: Sam Morris > Tutorials > After Effects Tutorials > After Effects Rendering / Exporting Tutorial

After Effects Rendering / Exporting Tutorial

07.05.2008 Bookmark and Share

This seems to be the most common question with After Effects so here’s a tutorial that will show you how to export/render in After Effects.

1. Generally when working in After Effects you’ll constantly be setting the work area start/end points (B key / N key) so you can preview only the part of your composition that you’re working on. Before you add your composition to the render queue you’ll need to reset this (assuming you want to render the whole composition).

2. Place the playhead at the start of your composition. You can drag, but pressing the home key is the easier and more reliable method.

3. Now that the playhead is in the right location press B to set the work area start location. Again, you could drag the bar below the playhead, but using the shortcut keys is easier, more efficient, and more reliable.

4. Now drag the playhead to the end of the composition or press the end key.

5. Press the N key and set your work area end location. Then add the composition to the render queue.

6. The Render Queue tab will appear in the timeline area. I’ll be leaving the name of my file and output location alone, but if you want to give your movie a filename to be saved as you would click on the “” text and it would bring up the “Output Movie To” menu. The menu will also allow you to change the location of where your movie will be saved.

7. Before you render you’ll want to check your settings. Click the text (in red box) to bring up the Output Module Settings window. I can’t tell you what settings to use since it depends on your project and what you’ll be using it for, but I will mention that by default audio output is turned off in After Effects. If you want to export with audio then you’ll need to check off Audio Output at the bottom of the Output Module Settings. When you’re happy with your settings click OK.

8. Click the render button and that’s it. When your movie is done rendering go to the location you picked for the movie to be saved to and your file should be there.

Lastly, I’ll mention you can also export by going to File > Export, but you’ll loose the ability to set some settings and it’s generally not the preferred method for rendering. You should get in the habit of using the render queue if you don’t already.

After Effects Tutorials

  1. Saeed Ahmad
    August 5th, 2011 at 02:47 | #1

    Hello sir, thanks for the tutorial but i wanna know tht i done a project in after effect and when i want to export the video then the size will reach upto 10GB. The lenght of my video is 5 minutes. I wanna reduce the size, so plz tell me how i can do this?

    • Sethington
      July 20th, 2012 at 16:04 | #2

      If you have Adobe Premiere, Export your render as a image sequence file(JPEG is the best) and than render it out in premiere. For some reason it is smaller by quite a bit.

  2. April 29th, 2012 at 00:41 | #3

    hi. after exporting from after effects i noticed during play back that my clip has slowed down to a slow motion speed. it a 4min movie. I used five AVI files from Premier pro. i specifically wanted to masked the key frames to get a cloning effect.

  3. Luke
    August 26th, 2012 at 12:01 | #4

    Hello, I have a short movie I made shot with a Go Pro Hero 2 in 1080p where the footage interpolates as 29.970fps and is in MP4 format. I am using After Effects Cs5. When I add the composition to the Render Queue and Render Render it out the footage is really blurry. I am trying multiple formats and settings but am having no luck getting a clear image where the footage renders highly pixelated. When I ram preview the footage it is very sharp and clear (my composition is set to preview at full Resolution) I am not sure what the issue is.

  4. September 8th, 2013 at 17:51 | #5

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  5. Sagar More
    March 11th, 2014 at 22:49 | #6

    For small render size:
    1.render video from after effects then use adobe media encoder to reduce file size.
    2.Use compression in after effect, in above step no. 7 select 'H.261' by clicking on button format option
    from video output in lossless.
    for more info mail me

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