DaVinci Resolve 17.3 boosts performance on M1 powered Macs

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DaVinci Resolve has been chugging along for several years, but it still gets the stinkeye from Adobe fanbois. Like most things these days, video editing software can become tribal. You have your Adobe users and your Final Cut Pro users, and lastly, your DaVinci Resolve users.

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

I’ve used Adobe Premiere Pro and Final Cut Pro in the past, and I like them both well enough. But Adobe’s monthly subscription fee is ridiculous, and Final Cut Pro is pricey. So I landed on DaVinci Resolve as an alternative, and I couldn’t be happier. Now, the company has updated the software to perform better on M1 Macs.

Blackmagic Design today announced DaVinci Resolve 17.3 which adds support for a completely new processing engine that transforms the speed of DaVinci Resolve to work up to 3 times faster on Apple Mac models with the M1 chip.

With this massive speed increase, customers can now play back, edit and grade 4K projects faster, and can even work on 8K projects on an Apple M1 notebook. The new processing engine uses tile based rendering, which also gives customers up to 30% longer battery life on laptop computers when working in DaVinci Resolve.

DaVinci Resolve 17.3 also supports a new option on Mac computers with M1 for H.265 hardware encoding. Customers can choose to prioritize speed vs quality when rendering, further improving render times up to 65%.

Plus, DaVinci Resolve will now decode AVC Intra files using the media engine built into the Apple M1 chip, making decoding and playback faster when working with these file formats.

Blackmagicdesign

DaVinci Resolve 17.3 Updates and Features

DaVinci Resolve 17.3

Apple Silicon Performance

  • Up to 3x faster new processing engine enabling 8K edit and grading.

Fairlight

  • Improved thru-latency and adjustable processing and input buffers.
  • Improved export dialog with naming, metadata and format control.
  • Timeline clips can be selected from the Fairlight edit index.
  • Improved Fairlight timeline ruler resolution.
  • Buses can be reordered by dragging in the track index.
  • New audio I/O preference options with support for separate I/O selections.
  • Improved mix-down support for LRC, 5.0 and 7.0 track formats.
  • Improved edit, nudge and fade behavior for linked clips.

Color

  • Color Warper supports persistent default grid resolutions.
  • HDR color controls support persistent default zone presets.
  • Active playheads can be switched by clicking on the split screen viewer.
  • New anamorphic aperture controls for Resolve FX Aperture Diffraction. Studio only.
  • New shapes and finer mosaic control for Resolve FX Mosaic Blur.
  • New rotation controls for Resolve FX Keyer garbage mattes.
  • New sat and gamma controls and faster performance for Resolve FX Glow.

Cut

  • List views in the media pool can be sorted from column selection.
  • New badge to easily identify still clips on the timeline.

Edit

  • Edits from sub-clips can now be match-framed to original media.
  • Shape and iris transitions can be rotated from the inspector.
  • Play around selection now works with transition selections.
  • Newly added subtitles retain playhead position to allow text preview.
  • Compound clip instances in the timeline can be renamed.
  • Fusion compositions can be renamed from the inspector panel.
  • Options to name and use full clip extents when creating a subclip.

Fusion

  • DRFX bundles can be double-clicked to install on Windows and Linux.
  • Support for viewing the node type by holding Ctrl/Cmd-Shift-E.

Codecs and Deliver

  • DaVinci Resolve Studio support for audio encoding in the encoder plugin SDK.
  • Hardware accelerated AVC Intra decodes for on Apple Silicon.
  • Support for decoding and encoding JPEG-HT .JPH image sequences.
  • Improved H.264 and H.265 decode performance in Windows Intel systems.
  • Optimized H.265 encodes for speed on Apple Silicon systems.
  • Support for decoding MKV clips with VP9 video codecs.
  • Improved decode performance for MKV clips with AAC and AC3 audio.
  • Support for embedding MPEG2 bitstream captions in XDCAM clips.

General

  • Improved startup speeds for disk databases with many projects.
  • Support for simplified database creation and connection process.
  • AAF imports now support translation of simple nested clips.

DaVinci Resolve 17 is available for download free of charge on Blackmagicdesign’s website, but there is a fee for unlocking all of its features. The free version is still pretty great.

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Last Updated on August 21, 2021.

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