I'm using Blender to do the video editing for one of my projects. The interface is somewhat counter-intuitive, but I use it because it gives me crazy amounts of control and it's very dependable. I'm working with multiple layers, and just because playback can be so slow, I was wondering if there is a way to disable a given layer for playback and then turn it back on when it's time to render (for example, if I had a music track or a color correction clip). I know that I can press the "eye" icon on individual clip properties, but I don't have time to do that for maybe 100 sound effects clips every single time I want to switch between rendering and playing. Thanks!


4 Answers 4


To disable within the VSE, use Mute Strip.

Mute Strips: H

Un-Mute Strips: Alt + H

example of Strip menu - Mute Strip


Use B to box select, select all the strips in the desired track, then click Strip > Mute Strips (or press H). This will turn the selected strips off.


There's a couple of great features hidden in the user-preferences.

Press ctrl+alt+u to open user-prefs

Select the "input" tab

In the search-box type "mute"

The last part of the search-result concerns the Video-editor and here you'll notice that the options for muting and un-muting strips seems to be duplicated - but they're not.

Even though it says:

  • Mute
  • Mute
  • Un-Mute
  • Un-Mute

It really should say:

  • Mute selected
  • Mute everything BUT the selected
  • Un-Mute selected
  • Un-Mute everything BUT the selected

I can't remember the default key-settings, but I now have:

  • Mute selected = H
  • Mute everything BUT the selected = Alt+H
  • Un-Mute selected = J
  • Un-Mute everything BUT the selected = Alt+J

Press CTRL+ALT+U - or perhaps CMD+ALT+U

Furthermore if you open the 'select' menu - you'll find options for selecting "all strips to the right/left" or just "strips to the right/left". The last one selects only strips on the same channel as the currently selected, whereas the first selects all to the right/left regardless of channel.

select menu in the VSE

These can also be used to mute/unmute a boatload of strips in one go, and of course you can define your own keyb. shortcuts. If you assign a shortcut to them, muting an entire channel (similar to muting a track in an audio-sequencer) becomes easy: select a strip - select all to the right and/or left of it, mute them.


I know I am a bit late, but you can always group everything on a metastrip, and mute/unmute the metastrip. To create the metastrip just select all the strips you want to group and press Ctrl+G. Then, when you select the metastrip you can apply group commands to all the strips in the metastrip with the shortcuts Acebone mentioned. One thing to note, you can always access every individual strip in the metastrip pressing Tab when the metastrip is selected (pressing tab again will group everything together again).

  • $\begingroup$ Hey, welcome to the site! Could you add some detail on how someone unfamiliar with Blender would do this? We get a lot of new Blender users coming through here so it's best to make answers that are as complete as possible. $\endgroup$
    – J Sargent
    Jul 13, 2018 at 14:52

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