Davinci Resolve: the inside track

Resolve 9 brings a drastic redesign to the interface, allowing the software to be more streamlined and continue to move forwards in a positive direction. Rather than just running you through the (admittedly impressive) spec list, we thought we’d ask some of the guys that have been testing the software what they thought.

We sat down with Resolve 9 test pilots Dan Moran (Smoke & Mirrors) and Warren Eagles (ICA) to find out what they think of the new features.


Davinci Resolve v9's new Lightbox view.

Davinci Resolve v9’s new Lightbox view.

Let’s start with the most obvious change: the interface.

Dan: I think the new interface is a great step forward for Resolve. Each icon and menu has been carefully thought about, and the whole interface has been streamlined so that every tool or function is right at your fingertips.

How robust have you found the additional editing and dailies tools?

Dan: The new dailies tools are a huge step forward for Resolve, and should make the DIT’s life a whole lot easier. For example, now you can load Arri RAW, set your look, sync all your audio in one click and then set up a render queue to make DPX for your VFX department, DnxHD 36 for your offline and H.264 for your director’s iPad.

Warren: The sound syncing allows for syncing by association of a sound file to a picture file or manual syncing. The burn-ins page is much improved, so I think it could be used as a dailies tool, though I’ve not actually used Resolve v9 on any dailies workflows yet. More features for dailies guys will come once v9 is released and Blackamagic Design get good feedback from the users. The editing hasn’t changed much, but the media page is much better – lots more info on the clips, FPS, codec, camera, etc. As a colourist you have to understand the material you are working with, and the improved media page allows us to do this.

Who do you think will benefit most from the changes?

Warren: They make it much easier for the new guys and basically anybody who has to prep and render their own timelines. The ‘hero’ graders who just grade might be wondering why it all had to change…

Will anyone be disappointed?

Warren: Only guys who don’t want to relearn things, but to be honest a day of playing and reading will get you up to speed. I have been using Resolve for seven years and the change doesn’t bother me. It’s faster, easier and still has the creative tools for me to service my clients, so it’s all good. I’m just going to throw in that this would be a good time to take an ICA R201 class…

Do you have any favourite features you’d advise people to try out if they’re on the fence?

Dan: My favourite new feature is probably split between the Log Grading mode and the Lightbox view. Log Grading mode is a new creative toolset for manipulating the picture with ultra-precise control, and the Lightbox is such a great way of speeding up your sessions, as you can see every shot open in front of you and quickly grab the grades you need.

Warren: The tracking has improved from v8. And that’s not just the interface – old material that didn’t track so well in v8 now tracks. The rendering is significantly faster… is that a good thing for a freelancer on an hourly rate? Seriously, I like that you can trim .R3D files. This feature allows you to conform your RED footage from the client’s HDD drive, add handles, then make new .R3Ds that are much shorter than the original clip, and which also have the advantage of sitting on your fast storage.

Working hard or hardly working? Jigsaw24’s Lewis and Jamie with Warren at Blackmagic Design’s Summer Reseller Event

For a closer look at Resolve 9, see Alexis Van Hurkman’s 20-minute post-NAB demo on YouTube.

Keep checking back for exclusive demos, tutorials and training info from our Resolve team. In the meantime call 03332 409 306 or email DaVinci@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest post-production news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Facebook page.

Call us: 03332 409 306

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