Resolve 12.5 Robbie’s Top Features

April 18, 2016

Another April, another version of DaVinci Resolve! In this Insight, Robbie shares his top new features of this exciting release.


Features Big & Small – An Exciting Update To DaVinci Resolve

Want to know what’s just as accurate as your new fancy smartwatch?

The DaVinci Resolve development team delivering a new release in April centered around the annual Superbowl of trade shows – NAB.

Like clockwork, the Resolve team has just released a pretty incredible update to DaVinci Resolve full of new features – well over 200 of them!

The simple fact that the dev team is able to consistently refine Resolve and deliver a new version of Resolve every April is impressive, but this year they did something I didn’t expect – improve what they had, refine existing features, and make new features somehow feel like they were there all along.

In years past, new UI, new workflows and totally new categories of features dominated each DaVinci Resolve release.  This year, in my opinion, it’s all about making things better and after the past few weeks testing and working with the new version on real-world projects color me impressed.

Many Improvements & Different Perspectives

With dozens and dozens of new features, it’d be next to impossible to cover all of them in a single insight.  In addition, many of the improvements are small enough that you sometimes ask yourself- isn’t that the way it always worked?

The answer, of course, is no, but that’s sort of the beauty of this release.  Among killer new features like enhanced noise reduction, new log grading functionality, HDR & RCM improvements  – there are hundreds of smaller features that just feel ‘right’.

Over this Insight and in similar ones from Dan and Pat, Team MixingLight will share its favorite new features.  And over the coming weeks, we’ll break down some of the marquee ones in more detail.

My Favorite New Features

Man, this is tough.

There is so much to like in Resolve 12.5 it’s very hard for me to narrow it down.  But rather than bombarding you with a 90min Insight of all the new features I love I’ve culled it down to my top 5 or 6.

Yep, I do have 2a, 3B, and 5C as well!  There are a lot of related complementary new Resolve 12.5 new features so I sort of bundled them together.

Here are my favorites.

  • Improved Resolve Color Management – Improvements here are huge!  As discussed in various threads here on MixingLight.com not having the ability to separate gamut and gamma has been problematic in the past.  Well, now you can do just that making RCM workflow much more straightforward and clear.
  • HDR Improvements – HDR is here and not going anywhere.  Recognizing this the Resolve team continues to add to HDR specific features. In the movie below I’ll show you some of my favorites including the new HDR Waveform, the HDR node option and ability to pass HDR metadata to HDMI 2.o equipped displays.
  • Noise Reduction Improvements – Once you become OCD about noise reduction it’s hard to accept anything less than perfection. It used to be that Resolve’s noise reduction capabilities were good, but a balancing act between real-time performance and actual noise reduction performance.  Now in Resolve 12.5, you can have up to 5 frames of averaging for temporal noise reduction and the spatial noise reduction toolset has been completely updated to produce much less ‘chunky’ results
  • S-Curve vs Linear Contrast Behavior – I’m probably the only person excited about this!  When using Contrast & Pivot resolve as always applied a nice soft s-curve.  Now via a preference, you can change the contrast behavior to be linear as it is in other apps.  While you can pretty much do the same thing with Lift, Gamma, Gain I have such muscle memory on my control surface with Contrast & Pivot that this option is very much welcomed.
  • Node Improvements – At the core of the Resolve color experience are nodes – the team keeps refining how to work with them. This is one category of improvement that had me wondering if things always worked that way!  The answer is no – they probably just should have.  In the movie below I’ll share some of my favorite new node enhancements.

I’m sure I’ll mention a few other new features in this release but remember Pat and Dan will guide you through many more exciting features including ResolveFX, other UI enhancements and some great workflow changes on the delivery page!

Finally, I should note that many of the HDR specific features I’ll mention are found in Resolve Studio 12.5 only.

As always any questions or things to add please use the comments below

-Robbie


Comments

16 thoughts on “Resolve 12.5 Robbie’s Top Features”

  1. I noticed the command swap of nodes does not work with openFX plugins. The openFX stays on the same node. Another big feature is the various RED color options in RCM.

  2. I’m kind of glad they took this approach to this release as opposed to a v13

    Probably the only thing i feel is lacking, and that they semi-addressed, is a full screen viewer in the edit page.

    I was playing around with it today and i really don’t like the cinema viewer for this purpose (or most purposes actually )

    I much prefer the full screen viewer (shift+f) for quickly bouncing in and out of a bigger view.

    The cinema viewer always seems clunky in the way it activates itself

    Besides that, i’m really loving this release !

  3. The nodes improvements are really welcome, especially the lasso tool to grab several nodes at once. One little thing is worth mentioning as well: you can now ‘override’ the input of a node by another source with a ‘straight’ connect (the previous link will be deleted automatically, no need to delete it first anymore). Little thing, but for sure one that will ease our lives. 🙂

  4. Doh, Previous Node and Next Node keyboard shortcuts (programmable to 3rd-party maco keypads) are great. The Node improvements are very well thought out. The handoff from Resolve to Fusion and back has the potential to be amazing, though still a little primitive compared to Lustre/Flame.

    1. Agreed with the Fusion roundtrip Marc. But not that primitive in my taste: have you seen that versioning is supported via this roundtrip? Right click on the fusion clip to manage different ‘versions’, which is great in term of files management (the Resolve UI does it all for you).

  5. One of the questions this release makes for a small shop like mine, where I’m not doing fancy editing moves but expect the fine and extraordinary controls I used to do in my custom color printing for every flipping frame of video … is whether to keep working in PrPro for editing and work with the Lumetri panel … or spend a bit of time to learn editing and push my grading all within Resolve. There’s so much new stuff Team Mixing Light hasn’t been able to get to in this release … that seems quite usable even for small fry like me. Such an extraordinary program. Ah well, who needs sleep …

      1. Realistically what I do involves more interview/documentary work than say the commercial stuff that Dan is so cool at. Basic editing seems rather similar to PrPro & probably most NLE’s I’m presuming … so it’s probably organizing media/assets for the job within Resolve’s media handling protocols (which are rather different than the Adobe models), then working with media from 2/3 different cams/angles … and … skin. How to salvage skin and balance skin from different cams, with different types of light hitting things … drives me nuts but fixing one image is NOT the same as fixing several clips from different cams and angles over time.

        And of course, if one is editing/grading within Resolve, then one will be exporting for deliverables from Resolve …

        1. Would like to see that too- Skin tones from different cameras – editing etc. All good ideas for further study. Multicam is hardly ever talked about in DaVinci. Tried it once and it couldn’t sync – dropped it into FCPX and boom everything synced as expected. That was an older version of DaVinci though.

    1. Neil – sorry for the super long delay in getting back to you. I’ve been having (apparently) an issue with Disqus notifications. I’m sincerely sorry.

      I think its all about context – quick turn around, super complicated edit, but limited to moderate grading needs stay with Premiere if you can get it done there faster/easier.

      While I’m an Adobe evangelist (not the paid kind) Premiere is not and will not be the robust grading tool that Resolve is. Adobe themselves has pretty much said this – its a tool for editors to do more with color – its not a replacement for color grading platforms.

      Regarding your comment below responding to Pat – we’re looking for contributors to discuss Resolve editing – as our focus is obviously color-centric.

      1. Yea, not going to be a huge amount of editing talk on a colorist’s training site … semi-sorry for the digression.

        As to the colorist part of Resolve … I’ve been through all the skin tut’s on the site. Would still love a bit of exploration as to how you all handle skin from different cams and angles of a shoot, for instance, and shot-to-shot of course. Really handling the subtle hues and textures well … that seems a bit of a challenge at times.

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