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DaVinci Resolve for iPad Now Available – First Look Video

December 22nd, 2022 Jump to Comment Section 9

DaVinci Resolve for iPad is finally live on the App Store. In the past few weeks, my colleague Jakub took some time to experiment with the Beta version of the application, then he sat down with Nino to grab a coffee and share his first impressions.

If you’re just starting out with video editing, there’s a long list of reasons why you’d want to adopt Resolve as your first editing software. And if you are an experienced professional, it is likely that you have already made the switch from a different editing platform over the last few years.

While the desktop version keeps getting better via a series of frequent updates, the advent of DaVinci Resolve for iPad (first announced back in October) adds to the list of reasons for taking the leap. So let’s take a closer look at what the first tablet-oriented iteration of Blackmagic Design’s editing and grading suite has to offer!

DaVinci Resolve for iPad. Source: Apple

DaVinci Resolve for iPad: pros and cons

For his own test of the Beta version of DaVinci Resolve for iPad, Jakub used the top-spec’d 12.9” iPad Pro equipped with the M2 chip. However, the app also runs on M1 chip versions of the iPad, including the latest iPad Air. The app seems to fully exploit the processing power of Apple’s silicon chips. We could easily playback a 4K timeline filled with H.264/H.265 media without noticing any dropped frame.

Having the ability to edit high-resolution media on a tablet can be a game-changer for fellow filmmakers on-the-go, especially considering that project files created on the iPad are cross-compatible with the desktop version of Resolve and viceversa. So you can start cutting everywhere, and then re-fine your edit once you get back home.

DaVinci Resolve for iPad. Source: Apple

The app grants access to media saved on the device’s internal storage, but also to external drives connected via the iPad’s USB-C port. Moreover, Blackmagic Cloud is available within the app. Hopefully, managing files on iPadOS will become even easier with future updates of the Files app.

Upon startup, the application looks pretty much identical to its desktop counterpart with very minimal changes to the UI. Right now, the overall design seems to be roughly optimized for gesture operations, and the use of Apple Pencil is almost mandatory. For example, you currently cannot use a two-finger gesture to zoom in into your timeline.

Also, as of now, the tablet-version of Resolve only includes the Cut and Color pages, with Fusion and Fairlight pages joining at a later date. In particular, the lack of the Edit page can be quite limiting for professional editors looking to refine their edit.

DaVinci Resolve for iPad. Source: Apple

On the other end, the Color page seems to be fully-featured, as it comes with pretty much all the controls and tools we all know from the desktop version. This means you can create nodes, play with curves and color wheels, analyze scopes, and use the Tracker window, for example. Paired with the DCI P3 screen, all this makes grading on the iPad Pro an overall enjoyable and intuitive experience.

To make up for the lack of the Deliver page, a quick Export button has been added at the top right corner of the interface. This function looks fairly similar to the one featured in the latest versions of Premiere Pro. When exporting, only a few export presets are available and the app does not allow for personal customization of export settings, such as resolution and frame rate. Apparently, these are inherited directly from Project Settings.

Price and availability

DaVinci Resolve for iPadOS is now available to download from the App Store. The download is free of charge. If you decide to play around with the app, then don’t hesitate to share your editing experience in the comments!

What do you think of DaVinci Resolve coming to the iPad? What are its major limitations in your opinion? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!

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