SMPTE-2046-2 Safe Title Guides for After Effects and Premiere

For whatever reason, the default safe area guides in Adobe After Effects and Premiere still come set as the old-school 80% Safe Title / 90% Safe Action, guides established in the 1960s. Well, we in modern times where pretty much all HDTVs display the full raster pixel-for-pixel, or come shipped with, at worst, a 2-3% crop (which you should really turn off because it's making your image soft.)

In any case, both SMPTE and the EBU revised their safe area guidelines years ago to a still conservative but much better 90% Safe Title / 93% Safe Action setup. Here's some numbers you can punch into After Effects and Premiere to use the new guides.

After Effects

From the pulldown menus, go to Edit > Preferences > Grids & Guides where you will find a group at the bottom called Safe Margins:

Action-safe: 7%; Center-cut Action-safe: 25%; Title-safe: 10%; Center-cut Title-safe: 32.5%

As shown, change Action-safe to 7% and Title-safe to 10%, and Center-cut Action-safe to 25% and Center-cut Title-safe to 32%.

NOTE: I am using the Center-cut Action-safe value of 25% which does NOT represent Safe Action, but rather shows where the left and right borders of the 4x3 raster would be, as I think it's more useful to know what part of the image will be completely cut off. If you want the proper 93% center-cut Safe Action, enter 30% instead of 25%.



Safe areas are set at the project level rather than the application preferences level. From the pulldown menus, go to File > Project Settings > General and you will find a group at the bottom called Action and Title Safe Areas:

Title Safe Area: 10% horizontal 10% vertical; Action Safe Area: 7% horizontal, 7% vertical

This is a little bit different than After Effects as Premiere gives you separate control over horizontal and vertical size, but doesn't give you a separate set of guides for center-cut reference. However, you could instead just use the Action Safe areas to represent center-cut Safe Title area, putting in 32% for Horizontal and 10% for Vertical.