23 Replies Latest reply on Jul 24, 2018 2:33 PM by rodneyb56060189

    Video Pixelated After Export

    on_a_wave Level 1

      I'm fairly new to Adobe Premiere, and I'm really stumped as to what the problem could be here. And maybe it's just as good as it gets...


      So after exporting the mp4 file in Premiere, the video looks somewhat pixelated. There is a lot of smoke in the video, and subtle gradients, and the video seems to have sort of distinct sections of color, that are a bit pixelated. In premiere itself, it looks absolutely perfect, but not in the exported version. I'm wondering if that's just the way it is, and I need to accept that it doesn't look as good as in Premiere?...


      Here is a screenshot of what the video looks like in Premiere:


      Screen Shot 2018-07-20 at 10.50.09 PM.png


      And here is one of the first frame in Quicktime player, of the exported version:

      Screen Shot 2018-07-20 at 10.51.26 PM.png

      It's kind of hard to tell in these photos, but you can see defined sections in the bottom one, where it kind of looks like Quicktime is just rounding certain pixels off, and it's not just a completely smooth gradient. And it's kind of pixelated... not absolutely horrible, but nowhere near as good as in Premiere.


      Here is what my export setting look like:

      Screen Shot 2018-07-20 at 10.48.31 PM.png

      And then further down:

      Screen Shot 2018-07-20 at 10.55.16 PM.png


      I've also tried exporting through Media Encoder, and that seemed to make no difference. (I have Encoder open during these screenshots, which is why there's no 'Export' button I believe, to do it within Premiere)


      Any thoughts on a possible solution would be amazing! The final video will basically just go on to Youtube... if that matters...


      Thanks very much in advance!

        • 1. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
          Ann Bens Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          Turn off max render if you have a dedicated graphics card.

          Also turn off Max depth.

          No need to set bitrate to 60 if original footage is way lower.

          Post screenhot sequence settings.

          • 2. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
            on_a_wave Level 1

            So I don't think I have a dedicated graphics card... I have a 2017 iMac, nothing in the way of a dedicated card...


            I tried turning off 'Render at maximum depth', and the export really just looks the same.


            Here is a screenshot of the sequence settings:

            Screen Shot 2018-07-21 at 2.24.06 AM.png


            Thank you!

            • 3. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
              Richard M Knight Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              It could just be a normal side effect of an 8 bit codec, try exporting using one of the DNxHR 10bit presets and see if it is any better.

              • 4. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                juanmario Level 4

                The characteristics of the source material, are mov.

                The export settings are not for YouTube:


                Premiere has presets for that.


                What version of Premiere are you using?

                • 5. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                  rodneyb56060189 Level 4

                  I only have old version cs6 of PPro. But maybe some of the basics are the same.


                  I suggest you more or less start at the 'bottom' and fine tune to try and squeeze out more quality after you just do simple stuff.

                  For example, I found ( learning this stuff a while back) that some things are sorta counter intuitive. One would think that using max settings and higher bit rates, forcing a particular bit rate using CBR instead of using VBR, and that VBR 2 passes must be better than 1 pass. None of that stuff is really helpful (and in some cases 'ruins' your export) until you figure out how the stuff exports from the bottom up so to speak.


                  Then, no matter who you deliver to (vimeo, you tube, etc.) will do what THEY want to convert. But that's another can of worms.


                  The smoke on the set has NOTHING to do with you. That's just a look the DP wants to soften stuff and make sunbeams visible, etc.


                  That's not influencing anything for you.


                  Try a small section of work area ( so you don't waste time doing the whole thing ) and use the below settings, changing it to 1920x1080.


                  Render the work area FIRST (using ( in preferences) I-Frame only ). Test it out.




                  : )

                  • 6. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                    Ann Bens Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    Please uncheck Use Preview files.

                    • 7. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                      rodneyb56060189 Level 4

                      Anne, have things changed since cs6 or has it always been bad to render work area and use preview files ?

                      • 8. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                        Ann Bens Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                        No things have not changed for preview fiels .

                        Preview files are make with the preview codec in your sequence settings

                        If your preview codec is I frame mpeg only which is of lower quality so will your output file be.

                        • 9. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                          Ann Bens Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                          Render work Area has no impact on the files quality.

                          • 10. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                            rodneyb56060189 Level 4

                            Thanks Anne. I think I understand. If I render work area it only make lower quality preview files, which makes my editing go smoother if my computer is struggling with playback, (playing timeline and so on ) but it has a negative effect on the export to use those files.  Sorry I misled the poster.

                            • 11. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                              AlyVivar Level 1

                              Hi, I don't know if this will help or not (I'm also new on this) but the other day I had the same problem! I exported on the same size as always but the outcome was horrible, that is when I realized I was not working with the proper size so I had to change the size of my frame. I just went to sequence; sequence settings; and changed the size to 1920 x 1080. (You have to press "custom" to be able to change the size)

                              • 12. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                on_a_wave Level 1

                                Thanks everyone for the replies so far! Looks like I have lots to try, I'm going to experiment with a lot of things here, and I will report back:)

                                • 13. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                  on_a_wave Level 1

                                  The version of Premiere CC I'm using is: 12.1.1


                                  Things I've tried so far, but I'm still having the same problem:


                                  • I have made sure 'Use Previews' is unchecked during the export.


                                  • I tried exporting using a DNxHR 10bit codec (I really don't know what that is) and it created a .xmp file, which I'm not sure what to do with...


                                  • Tried using VBR 1 pass, and 2 pass


                                  Here are some things I've noticed, I'm not sure if the answer might be in here somewhere, or might provide a clue:


                                  • I have yellow bars at the top of my entire sequence, so I tried 'Render In to Out' (even though I believe it's not necessary to render before exporting) just to see, and suddenly the clips were pixelated and it looked bad within Premiere. So then I deleted the render files, and it went back to normal, great looking footage.


                                  • I originally created the sequence settings, by simply dragging the first clip onto the 'New Item' icon, ostensibly creating a sequence that matches the footage. But I've noticed in my sequence settings, it's set to 'ARRI Cinema' in editing mode. Is that what I should have?


                                  • The footage was shot on a Canon C100, and I believe half the footage was shot with mp4, using the 'Special Fast And Slow Motion' feature in the camera, which shoots at 60p fps and then automatically slows to 23.976 fps. Then the other half was shot with AVCHD at 60p fps, and then 'interpreted as 23.976 fps' in Premiere to be slow motion. Again, everything looks great in the timeline during playback. Shouldn't I be able to have an exported version that looks identical to how I'm seeing it in Premiere?


                                  • If i check the 'Match Sequence Settings' in the export window, the format I get is MPEG Preview... is that what I should have? And then also under 'Basic Video Settings' the quality is set to 50, and is then greyed out and can't be changed... anything weird about that?


                                  Thank you!

                                  • 14. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                    on_a_wave Level 1

                                    Okay, so I think I finally found the solution. I guess with video, depending on what your source material is, slow motion, fast motion etc etc, one needs to choose relevant export settings. I'm learning there's no one 'Best' export settings to just get the maximum quality, it all depends... which is I'm assuming why there are soooo many options available.


                                    The export settings I ended up using, seem to get me very very close to the playback within premiere, it's definitely waaay better than it was. It might be the same, but still in Premiere, the text looks a bit sharper... but who knows.


                                    This is what ended up working:


                                    Format: DNxHR/DNxHD MXF OP1a  (thanks Richard M Knight! I didn't originally know what an .mxf file was, but apparently Youtube                                                             accepts it, and I guess it tends to look better than H.264? I have a lot of learning to do:)

                                    Preset: DNX HQX 1080p 23.976


                                    And then I checked Render at maximum depth, and use maximum render quality. I also set Time Interpolation to 'Optical Flow', because everything is in slow motion... I'm not sure if that helped...


                                    Thanks again everyone!

                                    • 15. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                      rodneyb56060189 Level 4

                                      Good going !



                                      how's it look on you tube ?

                                      • 16. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                        juanmario Level 4

                                        on_a_wave  escribió


                                        I also set Time Interpolation to 'Optical Flow', because everything is in slow motion... I'm not sure if that helped..

                                        Surely, yes, in my opinion it was the basis of the problem, I should have mentioned it from the beginning.

                                        I'm glad you could have solved it,

                                        • 17. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                          on_a_wave Level 1

                                          rodneyb56060189: Actually it looks like absolute garbage on youtube... It's just a private video until I figure this out, but it's way more pixelated than even anything I exported out of Premiere. This is really frustrating. And then watching videos that look insanely crisp on youtube, I wonder how they're doing it... like this one: Conor Oberst - Barbary Coast (Later) (Official Video) - YouTube


                                          Veeerrry confusing stuff... I guess I have to go back to the ol H.264, and settle with a pixelated video...  or maybe it will magically look better on youtube... and use the nice .mxf version to sit on my computer for some theoretical future use...?

                                          • 18. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                            on_a_wave Level 1

                                            So I tried using the 'Youtube' preset in Premiere to see if that would be better, uploaded it to Youtube, and it looks like absolute filth. Similarly as bad as the DNxHR version, but maybe slightly worse.


                                            It's just really pixelated. I'm running out of ideas. The DNxHR version looks great on my computer, terrible on Youtube... do certain people get special privileges on Youtube to upload high quality uncompressed video? Or is there some export setting I could find that would solve my problem? I feel like I'm missing something...


                                            Any ideas at all would be hugely appreciated.

                                            • 19. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                              on_a_wave Level 1

                                              Here's a screenshot of the type of pixelation I'm talking about... in case anyone has any thoughts...: If you can click on it to make it bigger, when it's small you can't really see.


                                              Screen Shot 2018-07-22 at 7.49.46 PM.png

                                              • 20. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                                rodneyb56060189 Level 4

                                                It's really a learning thing, this video stuff. Is impossible to know everything when starting out, and even long experienced very smart people are challenged with keeping up with all the changes going on so quickly. Going to the mxf avid thing was sorta like going to an intermediate thing for editing and sometimes vimeo and you tube like stuff that is more compressed and simple for 'viewing' rather than editing. I am not smart enough to know exactly what they like the most. So be patient and keep at it, and you'll get it down OK.


                                                I kinda think your video sample above (screen shot ) looks a little wider than 16:9 or maybe my eyes are messed up ? The black above and below your original samples kinda made me wonder too. Is that like 1:85 or something ?  You might wanna start from the beginning and use mediainfo or something, determine what your source footage is exactly, then set up a project to match the source stuff, and then export for web. I don't think you mentioned yet what you really have for source footage ..??


                                                That looks wider than 16:9 though.. .???  Could be my eyes are messed up though.



                                                • 21. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                                  on_a_wave Level 1

                                                  Thanks, ya for sure, definitely a ton of learning to do for me, I find this stuff very perplexing. It seems strange that I can't just get what I see in Premiere on to Youtube, and have it look the same, or relatively close.


                                                  I'm now reading that Youtube has a higher quality codec (or container? I'm not sure the correct term) for videos called VP9, over the lesser quality mp4. And if you 'render out' your video to 1440p before uploading, it will automatically use VP9. So I tried simply using a 4k preset in Premiere during exporting, uploaded it to Youtube, and it still looks bad. If you right click on the video in Youtube, click 'Stats For Nerds', it still says the video is mp4.


                                                  Then I read that if your channel has over 1000 subscribers, it will automatically use VP9. I'm not sure if this has anything to do with what's happening for me... I'm kind of stuck now, which is pretty frustrating... I guess I'll keep researching and making random changes, and hope to stumble on an answer.


                                                  But ya, the last screenshot I took there, I just took right above and below the black bars, it is actually 16:9, I just put in a crop in Premiere for stylistic effect.


                                                  Thanks again, we'll see what happens here:)

                                                  • 22. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                                    on_a_wave Level 1

                                                    So I finally figured out how to 'force' Youtube to use the VP9 codec, instead of the mp4, and the video pretty much looks exactly the same... still pixelated and pretty much looks like it's terrible quality.


                                                    I have now settled on the idea that it's the best I'm going to get it to look on Youtube.


                                                    I'm wondering if it maybe has to do with the color grading that was done in Premiere, Youtube just isn't able to play it back without pixelation... for some reason. I don't know. I still don't understand how some music videos seem to have absolutely pristine video quality. I wonder if they just know what's going to look good on Youtube when they actually shoot and edit, and know what might end up looking pixelated. Or they actually get some kind of privilege to have higher quality video. I supposde the best I could do would be to pay for a 'Pro' Vimeo account, and hope it actually plays back without garbage pixelation.

                                                    • 23. Re: Video Pixelated After Export
                                                      rodneyb56060189 Level 4

                                                      You're looking right now at things from a philosophical point to view. " Why does my source look great but the export doesn't look as good, and THEN when I upload it to somewhere else it looks even DIFFERENT ?"


                                                      You haven't gotten into the technical side of things yet. It's just a gut feeling and desire. Which is very cool, cause if you stick with it and figure it out for your workflow and quality demands, then you'll do really nice stuff, from shooting to edit to delivery.


                                                      Welcome to the club.


                                                      : )