DaVinci Resolve Vs DaVinci Resolve Studio: What’s The Difference?

Back in 2009, Blackmagic Design bought DaVinci Systems, making DaVinci Resolve their main project. Initially, DaVinci Resolve was only for big-budget film productions and was super pricey, mainly used for color grading. 

But then things changed. They made a free “lite” version for Mac, which meant anyone could access this powerful color grading tool without breaking the bank. 

So, to sum up, the main difference between the free and studio versions of DaVinci Resolve lies in their features and pricing. The free version gives you basic tools, while the studio version offers more advanced features for a price.

DaVinci Resolve Vs DaVinci Resolve Studio

If you’re thinking about using DaVinci Resolve for editing videos, you’ve got two options: the Free version and the Studio version. The Free version gives you a lot of cool features, but if you want the full package with everything included, you’ll need to go for the Studio version.

So, if you’re just starting out and want to try things out, the Free version is a great choice. 

But if you’re serious about professional-level editing and want access to all the bells and whistles, then the Studio version is the way to go.

The Price & The Lifetime License Of Resolve Studio

The full version of DaVinci Resolve, called Resolve Studio, costs $295 for a lifetime license. That means you pay once and never again for upgrades or updates. 

Unlike some software that requires monthly payments or yearly fees, with Resolve Studio, you buy it once and it’s yours forever. This also means you don’t have to worry about losing access if you stop paying. 

Even if you bought the software years ago, you can still update it to the latest version for free as long as you have your serial number. 

So, it’s a pretty good deal considering you get all the features of Resolve Studio without any ongoing costs.

Comparing DaVinci Resolve Free vs Studio

DaVinci Resolve is a software used for editing videos. There are two versions: free and studio. The free one can do a lot of stuff that the studio version can, but there are some things it can’t. 

However, for beginners, the free version is usually enough. You can still do most color editing for free, but some advanced editing tools are only in the paid version. So, if you’re just starting out, the free version should be fine for you.

Media and Delivery

In simple terms, the free version of the software allows you to work with high-quality videos but limits your ability to export them to very high resolutions or frame rates. You can edit and adjust these higher resolutions in the software, but you can’t save them at the highest quality.

However, the Studio version offers much more flexibility. It allows you to export videos at extremely high resolutions and frame rates, up to 32K resolution and 120 frames per second. This version also supports advanced HDR delivery, making it great for creating top-notch videos.

Moreover, Studio supports various formats and codecs, including ones used by professional filmmaking cameras like the Panasonic GH5. This means you can work seamlessly with footage from these cameras without worrying about compatibility issues. So, if you want more freedom and advanced features, Studio is the way to go.

Color Grading and Correction

DaVinci Resolve is well-known for its amazing ability to adjust colors in videos. There are two versions: the free one and the Studio version, which offers even more features.

In the free version, you get lots of tools to fix colors in your videos. You can change things like the hue (the actual color), saturation (how intense the color is), and brightness. You can even pick colors from different parts of your video to make precise adjustments. There are tools like color wheels and curves to help you do this. You can also fix little spots and remove some of the noise in your video.

But in the Studio version, there are even cooler tools. One is called Color Warper, which lets you change both the color and the brightness at the same time. Another tool, Magic Mask, is great for separating objects in your video and tracking them as they move. With Magic Mask, you can easily pick out a person or a specific thing in your video and work on it separately. If your video has 3D effects, Studio version also helps you fix any issues with colors or alignment.

Studio version also has something called HDR scopes. This helps you make videos with really good contrast and vivid colors.

Sound and Visual Effects

FairlightFX is a part of a software called Resolve, which helps with mixing audio. If you get the Studio version, you’ll have more sound effects and tools to work with. Some of these include special audio setups like Auro-3D and Dolby Atmos, which can make your sound really cool. The Studio version also lets you monitor your audio in a special way called B-chain audio monitoring.

Both versions of Resolve let you grab free sound clips from Blackmagic’s website. Then you can use the Fairlight audio editor to play around with up to 2,000 sound tracks at once!

In the Studio version, there are even more effects like Pencil Sketch, Analog Damage, Stylize, Chromatic Aberration, and Chromatic Adaptation. These can give your videos a really cool look!

GPU, Hardware Accelerated Encoding, and Neural Engine AI

In simple terms, both the free and paid versions of DaVinci Resolve, a video editing software, now use the GPU to make editing faster. In the past, the free version only used the CPU, which was slower.

Now, even the free version on Mac and Windows uses the GPU. But if you have the paid Studio version, things go even faster because it supports using multiple GPUs and has special features like hardware-accelerated encoding and decoding. 

Moreover, Studio also includes something called the Neural Engine, which is like a smart assistant. It uses AI (Artificial Intelligence) to help with repetitive tasks, like detecting scenes, tracking objects, recognizing faces, matching colors automatically, removing objects from footage, and improving the quality of your videos.

So, in short, both versions use the GPU now, but the paid Studio version is even faster and has extra cool features like hardware acceleration and AI assistance.

Multi-User Collaboration

Multi-user collaboration means that both the free and paid versions let you work with your team on a project at the same time. So, if you’re a professional like an audio engineer or picture editor, you can all work together in real-time using your favorite tools.

There’s also a chat feature built-in, so you can share ideas without switching to another app. However, some collaboration tools like markers and comments sync between DaVinci Resolve and Dropbox are only available in the paid version called Studio.

Motion Blur and Noise Removal

When you’re working on tricky video projects, it’s important to make sure your video looks clear and sharp. DaVinci Resolve Studio is a great tool for this. It has special tools to help get rid of things like fuzzy spots and extra graininess in your video. 

If your video has motion blur or looks foggy, Resolve Studio can also fix that up and make it look better. So, if you want your videos to look really good, it might be a good idea to upgrade to DaVinci Resolve Studio. Its fancy tools can help make your final video look amazing!

Resolve FX

Resolve FX are special tools that come with DaVinci Resolve Studio, a software used for editing videos. These tools are like magic tricks for your videos, helping you make them look better and more professional.

Imagine you have a plain photo, and you want to add some cool effects like shiny lights or remove any dirt spots. Resolve FX can do that for you. It’s like having a big box of tricks to play with while editing your videos.

What’s great about Resolve FX is that they are already included in the software, so you don’t need to buy them separately like you might have to with other editing software. Plus, thanks to the fancy technology in modern computers, these effects work really smoothly and quickly.

So, whether you’re making a Hollywood movie or just a fun video for YouTube, Resolve FX can help you make it look awesome!

DaVinci Resolve Free vs Studio: Should You Upgrade?

If you’re just starting out with editing and your projects aren’t super complex, you’re good to stick with the free version of DaVinci Resolve. It’s got all the basics like color grading and visual effects, perfect for beginners in filmmaking and video editing.

However, if you’re a pro or need advanced features like editing beyond 4K, then upgrading to DaVinci Resolve Studio makes sense. It’s packed with powerful tools, especially its top-notch color grading abilities and AI-driven clip organization.

In short, if you’re new to editing, the free version has you covered. But if you’re diving deep into filmmaking or need advanced editing tools, the Studio version is worth the upgrade.


In conclusion, whether you opt for DaVinci Resolve or DaVinci Resolve Studio depends on your editing needs and expertise level. The free version offers ample features for beginners and simpler projects, making it a great starting point for aspiring editors. 

On the other hand, the Studio version caters to professionals and those requiring advanced tools and capabilities, such as high-resolution editing and sophisticated color grading. 

Ultimately, your choice should align with your editing goals and the complexity of your projects.

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