, especially the ones that you should be using on almost any animated layer is a really bad idea.

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Nov 05, 2017 2
Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 05, 2017

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Keyboard Shortcuts are part of the Sync to/from Creative Cloud feature. So, it's quite OK if the individual using your machine has his/her own license and has synced their settings to CC. Having said that, it is a good rule of thumb to not remove default shortcuts - although having said that, I have removed a few and added alternate shortcuts to default shortcuts.

Here's a list of my NEW, favorite custom Shortcuts -

ALT+M - Lock All (other) masks

ALT+SHIFT+M - Unlock All (other) masks

ALT+ - - Select Previous Mask

ALT+ = - Select Next Mask

ALT+ V - Create Shape from Vector Layer

ALT+ T - Create Shape from Text Layer

ALT+SHIFT+F - Set First Vertex

SHIFT+B - Toggle Rotobezier

SHIFT + V - Toggle On/Off Video Layer

SHIFT + W - Toggle On/Off Audio Layer

SHIFT + I - Toggle Solo Layer

ALT + U - Reveal Animated Properties (this reveals props with KFs and Expressions)

SHIFT + Z - Reset Transform Props

CTRL+ALT+Z - Toggle Separate Dimensions

SHIFT + K - Create KF for Selected Props

SHIFT + G - Select Label Group

ALT + z - where z is the first later for a few Layer Label Colors

SHIFT + H - Toggle View Layer Controls (the default key combo is too much of a stretch for the fingers on one hand)

ALT + C - Copy Expression only

SHIFT + C - Copy with Relative Property Links

ALT + SHIFT + K - Convert Expression to KFs

CTRL+SHIFT+ALT+T - Create new Text Layer with insertion indicator in the Comp Panel

CTRL+SHIFT+ALT+1 - Create/Add Text Animator Group/Property with All Transform Animator Properties

CTRL+SHIFT+ALT+9 - Create/Add Text Animator Group/Property with RGB Fill Animator Property

SHIFT + [ - Select Previous Panel in Frame

SHIFT + ] - Select Next Panel in Frame

ALT + ; - Center Anchor Point in Layer Content (default shortcut, CTRL+ALT+HOME, is too much of a stretch for the fingers)

ALT + SHIFT + ; - Center Layer in View

ALT + D - Purge All Memory & Disk Cache

ALT + SHIFT + D - Purge All Memory

SHIFT + X - Reveal layer in Explorer (Timeline Panel)

CTRL + SHIFT + X - Reveal Footage in Explorer (Project Panel)

CTRL + SHIFT + B - Reveal Footage in Bridge (Project Panel)

CTRL + ALT + R - Time Reverse KFs (stole this SC from Reverse layer)

CTRL + SHIFT + ALT + R - Reverse layer)

ALT + F1 - Open KSV Editor/Window

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Nov 05, 2017 2
Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 06, 2017

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I've been messing with the new Keyboard Shortcuts Visualizer. Take a look, to see what's possible. I've set up two URLs: for a PDF of the shortcuts AND  notes, and the Shortcuts TXT file.

http://www.broadcastGEMs.com/mediaStreamer/DAET_RolandK_AE_CC2018_KSV_01.pdf

http://www.broadcastGEMs.com/mediaStreamer/Roland_Oct30_01.txt

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Nov 06, 2017 0
Mar 12, 2018

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What is Adobe's reasoning for restricting certain keys?

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Mar 12, 2018 1
Jul 01, 2018

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Why suddenly make it more difficult to customise AE? That doesn't make any sense!!!

Today I found out that I can no longer use the shortcut keys I've had assigned for over six years!!! Adobe, whyyyyy??????

I've always had D as one frame back and F as one frame forward, and Shift & D as ten frames back, Shift & F as ten frames forward. With my right hand on the mouse, these keys sit absolutely perfectly where my left hand rests on the keyboard and makes moving incrementally through the timeline super-ergonomic and fast.

Using the default Command & Left/Right Arrow keys seems silly, because I have to hold down Command with my left hand and then  take my right hand off the mouse to press the Arrow keys. Doesn't sound like too much of a hassle but if you're doing that all day, when you could be just pressing one key, it's just a massive waste of time and the complete opposite of ergonomic.

Please just let us assign what keys we want where we want. And especially don't make things we've used for years suddenly unaccessible. That is soooooo annoying!!!

Sorry for bitching but locking that F key has completely ruined a workflow I've been using for years.

Change it back please!

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Jul 01, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 02, 2018

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All of us in this thread are users like you. We aren't employed by Adobe. If you would like Adobe to officially hear you, the UserVoice page is the best way. Be sure to be specific about what you're asking for. "Putting it back the old way" isn't going to happen (the new keyboard shortcut editor is way, way better than before), but not locking certain keys could definitely be looked at. If that makes sense...

Anyway, here's the link (check to see if someone else has filed a similar request and add your +1, if not, create your own. 😞 After Effects: Hot (566 ideas) – Adobe video & audio apps

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Jul 02, 2018 0
Engaged ,
Nov 21, 2019

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While Szalam's answer has been MARKED as correct, it's not technically correct. There is a way to do this, which I posted on Uservoice: https://adobe-video.uservoice.com/forums/911311-after-effects/suggestions/38385004-remove-keybind-re...

But I'll post it again, here.

 

You can circumvent the keybind restrictions by modifying the .txt file the keyboard shortcuts are saved to.

For me, the folder location was here:
C:\Users\13gpu\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\After Effects\16.1\aeks
You'll have to replace "13gpu" with your own username.

And my current text file of shortcuts is called:
taran 4 - AE keyboard.txt
...but yours will be different.

Then I just opened that file in a notepad, and changed a few lines, like so:

opacity changed to O.pngtooltext changed to T.png

Then I saved the .txt file and restarted After Effects. It works like a treat!

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Nov 21, 2019 3
Mar 24, 2020

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your answer should be the correct one, helped me

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Mar 24, 2020 1
Oct 26, 2020

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You just saved my day! I realy don't understand how it didn't occure to adobe that some people would like to have shortcuts to be synced across their applications. (T) for Text tool, just the most obvious instance ...

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Oct 26, 2020 2
TaranVH LATEST
Engaged ,
Nov 19, 2020

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Thanks! People like you are the reason I go out of my way to provide documentation of the stuff I figure out!

Too bad the Adobe forum redeisgn essentially deleted all the old threads... ugh. If it wasn't deliberate, they sure didn't mind at all.

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Nov 19, 2020 1