Join Todd Kopriva for an in-depth discussion in this video Why is there a red or yellow bar in my sequence?, part of Premiere Pro: Frequently Asked Questions (2011).
Frequently asked questions about Premier Pro. Why do I have a red or yellow bar over some parts of my sequence? An important first step in answering this question, is first define the term render. Rendering is the creation of an image from the various inputs into that image. For example. To render the image that's in the program monitor right now. The Premiere Pro needs to take into consideration, this track. The effects on this track. The track above it. The effects on it. And the blending mode between the two. When I drag the current time indicator to the next frame. Premiere Pro is rendering the next frame by considering the inputs into the image for this frame.
Sometimes in the context of Premiere Pro, people mistakenly use the term render as if it only refers to one kind of rendering. And that is the rendering of preview files. That is incorrect usage. Rendering refers to the creation of images, for any purpose, whether it's rendering with a program monitor, rendering to preview files, rendering to final output. It's simply the creation of image information from inputs. So, why is it important to define this term? The color of the render bars, is determined by how fast Premiere Pro thinks that it can render these frames. If a bar is red, Premiere Pro is essentially saying that it doesn't think that it can render these frames back in real time. Meaning if the frame rate of the sequence is 25 frames per second, Premiere Pro doesn't think that it can render 25 of these frames each second. So it can't play them back in real time.
It would end up playing back at a lower frame rate, which appears as stuttery playback. If, the render bar is yellow, then that is Premiere Pro saying, that it thinks that it can render these frames in real time. No promises, but, that's its best guess. By the way, the best guess applies to the red as well. It may very well may be that Premiere Pro can play at least back in real time. It just thinks that probably not. So yellow, probably back in real time. Red, probably not.
No color at all, means that Premiere Pro is very, very confident about it's ability to play this back in real time, because this is a computationally simple codec that is being used. Let's right-click or Ctrl+click on the Mac OS, reveal in project and then right click or Ctrl+click on Mac OS on the revealed item, and look into its properties. And now that we can see that it's codec is XTKMHT22, is an MPEG 2 based format. That Priemer Pro can play back very quickly.
DV DVC Pro XD Cam HD and a small number of other codex. Don't get any color bar at all because, their computationally relatively easy to play back and there's one more color to keep in mind and that is green. Green means that our preview file is associated with a segment of a sequence this is the work area. This bar right here. We can drag its ends to make it longer or shorter. If we press Enter, then Premiere Pro will create a preview file for all parts of the sequence that are within the work area that are red.
The forward playing back. Preview files, make it so that Premier Pro can play the segment back in real time. This part of the sequence may be difficult to render in real time. But if premier pro renders the frames out to a file, stores that file on disk. And then reads those frames back from disk instead of processing them anew. It can play those back in real time. So I'll press Enter to create preview files here,SOUND and it plays back within the work area.
So, green means that there are preview files associated with this segment of the sequence. Let's move the work area over here to this yellow portion. Now as I said, when you press Enter, preview files are generated for all red segments, so if I press Enter nowSOUND nothing happens or rather no preview files are generated and playback just starts immediately. But if I go to Sequence > Render entire work area, that does create a preview file.
(audio playing) Now notice, the keyboard shortcut assigned to this is Shift+Enter. That is not the default. That is what I have personally customized this to. By default, Premier Pro does not have a keyboard shortcut for rendering an entire work area. I set this myself because I like having that shortcut. Go to Edit > Keyboard shortcuts, search for render, and here, and render our entire work area. I clicked Edit, and then pressed Shift+Enter, and then OK.
Now I have keyboard shortcut for a very useful command. So what kind of things make a segment that is yellow turn red? Well, one thing that can do it is to apply an effect and premier pro doesn't think that it can render in real time. I dropped auto color on here. Just because it was the first effect that I see here. That doesn't have the icon on for GPL acceleration. Like this one here that extract has. So as soon as I apply that effect. Because it's not a GPL accelerated effect. Premier Pro guessed that it wouldn't be able to render that in real time.
Notice that in project settings I am using. Render mercury playback. Engine GPU acceleration. If I'm using Mercury Playback Engine Software only like so. Here, whatever we change the render we're asked if we want to keep our preview files around or delete them. I'm going to go ahead and delete them. But if you're going to be switching back and forth between rendereres, you might want to keep them yourself. so now notice that even the segment I had over here that used a GPU accelerator effect, turned yellow.
Essentially, any effect will cause the render bars to turn red if you're not using the GPU acceleration. I'll go ahead and delete these effects. And as soon as I deleted the effects, the bar turns yellow again. So if you're not using the GPU acceleration, the CUDA processing portion of the Mercury Playback Engine, any effect at all is going to give you a red render bar. So to sum up, red means that Premiere Pro doesn't think that it could play this back in real time without having a preview file, yellow means that it thinks that it can play it back in real time without a preview file. No render bar, means that the Kodak is very simple, so Premiere Pro is quite content in it's ability to play it back in real time. And green means there's a preview file associated with that segment of the sequence.
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