Exporting creates a new video or image sequence from your project. The exported media can then be used and played outside of HitFilm.

Exporting a Timeline

You can export any timeline, in whole or in part, to create a new video file of its contents. On the left hand side of each timeline are two icons. Which one you click determines what portion of the timeline is added to the Export Queue.

Export_contents Export Contents: The top button exports the entire contents of the timeline. If your timeline extends beyond the video it contains, any empty frames on the end will not be included in the export.
Export_workarea Export IN/OUT Area:  The bottom button exports only the work area of your timeline. The work area is defined by the In and Out points you set. To set the work area, move the playhead to the frame where you want the work area to begin, and press the I key (for "in") on the keyboard. Then, move the playhead to the frame where you want the work area to end, and press the O key (for "out").
 
Once the work area is set, click the Export Work Area button to add the work area to the render queue.

Exporting Multiple Media Items to Individual Clips

You can select multiple clips on the editor timeline, or multiple layers on a composite shot timeline, and then right-click on any of the items and select Add To Export Queue. This will add each selected item to the Export queue as a separate task, so that you can export them individually.

This can be useful for batch converting multiple files to a new format, or for exporting the individual elements of a scene for further compositing or editing in another application.

The Export Screen

The HitFilm Export screen is where you manage your exports. It is divided into two main sections. On the left is the Queue. You can add multiple export tasks to the queue, and export them individually or all at once. On the right is the Presets bank, where you can select from a variety of predefined export settings designed for different purposes. You can also customize the settings at any time you need to, and save your own export presets.

The Queue

When you export a timeline from the Edit screen of HitFilm, it is added to the export Queue. You can view the list of queued timelines here, and select the export details used by each task. The details of each task in the queue are also listed.

Name: The name of the task to be exported.
Format: The format to be used for the export. This is determined by the preset that is selected.
Preset: Presets contain a specified set of format and compression details which will be used to create the exported file. The presets panel on the right side of the Export screen can be used to manage your presets, and will be discussed later.
Duration: Indicates the total duration of the exported file.
Output: Here is where you can set the name and location that will be used by the exported file. Click on the Output field to enter a name to be used by your exported file, and to choose the location to which it will be saved.
Progress: Once you click the Start Exporting button, the progress of the task will be shown here, so you can see how much is completed, and how much of the render remains.
Start Time: The time of day at which the file began rendering for export.
Elapsed: The amount of time that has been spent processing the task so far. During the export, this number will change dynamically based on how long the task has taken. Once the export is complete, this will display the total time spent on rendering the exported file.
Remaining: An estimate of the amount of time it will take to complete the export.

At the bottom of the Queue there are several buttons for managing the task list.

Remove Task(s): Removes the selected task (or tasks) from the render queue
Remove Completed Task(s): When a render task is completed, it remains listed in the queue. You can select completed tasks and use this button to remove them when you no longer need them listed.
Start Exporting: Begins exporting all tasks listed in the render queue. Tasks will be processed in order, from the top of the list to the bottom.

Presets

The Presets portion of the Export screen lists all your available export presets. Presets allow you to save export settings that you wish to use again, and make it easy to export multiple versions of your project for different purposes. The included presets provide a variety of settings suitable for most export situations, but you are not limited to only exporting using these settings.

You can create your own presets at any time. Click the New Preset button below the presets list, then select the format you wish to use, MP4, Image Sequence, AVI (Windows), or MOV (Mac). Once you select a format, the options for that format will be shown, so you can select the specific settings you wish to use in your preset. These options are explained in detail below.

In the queue, you can select any of your available presets for each export task.

You can delete a preset by selecting it in the list, and then clicking the Delete Preset button at the bottom of the screen.

The From Source option that appears in various options when creating a preset allows the preset to adapt, and vary certain settings based on those used by the source timeline. For example, You may want to use a specific preset on source timelines that use different frame rates. Setting the Frame Rate to "From Source" allows you to do so.

MP4 Options

The MP4 format uses the H264 codec, which is superb for creating final content for delivery. It creates high quality video at remarkably small sizes, so is excellent for creating videos suitable for uploading to the internet.

Note that the MP4 format is designed specifically as a final delivery format. While an MP4 video may appear to be visually high quality, it will be lacking in detail compared to other formats. It is therefore recommended that H264 is not used to export video which is being transferred to another program for further work.

General Options

Name: Enter a name for your preset. This is the name that will be shown in the Presets panel of the Export screen.
Format: The format used by the preset. This option is selected from the New menu at the bottom of the panel, before the preset is made, and cannot be edited here.
Comment: You may add a comment to your preset, to remind you of details of the compression, or when the preset is intended to be used, or other information.

Video

Codec: MP4 export requires the use of the H.264 codec, so this setting cannot be edited.
Width / Height: Set the dimensions at which the timeline will be exported. By default these will be set to the dimensions of the selected timeline. You can also tick the box under "From Source" to have the preset automatically use the dimensions of the timeline being exported.
Scale Mode: This menu lets you control how the timeline is fitted into the exported frame.
         Keep Aspect Ratio is the default, and prevents the frame from being distorted if the export resolution uses a different aspect ratio from the timeline.
         Center will center the source timeline into the export resolution, without scaling. If the source is larger than your export resolution, it will be cropped to fit. If your source is smaller than the export resolution, black edges will be added.
         Ignore Aspect Ratio will warp the source timeline to fit the size and shape of the export resolution.
         Keep Aspect Ratio by Expanding will increase the scale of the source timeline as required to fill the export resolution, which may result in some cropping of the source timeline.
Frame Rate: This defaults to From Source, so the frame rate of whatever timeline you are exporting will be used, and should generally be left there. You can deselect the From Source option and manually select a frame rate, but keep in mind that changing the frame rate will affect the speed at which the video in the exported file plays back.
Aspect Ratio: sets the aspect ratio of individual pixels in your exported file. Modern HD formats nearly always use square pixels,but if you wish to export using non-square pixels, you can set the aspect ratio here.
Profile: Profiles define specific sets of capabilities in the exported file. Baseline keeps file sizes to a minimum. Main is the standard for broadcast TV, and is usually the best for standard definition content. High is the broadcast standard for HD television and Blu-Ray, and is also used for high quality digital storage.
Level: A Level defines a specific set of constraints within the selected Profile. These might be limitations on resolution or frame rate, or maximum bitrate. Increasing the Level will increase the available resolutions, bit rates, and frame rate options.
Encoding: You can select between variable or constant bitrate encoding. Bitrate refers to the rate at which the decoded data of the file is processed. Variable Bitrate is preferred in most cases. It allows a higher bitrate to be used in more complex frames of the file, and lower bitrates to be used in less complex areas where the additional data is not needed. Constant Bitrate uses the same bitrate for all frames regardless of their complexity,which can be useful for streaming content, but will tend toward quality degradation in more complex areas of the exported file.
Target Bitrate: When using Variable Bitrate encoding, the software will aim to make this the average bitrate for the entire file. In general, increasing the Target Bitrate increases the quality of the exported file.
Max Bitrate: When using Variable Bitrate encoding, this sets the highest bitrate that will be used for complex portions of the timeline. In general, set the Max Bitrate about 50% higher than your Target for best results.
Bitrate: If you are using Constant Bitrate encoding, there will only be one Bitrate slider, which defines the constant bitrate that will be used.

Audio

Codec: MP4 export requires the AAC audio format, so this setting cannot be edited
Channels: HitFilm export uses stereo audio, stored in two channels (left and right).
Sample Rate: Set the sample rate used by the exported audio. By default, HitFilm will use the same sample rate as the timeline that is being exported. However, if you wish to change it, you can deselect the "From Source" option, and choose a different sample rate from the menu. The sample rate refers to the number of audio samples per second of audio, and is similar to frame rate of a video signal. Higher sample rates don't necessarily bring a perceptible improvement in audio quality, but they can allow for more extensive editing to be done without audible damage to the signal. CD audio uses 44.1 KHz, while digital video typically uses 48 KHz.
Bitrate: The audio bitrate balances the file size and the audio quality. Higher bitrates will give greater fidelity at the cost of larger file sizes. 192 kbps is a typical High Quality setting, while 256 kbps is commonly used by professional AAC audio files for maximum fidelity. In the AAC format, exceeding 256 kbps is not likely to provide perceptible quality increase, though some other audio formats which use less efficient compression methods may benefit from higher bitrate values.

Image Sequence Options

Image sequences have the benefit of exporting one frame at a time, which can save you time in the event of unexpected power loss, as you only need to resume exporting from the most recently rendered frame (with most video formats you would need to start exporting again from the start). Several common image types are provided, including PNG, JPG, BMP and OpenEXR.

Image sequences cannot include audio.

General Options

Name: Enter a name for your preset. This is the name that will be shown in the Presets panel of the Export screen.
Format: The format used by the preset. This option is selected from the New menu at the bottom of the panel, before the preset is made, and cannot be edited here.
Comment: You may add a comment to your preset, to remind you of details of the compression, or when the preset is intended to be used, or other information.

Video

Format: Select the image format to be used by the exported sequence. PNG and BMP offer high quality images, but larger file sizes. JPG images provide excellent compression, for much smaller files that still offer acceptable image quality. OpenEXR is not intended as a real-time playback format. It is specifically designed to be a lossless, high quality interchange format.  OpenEXR is excellent for transferring video between different software. Combined with HitFilm 4 Pro's 16-bit or 32-bit render pipeline, OpenEXR is the best option for maintaining maximum quality, though filesizes are likely to be large.
Prefix: You can enter a prefix that will be used in the name of each image in the sequence. By default the prefix is set to "image", but you can enter any text you wish to use.
Example: The file names of the exported images will combine the prefix with the image number. This example shows what the image names will look like.
Dimensions: By default the dimensions will be set to From Source, so the dimensions of whatever timeline is being exported will be used. If you wish to override this, and create a preset that will always export to fixed dimensions, you can disable the "From Source" option, and set specific dimensions at which the timeline will be exported.
Scale Mode: This menu lets you control how the timeline is fitted into the exported frame.
         Keep Aspect Ratio is the default, and prevents the frame from being distorted if the export resolution uses a different aspect ratio from the timeline.
         Center will center the source timeline into the export resolution, without scaling. If the source is larger than your export resolution, it will be cropped to fit. If your source is smaller than the export resolution, black edges will be added.
         Ignore Aspect Ratio will warp the source timeline to fit the size and shape of the export resolution.
         Keep Aspect Ratio by Expanding will increase the scale of the source timeline as required to fill the export resolution, which may result in some cropping of the source timeline.
Channels: If you are exporting to a format that supports alpha channels, such as PNG or OpenEXR, then this option allows you to select which channels are included in the export. RGB will export only the color data. RGBA includes the color data as well as an alpha channel, to store the transparency data contained in the timeline being exported. If you are exporting to JPG or BMP formats, no alpha channel option will be available, as these formats cannot support alpha channels.
Compression: If you select PNG format, this slider will allow you to adjust the amount of compression applied to the image. Lower values reduce file size, at the cost of image quality. Higher values give better image quality, but create larger file sizes. If you select OpenEXR format, a variety of compression options will be listed.
         Uncompressed: no compression.
         PLZ (lossless): This is the default compressor option. A wavelet transform is applied to the pixel data, and the result is Huffman-encoded. This scheme tends to provide the best compression ratio for the types of images that are typically processed at Industrial Light & Magic. Files are compressed and decompressed at roughly the same speed. For photographic images with film grain, the files are reduced to between 35 and 55 percent of their uncompressed size.
         RLE (lossless): Differences between horizontally adjacent pixels are run-length encoded. This method is fast, and works well for images with large flat areas, but for photographic images, the compressed file size is usually only between 60 and 75 percent of the uncompressed size.
         ZIP (lossless): Differences between horizontally adjacent pixels are compressed using the DEFLATE compression algorithm.   16 rows of pixels are accumulated and compressed together as a single block. ZIP decompression is faster than PIZ decompression, but ZIP compression is significantly slower. Photographic images tend to shrink to between 45 and 55 percent of their uncompressed size.
         ZIPS (lossless): Like ZIP compression, but operates on one scan line (row) at a time.
         PXR24 (lossy): RGB pixel data is converted to luminance and chroma and then differences between horizontally adjacent pixels are compressed similar to the ZIP compressor.
         B44 (lossy): RGB pixel data is converted to luminance and chroma and then split into blocks of four by four pixels.  Each block is then compressed into a smaller size.  The size of a compressed B44 EXR file is about 25 percent of the uncompressed image and depends on the number of pixels in the image, but not on the data in the pixels. All images with the same resolution and the same set of channels have the same size.
         B44A (lossy): Like B44, except that blocks of four by four pixels where all pixels have the same value are compressed even further. For images with large uniform areas, B44A produces smaller files than B44 compression.
Quality: If you select JPG format, this option will be available. By default it is set to From Source, but if you wish to customize the quality level used, you can deselect the" From Source" option and manually specify the quality level. Higher values will give better image quality and larger file sizes.
Color Bit Depth: By default this is set to From Source, and will use the bit depth selected in your Project settings. If you want to override the project settings, so the preset always exports to a fixed bit depth, you can deselect the" From Source" option, and manually select either 16-bit Float or 32-bit Float color depth.

MOV Options [Mac Only]

If you're using HitFilm on a Mac you can access Apple's Quicktime format, with several codecs providing a range of compression options from H.264 to ProRes 4444. The PRoRes options are particularly useful for creating high quality files suitable for further editing.

General Options

Name: Enter a name for your preset. This is the name that will be shown in the Presets panel of the Export screen.
Format: The format used by the preset. This option is selected from the New menu at the bottom of the panel, before the preset is made, and cannot be edited here.
Comment: You may add a comment to your preset, to remind you of details of the compression, or when the preset is intended to be used, or other information.

Video

Codec: Select the codec to be used for Export. The ProRes codecs provide a range of high quality options, and are popular among professional editors. AVC/H.264 is suitable when small file size is critical. Photo-JPEG is a high quality format which stores each frame of video as a JPEG image, within the .mov container. Note that if you wish to access individual image files after export, you should use the Image Sequence export option.
Width / Height: By default HitFilm will use the dimensions of the timeline being exported. If you wish to override this, and create a preset that will always export to fixed dimensions, you can disable the "From Source" option, and set specific dimensions at which the timeline will be exported.
Scale Mode: This menu lets you control how the timeline is fitted into the exported frame.
         Keep Aspect Ratio is the default, and prevents the frame from being distorted if the export resolution uses a different aspect ratio from the timeline.
         Center will center the source timeline into the export resolution, without scaling. If the source is larger than your export resolution, it will be cropped to fit. If your source is smaller than the export resolution, black edges will be added.
         Ignore Aspect Ratio will warp the source timeline to fit the size and shape of the export resolution.
         Keep Aspect Ratio by Expanding will increase the scale of the source timeline as required to fill the export resolution, which may result in some cropping of the source timeline.
Frame Rate: This defaults to From Source, so the frame rate of whatever timeline you are exporting will be used, and should generally be left there. You can deselect the From Source option and manually select a frame rate, but keep in mind that changing the frame rate will affect the speed at which the video in the exported file plays back.
Channels: If you are exporting to a format that supports alpha channels, such as ProRes 444, then this option allows you to select which channels are included in the export. RGB will export only the color data. RGBA includes the color data as well as an alpha channel, to store the transparency data contained in the timeline being exported.
Bitrate: If you select the AVC/H.264 codec, this option will be available. Bitrate refers to the rate at which the decoded data of the file is processed. Higher bitrate settings will provide a higher quality file.
Key Frame Interval: If you select the AVC/H.264 codec, this option will be available. The Key Frame Interval controls the frequency at which key frames will be stored when encoding the footage. Higher values create smaller files, at the expense of image quality  and performance. Lower values improve performance and image quality, but also increase file sizes.
Quality: If you select Photo-JPEG codec, this option will be available. It controls the quality of the JPEG compression used to encode each frame of the video. Higher values will give better image quality and larger file sizes.

Audio

Codec: Select the audio codec used by the exported file. AAC is a high quality compressed format designed for final playback, Apple Lossless and Uncompressed PCM are full-quality formats useful for audio editing.
Channels: HitFilm export uses stereo audio, stored in two channels (left and right).
Sample Rate: Set the sample rate used by the exported audio. By default, HitFilm will use the same sample rate as the timeline that is being exported. However, if you wish to change it, you can deselect the "From Source" option, and choose a different sample rate from the menu. The sample rate refers to the number of audio samples per second of audio, and is similar to frame rate of a video signal. Higher sample rates don't necessarily bring a perceptible improvement in audio quality, but they can allow for more extensive editing to be done without audible damage to the signal. CD audio uses 44.1 KHz, while digital video typically uses 48 KHz.
Bitrate: The audio bitrate balances the file size and the audio quality. Higher bitrates will give greater fidelity at the cost of larger file sizes. 192 kbps is a typical High Quality setting, while 256 kbps is commonly used by professional AAC audio files for maximum fidelity. In the AAC format, exceeding 256 kbps is not likely to provide perceptible quality increase, though some other audio formats which use less efficient compression methods may benefit from higher bitrate values.

AVI Options [Windows Only]

On Windows you can export to the CineForm codec to create high quality intermediate files suitable for further editing. You can also export to uncompressed AVI or legacy DV codecs.

General Options

Name: Enter a name for your preset. This is the name that will be shown in the Presets panel of the Export screen.
Format: The format used by the preset. This option is selected from the New menu at the bottom of the panel, before the preset is made, and cannot be edited here.
Comment: You may add a comment to your preset, to remind you of details of the compression, or when the preset is intended to be used, or other information.

Video

Codec: Select the codec to be used for Export. CineForm provides a high quality, high performance file, and it an excellent choice for creating files suitable for further editing. Uncompressed provides maximum quality, but very large file sizes. DV NTSC and DV PAL are legacy standard definition formats provided for backward compatibility. NTSC is the SD video standard in America, while PAL is the SD video standard for Europe.
Dimensions: Set the dimensions at which the timeline will be exported. By default these will be set to the dimensions of the selected timeline. You can also tick the box under "From Source" to have the preset automatically use the dimensions of the timeline being exported.
Scale Mode: This menu lets you control how the timeline is fitted into the exported frame.
         Keep Aspect Ratio is the default, and prevents the frame from being distorted if the export resolution uses a different aspect ratio from the timeline.
         Center will center the source timeline into the export resolution, without scaling. If the source is larger than your export resolution, it will be cropped to fit. If your source is smaller than the export resolution, black edges will be added.
         Ignore Aspect Ratio will warp the source timeline to fit the size and shape of the export resolution.
         Keep Aspect Ratio by Expanding will increase the scale of the source timeline as required to fill the export resolution, which may result in some cropping of the source timeline.
Frame Rate: This defaults to From Source, so the frame rate of whatever timeline you are exporting will be used, and should generally be left there. You can deselect the From Source option and manually select a frame rate, but keep in mind that changing the frame rate will affect the speed at which the video in the exported file plays back.
Channels: If you are exporting to a format that supports alpha channels, such as CineForm or Uncompressed, then this option allows you to select which channels are included in the export. RGB will export only the color data. RGBA includes the color data as well as an alpha channel, to store the transparency data contained in the timeline being exported.
Quality:  When the CineForm codec is selected, five different quality settings are available. For most professional level projects, Film Scan 1 or High are the best options. They are suitable for acquisition, post-production, and rendering tasks. Film Scan 2 offers  the highest quality, but is overkill for most projects. It might be useful, however, if you must export a file that will required extreme post-processing. Medium gives a smaller file size, while still creating a file suitable for modest post-processing. Low should be used when small files are of primary concern, and post-processing is not required.
Format: Cineform allows you to export using 10-bit YUV color, or 12-bit RGB color.

Audio

Codec: The PCM codec is used for audio in AVI files.
Channels: HitFilm export uses stereo audio, stored in two channels (left and right).
Sample Rate: Set the sample rate used by the exported audio. By default, HitFilm will use the same sample rate as the timeline that is being exported. However, if you wish to change it, you can deselect the "From Source" option, and choose a different sample rate from the menu. The sample rate refers to the number of audio samples per second of audio, and is similar to frame rate of a video signal. Higher sample rates don't necessarily bring a perceptible improvement in audio quality, but they can allow for more extensive editing to be done without audible damage to the signal. CD audio uses 44.1 KHz, while digital video typically uses 48 KHz.