DaVinci Resolve’s color grading power is no secret, but more and more video editors are adopting the Blackmagic software as their NLE of choice. These quick tips will help you get the most out of your Resolve editing experience.

Top image via Blackmagic

Since the release of 12.5, DaVinci Resolve has become a certified powerhouse for non-linear editing. It has taken some of the best bits of other NLEs, along with tons of original features, and streamlined it all into one cohesive software. With any new application, it can take some time to find every nook and cranny. Ultimately, this can be the sole reason why many stay with the same software year in and year out. It’s familiar; you know it, and you’re efficient with it.

Being fast with an application can make or break a job. With that in mind, here are a few quick tips to help speed up your video editing workflow in Da Vinci Resolve 12.5.

DaVinci Resolve Editing Tip: Favorites Folder

Video Editing Tips: Speed Up Your Editing in DaVinci Resolve - Favorites Folder

Do you have a set of elements or sound effects that you often use, but there are just so many that importing the entire folder would be too process heavy? If so, look at setting up a Favorites Folder. Very simply, while on the Media page, navigate your way to the designated folder in the volume list, right-click, and select Add Folder to Favorites.

Now you can very easily bypass the hierarchy of your folder database and jump straight into your elements/media folder to import the selected files when needed.

DaVinci Resolve Editing Tip: Sync Your Audio in the Media Pool

Video Editing Tips: Speed Up Your Editing in DaVinci Resolve - Sync Audio

Forget the days when you had to use separate software, a plugin, or manually sync audio. You can quickly do this in the Media Pool in just a few simple steps. First, Ctrl-select your clip and audio file, right-click with both highlighted, and select the sync options that are of use to you.

If your footage and audio have the same timecode metadata, choose Auto-Sync Based on Timecode. If you have perhaps shot with a DSLR and have onboard sound with your video footage, you can choose Auto-Sync Based on Waveform.

Resolve does a great job of auto-syncing regardless of using the timecode or waveform method. You can also select Auto-Sync based on timecode and append tracks, which will add the synchronized audio to any timelines where the footage is present. If you find that your clip is playing back the recorded sound and camera sound, follow the steps below to remove the camera sound.

Video Editing Tips: Speed Up Your Editing in DaVinci Resolve - Sync Audio in Media Pool

  • Right-click on your video clip and select Clip Attributes.
  • In the pop-up menu, shift to the audio tab.
  • Change the audio tracks from 2 to 1.
  • Change the audio channels from embedded channel to linked channel — you will need to do this for both source channels.

DaVinci Resolve Editing Tip: Use Audio to Mark Clips

Video Editing Tips: Speed Up Your Editing in DaVinci Resolve - Use Audio to Mark Clips

If you have synced your audio and footage on the Media page, you can make your clip trimming a little more fluid in the Edit page by trimming the clip to the audio waveform. This is very useful if you’re editing an interview or speech.

On the Edit page, double-click your footage clip to bring it up on the Source Monitor. Click the ellipsis in the top right corner, and select Show Full Clip Audio Waveform.

Video Editing Tips: Speed Up Your Editing in DaVinci Resolve - Mark Clips With Audio

You’ll now be able to trim your footage a lot faster by pinpointing the moments of speech (or lack thereof) before bringing it into the timeline.

DaVinci Resolve Editing Tip: Trim Long Clips Before Import

Video Editing Tips: Speed Up Your Editing in DaVinci Resolve - Trim Clips

Conventionally, you would import your files and then adjust the start the end points in the Source Monitor or on the timeline itself. DaVinci Resolve offers the ability to trim long clips on the import level. This is useful if you have a ten-minute clip, perhaps a timelapse or nature shot, and importing the entire file and scrubbing through it in the timeline will be too cumbersome. Creating SubClips makes handling the media much easier.

Very simply click the media file to bring it into the viewer. Find your designated area, mark your In and Out points, hover over the jogger, right-click and select Create SubClip. This will then import the file at the specified length instead of the whole clip.

It’s important to note that this doesn’t create a new file on your media drive. The SubClip’s timecode will also start where it originally appears in the source clip. You can also make multiple SubClips from the same footage.

Bonus Tip!

Video Editing in DaVinci Resolve: Scene Cut Detection

If you’re editing a preexisting scene or piece of media such as archived news footage, you can import using Scene Cut Detection. This automatically cuts your media into multiple shots based on where Resolve thinks there is a cut. You can read more on that in this article from our friends at PremiumBeat.

Got any tips for editing in DaVinci Resolve? Share them in the comments below!