Although version 12 of Blackmagic Design's DaVinci Resolve NLE and color-grading software was announced at this year's NAB, the Beta version is finally ready for download—and it's packed with more than 80 new features. It's an amazing piece of software and, better yet, there's a free version that provides almost all the same features as its $1,000 counterpart.
To reflect the free version's depth and breadth of features, the version formerly known as DaVinci Resolve Lite is now, simply, DaVinci Resolve. The paid option is now called DaVinci Resolve Studio, an apt descriptor since Studio is designed for larger companies that require operational functions such as multi-user workflows. Other differences include 3D Stereoscoping features, available in the Studio version alone.
Still, that leaves the free version with more editing and color-grading tools than you'd expect, or even hope for. If you're not familiar with the software, take a little time and scroll through this list to discover how powerful DaVinci Resolve really is.
Among the new features, you'll find a revamped User Interface that's optimized for high-resolution displays, which not only makes the screen easier on the eyes but also provides convenient methods of sorting and accessing various components (e.g., clips and media) of your project, including new Smart Bins. Tag your media clips and the program automatically sorts it into the correct bin.
Also new is Multi-Cam editing tools for combining clips shot at different camera angles. These can be dragged and dropped into the timeline for a more efficient workflow. You can drag and drop files directly from the finder to the timeline, sort media files into favorite folders and much, much more. DaVinci Resolve 12 is now available for Linux, as well as Mac and Windows.
Although there's no final release date, Blackmagic Design works quickly, so we wouldn't be surprised to see the final version in about a month or so. If you're not a fan of installing Beta software on your computer, it's best to wait until DaVinci Resolve 12 is ready for prime time. Meanwhile, if you're anxious to see what at least some of the fuss is about, download DaVinci Resolve 11 Lite from the app store or, for Windows, the Blackmagic Design site to get started.