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June 24, 2011
Final Cut ProFinal Cut Pro XVideo Editing

How To Export A High Resolution Movie Out of Final Cut Pro X

In this post, we’ll examine how to export out a high resolution QuickTime Movie out of Final Cut Pro X, as well as the best shortcuts to expedite this process.

Although many of the previous exporting options have been “simplified” in FCPX, exporting a hi-res QuickTime movie remains intact…if you know where to look in the application.

  1. Open up your project library view with the shortcut COMMAND + 0.
  2. Select the “project” you would like to export (Note:  Whereas you would choose a timeline to export in previous FCP versions, each timeline in FCPX is called a “project”)
  3. Use the shortcut COMMAND + E to open up the Export window (or in the menu bar choose Share > Export Movie.)
  4. In the dialogue box you can choose to export using your Current Settings or a few other codecs (ProRes, DVCPro, etc.).  Use the default, Current Settings, to export at the highest quality (no re-encoding required).
  5. Then, choose what you would like FCP to do with the file after export.  Choosing “Compressor” will put the file in a Compressor batch where it can be encoded into a much wider variety of formats and codecs (you must have purchased and installed Compressor for this to work). If you are simply looking for a high res QuickTime video, choose one of the first two options.
  6. Click “Next” and then choose where you would like the file to be saved.

**Note:  there is currently not an option to export out between in and out points.  Projects must be exported out of Final Cut Pro X in full.**

Numerous post-production professionals have scrutinized Apple for stripping out many of the encoding options that were previously present in FCP. However, I’d make the argument that FCP was never optimized for encoding.  My much preferred method has always been to use Compressor (or another software encoder such as Telestream’s Episode), freeing up FCP for editing.  The only difference is…now that seems to be the only choice.

Check back to for the latest FCP X tutorials and tips!


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  • vasilis Katsogiannos

    Export to dvd or blue ray. How to make dvd with animation video menu in final cut pro x.
    I start to used final cut pro x 5 days ago

  • greg


    FCPX can’t “author” a blu-ray or dvd. It can make disks playable in those disk players. But you can’t use FCPX to setup menu’s and chapters.

  • Luke Frohling

    Yes FCP X can make Blue-rays and DVD’s (as well as podcasts and email-sized movies) straight from the root menu system. Go to “share” and have a look around. It seems initially impressive until you realise you can’t do much beyond the very basics… you gotta buy compressor to really do ANYTHING with FCP X. It’s not too bad cause it + FCP X is much cheaper than buying FCP 7 (or earlier) but it felt like a kick to the guts when I first found out.
    Check out any online tutorials about porting FCP stuff to your chosen DVD/Blu-ray authoring program for more options beyond the basic.

  • http://YourSite(Optional) Lasse

    I am working with a theatre project, and I want to project my film on two projectors. I bought the Matrox DoubleHead2Go to split up my film into two outputs. I want the resolution to be 2160X540 this is no problem in my old version of Final Cut, I just change the resolution in the sequence settings. But I don’t know what to do in Final Cut X?! Please help me:-)

  • Bill Torgerson

    I’ve got a draft of a film done and not been backing up. To save the project and move it someplace for back up, what settings should I export to?  Thanks for for taking the time to read this.

    • Danny Greer

      Hi Bill!  Check out our previous post on Archiving Projects in FCPX.  That should be the info you’re looking for.

      • Bill Torgerson

        Great, thanks Danny!  I’m a writer and totally new to film. This is my first project. I’m exporting to a DVD which probably wasn’t a good starting place but I’ll check out your link and do that next.  Take care!

  • Charles

    Is it possible to export at 4096×4096?  I am creating materials to be shown on a planetarium dome.

  • onjoFilms

    I like to use X.264.  Better than h.264.  I created that folder in Compressor, now in FCPX I Export>Use Compressor settings, and choose the X.264 settings.  You can do that with any settings you want to export in without opening up Compressor, but yes, you must have Compressor installed.

  • Don Schaefer

    Any links/advice for converting FCP7 edits to h.264? I know there were many problems with that workflow. Thanks.

  • Alex Gollner

    Good tip for versions up to 10.0.5. The way exporting works changed in 10.0.6. For more info, check out

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