Exporting HD to AppleTV from Final Cut

Perhaps I’ve missed something here, but I’ve noticed that when you export an HD project to AppleTV from within Final Cut Express HD, you get an SD format (4:3) file. If however, you first do a full quicktime output (1080i) and then export to AppleTV from within Quicktime Pro, you get a proper 16:9 720p file.

I don’t know why this is, but it’s happened regularly enough to me the past few weeks that I thought I’d share so others could avoid the same frustration.

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17 comments for “Exporting HD to AppleTV from Final Cut

  1. Kirk Wedge
    12/23/2008 at 8:16 pm

    Hi. Just wondered if you ever figured out how to preserve 16:9 directly from FCE to Apple TV? Maybe mail me?

  2. 12/23/2008 at 8:43 pm

    As noted in the post I export from FCP to Quicktime and then from Quicktime to AppleTV which gives me a 720p 16×9 file. Takes a while, but it works

  3. 1/2/2009 at 12:49 am

    Thank you! I thought I was going crazy.

  4. 1/2/2009 at 8:15 am

    You bet – seems like a bug to have to do it this way, but at least it works!

  5. 1/4/2009 at 7:27 am

    oke I see, This nead quictime and then export. thanks for that explenation.

  6. 1/10/2009 at 3:04 pm

    hmm.. let me try this one!

  7. teedawg
    9/17/2009 at 3:10 am

    When you say “export from FCE to Quicktime” you are not using Quicktime conversion right? How do you know its 1080i? Do you have to set it to that? Thanks.

  8. 9/17/2009 at 10:01 am

    I export as a full frame Quicktime first which is a HD 1080i file based on what was imported. If you import 720p content it will come out that way as well. This is really more like a save as …

    I then use Quicktime Pro to export as the appropriate file for AppleTV which is a way to compress it down a bit yet retain a very high level of quality. Sites like YouTube, Viddler, Vimeo and Facebook can all except this.

  9. teedawg
    9/17/2009 at 11:23 am

    When I follow your instructions, the video quality has gone up. Thanks! However, the video does not cover the full screen when watching. Is there an option that I can change to make the screen size bigger?

  10. 9/17/2009 at 11:26 am

    not sure where you are watching, but in Quicktime you can play fullscreen if you have Pro or Quicktime X in Snow Leopard

  11. teedawg
    9/17/2009 at 1:11 pm

    On apple tv. . . . .

  12. 9/17/2009 at 2:01 pm

    I export as a full frame Quicktime first which is a HD 1080i file based on what was imported. If you import 720p content it will come out that way as well. This is really more like a save as …

    I then use Quicktime Pro to export as the appropriate file for AppleTV which is a way to compress it down a bit yet retain a very high level of quality. Sites like YouTube, Viddler, Vimeo and Facebook can all except this.

  13. teedawg
    9/17/2009 at 3:23 pm

    When I follow your instructions, the video quality has gone up. Thanks! However, the video does not cover the full screen when watching. Is there an option that I can change to make the screen size bigger?

  14. 9/17/2009 at 3:26 pm

    not sure where you are watching, but in Quicktime you can play fullscreen if you have Pro or Quicktime X in Snow Leopard

  15. teedawg
    9/17/2009 at 5:11 pm

    On apple tv. . . . .

  16. ivan
    2/1/2010 at 5:03 am

    this article is from may 2007 and it's still a problem. i don't have quicktime pro but imovie works. still a pain.

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