Post Production

What’s New in Blackmagic Design’s DaVinci Resolve 12.5?

We’ve got over 250 new features plus Fusion integration

As a Senior Director of Marketing at Blackmagic Design, you would expect me to talk up the release of the latest DaVinci Resolve upgrade. That being said, DaVinci Resolve 12.5 really represents something different for the software and for post professionals. That’s something I can talk through in detail.

Originally, this was going to be a minor release that had a lot of small features which would mean a lot to the everyday workflow for both editors and colorists. It was really about refining the toolset and making things a little simpler and easier. The overall goals were to make it easier for the pros to work faster and do what they do, but to also make it simpler for new people to learn how to use the software. Ultimately, we’ve been on this path to turn it into an NLE, and we wanted to make it the best NLE that we could. This was the release in which we wanted to polish it up and really refine that feature set so that editors would love it.

As it turned out, we went a step further. We have an amazing engineering team and they started to add some pretty big features, as well as some new and innovative ones that you don’t see in any other NLEs. So we wound up with this release that has over 250 new features and really made it a bigger release than we thought it was going to be. We probably should have called it “13”, but we started with “12.5” and stuck with it.

<p”>As an example, one of those new features is the Ripple Overwrite. It seems so simple, but it’s never been done in any other software. It’s a four-point edit, and you can see it in detail in the Getting Started with DaVinci Resolve 12 video. Basically, it lets you replace a clip in your timeline with a clip of a different length, and automatically ripples everything else in the timeline so it fits. You don’t have to slice your timeline and make a gap or anything like that. It’s the kind of feature where you wonder why no one else has done it before. It feels like it’s the way it should have always worked.

Another example of a new killer feature is the audio waveform overlay in our source monitor. Now you can see your audio waveform and your video at the same time. This allows you to see exactly where sentences start and stop, or to find things like sound effects by looking at the audio waveform. In the demo video, I showed a particular effect in the audio waveform, and how you can cue your video to it at that exact moment. These and many other features are exclusive to Resolve. In addition, we’ve given editors all of the traditional tools they’re used to using. The combination of familiar traditional tools and innovative new ones really makes Resolve stand out.

It’s been an interesting year, because in version 12 we introduced a lot of editing features, but in 12.5 we refined just about everything. What we’re hearing from a lot of people is that they looked at it last year, but this year they’re switching because the benefit of having integrated color and editing is really meaningful to people. So far, the feedback we’ve gotten around 12.5 has been really incredible.

Since we started off as such a high-end application for feature film finishing, what we offer is the best image processing in the world. We do everything in 32-bit float YRGB and we process luminance separate from color info, so we can make video that looks better than any other system. Just as important is that, rather than shoehorning a bunch of color correction tools into an editing interface, DaVinci Resolve gives you a powerful, dedicated editing interface as well as a dedicated color interface. You can easily switch between the two at anytime with a single click. So you get a color interface that’s designed for a colorist’s workflow that gives you a deeper and richer feature set than you’ll find in any other NLE.  On top of that, with 12.5 we added Fusion Connect so now you can access all of Fusion’s motion graphics, 3D compositing and visual effects tools right from the Resolve timeline too.

Resolve is turning into a one-stop shop for professionals. You can use it on set for previz to figure out looks and use Resolve Live while you’re shooting. You can use it to make your dailies and do your craft edit or offline edit. You can finish with it using our color tools and add effects, so it’s really become a complete post-production solution. If you’ve ever used another NLE, stepping into Resolve won’t take more than 15-20 minutes to figure out. Everything is customizable so you can configure the keyboard commands and set it up exactly the way you want.

The benefits are unmatched and apply equally to all users— whether you’re cutting a major Hollywood blockbuster, television show, wedding, corporate video, or anything in between, Resolve 12.5 allows all users, from one-man bands to large studio workgroups, to use a single tool to effectively handle just about everything they need in their post production workflow. For DaVinci Resolve 12.5 Studio users, you can even have an editor with multiple colorists working on the same project at the same time. We’re really excited about Resolve 12.5, and this demo video will give you an even better idea of why that’s the case.


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Paul Saccone is a Senior Director of Marketing at Blackmagic Design. With more than 15 years experience in technology for professional film, television and commercial video production, Paul is a production and post-production workflow specialist,…

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