How Preferences Are Overhauled in DaVinci Resolve 14 Public Beta 7
DaVinci Resolve 14 Public Beta 7 (14pb7) is released (at the time of this writing). This is proving to be a very eventful Beta cycle, with several unannounced features launched throughout this cycle… and the Fairlight integration continues unabated (but overall audio performance on the Edit Page is still lagging from Resolve 12.6). The release of 14pb7 brought about a fix to a problem I’ve long griped about in my training on Tao Of Color and Mixing Light – the problem of User Preferences getting mixed in with Project Settings.
The Annoyance of Continually Resetting User Preferences
Through my entire career on DaVinci Resolve, the one daily annoyance is creating a new Project and then resetting my personal preferences for how DaVinci Resolve works. From unchecking ‘Still Wipes Wrap Around’ to enabling Timeline Bins – there wasn’t a day that I wasn’t annoyed at having to reset these settings. Yes, the ‘Copy Settings from This Project’ command alleviates some of that pain; but I don’t always remember to do that until after a timeline has been created. And at that point the Timeline Bins option is no longer available for enabling, destroying my organizational structure.
Now – in the circle of life this may not seem like a big problem… until I have clients sitting behind me and some aspect of the software trips me up and I have to stop what I’m doing to fix a Preference I missed. Color correcting (and editing) is all about the flow. Killing my flow to fix the same set of Preferences every day? That get’s super-annoying after 6 or 7 years.
Waiting for the Solution to Get Implemented
Of course, I’m not the only Power User complaining about this daily chore to the Blackmagic team. Just visit NAB and listen in to your peers talking with the Resolve team and you’ll hear this same gripe – year after year. This is a problem that was waiting for a solution for a very long time.
Who knows why Team DaVinci Resolve decided to finally implement this fix now? Maybe the Fairlight integration team was mucking around in the deep internals of Resolve (adding the new Speaker Configuration preferences, which are super cool) and they decided this was as good a time as any to revisit System, Project and User preferences? Or maybe one of their software engineers color grades on the side and got equally annoyed, and tackled this as a lunch-time project?
Whatever the reason… I’m stoked.
Releasing the Inner Fanboy
After installing any new version of DaVinci Resolve, the first place I always check are the preferences, since they give you a good idea of any under-the-hood changes they’ve executed. But when I opened Resolve 14 public beta 7, my inner fanboy let out a whoo-ho! Well, after first being dismayed that my keyboard mapping settings had disappeared:
What menu did they put that under now??? I asked myself.
It wasn’t until I found User preferences sitting in the same menu as System Preferences that I grokked what Blackmagic had done… then I released a loud triumphant hoot!
Examining the Preferences Structure of DaVinci Resolve 14
Since I need to share my enthusiasm for this preference redesign, I decided to record an Insight on the logic of it (as best as I can intuit). I also share thoughts on one major feature that is missing from this redesign. Plus, I remind long-time members who have taken my self-contained DaVinci Resolve training courses about the one remaining Big Picture project settings gripe I’ve had for 7 years… that isn’t fixed in this release of Resolve 14.
A warning about Public Betas
Keep in mind, during Public Beta release cycles Blackmagic is known to make major structural changes. The preferences as laid out in this Insight are subject to major revisions in later builds. If you’re watching this a few weeks or months from now then you can expect they’ve tweaked what’s been recorded here.
Enjoy this Video Insight!
PS – Don’t forget, if you’re an existing Resolve user, Mixing Light Contributor Joey D’Anna recorded a stand-alone training title detailing the major new features in DaVinci Resolve 14 – that Mixing Light members get to buy at a discount.