Save an After Effects CC 2015 project as an AE CS6 project [video tutorial]

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Do you need to save your AE project so that those having older versions could see it too? You’re in the right place.

Jeff Sengstack, our Adobe certified instructor, will show you how to save an After Effects project made in a newer version to older versions of AE.

NOTE: Visual memory works great for most of us, so don’t forget to watch the video tutorial! It will help you understand better and remember easier.

Jeff will talk about:

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So let’s start with a quick introduction

1. Why you need to know this

We are going to explain how you can
take an After Effects project made in a current version or a newer version of AE
and save it such that people can open it up in an older version of After Effects
.

Specifically, we are going to save from After Effects CC 2015 back to the CS6 version.

People need to do this because After Effects is not backwards compatible.
In other words, you can’t take a project made in a newer version of After Effects and
open it up in an older version of After Effects.

It just won’t work. You can take a project made in an older version of After Effects and
open it up in a newer version but not the backwards process.

And this process of making a project backwards compatible is something people need to do a lot.

Because let’s say you’re working with a client who has an older version of After Effects and you want them to be able to view the project on their version of After Effects.

Or you’re a company, like BlueFX, that makes templates, and you need to make sure these templates open up on older versions of After Effects. So this is something that people need to do a lot.

2. The one and only situation when you CANNOT save an AE project to an older AE version

The one caveat is that if you do stuff in the newer version of After Effects that are in fact new to After Effects, they won’t work in the older versions.

So let’s say you work with character animation or the 3 new Cycore effects in the current version of After Effects, that won’t work in the older versions.

So keep that in mind when you want to make something backwards compatible. You need to make things that will actually work in the older versions of After Effects.

3. What tools do you need?

The process to do this requires having the older versions of After Effects. And if you’re a Creative Cloud subscriber you can get these older versions back to the CS6.

So here’s how you do that.

additional apps creative cloudYou go to Creative Cloud. Open that up. And you scroll in order to find “Find Additional Apps

It’s probably a bit confusing, because it says, “Previous Versions“, but that’s not what we’re talking about. We want to find additional apps.

You should click at the bottom where it says “View Previous Versions“. And it shows all the Adobe products that you can get previous versions of.

So scroll down and there’s After Effects. And then it says “Install” which is another confusing thing because you’re not going to install, just yet.

 

 

So this whole process is a little cumbersome.

If you click on “Install“, it opens up a list and it shows the available versions.

cc cs6Now, if you’re going from the current version which is CC 2015 you don’t need to go to CC (2014) because they’re both version 13. But you do need the CC version, which is version 12.

And you probably want to get CS6 as well so you could test your project to make sure it really does open up on CS6, and there aren’t any problems when it opens up.

So you need to install both of these version.

 

4. How to actually save an After Effects CC 2015 project as an AE CS6 project

I’m going to pull up a very basic project that I made in 2015. And now I want to save this as the CC version.

You can always step back one step with whatever version you have.

 

That is one version you’ve done inside After Effects.

So to do that, I go to “File” –  “Save As” at the bottom it says, “Save as a copy as CC (12)” which means the original I created—that’s version 12, I click on that.

save as cc 12

Then it gives me the name pretty clearly.

Now it will open up in the CC version.

So I close this one.

And I open up the CC version now, I open up the project and I’m going to save this as a CS6 version.

So I go to “File” –  “Save As” and it goes back one step to the CS6 version now. Click on that. I’ll call this one “CS6” like so. And click “Save“.

save-as-cs6

I’ll close this down. And now I’ll start up CS6 just to make sure that works.

All right, now we’re in CS6, so I’ll click on “Open Project“.

Open up the CS6 version and make sure it actually opens up.

open as cs6

And it does. So that’s the process to take projects back incrementally one step at a time.

If you have even older versions of After Effects you can continue to do this. I can go up to “File” “Save As” and save it as a CS5.5 Project.

So if you have older versions of After Effects you can continue to go back in time but you have to have these older versions, and they’re not available via Creative Cloud.

But at least you know you can take a project made on a newer version of After Effects and step it back to the CS6 version.

Now, if you like this tutorial then make sure to check out bluefx.net and join the After Effects Academy where you can get access to hundreds of After Effects lessons and live classes that I present every week.

Did you find this blog post useful? Drop us your comments, we’ll be happy to hear from you.

Remus Hosu

Remus Hosu

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