What Are Proxies Video Editing?

What Are Proxies in Video Editing?

In the world of video editing, proxies play a crucial role in facilitating the editing process. Proxies are essentially lower-resolution copies of original video files that are used for various purposes, including faster and smoother playback, easier editing, and efficient rendering.

By utilizing proxies, editors can work with large and high-quality video files without straining their computer’s resources. Let’s dive deeper into the concept of proxies in video editing.

The Purpose of Using Proxies

Smooth Playback: One primary purpose of proxies is to ensure smooth playback during the editing process. When working with high-resolution videos, such as 4K or even higher, the computer’s processing power might not be sufficient to handle the heavy load.

By using lower-resolution proxies, editors can achieve real-time playback without any lag or stuttering.

Faster Editing: Another advantage of using proxies is that they enable faster editing workflows. Since proxies have lower file sizes compared to original high-resolution videos, they require less processing power to manipulate and edit.

This allows editors to make smooth edits without any delays or lags between actions.

Easier Collaboration: Proxies also facilitate easier collaboration among multiple editors or team members working on a project. Instead of sharing large high-resolution files that can be time-consuming to transfer and download, collaborators can share smaller proxy files.

These proxy files retain the same timecode as the original footage, allowing everyone to work on different sections simultaneously and later sync their changes seamlessly.

Creating Proxies

To create proxies, video editing software usually provides built-in tools or options that allow users to generate lower-resolution copies automatically. Editors can select the desired resolution and codec for their proxies, depending on their specific requirements.

It is recommended to choose a resolution that is significantly lower than the original footage but still retains enough detail for editing purposes.

Once the proxies are created, the editing software automatically links them to the original high-resolution files. This way, editors can seamlessly switch between working with proxies or the original footage, depending on their needs and computer performance.

Rendering and Exporting

When it comes to rendering and exporting the final edited video, editors have two options: using proxies or rendering directly from the original high-resolution files. While using proxies for rendering might speed up the process due to their smaller file sizes, it’s essential to ensure that all changes made during editing are accurately applied to the high-resolution files.

Most video editing software offers options to either render using proxies or automatically switch back to the high-resolution files during export. This allows editors to balance between faster rendering times and maintaining the best possible quality in their final exported video.


In summary, proxies in video editing are lower-resolution copies of original video files used to enhance workflow efficiency. They enable smooth playback during editing, faster editing processes, and easier collaboration among team members.

Creating proxies is a common practice in modern video editing software, allowing editors to seamlessly switch between working with proxies or high-resolution footage. When it comes to rendering and exporting, editors can choose whether to utilize proxies or revert back to the original high-resolution files based on their specific needs.