Adobe Premiere Pro CC
Supported file formats
Premiere Pro can import many video and audio formats. Premiere Pro can import files in the formats listed, provided the codec used to generate a specific file is installed locally. Most of these software modules are installed automatically with Premiere Pro.
See the PDF Supported video and animation file formats for a basic list of supported file formats for import.
ASF (Netshow, Windows only)
AVI (DV-AVI, Microsoft AVI Type 1, and Type 2)
DV (raw DV stream, a QuickTime format)
FLV and F4V
Premiere Pro can import FLV files with video encoded using the On2 VP6 video codec. Premiere Pro, however, can’t import FLV files with video encoded with the Sorenson Spark video codec. As with any unsupported format, transcode the file to a format that Premiere Pro can import.
GIF (Animated GIF)
M1V (MPEG-1 Video File)
M2T (Sony HDV)
M2TS (Blu-ray BDAV MPEG-2 Transport Stream, AVCHD)
M4V (MPEG-4 Video File)
MOV (QuickTime Movie, requires QuickTime 7 for import of non-native QuickTime files; in Windows, requires QuickTime player)
MP4 (QuickTime Movie, XDCAM EX)
MPEG, MPE, MPG (MPEG-1, MPEG-2), M2V (DVD-compliant MPEG-2)
MXF (Media eXchange Format; P2 Movie: Panasonic Op-Atom variant of MXF, with video in DV, DVCPRO, DVCPRO 50, DVCPRO HD, AVC-Intra; XDCAM HD Movie, Sony XDCAM HD 50 (4:2:2), Avid MXF Movie), and native Canon XF
You can preview Native Canon XF files in the Media Browser, and the use of metadata is supported.
R3D (RED camera)
Adobe Premiere Pro supports RED Digital Cinema (R3D) files, including new color science support (REDcolor2, REDgamma2, REDlogFilm, etc.) and better curves and levels user interface. For a summary of the features for RED (R3D) footage, including RMD and Red Rocket card support, see this video by Video2Brain or this blog post.
Adobe has also released a preview version of advanced RED importer software that adds support for RED EPIC footage for Premiere Pro, as well as the following features:
Ability to rotate and flip footage based on the camera orientation flag in R3D metadata
Support for Echo port in R3D Source Settings dialog box, so that RED preview can be sent out to an external monitor
Increased size of RED R3D Source Settings dialog on large monitors
HDR track selection and HDR blend support
SWF files can be imported with an alpha channel. Audio is not retained. Interactive content and scripted animation are not retained. Animation defined by keyframes in the main, top-level movie is retained.
Render Type 1 AVI clips before previewing from a DV device. To render a Type 1 AVI clip, add it to a sequence in a DV project, and preview it.
AC3 (including 5.1 surround)
ASND (Adobe Sound Document)
AVI (Video for Windows)
BWF (Broadcast WAVE format)
M4A (MPEG-4 Audio)
mp3 (mp3 Audio)
MPEG, MPG (MPEG Movie)
MOV (QuickTime; requires QuickTime player)
MXF (Media eXchange Format; P2 Movie: Panasonic Op-Atom variant of MXF, with video in DV, DVCPRO, DVCPRO 50, DVCPRO HD, AVC-Intra; XDCAM HD Movie, Sony XDCAM HD 50 (4:2:2), Avid MXF Movie)
WMA (Windows Media Audio, Windows only)
WAV (Windows WAVeform)
BMP, DIB, RLE
ICO (Icon File) (Windows only)
JPEG (JPE, JPG, JFIF)
PSQ (Adobe Premiere 6 Storyboard)
PTL, PRTL (Adobe Premiere title)
TGA, ICB, VDA, VST
AAF (Advanced Authoring Format)
AEP, AEPX (After Effects project)
CSV, PBL, TXT, TAB (batch lists)
EDL (CMX3600 EDLs)
PLB (Adobe Premiere 6.x bin) (Windows only)
PREL (Adobe Premiere Elements project) (Windows only)
PRPROJ (Premiere Pro project)
PSQ (Adobe Premiere 6.x storyboard) (Windows only)
XML (FCP XML)
Premiere Pro on Mac OS imports projects from version CS3 onwards. You need the Windows version to open projects from earlier versions and save them as a current one.
About file formats
Some filename extensions—such as MOV, AVI, MXF, FLV, and F4V—denote container file formats rather than denoting a specific audio, video, or image data format. Container files can contain data encoded using various compression and encoding schemes. Premiere Pro can import these container files, but the ability to import the data that they contain is dependent on the codecs (specifically, decoders) installed.
By installing additional codecs, you can extend the ability of Premiere Pro to import additional file types. Many codecs installed into the operating system (Windows or Mac OS) work as a component inside the QuickTime or Video for Windows formats. Contact the manufacturer of your hardware or software for more information about codecs that work with the files that your specific devices or applications create. If Premiere Pro does not import your file, see this FAQ video tutorial, "Why can't Premiere Pro import my file?" for an explanation.
Video and still-image files that you want to import must not be more than the maximum dimensions allowed. For more information on maximum dimensions in Premiere Pro, see the Premiere Pro Work Area blog.
Adobe provides workflow guides for P2, RED, XDCAM, AVCCAM, and DSLR cameras and footage on the Adobe website.
Colin Brougham explains how Premiere Pro works natively with tapeless media (no transcoding) in this article and video series on the ProVideo Coalition website.
For more information about RED (R3D) digital cinema and Canon XF improvements in Premiere Pro, read this post on the Premiere Pro work area blog.
For an excellent explanation of importing files into Premiere Pro, see this excerpt from "An Editor's Guide to Premiere Pro," entitled, "Importing Media into Adobe Premiere Pro."
For information about shooting and capturing high-quality audio and video, see “Shooting and Capturing Great Video Assets”.
About transferring files
When transferring project files, such as After Effects project files, Premiere Pro project files, or Final Cut Pro project files from another computer to the computer on which you import those project files into Premiere Pro, make sure that you transfer all the assets associated with the project files. Keep the project files, and their associated assets, on the destination computer in folders that have names and folder structures identical with files on the computer of their origin.
It is possible to edit assets residing on file-based media, such as P2 cards, XDCAM cartridges, SxS cards, or DVDs. However, Premiere Pro performs faster if you first transfer the assets to a local hard disk. Using Windows File Explorer (Windows) or Finder (Mac OS), transfer files from file-based acquisition media. Then, import the files on the hard disk into Premiere Pro projects.
When transferring files to hard disk from file-based media, transfer the folder containing all related files and all of its subfolders. Keep the folder structure intact. For example, when transferring files from AVCHD file-based media, transfer the BDMV folder and all its contents. When transferring files from DVCPRO HD media, transfer the CONTENTS folder and all its contents. When transferring files from XDCAM EX media, transfer the BPAV folder and all its contents. When transferring files from DVD, transfer all the contents of the VIDEO_TS folder, and if it exists, all the contents of the AUDIO_TS folder.
Transfer video files from file-based media into the same folder you specify for captured video with the project scratch disk settings.
The folder structure for AVCHD assets
The folder structure for DVCPRO HD assets
The folder structure for XDCAM EX assets
The folder structure for DVD-video assets
About importing files
For a video overview of the ways to import assets into Premiere Pro, see the Adobe website.
Importing is different from capturing. The Import command brings files that are already on your hard disk or other connected storage device into your project. Importing files makes them available to a Premiere Pro project. Premiere Pro lets you import numerous types of video, still images, and audio. Finally, you can export a Premiere Pro project from After Effects, and import it into Premiere Pro.
You can import video, audio, and still files in various file formats into a Premiere Pro project. You can import a single file, multiple files, or an entire folder. Frame sizes cannot exceed 16 megapixels.
If you have spanned clips, be sure to import them via the Media Browser instead of importing them through the File menu.
If the software you use to create art doesn’t let you specify pixels as a unit of measure, try specifying points.
For a basic tutorial on importing, editing, and then exporting a file, see this video by Clay Asbury.
In Premiere Pro, you can import files by using the Media Browser or the Import command. You can also place files into Premiere Pro from Adobe Bridge.
Premiere Pro indexes certain types of files and transcodes others after importing them. You cannot edit these types fully until these processes are completed. The filename of a clip appears in the Project panel in italics until it has been fully indexed or transcoded.
To import files that Premiere Pro does not support natively, install the appropriate capture card or third-party plug-in software. For more information, check the manual that came with the installed card or plug-in.
You can also import files and folders by dragging them from Windows Explorer (Windows) or Finder (Mac OS) into the Project panel. On Windows Vista, if the User Account Control (UAC) is activated, Windows disables drag-and-drop from Windows Explorer, or any program, to any program running in Administrator mode. You run Premiere Pro in Administrator mode for plug-in activation, special disk access, and network permissions. To enable drag-and-drop while running Premiere Pro in Administrator mode, disable the UAC. In Windows Control Panel, select User Accounts. Disable UAC for the selected user.
Import files with the Media Browser
The Media Browser makes it easy to browse to files, and to find them by their type. Unlike the Import dialog box, the Media Browser can be left open, and docked, like any other panel. The Media Browser gives you quick access to all your assets while you edit. Also, you can use the Media Browser to import clips copied from video storage media such as P2 cards, SxS cards, XDCAM disks, and DVDs. When you import an asset Premiere Pro leaves it in its current location, and creates a clip in the Project panel that points to it. By default, Premiere Pro writes XMP files to the directory where the media files are located, but you can turn off this behavior in Preferences. For best performance, first transfer files from their file-based media to a local hard disk. Then, import them into Premiere Pro projects from the hard disk.
Import files with the Import commands
While you can import clips directly from file-based media connected to your computer, it is best to first transfer clips from these media to a hard disk. Then, import them from the hard disk. For more information about transferring files, see About transferring files
- Choose File > Import. You can select multiple files.
- To import a recently imported file, choose File > Import Recent File > [filename]. (The filename doesn’t appear if Premiere Pro preferences have been reset.)
- To import a folder of files, choose File > Import. Locate and select the folder, and then click Import Folder. The folder, with its contents, is added as a new bin in the Project panel.
- For instructions on importing a numbered still-image sequence as a clip, see Importing numbered still-image sequences as one clip.
Import files using Adobe Bridge
You can also drag clips from the Adobe Bridge Content panel directly into the Premiere Pro Project panel.
Premiere Pro supports four-channel assets. Every processed pixel in the render pipeline uses four channels. When Premiere Pro processes a three-channel asset, such as DV, HDV, or MPEG footage, Premiere Pro automatically converts it to a four-channel asset. Premiere Pro converts a three-channel asset when you add an effect or transition to the asset.
Premiere Pro supports 10-bit color depth, sometimes useful for editing standard and high-definition footage.