Seven Useful ProPresenter Features You May Not Be Using


14 Jun 2016

ProPresenter is not only one of the most powerful pieces of software available for church media, it’s one of my personal favorites. I’ve been using it for almost ten years and have loved watching this ministry-focused presentation software become the industry standard.

Since it’s such a robust program, it’s easy to overlook some of the features that are tucked away in all of its menus and toolbars. Plus, with each new update, new tools are constantly being released to make your workflow easier.

So, I’ve put together a quick list of features that are extremely useful that you may not know even exist in the software. Hopefully you’ll find a few that can help you create a better video experience for your church family.

This list is based on Version 6.0.20, but will apply to many other versions.

1. Playlist Headers

The larger your playlist becomes, the more difficult it can be to find things on the fly. Adding in headers to separate your list, such as “Pre-Service,” “Worship,” or “Announcements,” can help keep you organized. Headers can easily be inserted by pressing the “+” button in the bottom left corner next to the Playlist and selecting “New Header.”

Playlist Headers


2. The All Caps Button

Not long ago, I wrote an article detailing several methods for the seemingly simple task of changing lyrics in ProPresenter to all capital letters. Since then, their developers heard the cries of their people and added a one-click option for this. (This calls for celebration!) It can be found in the Text Properties tab in Editor.

All Caps


3. Background Soft Loop

Have a background video that looks awesome but doesn’t loop perfectly? Choose the “soft loop” behavior in Media Properties to keep your audience from noticing the skip. This feature will play the video once, and when it reaches the end of the file, it will loop while also performing a crossfade. This will work great when using nature videos or time-lapses.

Soft Loop


4. Cues/The Cue Palette

One of my favorite features can be found by right-clicking on any slide in a presentation and selecting “Add Cue.” Cues can be used to trigger commands in ProPresenter automatically when a slide is clicked. We use this in our church to switch our Stage Display layout during different parts of worship and to start a timer on the first slide of our pastor’s message.

Cues


5. The Contiguous Button

Normally when you click on an item in your playlist, it only shows one presentation or file in the Slide Viewer to the right. However, if you click on the Contiguous button (located just above the Playlist), everything in your playlist will be loaded into the Slide Viewer for one continuous view of everything for your service. Combined with the headers that I mentioned before, it can totally improve your workspace.

Contiguous Button


6. Custom Transition Styles/Speed

The ideal style and speed of your slide transitions will vary from song to song. In the past, this meant having to change your transition settings on the fly between each presentation. Now, you assign custom transition styles and speeds for each song by using the transition icon located in the upper right corner of your screen. This is particularly useful for assigning fast transitions to upbeat songs and slow fades to more intimate songs.

Custom Transitions


7. Keyboard Shortcuts To Toggle Outputs

We’ve all ran into a situation where we’ve needed to disable our main ProPresenter output or Stage Display output. I’d say around 99% of those times are when we’ve accidentally filled our main display and covered all of the controls of the ProP interface. Two quick shortcuts to remember in these times are Cmd+1 (Ctrl+1 on Windows) to toggle your main output and CMD+2 (Ctrl+2 on Windows) to toggle your Stage Display output. It may seem like an insignificant feature now, but you’ll be thanking me later.


What do you think?

Have you ever used any of these features?
Were any of these new to you?
Let us know by leaving a comment below!

Backgrounds provided by Church Motion Graphics.


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Kendall Conner

Kendall Conner serves as the Creative Pastor at Piedmont Chapel in Greensboro, NC. He is a graphic designer, video editor, and all-around media geek, but above all enjoys seeing lives changed. Together with his beautiful wife, Holly, they strive to use media to spread the message of Christ and equip others for ministry.

Comments

  1. To go along with the first point, if you use Planning Center Online, you can import your PC into ProPresenter and the headers and sub-headers will be inserted in your playlist. You can access that through preferences/services then login to your Planning Center Online. Once you’ve enabled Planning Center, you will see an option when creating a new playlist for New PCO Playlist. This is a great feature!!

    • Kendall Conner : June 14, 2016 at 9:46 am

      Yes! That is an awesome feature. Our church isn’t currently using it, but we’re big into PCO. Maybe we need to revisit that.

      • It’s a great addition. Plus with the library match, you don’t have to search through the library, it matches and loads the playlist.

    • Jordan Cunningham : June 14, 2016 at 10:20 am

      I would have to agree. The PCO Playlist download is my favorite feature. Saves so much time, especially if someone forgot to set everything up prior to Sunday morning. There have been a few times when I’ve had to set everything up 15 minutes before our first service because someone forgot. The library match is super helpful in that kind of a time crunch.

      • Kendall Conner : June 14, 2016 at 10:23 am

        This is great!

        • In this situation, when having PCO connected to your ProP6, does your pastor load his sermon into the media file for his sermon?

          • I mean does he load his sermon into PCO for it to appear on ProP6?

          • Jordan Cunningham : June 22, 2016 at 3:57 pm

            We have a category that already in the service order on PCO titled, “Teaching” and we also have presentation in the library titled, “Teaching”. That way when the PCO is imported we click on “Teaching” in the library and click and drag the sermon slides into that presentation part. Then link it to the PCO Playlist. That takes a couple minutes a most unless you have to physically make the sermon slides inside of ProP6.

  2. I’ve used these all the time!!!

  3. Love the cues tip. Adding Stage Display and Countdown cues to everything! One issue: We have multiple services and it seems like once a countdown clock is cued and runs down it doesn’t reset automatically with clicking Clocks > refresh. Any way to have it automatically reset every time?

  4. Option + Enter on the Mac = break line in lyrics and creates new slide with everything left below it.

  5. Chris Hobby : June 14, 2016 at 4:50 pm

    I have ProPresenter 6 and fully up-to-date. I’m reasonably new to ProPresenter. I am struggling to find the “all caps” button that you mention in point #2 am I ment to download something?

  6. Is there a way to have it automatically capitalize the first word of every line?
    Absolutely the only thing I miss from liveworship.

  7. Is Propresenter6 a necessary upgrade for functionality? Our church does lyrics with a background and the occasional video.

    • Kendall Conner : June 21, 2016 at 11:37 am

      To get some of these features, you’ll need to upgrade. However, if you’re doing pretty simple stuff, I wouldn’t worry about it.

  8. One thing you didn’t mention is Slides by Group. If you look at the 5th slide (The Contiguous Button), at the bottom of the pic is a check box “Slides by Group”. Our team really likes this option on.

    Rather than slides listed “continuously, as screen width permits —
    v1a, v1b, chorus1a, chorus1b, v2a etc.

    Each group starts a new line so you see:
    v1a, v1b
    chorus1a, chorus1b
    v2a, v2b…

    I may not be explaining it correctly, but if you use slide groups/labels, and check the box, you will see the difference.

    Our worship leader likes to “be led by the spirit”, and often changes things, particularly at the end of a song, he may repeat a verse, or going back to the bridge. Grouping the slides makes it very easy to find / jump to 1st slide.

    Definitely a personal preference, but we like it.

    I think this was added in V6.x

  9. I need to upgrade to pro 6… most of these features are not available on pro 5

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