ProRes is an outstanding family of codecs, even if Adobe Premiere Pro is your principle editing tool. However, Adobe did not create any ProRes presets until the current (2019) version.
Here’s how to create a ProRes setting in both current versions Adobe Media Encoder (AME) and earlier.
NOTE: Here’s an article on how to create a ProRes sequence setting in Adobe Premiere.
WHAT IS PRORES?
“Apple ProRes is a high quality, lossy video compression format developed by Apple Inc. for use in post-production that supports up to 8K. It is the successor of the Apple Intermediate Codec and was introduced in 2007 with Final Cut Studio 2. It is widely used as a final format delivery method for HD broadcast files in commercials, features, Blu-ray and streaming.
“ProRes is a line of intermediate codecs, which means they are intended for use during video editing, and not for practical end-user viewing. The benefit of an intermediate codec is that it retains higher quality than end-user codecs while still requiring much less expensive disk systems compared to uncompressed video. It is comparable to Avid’s DNxHD codec or CineForm which offer similar bitrates and are also intended to be used as intermediate codecs.” (Wikipedia)
All variations of ProRes have a video bit-depth of 10 bits or greater.
NOTE: AME does not ship with the ProRes codecs. The easiest, and cheapest, way to get them is to purchase either Apple Motion or Compressor. Either includes all the ProRes codecs.
FOR OLDER SYSTEMS
Open Adobe Media Encoder and click the plus icon in the top left corner. Then, select Create Encoding Preset.
NOTE: Create Ingest Preset creates import presets for Adobe Premiere Pro CC.
This opens the Preset Settings window.
Give your new preset a name, then, from the Format menu, pick QuickTime.
NOTE: QuickTime is a word with many meanings: it is both a movie format and a “foundation” for a variety of older codecs. The QuickTime 7 Foundation is going away with macOS 10.15 and later. However, the QuickTime movie format is fully supported by Apple and continuing.
After you select QuickTime, the Based on Preset menu changes to include a variety of ProRes settings. (This menu will look different depending upon which version of AME you are running.) Here, I’m selecting ProRes 422. Which version should you pick?
It depends upon the video you initially shot. (Remember, ProRes is designed for editing and master files, not for posting to the web.)
NOTE: Converting a lower-quality camera format, such as H.264, to a higher-quality format, such as ProRes 422, does not add more quality. It just means that you won’t lose any quality during the conversion.
The rest of the Basic Video Settings are fine.
As you can see from the settings in the Audio panel, ProRes defaults to fully uncompressed, stereo audio using a 48,000 Hz sample rate and 16-bit depth. You can adjust audio bit-depth up to 32-bit.
NOTE: Audio bit depth controls the gradation of audio volume. 16-bit is fine for recording and distribution. Most audio mixing is done at 32-bit depth.
NOTE: When creating final output, be sure to check Use Maximum Render Quality. This will improve the look of effects in a final output. It is not necessary when transcoding from 8-bit video to ProRes.
I also recommend against Use Previews. Using previews saves time by reusing existing render files. However, I prefer to create all new renders for my final output. Again, for transcoding camera masters this setting does not apply.
When you have adjusted your settings, click OK.
FOR CURRENT SYSTEMS
For current system, Adobe created a new ProRes category containing all six ProRes variations.
You’ll find them in System Presets > Broadcast > Apple ProRes
NOTE: What about Apple ProRes RAW? This is created at the camera during initial recording, NOT in transcoding, because it needs to record the Bayer pattern (pixel locations) directly from the camera sensor. You would NEVER transcode existing media into ProRes RAW because the video is no longer “linked” to the camera sensor.
Here’s an article that explains ProRes RAW further.
The new setting now appears in User Presets & Groups. At this point, you can apply it to clips the same as any other compression setting.
NOTE: Here’s a webinar that covers how to use Adobe Media Encoder.
10 Responses to Create ProRes Settings in Adobe Media Encoder
This was sooooooo helpful. Thank you!!!
Happy to help.
Thanks for this helpful tutorial! I was looking for ProRes setting!
Question about the audio setting. I have an option that shows up beneath what you show in the pic for “Mono” or “Discrete”. I tried each and the ‘get info’ on the QT shows “mono mono” for Mono instead of the usual “Stereo”, and when I chose “Discrete” I got no sound at all.
How do I get normal stereo tracks so that it simply says “Stereo” when I ‘get info’ so I can be assured it’s actually true stereo?
Make sure the sequence settings are to stereo. Also, dual-channel mono will work, as long as the odd channel is panned fully left and the even channel is panned fully right.
Hey Larry, thanks very much for this – very informative. I transcoded some ProRes Raw into 4444XQ to be able to use into Resolve.
It looks like the 4444XQ is baked with this weird Rec709 hardcoding. The same happens when I import ProRes Raw straight into Premiere, but with the exposure slider I’m able to recover all the info.
But with the 4444 conversion, it’s clipped beyond recovery.
Would Compressor do a better job with the conversion?
Thanks very much!
Good question. I don’t think Compressor would do a better job, as it uses the same compression engine as Final Cut.
Instead, I suggest you contact Apple Support.
Are there presets in Media Encoder that would give me a higher data rate that I might not need? The LTs I’m rendering out are massive compared to what I thought they’d be.
Thanks for your time,
Many of the presets in Adobe Media Encoder have unnecessarily high bit rates. Take a look at tweaking the bit rate setting to bring the file size down – however, be careful. Bring it down too far and you’ll lose image quality.
Every movie is different, there’s no magic setting that fits all.
I am trying to use this method with Prores Raw from an Atomos Ninja V with a Panasonic S1H and it is not working. I looked around for solutions but it seems that the encoder cannot down sample from Raw to 4444 on windows. Have you been able to do this or have any suggestions about how to convert the footage so that I can grade in Resolve? From what I found you can only convert this footage on a mac using compressor.
I don’t run Windows, so I don’t have any advice. I suggest you contact Atomos, who should have a work-around.