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DaVinci Resolve - for video editing?

 
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Someone suggested I try DaVinci Resolve for video editing because it's free.

I have no idea what it is.  So far I've been using Movie Maker and struggling.  At first, I thought it was the user failing, but after doing some more reading and research, it might be the tool.  

Anyone here use DaVinci?  Tips, tricks, help?  Where does a n00b like me get started?
 
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Bump...  I hope someone with actual experience will reply here...

In the mean time, I always expect beginner intros to products live on youtube.   So I did a quick search.   I found this video, which shows a quick runthru of using DaVinci Resolve.  



It looks very good, but has a disclaimer at the end that it needs a very beefy, late-model PC to run.   This opinion seems to be borne out by further search hits on other sites, though I cannot vouch for these.

The same youtuber is recommending (he's an affiliate for) Filmora which specifically advertises itself as running on older, lower-end hardware.  It looks like it costs 60 USD and has a free trial version (I didn't try it.)
Same youtuber has a beginner tutorial for Filmora:


Hope this helps.... just some searches...
 
Kerry Rodgers
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I found another free video editor called Shotcut.  (Be a little careful what you are clicking on there:  google is advertising their competitors on the Shotcut site!)

This one actually says it is open source, and is avail for Win, Mac, and Linux!.  Here's a review channel giving a demo/tutorial of it:



This is just searching at this point.   However, this one looks compelling enough that I might try it.
 
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I did use DaVinci Resolve a while back. It is a super professional software. Their idea is, that they give the software away for free and make money selling the hardware. I like it, and I like that they're alternative to the giants who dominate the multimedia market.
Your computer should work with DaVinci on a smaller project, but remember that it's designed for much more powerful machines. So it will overheat, and crash, and you won't be able to use any other apps at the same time.
You need to learn the basics and spend some time on it before you start to work with your project. But, then it's a pleasure because it's really a professional working environment, so you can make a high quality project.
 
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DaVinci is definitely a professional software, but it does require a professional-level computer to run, meaning it simply does not install on a simpler machine.
I try to use only open source software, and I truly believe this is as relevant a topic for humankind as it is permaculture or avoiding huge corporations products.
Of course, the most used video editors are commercial, and you'll have a hard time searching professional people and companies working with open source software. On the other hand, the open source community is usually friendly and helpful - like-minded, I'd say.
Some (free) open source video editors:

Shotcut
https://shotcut.org/

Openshot
https://www.openshot.org/

Flowblade
https://jliljebl.github.io/flowblade

Kdenlive
https://kdenlive.org/

I haven't tried neither Shotcut nor Openshot. They seem to be simple and effective.
I've tried Flowblade (it's linux-only), and liked it, but I use Kdenlive.
Editing video is probably the most demanding stuff you can do in your computer. If you're willing to use an average-spec computer to edit video, you'll need to use proxies - a way to replace the original video with low resolution versions. The final video will be rendered with your original clips, so there'll be no quality loss.
Both Flowblade and Kdenlive work with proxies - I don't know about the former two.
Flowblade states it was developed with stability in mind. This is the biggest issue you will have, regardless the editor you choose: the software crashing. I've been using Kdenlive for a few years, and have no problems, but I use Linux (I'm guessing you use Windows). Many people complain of Kdenlive crashes in Windows, even in Linux. The ideal would be having a dedicated computer only for editing, but it may not be a realistic option for most of us.
So, my suggestion is to install one or some of the editors mentioned, add one or two clips, generate proxies and apply some effects. Render it and see if it works. If you need help, have a look at the forums - they may be somewhat buried, like kdenlive's:

https://forum.kde.org/viewforum.php?f=263

Of course, there are many other communities for these softwares (aside the 'official' ones), for instance on reddit and facebook.
And if you want me to go into details, I'd be glad to help.
 
r ranson
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Today I finally gave up.
Now, it's not the fault of the software.  The DaVinci software is amazing!  It does so much.
And... that is the problem.  I'm not ready yet.  My skill set isn't far enough along to make it do what I want.  After almost 6 weeks of trying to learn this, I decided I need a stepping stone.  

I downloaded the free version of Filmora today and learned how to use it in the morning.  This is an excellent stepping stone.  I can already see that I'll outgrow it in a few years, but by then, I'll have enough skill to use DaVinci.  
I'll start a new thread about Filmora once I get to know it better.  
 
r ranson
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I've been using wondershare filmora and I love it as a stepping stone.  It's enough software that I can just do stuff and learn as I go along.  Not so much that I am overwhelmed.  

In a while, I want to start using Davinci Resolve because it can do so much more.  Filmora has its limits and ... between you and me, it crashes several times a day.  I need to remember to save every third action.  Although it does have a limited auto-save which has saved my arse more than a few times.

So... learning DaVinci.
I may have a problem that my computer can't handle it.  But I want to try.
The aim is to find and film what I need for a 1 to 1:30 min video.  Then do all the things I usually do
- cut and paste footage together
- text overlay sometimes
- sound layers
- sound volume playing
- colour correction

I would like to start learning this software this winter.  There are a few good videos I've stumbled on which I'll post in this thread if I find them again.  
 
r ranson
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r ranson
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I haven't signed up for this yet, but this is a free class for learning DaVinci Resolve 16 https://filmsimplified.com/p/davinci-resolve-crash-course

One of the hesitation is that DaVinci is now 17.  
 
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Be careful with wondershare.
I got their SD card recover stuff for 1 year.
Now they are trying to auto renew me for 10 years.
I did jump through their hoops to unsubscribe but they never sent an email saying I unsubscribed
and keep sending emails telling me to unsubscribe before the renewal date.
But won't let me into my account to unsubscribe again.

Recoverit sucked anyway. Didn't just read my card "refreshed" it.
Beware.
 
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I switched over from Final Cut Pro to Davinci Resolve a few years ago, and haven't looked back.  But I've been editing video semi professionally for about 20 years.  It is a *very* deep system - I'm guessing even more daunting for folks new to video editing. But if you want to take the time to master it, you will be rewarded.

On the other hand, so many people get so frustrated with the simple and typical free editors, because they can be cumbersome and limiting.  I hate not being able to achieve something I have in mind.
 
r ranson
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I've just about finished my final project on filmora.  Got to go through and do the sfx and colour correction.  These are both highly clumbersome on Filmora, especially colour because even if I make presets, the menu resets to default with each clip so I have to make about 7 clicks to get to my saved colour profiles.  The auto features for colour correction glitch terribly.  20 min video is going to take about 8 hours to colour correct.  sigh!  

Oh well, now to start planning a small project to do on Da Vinci.  I've got a creator's block from the fear of starting with a new system.  
 
Beau M. Davidson
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r ranson wrote:I've just about finished my final project on filmora.  Got to go through and do the sfx and colour correction.  These are both highly clumbersome on Filmora, especially colour because even if I make presets, the menu resets to default with each clip so I have to make about 7 clicks to get to my saved colour profiles.  The auto features for colour correction glitch terribly.  20 min video is going to take about 8 hours to colour correct.  sigh!  

Oh well, now to start planning a small project to do on Da Vinci.  I've got a creator's block from the fear of starting with a new system.  



I understand!  All of the above.  Especially the drag of starting the learning curve all over again.  It's like working in someone else's boots for awhile, but then things smooth out and get fun again.  Hang in there.

I was pretty thrilled when I got my hands on Resolve.  Handles color very well and intuitively, in my opinion, and has a pretty nice built in audio suite too, which I was not used to.  I have always handled audio separately, but now I can potentially do simple stuff all within Resolve.
 
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Good information here.  Thank you.  One question, when looking at their website I saw they mentioned using the Cloud.  Would this work without uploading to the Cloud?  I would like to just download right from my phone or a memory card.  The sue of the internet for me the better.
 
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You have to pay extra for the cloud.   Good for projects with multiple people editing,  but not necessarily.
 
Michael Fundaro
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r ranson wrote:You have to pay extra for the cloud.   Good for projects with multiple people editing,  but not necessarily.



Thank you.  When I get a new computer that is probably the way I will go.
 
r ranson
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Apparently, version 18 is out.

I'm not so far into learning the software that I can't switch.  Any thoughts?  Would it be stable enough for a bug magnet like myself?  Should I wait a few months?
 
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I finally edited my first video with DaVinci.  



It was easier and harder than I expected.

Having a quick way to view the clips and easy to use keyboard shortcuts like "i" and "o" was brilliant.  I would stick with this software just for how much time that saved me over my old editor.  Just hover the mouse over the clip to view the different parts, then click the key to set the start and stop places.  Brilliant!

I only used the cut and edit tabs.  The rest confused me greatly.

I couldn't figure out how to colourgrade.  There are a few clips I would have liked to adjust exposure at least, but the camera isn't too bad at capturing the look I like, so I just went with it.

But now I've done one, I know enough to figure out what tutorials I can watch to learn more.  My brain couldn't absorb the tutorials prior to using the software, but now I have an experience to link it to in my brain, it will be easier to remember.  

I'll probably switch between this and my old editing software for a while.  But it won't be long before I fully commit to DaVinci.  
 
Beau M. Davidson
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Looks really great!  I'm glad it's working out for you.

As for updates, unless there is a specific functionality you want in the new version, I am a fan of slow adoption of updates.  The whole "if it ain't broke" thing.  Others may disagree . . .
 
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Today I begin my first proper video on DaVinci.  I'll be cutting, pasting, editing, adding voiceover, editing audio levels, adding music, making the music go quieter when I am talking, and colour correction.  There may even be a couple of transitions depending on how the video goes, but I am trying to move away from them as I don't feel they always add to the video and I'm just putting them in there because fade is cool.  

I expect it will take quite a bit longer than on filmora as I'm familiar with that style.  The last video, Filmora glitched out and cost me many extra hours fixing things.  So I've reached a high enough frustration level that it is time to switch.

But actually, I only spent 10 min and I've already gotten most of the clips organized.  So maybe once I get over the learning curve, this will be better?

Keyboard shortcuts are awesome!  But tricky as shift-12 (append clip to end of timeline) is right next to shift-backspace (delete clip) so my hands are making mistakes.

I'm also going to try a different style of editing.  normally I build my videos by choosing the music and voice, then trim each clip to the very frame I want, and add it in.  This time, I'm building the visuals first with a really rough trim.  Then I'll trim down some more, add the audio, and then adjust.  I'm curious if this will speed up the workflow or if my mind is a better match to building video rather than cutting it into shape.  

wish me luck.
 
Beau M. Davidson
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Good luck!

You can map your own shortcut keys.  Or delete shortcuts that are causing you problems . . .
 
r ranson
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Beau Davidson wrote:Good luck!

You can map your own shortcut keys.  Or delete shortcuts that are causing you problems . . .



Thanks.  Good news about changing the shortcuts.

Timeline made.  I just found a button that says "revert to last save".  Does that mean that I don't have to save a new file each time I sit down for an editing session?  
 
Beau M. Davidson
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r ranson wrote:

Beau Davidson wrote:Good luck!

You can map your own shortcut keys.  Or delete shortcuts that are causing you problems . . .



Thanks.  Good news about changing the shortcuts.

Timeline made.  I just found a button that says "revert to last save".  Does that mean that I don't have to save a new file each time I sit down for an editing session?  



If I understand correctly, your question requires 2 answers.

Revert to last saved just goes back to the state of the project the last time you saved, undoing all changes made since that point.

However, you don't have to save a new file each time you sit down for a session.  Some editors do that, so they have an easily accessible, date specific file at various stages of development, but most editors just keep 1 file for every major edit, updating as they go.

Did I understand well enough to answer well enough?
 
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That makes sense.

On filmora I would save a new file each day because I never knew what action I did would cause it to glitch out and delete a bunch of edits or files.  It's a habit I got into back in the '90s when computer crashes were common.  Do one big backup each day, then smaller backups every 10 changes.  

That way if it all goes to gibberish soup, there is a restore point we can use.
 
Beau M. Davidson
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Makes sense - nothing wrong with doing it that way.  Peace of mind is priceless . . .
 
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adding this here because it is SUCH a game changer.

 

 
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It is now available for ipad:



I try to find the simplest route on my workflow and these devices allow for quick and efficient edits. They are increasingly becoming as powerful as computers.
 
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I thought I'd 'bump' this thread for myself, and any budding video editors for the freaky cheap gamcod film......
 
Beau M. Davidson
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Good bump, Nancy.

I'm still using Resolve, and still very happy.

I threatened for the first time last month, after about 3 years with Resolve, to upgrade to their paid version because of its newly introduced video-edit-via-text-edit functionality, but as yet I just haven't been able to justify the spend because the free version is just so powerful and usable.
 
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