How to Create a Master File for Video

For many, getting footage into their edit application is the easy part. It's getting the footage out that becomes tricky. While each editing application will all have its own unique steps for exporting a project, the process is pretty standard. Use these steps to create a master file.

  1. Identify the final sequence. This sequence should be what is called "picture-locked" meaning that no additional changes will take place to the sequence.
  2. Make sure that the whole sequence is rendered. Click in the timeline and choose Select All, then render the clips.
  3. Mark and In point at the start of the footage you want, then mark an Out point at the end of the range. For most editing tools, you can use the keyboard shortcuts I and O for In and Out respectively.
  4. Look in the file menu or application menu for an option to export the file. Choose this option.
  5. Export the file using the same high quality settings that you were editing with, meaning the same frame size, frame rate and codec.
  6. Save the file to a location of your choosing, keep in mind that the file you export will be large so choose a location that has enough storage space.

After exporting the file you now have your master file that you can make compressions from, pull stills from or archive.