Originally designed for Hollywood’s elite colorists, DaVinci Resolve has been used on more feature films and TV shows than anything else because it lets you create images that are simply impossible with other tools. DaVinci is also the world’s fastest growing and most advanced editing software.
Color Grading, Exporting
In general, more CPU cores will give you better performance in Resolve (especially when exporting) but with the exception of the free edition of Resolve it is generally better to spend you budget on more or higher-end GPUs before spending it on a more powerful CPU.
If working with 2K footage go with a single socket workstation. For 4K, 6K and 8K, a dual processor system is recommended with dual graphics cards.
H.264, ProRes, DNxHR
According to benchmarks, if working primarily with these codecs, it's best to stick with a single processor system as there is little to no performance gain with a dual CPU system.
If you use R3D footage there can be very noticable performance gains with a dual Xeon workstation.
In general, 3-6GB of RAM per CPU core is recommended. For example, if you select a single 12-core processor, 32GB will suffice for basic tasks or 64GB for more demanding workloads.
With video editing, the amount of RAM required generally depends on the resolution of the video and the complexity of your timeline. As a general rule of thumb we recommend 32GB if you work with 1080p footage, 64GB for 4K footage, 128GB for 6K footage, and 256GB (or more) if you work with 8K footage.
We recommend having two drives which provides the best performance:
- Primary Drive: SSD for the operating system and software
- Secondary Drive: another SSD, or for better performance, an NVMe Flash Storage Drive (the "HP Z Turbo Drive") for active project files
If you need additional storage for large, infrequently accessed files, we also recommend one or more 4TB, 6TB or 8TB+ hard drives. Hard drives also work well for storing export files as the export/rendering process is generally not write intensive.
The Z Turbo Drive Quad Pro yields the absolute maximum in performance - remarkable drive speeds combined with massive flash storage capacity. Supporting up to four m.2 NVMe flash storage drives on one PCIe slot, each reaching 1750MB/s write and 2500MB/s read speeds, the Z Turbo Drive Quad Pro is the ultimate footage drive. We recommend the Quad Pro in these two configurations:
- One drive in the Quad Pro as primary - dedicated for the operating system and applications. Three drives in RAID configuration as a editing/footage partition - dedicated for storage of the project, source media, media cache and scratch files. A 3-drive RAID 0 configuration in the Quad Pro achieves speeds of 6GB/s, which is perfect for a 6K or 8K workflow. The benefit of this route is conserving a PCIe slot - the primary and editing partitions both on one PCIe slot opening a secondary PCIe slot for a specialty or port-expansion card.
- All four drives in the Quad Pro in RAID 0 configuration dedicated as the editing/footage partition. Drive speeds reaching 9GB/s and up to 8TB capacity. Select a separate SATA 3 solid-state drive (SSD) or m.2 NVMe drive (HP Z Turbo Drive) for the operating system and appications. The benefit of this route is unparalled performance.
RAID 0 configurations are optimized for performance. Also known as disk striping, RAID 0 spreads the data across multiple phyical drives, allowing multiple disks to access the contents of a file, thus writes and reads will be completed quicker. The drawback to RAID 0 is that if a drive should fail, all data would be lost. Thus, we recommend back up of data on a RAID 0 using a standard spindle 7,200rpm hard drive.
For post production video editing, we recommend NVIDIA GeForce GTX graphics cards as they provide high performance at a great value compared to Quadro cards.
For lower budget systems, we recommend a single NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti. If you require support for 10-bit displays, we recommend adding a Decklink card as well.
For higher budget systems, we recommend a single NVIDIA GeForce Titan Xp, which is currently the top of the line GeForce card with the latest architecture. It also supports 10-bit displays, so no need to add a separate Declink card.
If you are considering a dual graphics card setup, then we recommend two GTX 1080 Ti cards (as opposed to two Titan Xp cards) since it provides extreme power at a great value and utilizes less power from the power supply.
The Z840 is recommended if you require dual processors or dual high performance graphics cards. The Z840 can support up to 6 hard drives or 10 SSDs.
The Z640 is recommended if you require a single high-end processor or single high-performance graphics card. You can always add a second processor and double the memory at a later date using the optional Z640 processor riser. The Z640 can support up to 4 hard drives or 6 SSDs.
The Z440 is recommended if you require a single processor with a low core count or mid-range graphics card. The Z440 can support up to 4 hard drives or 6 SSDs.
Include a Blackmagic Decklink capture and playback card to your post-production workstation. Work with any video format and resolution that you need. Capture from cameras, decks and live feeds directly into editing, effects and design software applications. DeckLink Studio 4K and DeckLink SDI 4K feature high resolution Ultra HD, while DeckLink 4K Extreme 12G and DeckLink 4K Pro also includes dual link 12G-SDI, 2160p60 support, 4:4:4 image quality, 3D stereoscopic for advanced feature film visual effects, editing and color correction. There are DeckLink models to support either file or tape based workflows to precisely deliver perfect monitoring in editing and grading suites using professional SDI monitors, HDMI televisions and even video projectors.
Include a AJA KONA 4 integration and connectivity card to your post-production workstation. KONA 4 is a powerful 8-lane PCIe video and audio desktop I/O card with unparalleled features for handling everything from SD to HD, 2K and 4K with full 10-bit 4:2:2 and 4:4:4 sampling for fantastic image clarity and 12-bit support. For HDR workflows, KONA 4 supports HDR 10 and HLG for rich color delivery over HDMI.