How to export After Effects as MP4 (without Media Encoder) 2021

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How to Export After Effects as MP4

This video is a tutorial of a method on how to export/convert/render your After Effects project as MP4 in After Effects CC 2018, without Media Encoder.

The result will be a file that you can send to and watch on your iPhone. This is a method without using Media Encoder but instead downloading and using the application HandBrake. HandBrake can be used as an AE to mp4 converter. This is a good method especially if you have an After Effect video that you want to post on Instagram for example which can only be done through your phone.

I made this tutorial after having trouble with exporting using Media Encoder Queue, it just didn’t work for me. Seeing the comments I’ve gotten on YouTube it seems that it’s a common problem, so this is an alternative way.

Step-by-Step on How to Export After Effects as MP4 (Without Media Encoder)

  • Open the Composition Settings in After Effects.
  • Make sure the Pixel Ratio Aspect is set to Square Pixels.
  • Export in Render Queue. You will get a .mov file.
  • Download program called Handbrake
  • Chose the movie in Handbrake
  • Make sure the Dimensions are right. The Cropping to Custom and 0 on all form fields.
  • Chose where to save the video and the name.
  • Click Start to convert from .mov to .mp4
  • If on Mac
    • Open the file in Finder
    • Right-click on Share
    • Chose Airdrop
    • Choose the device you want to share it to.
  • Done!

Other methods

If you don’t want to use the HandBrake app, there are other ways of exporting your After Effects to MP4. There is of course the way with using Media Encoder Queue.

Using Media Encoder Queue

  1. Open the document/composition you want to export
  2. Go to “Composition” (at the top menu)
    1. Choose “Add to Media Encoder Queue”
  3. Under “Format”, choose “H264”
  4. Under “Preset”, choose the preset you want
  5. Click the “Play” button, and the export will start.

And you could probably use a lot of other converter software as well, although many good ones cost.

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