Media Encoder is a sneaky little program that comes packaged with a Creative Cloud subscription. The purpose of this program is to transcode your footage from one format to another. When would you need to do this? Well you should always transcode your footage to Apple Pro Res before editing in Premiere, for example. Or maybe you may need to transcode a Quicktime file in order to upload it to Vimeo or Youtube. Regardless, our computers provide you with all the necessary presets to transcode or compress any number of clips.
NOTE: If you are unfamiliar with the concepts of Codecs, it may be helpful to check out our guide here: Understanding Codecs, Proxies, and Transcoding
- Open up Media Encoder and you will find four different areas within the interface.
- On the top left we have our Media Browser, which is where we will import our Media/clips.
- Below this is the Preset Browser, where we will find various transcode settings.
- On the top right lives the Queue; this is where we will see the order of clips we will transcode as well as their individual settings.
- Then below that is the Encoding window, which goes into more detail about a clip as it is being transcoded.
- The first step is to import your media. In the Media Browser tab, navigate to your the folder containing your clip on your hard drive.
- Double click on a clip to add it to your Queue
- If you are planning to transcode multiple clips, you could add those to the queue now too however we recommend waiting a few steps before you do so. Once you have selected all the settings on your first clip (next steps in this article), you can add the rest of your clips to your queue and they will automatically receive the same settings.
- In the Queue, you will see four columns: Format, Preset, Output File, and Status.
- The Codec/”format” you choose will affect which Presets are available. For example, our computers have a few different Vimeo/Youtube presets available under the H.264 format (which is the format most often used when exporting for the web). If you are transcoding footage to be edited in Premiere or another editing program, you’re most likely going to use a Quicktime format and Apple ProRes preset. The Preset Browser will tell you which Format each preset can be found under. Again, for more information on Codecs, see our guide here: Understanding Codecs, Proxies, and Transcoding
- Always double check the framerate or your original media before transcoding it. To do so, navigate to the clip in finder and open it in Quicktime. Press Command+I and window will appear with your, frame rate, resolution codec, etc.
- To customize your settings further, click on the (blue) Format or Preset chosen for an individual clip in the Queue tab. This will open a familiar window for Premiere editors, the Export Settings window, which allows you to ensure the best possible export.
- If you are encoding H.264 files worried about the size of your file, find the bitrate setting under your video settings in the Export Settings window. A lower bitrate will produce a smaller file. The estimate file size can be found at the bottom of the export settings window. Click OK when you are finished in this window.
- If you are transcoding multiple clips, now is the time to add the rest of the clips to the queue. Since you have already chosen the settings of your first clip, any clips you add to the queue at this point will receive the same settings.
- Make sure you set the correct destination for your clip by clicking on the blue path under 'Output File.' If you are transcoding multiple clips, highlight them all (CMD + A to select all) and click the blue text under Output File' to set a destination for all clips.
Starting Queue & Transcoding
- Once you have chosen your format, presets, and file destination it is time to being transcoding! Simply hit the green play button in the top right corner of the Queue window.
- As a clip transcodes, the Encoding window will give you live updates as well as list information on your export settings.
- The new clip will appear in your Media Browser as well as the destination you set on your hard drive.