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How to Export a Video in Premiere

Once editing is complete and you’re ready to deliver your finished video project to a client or you’re simply ready to finalize so that you can prepare for the distribution of the content yourself, it’s time to export. Learning how to export video in Premiere or Premiere Pro is one of the most sought after tutorials for new filmmakers and editors. In fact, this is an important skill for you to have regardless of how early, or advanced, you are in the stage of film editing.

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Learning how to export video in Premiere can be challenging, especially with so many different settings to contend with when you click to view the export tab. Couldn’t they make it a little bit simpler? But the fact is, it’s not all that complicated to do – even if it does seem to be, at first.

Step 1:  Opening the Export Window or Tab

To export a video, clip, or edited file in Premiere you’re going to choose the following: File>Export>Media 

If you’re on a Mac, consider command keys your friend! To perform the above shortcut, simply choose Cmd + M.

If you’re on a PC, similar shortcuts exist. All you have to do is choose Ctrl + M

Step 2:  Choosing Your Settings

The export window is going to open up your sequence settings window. This is where you will choose how you want the export to take place. To do this, you should be thinking about how your finished video will be distributed and viewed.

Will it be published to your website? Will you upload the video to YouTube? Are you planning to send it to a client? 

Choose your settings based on how you intend to deliver the video and what the purpose is. Premiere provides many different presets to make this easier for you (although it may complicate matters for those who are new to the process).

If you see the preset that fits the intended delivery of your video, such as YouTube 1080 HD, choose that to quickly finish step 2. 

To bypass the customized settings that are preset for you and choose the sequence that you design, simply select Match Sequence Settings  which you can find at the very top of the list.

This automatically adjusts the settings to whatever you choose specifically. However, most of the settings you’ll need are already preset, so it’s a good idea to get accustomed to using those.

Step 3:  Define Intended Platform for Distribution

One of the most important tips on how to export video in Premiere is to have a plan in place ahead of time for your video. Knowing where you intend to distribute your video once it’s exported is important.

If you know you’ll be uploading to YouTube, this will help you in adjusting your settings and finalizing your export. Premiere has export settings for many different platforms and processes to make your life easier.

A little planning on your part goes a long way in helping you to establish the appropriate export settings for your video in Premiere – and with ease!

Step 4:  To Export with Custom Settings Select Format & Codec

If you don’t want to use the pre-established settings in Premiere, you’ll have to create those settings yourself. To export with custom settings, first select the format that is most suitable for your video.

If you plan to post the video online, but you’re not sure where, choosing a setting that is most appropriate for web based playback is important.

Choose H.264 codec as your format. Most of your playback settings or format codecs will fall into this category.

Next, choose a sequence for the desired output. 

Step 5:  Adjust & Fine Tune

Choosing a name for the final exported file is important. Make sure that you’re using appropriate file naming conventions. This is also the point where you must check the boxes for “Output video” and “output audio.”

Failure to check both will render your final file with one or the other missing.

There are several other settings here that you can choose from including the Bitrate Settings. If exporting a master copy of your footage or file, you should have a high bitrate. To do this, make sure that your Maximum Bit Rate is set to twice the Target Bit Rate.

Choose VBR, 2 Pass for your Bitrate Encoding. This will tell Premiere to make a double pass through your files to ensure that the final export is clean and free from any corrupted frames.

Step 6: Export Video in Premiere

The final step is to export your video. You have the option of queuing or exporting. Choose Queue if you wish to export after other processes have completed on the system. Choose Export to immediately begin the export sequence.

Keep in mind that if Exporting immediately, other processes in Premiere will become unavailable until the file is finished. 

Now you know how to export video in Premiere. It’s really not that hard is it?