[Updated Nov. 11, 2020, with changes to how FCP X exports a region.]
Most of the time, we want to export an entire project from Final Cut Pro X. (And, if that is the situation you find yourself in, here’s an article that describes my current recommendations on how to do this.)
However, sometimes we just need to export a portion of a project, called a “region.” This ability to export a portion of a project first appeared in the 10.0.6 update to FCPX, so you may not be aware that it exists.
This is simple to do. Here’s how.
UPDATE: For Final Cut Pro X 10.4 or later, Option #1 and Rule #2 no longer work. You’ll need to set an In and/or Out. See Rule #3.
FINAL CUT PRO X v3 or earlier
The first rule of Final Cut Pro X is: “Select something, then do something to it.” (OK, maybe this isn’t as deep as “I think, therefore I am,” but its still pretty darn helpful.)
So, when we want to export a portion of a project, we need to select what we want to export first.
For example, to only export the range of a single clip, select the clip. Keep in mind that all clips contained within this range – above or below it whether selected or not – will also be exported.
NOTE: If you need to export a single clip, or a range within a single clip, the easiest way is to select the clip in the Event Browser, not the Timeline.
To export a group of clips as a single clip, select the group. This exports them as a single movie.
NOTE: Currently, Final Cut does not allow you to export a selected group of clips as separate clips. If you export a selection of clips as an XML file, all the media files contained in that project will be exported.
FINAL CUT PRO X v.10.4 or later
For more recent versions of Final Cut you need to set an In and/or Out. You can do this two ways: Select the region you wan to export using the Range selection tool (type R) or move the playhead where you want to set the In and type the letter I, then move the playhead where you want to set the Out and type the letter O.
NOTE: To remove the In and Out, type Option + X.
Here, I selected a portion of one clip using the Range selection tool. You can also adjust the range by dragging one of the vertical edges.
To export, choose File > Share > Master file (in Preferences, you can assign this the keyboard shortcut Cmd+E). In this example, all clips on all layers contained within a selection will be exported, not just the selected clips. And, remember, they are exported as a single movie file.
If you want to NOT export a clip, make it invisible or inaudible by selecting it and typing V. To toggle visibility back on, select it and type V, again.
I find this technique useful when I need to send clips to Motion. If I am sending clips to After Effects, I use Clip Exporter.
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