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Sooo, this may sound fairly stupid, especially for professional editors, but I'd like to know the role of the sequence settings in Premiere Pro. I know that the format of the preview files depends on the sequence settings, but apart from that, do they serve any purpose? I mean, regardless of the sequence settings, I can export my video to any format I want. So I'd e.g. like to know if it makes a great difference if I choose AVCHD 1080p25 or DSLR 1080p25 ...

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The entries for the creation of a new sequence are only presets. They load things like pixel pitch, resolution, color depth, etc. Many of these can be changed after creation, particularly if you haven't added anything to the timeline yet. You can also make additional presets if you have frequent use of settings that there isn't already a preset for (or you can even manually select all the settings and not use a preset.)

This is the actual sequence settings:

Sequence Settings

As you can see, the framerate(timebase), frame size, pixel pitch (aspect ratio), fields, display format, audio sample rate and audio display format make up the primary settings.

There are additionally settings for how previews are rendered, which particularly matters if you intend to use previews in the rendering of final output, otherwise it just impacts what you see during editing (after preview renders have finished.)

While you can export in different formats, that will result in scaling if the resolution differs. The sequence settings determine how the video renders, the export settings determine how the rendered frames are saved in to a final output.

  • So the sequence settings only determine the quality of the preview files, but not of the final export, right? And those two are in no way connected or influence each other? And I heard that the sequence setting also includes the codec that is used to render the preview file. This would mean that depending on the material, the sequence settings could effect the rendering time for the preview files, is that correct? – MoritzLost Nov 18 '14 at 16:51
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    @Gin-San - no, the sequence settings determine the render. You render at sequence settings and encode at the output settings. My understanding is that Premiere builds up a list of full resolution images (based on the sequence settings) and passes them to the encoder. The encoder then takes those images and encodes them in the output format and specification. If you had a 1 pixel by 1 pixel sequence and output it as 1000 pixels by 1000 pixels, I believe you would just get 1 pixel by 1 pixel scaled up to 1000 by 1000. That should be easy to verify, but I don't have Premiere on this PC. – AJ Henderson Nov 18 '14 at 17:20
  • That's a good explanation, thanks! I saw exporting as one unique process rather than two seperate procedures (rendering and encoding), that made it hard for me to understand the difference between sequence and export settings. Well it's a little confusing that the sequence presets are haply named after camera types and codecs as well °v° Thanks! – MoritzLost Nov 18 '14 at 19:37

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