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Adobe Media Encoder CS5.5: What’s new and changed

Adobe Media Encoder CS5.5 is available. Adobe Media Encoder CS5.5 is included with such applications as After Effects CS5.5 and Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5, which you can order now.

To see a video demonstration and explanation of the changes in Adobe Media Encoder CS5.5, see this video on the Video2Brain website.

If you want to ask questions about these new and changed features, come on over to the Adobe Media Encoder user-to-user forum. That’s the best place for questions. Questions left in comments on a blog post are much harder to work with; the blog comment system just isn’t set up for conversations. It’s also never too early to leave comments on the pages of the Help documents to ask for more information, point out areas that aren’t clear, and so on; Kevin, the guy who writes the Help documents, wants your input. You can also leave comments on the pages of the Help document to tell everyone about tutorials and other resources that you’ve found (or created) about these new features.


top new features and changes in Adobe Media Encoder CS5.5, with links to more information


Listing every change to the Adobe Media Encoder user interface here would be a daunting task, since so much work went into cleaning up, rearranging, and otherwise improving the interface for Adobe Media Encoder CS5.5. So, here are the top new features and changes, as well as a few that have made my life easier already.

  • Added encoding presets for iPad devices and other tablet devices.
  • Improved encoding presets for YouTube, Vimeo, and other popular output formats.
  • You can now import image sequences into Adobe Media Encoder.
  • Watch folder features are much improved, including ability to add the same watch folder to the encoding queue multiple times and assign multiple sets of encoding settings for multiple output types from the same source. Adding a watch folder is now as easy as dragging a folder into the Watch Folders pane.
  • The Start Queue Automatically When Idle For preference is off by default. (Yay!)
  • A new checkbox, Auto-Encode Watch Folders, gives you the ability to decide whether items in a watch folder are automatically encoded as soon as they appear, as opposed to waiting until the encoding queue is started.
  • Added context menus to many items, so that common commands are available by right-clicking (Windows) or Control-clicking (Mac OS) many items. An especially handy pair of such menu items are Reveal Source File and Reveal Output File, which show the location of the respective file in the Finder or Windows Explorer.
  • Added ability to drag a sequence from the Adobe Premiere Pro Project panel or a composition from the After Effects Project panel into Adobe Media Encoder to add it to the encoding queue. You can also begin the process of importing by double-clicking in an empty area of the encoding queue pane.
  • RED (R3D) source settings can be accessed using File > Source Settings, with improved RED support like that in After Effects CS5.5 and Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5, including new color science support (REDcolor2, REDgamma2, REDlogFilm, etc.) and better curves and levels UI.
  • A chime sounds when the encoding queue is done processing, like in After Effects.
  • The trial versions of Adobe Premiere Pro CS5.5 and After Effects CS5.5 include all codecs included with the full versions, so users of the trial version will be able to import any file that can be imported using in the full version, as well as being able to encode using any codec that can be used in the full version. Because Adobe Media Encoder receives its codecs from the client applications, this change expands the functionality of the Adobe Media Encoder CS5.5 trial version, too.

For a couple of early videos showing improvements to Adobe Media Encoder, see “Sneak preview of Adobe Media Encoder improvements to importing” and “Sneak preview of Adobe Media Encoder improvements to encoding”. (Please excuse the low audio levels in these videos. I was in a hurry to post these videos, and I neglected the all-important step of checking and normalizing my audio levels. Learn from my mistake.)

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