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So I have an animation that I am trying to render in cycles. It takes about 20 mins per frame (my pc isn't amazing) and is 200 frames. I want to render the animation overnight, close the program and come back to it later.

Question: Is there any way to close a project after rendering, and be able to edit in the compositor after?

I know that you can do this with MultiLayer EXR files, but thats for pictures. How would I get a multilayer video?

Or is just any way to not have to composite the whole render in one go, and be able to close the program

Sorry in advance if this is already answered, I looked but found nothing.

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    $\begingroup$ Well since a video can just be a series of images, I don't see why you can't. Render the video as a list of images in the multilayer EXR format, and when you are ready, open another blender project, and add an Input -> Image Sequence node into the compositor. I haven't actually tried this so I'm not sure if it works, so you might want to attempt it with just a couple frames first. $\endgroup$ – Prime_Aqasix Mar 10 at 6:41
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    $\begingroup$ Short answer: No. ... and there is also no need for that. The highest bitdepth you'll get from a dnxhd/prores encoded clip is 10bit while you're getting 32 bit from an exr file. Also, to edit a movie clip, it needs to be decoded before anyway (splitting up the clip into editable frames requires caching, which slows down the process). Even if that would be technically possible, the file size for just a few seconds would be enormous for 10bit only. Anyway, using image sequences in comp is the way to go since decades for good reasons. $\endgroup$ – brockmann Mar 10 at 9:12
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you, this helped a lot. $\endgroup$ – Relevred Mar 10 at 12:46
  • $\begingroup$ One question: how would I export the composited video? it usually just edits the actual file, and I don't need to do anything but composite. However, Now that it is 200 exr files, how would I get a rendered video out of the compositor? $\endgroup$ – Relevred Mar 10 at 18:51
  • $\begingroup$ Read about what encoding is: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Video_codec You can use whatever you want: ffmpeg, Resolve or even the VSE to encode your sequence: How to convert image sequence to video using the VSE? $\endgroup$ – brockmann Mar 11 at 9:35
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  1. First render out your animation with the OpenExr Multilayer setting, into an image sequence.

Output properties

  1. Then load the image sequence into the compositor (can be on a separate blender instance), with the Input -> Image Sequence node

Image sequence node

  1. Do whatever composite you desire.

Composite tab

  1. Then in the Output properties tab, set your frame start and end, then change the output format to ffmpeg video. Open up the encoding tab that appears, and change the container and encoding settings to what you want.

Output properties

  1. Render the animation (Ctrl + F12) (find the output video file in the folder specified under Output. It should be named something like 0001-0250.mkv or similar)
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  • $\begingroup$ Wait, would rendering it again just create another image sequence, or will it render the composite? $\endgroup$ – Relevred Mar 11 at 21:03
  • $\begingroup$ If in the composite, you have the Use Nodes checkbox checked, it will render the composite. The best way to understand it is to just render a couple of frames and try it out. $\endgroup$ – Prime_Aqasix Mar 12 at 22:22

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