High-end movie production hardware and software maker Blackmagic Design has now released the full version of its DaVinci Resolve 11 color grading software.
Blackmagic first announced its radically revamped version 11 at NAB 2014 in April and released beta versions of Resolve 11 and Resolve 11 Lite in subsequent months. The full version of DaVinci Resolve 11 boasts more than 140 new features and enhancements, turning software once squarely aimed at movie colorists into a fully-fledged, well-rounded on-set and post-production editing and grading application suite.
DaVinci Resolve 11 New Features Appeal to Photographers
Having spent quite some time detouring into digital stills photography from filmmaking in the analog era, then back into digital moviemaking, I really appreciate version 11’s photographer-friendly new features.
Blackmagic’s DaVinci team has clearly been looking over the shoulder of stills photographers, so many of whom are moving into cinematography, while they work in existing dedicated stills raw editing software. Resolve 11 now overcomes the single-frame limitations of stills raw processors while learning from what works well in them.
ColorMatch Is Exciting
I find Resolve 11’s new ColorMatch palette feature especially exciting. Shoot some frames at the start of each scene using X-Rite, Datacolor or DSC Labs portable color charts, apply the ColorMatch palette’s onscreen control in Resolve 11’s Color page, and voilà, an accurate, neutral grade. What better foundation for grading upon than that?
If you don’t currently carry a portable color chart by one of those vendors, please consider doing so. ColorMatch’s savings will pay the chart’s purchase cost off soon enough.
Another photographer-friendly feature is the camera raw palette in the Color page, allowing highlights and shadows adjustment of high dynamic range media. No need to hold back on HDR footage now, especially when shooting in long dynamic range outdoor and outdoor/indoor scenes.
As a lifelong fan of great typography I love the promise of Resolve 11’s new titling feature. I am looking forward to putting it to the test soon. Watch the preview video at www.blackmagicdesign.com/support/video/1368 to get a glimpse of what it can do.
Three Level Grading Modes for Speed, Ease & More
There are plenty of other new features and enhancements in DaVinci Resolve 11 too. The group pre-clip grade and post-clip grading modes – three separate levels of grading with automatic updating – add ease and speed when working with related clips and scenes.
Round-trip collaboration with Final Cut Pro X is improved in Resolve 11 while on-set colorists and DITs (Digital Imaging Technicians) can use the clone tool to make back-ups of camera cards, drive volumes and previously copied clip folders. Backing-up should be easy and often and the clone tool helps make it so.
Resolve 11’s multi-user workflow supports teams of editors, assistants and colorists when collaborating and collaboration is further enhanced now with multiple languages to reflect the increased reality of multinational teams.
I strongly suggest trying out DaVinci Resolve 11 Lite for those who are not existing DaVinci Resolve customers, to get a feel for what this version can do. There are plenty of other features in this colour node-based, track-based editing software package that should appeal as well.
Current Resolve customers can go to the Blackmagic website for their free download of DaVinci Resolve 11. That includes owners of Blackmagic cameras where Resolve was bundled with their hardware as well as customers for DaVinci control surfaces and full software-only.
Blackmagic Design Announces DaVinci Resolve 11 is Now Shipping
Major update adds professional nonlinear online editing features, revolutionary new ColorMatch, new photographer friendly color correction tools, on set media management and much more!
Fremont, CA, USA – August 6, 2014 – Blackmagic Design today announced the release of DaVinci Resolve 11, available now for download free of charge for all existing DaVinci Resolve customers. DaVinci Resolve 11 is a major upgrade with over 100 new editing and color grading features. This new update includes professional nonlinear video editing with context sensitive trimming tools, onset file cloning, a revolutionary new ColorMatch feature, photographer style color grading tools and an amazing new collaborative workflow that allows multiple users to work simultaneously on the same timeline.
The new DaVinci Resolve 11 has over 70 new editing features based on feedback from professional editors. With DaVinci Resolve 11, editors now have dual monitor support and familiar professional tools like dynamic JKL trimming, audio crossfades and fully customizable keyboard shortcuts for faster editing. Trimming tools are context sensitive, which means DaVinci Resolve automatically knows whether editors want to ripple, roll, slip, slide, extend or shorten edits, based on the position of the mouse. This makes editing super fast because time is not wasted switching tools and clips can be trimmed on multiple tracks simultaneously in the same direction, or asymmetrically.
DaVinci Resolve 11 features a new spline curve keyframe editor integrated into the edit timeline that positions keyframes directly under each clip and in context with the clip. Editors can now also add and animate Open FX plugins directly in the timeline as well as use plug-ins for transitions.
The new collaborative workflow tools in DaVinci Resolve 11 allows an editor and multiple colorists to work on different workstations, sharing the same timeline and working in tandem as they complete shots. An example is a colorist could be color grading or tracking windows while another colorist fine tunes grades that are all immediately updated as the editor edits. Each user can see the timeline update so they are all working on the same job at the same time. Sharing the same timeline makes it much easier for creative teams to stay in sync and work faster on large complex jobs such as feature films and television programming.
One of the most exciting advantages of the enhanced editing features in DaVinci Resolve 11 is the dramatically better round trip collaboration with Final Cut Pro X. This is possible because more of the features in each application are compatible so projects can be moved back and forward easily. A powerful example of this integration is when a Final Cut Pro X customer might be shooting an independent film but then wants to move their edit to a large Hollywood post production facility for color grading and finishing. This is an exciting workflow that makes it possible to allow independent filmmakers to integrate with the largest post production facilities. DaVinci Resolve 11 also includes support for ProRes 4444 XQ, the highest-quality version of ProRes that is designed to maintain the detail of high-dynamic-range video through rigorous post-production.
Color correction features have also been upgraded in DaVinci Resolve 11, including all new RAW image and color grading controls that are designed for photographers who are moving into cinematography. The new camera RAW palette features highlight and shadow recovery, mid tone detail, color boost, saturation, lift, gain and contrast. DaVinci Resolve 11 solves the single frame limitations of photo enhancement systems and gives photographers advanced control over RAW images so they can pull the maximum detail from high dynamic range footage in real time.
Adding to DaVinci Resolve’s powerful on set tools, DaVinci Resolve 11 can now securely back up and save digital camera files. The new DaVinci Resolve Clone tool copies media drives, memory cards and camera packs to multiple destinations simultaneously. All copies are checksum verified, that means users get exact bit for bit digital copies of their source media. The new Clone tool is included in the free DaVinci Resolve Lite and can be installed on a laptop for on set use.
DaVinci Resolve 11 also features Color Match, a unique and powerful automatic color chart color balancing tool that works on all types of footage including video, RAW and even film. The new Color Match tool automatically gives a primary base grade by analyzing shots containing standard color chip charts even if they were shot in different lighting conditions with different exposure and color temperatures.
DaVinci Resolve 11 also adds optimizations to OpenCL image processing which allows improved rendering speeds on the new Apple MacPro systems. The MacPro features dual GPU’s making it the ideal “off the shelf” system for customers looking for a high performance solution that can handle the extreme image size and wide dynamic color range of Ultra HD 4K video at the deepest YRGB 32 bit floating point processing quality.
“With over 1 million DaVinci Resolve customers worldwide, we have had great feedback from editors working on high end feature film and television programming jobs and we have rolled this into DaVinci Resolve 11. DaVinci Resolve is not only the worlds most advanced color correction system but now a full featured online editing and finishing system,” said Grant Petty, CEO, Blackmagic Design. “Since the first beta release, feedback from professional colorists and editors has been extremely positive and we are very thankful to have such an advanced community that relies on DaVinci Resolve for their work every day and who can provide us such high quality feedback and guidance!”
Availability and Price
DaVinci Resolve 11 is available now for download from the Blackmagic Design web site free of charge for all DaVinci Resolve customers. For new customers looking for advanced color correction and editing, DaVinci Resolve 11 Lite is a powerful version that can be downloaded free and supports resolutions up to Ultra HD.
About Blackmagic Design
Blackmagic Design creates the world’s highest quality video editing products, digital film cameras, color correctors, video converters, video monitoring, routers, live production switchers, disk recorders, waveform monitors and real time film scanners for the feature film, post production and television broadcast industries. Blackmagic Design’s DeckLink capture cards launched a revolution in quality and affordability in post production, while the company’s Emmy™ award winning DaVinci color correction products have dominated the television and film industry since 1984. Blackmagic Design continues ground breaking innovations including 6G-SDI and 12G-SDI products and stereoscopic 3D and Ultra HD workflows. Founded by world leading post production editors and engineers, Blackmagic Design has offices in the USA, UK, Japan, Singapore and Australia. For more information, please go to www.blackmagicdesign.com.
What do you think of Davinci Resolve 11?
(cover photo credit: snap from Blackmagic Design)