Best Practices: Export faster
- Adobe Premiere Pro User Guide
- Beta releases
- Getting started
- Hardware and operating system requirements
- Creating projects
- Workspaces and workflows
- Capturing and importing
- Importing from Avid or Final Cut
- Supported file formats
- Digitizing analog video
- Working with timecode
- Edit video
- Create and change sequences
- Change sequence settings
- Add clips to sequences
- Rearrange clips in a sequence
- Find, select, and group clips in a sequence
- Edit from sequences loaded into the Source Monitor
- Simplify sequences
- Rendering and previewing sequences
- Working with markers
- Source patching and track targeting
- Scene edit detection
- Overview of audio in Premiere Pro
- Audio Track Mixer
- Adjusting volume levels
- Edit, repair, and improve audio using Essential Sound panel
- Automatically duck audio
- Remix audio
- Monitor clip volume and pan using Audio Clip Mixer
- Audio balancing and panning
- Advanced Audio - Submixes, downmixing, and routing
- Audio effects and transitions
- Working with audio transitions
- Apply effects to audio
- Measure audio using the Loudness Radar effect
- Recording audio mixes
- Editing audio in the timeline
- Audio channel mapping in Premiere Pro
- Use Adobe Stock audio in Premiere Pro
- Overview of audio in Premiere Pro
- Advanced editing
- Best Practices
- Video Effects and Transitions
- Overview of video effects and transitions
- Titles, Graphics, and Captions
- Overview of the Essential Graphics panel
- Create a shape
- Draw with the Pen tool
- Align and distribute objects
- Change the appearance of text and shapes
- Apply gradients
- Add Responsive Design features to your graphics
- Install and use Motion Graphics templates
- Replace images or videos in Motion Graphics templates
- Use data-driven Motion Graphics templates
- Best Practices: Faster graphics workflows
- Retiring the Legacy Titler in Premiere Pro | FAQ
- Upgrade Legacy titles to Source Graphics
- Animation and Keyframing
- Color Correction and Grading
- Overview: Color workflows in Premiere Pro
- Auto Color
- Get creative with color using Lumetri looks
- Adjust color using RGB and Hue Saturation Curves
- Correct and match colors between shots
- Using HSL Secondary controls in the Lumetri Color panel
- Create vignettes
- Looks and LUTs
- Lumetri scopes
- Display Color Management
- HDR for broadcasters
- Enable DirectX HDR support
- Exporting media
- Export video
- Export Preset Manager
- Workflow and overview for exporting
- Quick export
- Exporting for the Web and mobile devices
- Export a still image
- Exporting projects for other applications
- Exporting OMF files for Pro Tools
- Export to Panasonic P2 format
- Export settings
- Best Practices: Export faster
- Collaboration: Frame.io, Productions, and Team Projects
- Collaboration in Premiere Pro
- Team Projects
- Working with other Adobe applications
- Organizing and Managing Assets
- Working in the Project panel
- Organize assets in the Project panel
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- Managing metadata
- Best Practices
- Working in the Project panel
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- Working with Proxies
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- Premiere Pro for Apple silicon
- Eliminate flicker
- Interlacing and field order
- Smart rendering
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- Best Practices: Working with native formats
- Knowledge Base
- Set preferences
- Monitoring Assets and Offline Media
The last step in production – the thing that stands between the final edit and the final delivery – is export. Nobody gets to go home until the export is finished so editors need the final export to go out as fast as possible.
Exporting is about compression – while preserving as much of the image detail as possible. By default, Premiere Pro prioritizes quality for exports, but that doesn’t mean your exports have to be slower. This Best Practices guide covers features in Premiere Pro (and Adobe Media Encoder) that can streamline your overall workflow and ensure faster exports with better Previews, and Smart Rendering of key codecs. If your system supports it, you can also use hardware acceleration for H.264 and HEVC (H.265), two very processor-intensive formats.
What the Timeline tells you
Timeline colors tell the story. The thin colored line along the top of the Timeline in Premiere Pro indicates what’s happening underneath with that part of the sequence. If the line is yellow, that means your content is accelerated by the Mercury Playback Engine (a combination of software and GPU technologies). If it’s red, Premiere Pro is solely using CPU processing, for example for an After Effects composition. If the thin line is green, that means that Previews have been generated for this section of your sequence.
How to create Previews
Premiere Pro renders sections of your sequence when you create a Preview, which you can do by choosing Sequence > Render Effects In to Out (or Render In to Out). “Render as you go” means creating Preview files. These take a moment to generate, so do it when you’re taking a break from editing. Previews can provide smoother playback, but there’s an extra payoff when exporting.
Using Previews to speed up export
Premiere Pro’s default Previews are optimized for playback, not image quality. If you select Use Previews in the Export mode, Premiere Pro will apply the Preview render files for your export. That may give you a speed boost, but you will be re-compressing an already compressed file, which is not ideal for quality. You can get the best of both worlds (editing performance and optimal export quality) by choosing a high-quality codec for your Previews.
Changing Previews to Mezzanine codecs
When using previews on export, it’s important to make sure they’re robust and of high enough quality. By default, previews are disposable renders designed to generate quickly.
To create high quality previews, open your Sequence Settings and change the Editing to Custom. Then switch to an appropriate Mezzanine codec. By doing so, the Preview files are now of high quality – usable for export.
As an example, our Best Practices: Create your own project templates, has a series of sequences that are set to ProRes 422 for Previews.
This is similar in concept to choosing to Transcode on ingest. See our Best Practices: Working with native formats for detailed instructions on setting up ingest workflows.
Smart Rendering of codecs
If your Preview codec matches your output codec, your export time can shrink from minutes to seconds.
Generally, whether or not there are previews, when media is exported, it gets re-compressing. Premiere Pro and Adobe Media Encoder do a great job of preserving image quality. By default, the source footage and effects are compressed to the final output codec, transforming media as little as possible.
Using high-quality Previews for export, removes the need to recalculate the encoding, at a negligible impact on quality. This is key in fast turnaround workflows. When you create high-quality Previews with the same codec as your output codec, Adobe Premiere Pro intelligently speeds up your workflow: instead of recompressing your media, Premiere Pro copies the already computed Previews into the output file.
Technically, Premiere has the capability of doing this type of file copy when sources are untouched and merely edited (shortened) and output to the same codec. An example would be XDCam originals, edited (no effects) and then output to XDCam. But today that almost never happens: at the very least, every clips gets a little color correction. Since every clip will get an effect – the source codec no longer matters, as long as the Preview files and output codecs match.
Smart Rendering is available for a range of formats, both mezzanine codecs and key cameras codecs. For a full list, see Smart rendering.
Accelerating h264/HEVC (H.265) output
High compatibility distribution formats, such as H.264and HEVC (H.265) work on a very wide range of devices and platforms. They offer fast upload times in relation to their file size and that’s why they are preferred codecs for YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Vimeo, and others.
But that versatility come with a cost: time. The H.264 and HEVC are processing-intensive formats which place high demands on your system.
Premiere Pro supports Intel Quick Sync Video technology, available in Core i5 and Core i7 CPUs for hardware-based decoding and encoding of H.264 and HEVC files. Decoding means smoother playback; encoding means faster exports (See Premiere Pro hardware acceleration requirements).
To use hardware encoding for H.264 and HEVC files during export, select that option in the Export mode. If your hardware does not support it, you will only see Software Encoding.
The results will be significantly faster in hardware encoding. The only caveat? Hardware encoding is generally limited to CBR and 1 pass VBR. Generally, data rates need to be slightly higher to ensure quality – meaning slightly larger files.
About these Best Practice guides
Adobe helps you get to the finish line faster. Learn more in our new Best Practices guides for video editing and production.
- Joe Newcombe is head of sales and marketing at Support Partners, a system integrator for broadcasters and post-production facilities. He’s based in the UK.
- Jeff Greenberg is a consultant, master trainer, and author of Adobe Premiere Pro Studio Techniques.
- Maxim Jago is a Paris-based filmmaker, master trainer, and author of Premiere Pro Classroom in a Book.
- Alex Macleod is a production professional, broadcasting consultant, and owner of Media City Training in the UK.
- Jarle Leirpoll is a filmmaker, editor, and Master trainer based in Norway. He is also the author of The Cool Stuff in Premiere Pro.
- Ian Robinson is a broadcast motion designer, and regular Adobe MAX trainer. Ian is based in Silverthorne, Colorado.