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Bart Walczak November 16th, 2011 08:03 AM

DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
Excellent news. Press release below. I believe at NAB or IBC next year we will also see a control surface that will cost about $500-$700. I will write more about it later in the evening.

Blackmagic Design: View Press Release

Blackmagic Design Announces DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!

InterBEE 2011, Tokyo, Japan - November 16, 2011 - Blackmagic Design today announced DaVinci Resolve Lite 8.1, a new version of the free DaVinci Resolve that now includes unlimited color correction nodes.

Unlimited color correction nodes allow customers to use multiple color correctors for more complex and creative grading and is a dramatic boost in power over the previous version of DaVinci Resolve Lite that was limited to 2 nodes. Adding more than 2 color correction nodes was the top requested feature by DaVinci Resolve Lite colorists.

DaVinci Resolve will be demonstrated on the Blackmagic Design InterBEE booth.

To help promote the art of color correction, DaVinci Resolve Lite includes many powerful features found in the full version of DaVinci Resolve for an extremely powerful toolset that anyone can download free of charge.

DaVinci Resolve Lite includes all the same high quality processing of the full DaVinci Resolve, however limits projects to SD and HD resolutions, unlimited nodes using a single processing GPU and a single RED Rocket card. Stereoscopic 3D features, noise reduction, power mastering, remote grading and sharing projects with an external database server are features only offered in the full DaVinci Resolve so are not included in this free DaVinci Resolve Lite edition. Customers who want these features can simply upgrade to the full DaVinci Resolve Software for only US$995.

Even with the restrictions of the free DaVinci Resolve Lite, image quality is never limited, and customers can use the incredible image processing quality of DaVinci Resolve. In addition DaVinci Resolve Lite can still accept high resolution source footage in 2K, 4K and 5K from the latest digital cameras from RED and ARRI, so customers get a fantastic digital camera utility.

DaVinci Resolve Lite still includes high quality optical resizing, curve grading, XML import and export, 32 bit float processing, YRGB image processing, multi layer timelines, stabilization, window tracking, primary and secondary color correction, real time processing, capture and playback with deck control, compatibility with third party control panels and much more. With so many powerful features at absolutely no charge, customers will be able to experience the dramatic improvement to their work from using professional color correction.

“Thousands of colorists have downloaded and are using DaVinci Resolve Lite to help generate a revolution in visual design that’s dramatically improving the production values of the entire television industry!”, said Grant Petty, CEO, Blackmagic Design. “We are very excited to be able to offer this new enhanced version of DaVinci Resolve Lite, and we hope that many more people will be able to explore the art of color correction on their television production work”

Availability and Price
DaVinci Resolve Lite is available now and free of charge from the Blackmagic Design web site.

Bart Walczak November 16th, 2011 10:52 AM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
And here are my comments about this release.

Democratization of Color Grading – what’s the next move? | Life's caveats and wonders

Yesterday BlackMagic released an upgrade to its free version of the industry standard grading tool, daVinci Resolve. The biggest and most influential change was surely removing the limit of 2 nodes that was present in previous Lite version. This bold move essentially makes the professional color correction software available to everyone for free. I am still waiting for the announced Windows version, that would make it even more accessible, but it’s almost a given at the beginning of the next year.

There still are limitations – you can at most output at HD resolution, even though you can work with footage that is much bigger than that, you won’t get noise reduction, you are limited to a single GPU. That said, most of the people to whom this version of software is directed hardly ever yet think about projects in 2K and above and have not considered buying a second GPU except perhaps for gaming purposes. However you choose to look at it, BlackMagic did surprise everyone by providing amazing piece of truly professional software for free. This kind of democratization of grading tools is certainly terrific, and unexpected. It is however not yet disruptive enough. What will BlackMagic next move be?

I see this release as a preemptive strike against Adobe (see my previous post on Adobe acquiring Iridas) and following Apple recent “prosumerisation” trend. In Adobe CS6 we will almost certainly see integrated SpeedGrade color-correction software – to many it means that they will get this tool almost for free (for the price of upgrade, but you would most-likely want to upgrade anyway). To attempt to win the new users, there was little else that BlackMagic could do. However the question still remains, why would BlackMagic voluntarily resign from some part of their income? Why not sell the newly unlocked Lite version for $99 or $199 and profit handsomely? What’s in it for them, apart from perhaps profiting from monitoring interfaces that they already sell? Let’s speculate a little bit.

One of the things that distinguishes “real” from “would-be” colorists is a control surface. It’s a tool dedicated towards increasing speed and ease with which to operate the software. All companies that provide serious grading software also sell special panels that go with it. This hardware is extremely expensive, costing anywhere from ten thousand to several hundred thousand dollars. BlackMagic does have its own model, which costs about $20 grand. Of course, in the world of high-turnover, high-end productions, such costs are quite quickly recovered. But this highly demanding pro world is relatively small, and competing companies rather numerous: BlackMagic, Digital Vision (former Nucoda), Baselight, Autodesk, Quantel, to name a few important ones.

Certainly no home-grown editor would-be colorist will shell out $20k for a tool that will sit idle 90% of their working time. Towards this end companies like Euphonix (now Avid), and Tangent Devices developed less sophisticated models that cost about $1500. For a pro it is often a very reasonable price for an entry-level piece of hardware that will pay for itself pretty quick. However, for a prosumer it is still at least two to three times too much, especially considering very limited use of the said tool. Regular consumers are willing to pay $499 for a new iPhone, avid gamers usually spend this much on a new GPU, and I guess this is about the limit that a prosumer color-grading surface would have to cost to catch on big time.

From a business perspective, selling 10 000 pieces of hardware costing $500 each earns you more than selling 10 $20k ones. Apple knew that when they released Final Cut Pro X (regardless of what you think about the program). Professional market is quite saturated, and there is not much to be gained there. It is also very demanding. Prosumers are much easier to appease, and their tools do not have to withstand the amount of abuse that pros require. Following the Apple model – giving the tool to prosumers – is a surer promise of profit, than appealing to the demanding pros.

The question is – who will make this move? Two years ago I would say that Apple might be one of the best candidates, but after introducing weird color control in Final Cut Pro X, and focusing all their efforts on touch panels I’m pretty sure they are not the ones. I don’t expect Tangent Devices or Avid to undercut the sales of their relatively low-cost models, especially after Tangent recently revamped their panels. BlackMagic is the most likely candidate, because right now they only have their high-end model. Creating a new version takes a lot of R&D resources, both time and money, and it is pretty hard to compete in this segment. BlackMagic also always did appeal to those with lower budgets, and this kind of disruptive move is something that is the easiest to expect from this company.

Therefore I am waiting for a simple control surface that will cost about $500-$700, will be sturdy enough to last me two years of relatively light to moderate use, and sensitive enough for the kind of color grading that I presently do – nowhere near truly professional level, but sometimes quite demanding nevertheless. I understand the big problem is producing decent color wheels, but I don’t loose hope that somebody will come up with some neat idea, and implement it. And no, multitouch panel will not do. If you wonder why, read another of my articles on the importance of tactile input. The whole point of control surface is that you don’t have to look at it while grading.

Finally, is the realm of professional colorists in any danger from the newcomers? To a certain extent perhaps. The field will certainly become more competitive, and even more dynamic, perhaps a few players will drop out of the market. On the other hand, more people will be educated about the quality of good picture, and more will require this quality, and also will be able to appreciate excellent work that most of the professionals do. All in all it probably will influence more the job of an editor than a colorist, bringing the two even closer together – the editors will be required to learn color correction to stay in business. In the high-end productions not very much will change, the dedicated professionals will still be sought for both for training and for expertise. Perhaps some of the rates will go down, but most likely in the middle range. In the end I think it will have net positive effect on what we do and love.

Will we then see a new product during NAB 2012 or IBC 2012? I would certainly be the first in line with my credit card. And if we do – you heard it here first. :)

Jonathan Shaw November 17th, 2011 03:09 PM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
Any of you guys have the link to download the free lite version. I been looking on the Blackmagic site and it says download but I can't find the link.

Bart Walczak November 17th, 2011 03:38 PM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
Try here:

Blackmagic Design: Support Register

Jonathan Shaw November 17th, 2011 05:16 PM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
Thanks Bart, downloading now

John Richard November 19th, 2011 08:43 AM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
Any leads on good training resources? (in addition to the manual pdf)

Bart Walczak November 19th, 2011 01:57 PM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
This one is free but only touches the basics:

Getting Started with DaVinci Resolve Lite | FREE TRAINING

The paid ones are here:
Tao Of Color Training : MasterClass Series

That's all I know there is.

Henry Coll November 20th, 2011 02:27 AM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
This is a very surprising move and the death of DaVinci within professional environments.

Perception is VERY important and the most valuable asset of any brand. If Audi were to make some cheap car it would lose its status and those with money will get Mercedes instead of Audis.

The same will happen to DaVinci. Producers will refuse to pay decent money for a tool "my niece downloaded for free" and will instead book Lustre and Baselight suites which aren't degraded (pun intended) as DaVinci now.

Poor facilities that invested serious money in Resolve. Their investments just went down the toilet today. Which facilities will pay plenty of money for Resolve now, knowing that BMD can't be trusted and the $50k+ tool they just bought a month ago is now seen as having no value at all?

Peter Moretti November 20th, 2011 03:42 AM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
I don't think producers have a clue as to what the differences are with DaVinci, Baselight, Lustre, Pablo, Avid DS, Symhony, etc..

It's like w/ NLE's. "The Social Network" was cut on FCP. No one said don't use it b/c it cost a grand.

John Richard November 20th, 2011 08:12 AM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
Resolve Lite is not a professional fully tricked out color grading system nor is it the most important part of the equation - the experienced trained professional artist employing the tool! That is what producers and directors with a budget WILL pay for and never give a thought to the notion that all of that value is now worthless.

What Davinci Resolve Lite is ... is an opportunity to learn the tool and possibly produce a few more artists over time ... and the little guys to use a great tool to improve their productions somewhat ... but nothing like a full on professional colorist.

I seriously doubt that the pro grading houses are quaking in their boots over the Lite software version available for free.

Dom Stevenson November 20th, 2011 10:38 AM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
Henry Coll

"the death of DaVinci within professional environments."

That tells me rather more about "professional" environments than it does about Davinci. Meanwhile, those who want to get the job done will carry on as before.

Unfortunately this app doesn't like my MPB (entry level 2.3 intel core i5 2011 model) so i can't use it despite downloading it. I think there may be a way of getting it to work though if anyone has any tips?



Henry Coll November 20th, 2011 01:53 PM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
Put yourself for a second in the shoes of a Post facility manager.

In the past you adverstised your DaVinci suite loud and proud. It was expensive, and the tool only pros could offer.
Resolve (just the soft, not the entire suite) was $100k a year ago. After BMD bought it, it suddenly could be bought for $999. Now it's free. Your suite is now associated with cheap work and freeware. It's now the work of the manager/sales guys to try to educate every single client that comes through the door. "OK, but isn't it the SAME software if you're only doing HD? Yes, but..."

Colorists will buy a cheap PC and a Panasonic plasma and will undercut their own facilities at home, etc.
Producers jump in everytime they have a chance to pay less. Here's another opportunity to strecht the budgets even further.

On the other hand, facilities with Baselight, Pablo...etc, still keep their reputation intact. "We're not for the cheap DSLR crowd, we're PROs". That's a PR nightmare for any facility manager using Resolve.

The WORST of it all is the uncertainty that BMD could even introduce a new controller very similar to the big one for just $3k at the next IBC and drop the high-end, because they realize they'd make more money selling thousands of $3k controllers than a dozen $30k ones. BMD has already introduced other disruptive products and can no longer be trusted as a provider of high-end solutions.

Tim Kerigan November 20th, 2011 03:40 PM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
Actually I read somewhere else they are introducing a cheaper control surface, by NAB I believe.

Murray Christian November 20th, 2011 04:04 PM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
It seems more likely that DaVinci realised, like most high end production software manufacturers in the last ten years or so, if you have no skill base all the prestige in the world is worthless. Indeed, it can actually work against you, as thousands of students want experience with your software on their resume and to see what all the fuss is about but can't afford yet another $5-10,000 course with some school just to be able to touch it and opt just to take it instead. Crippled demos don't work. People want the real thing.

At that point you're no closer to selling any more licenses than you were before. But there's only a small cadre of experienced users around talking about it anyway, so maybe no one's heard of it to bother even stealing it.

However if it's cheap and lots of people have experience with it (and, above all, does the job well, I think ought to be the most important bit) a good portion of which might want to take that leap to frame sizes above 1080, as that's rapidly becoming the home video resolution (high level colour grading is a fairly particular thing, after all. Generally employed by people making stuff on purpose). That's a leap they could not make with prestige pricing and prestige priced operators.

We've seen Avid/Pro Tools, Autodesk (less so), Adobe generally, and others go this way. Maybe not for precisely the same reasons, but big price drops, mildly restricted free versions, student editions, subscriptions etc are things you see more often. Heck, more schools that aren't production focused even start setting up suites.
Software without users dies; prestige without a skill base is just a price tag no one wants to pay. I think that's what production software makers have come to realise.

Allan Black November 20th, 2011 05:13 PM

Re: DaVinci Resolve Lite now Includes Unlimited Color Correction Nodes!
Maybe the counterfeit copies are selling so well, they figured they might as well give it away.

Or like RED, they've heard about another 'November 3' announcement coming and figured they'd jump the competition.

Canon and RED should take notice re the price.


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