Whether you’re a video-editing beginner or a seasoned veteran, you may find yourself asking which is better in the battle of DaVinci Resolve vs Adobe Premiere Pro.
Although there are plenty of Premiere Pro alternatives, it’s Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve that you’ll hear of most often as a replacement.
Both video editing software apps are packed with an arsenal of high-performing features and all the tools you need to edit video, so determining which is best can be challenging.
In this article, we’ll cover the ins and outs of DaVinci Resolve and Adobe Premiere Pro to help you decide which is best for your video editing needs.
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Adobe Premiere Pro vs DaVinci Resolve Comparison
Adobe Premiere Pro and DaVinci Resolve are elite, non-linear platforms designed to cover all video-editing needs.
Although they share an array of similarities, they differ in price and other detailed features worth considering when choosing between Premiere Pro and DaVinci Resolve.
So let’s get down to the specifics.
(See also: What is the best software for video editing?)
Adobe Premiere Pro
Thanks to its intuitive design, traditional timeline and team-oriented makeup, Adobe Premiere Pro has long served as the software of choice for professional video editors.
Boasting features powered by Adobe Sensei AI, Premiere Pro takes the guesswork out of tedious tasks like color matching and reframing. And don’t worry if you want to call the shots during video edits — Adobe Sensei AI gives you total creative control during the process.
VR video display mode gives you access to innovative features like 360VR Video, so you can import and modify native 360 footage, while motion graphics templates let you seamlessly incorporate stock footage and motion.
But let’s dive deeper into Premiere Pro’s pros and cons.
Pros of Adobe Premiere Pro
Adobe Premiere Pro has top-line usability thanks to its drag-and-drop layout. Designed for beginners and professionals on both Macs and PCs, Premiere Pro delivers a clean user interface free from clutter.
You can easily open an existing project or create a new one with accessible, intuitive buttons on the left-hand side of the screen. You can also create one collaborative workspace by selecting New Team Project.
Imports are a breeze when you open the Media Browser to populate your workspace with assets from Illustrator, Photoshop and After Effects before fine-tuning your sequence, which can be done according to the Timeline feature we’ll dive deeper into below.
One of the best features of Adobe Premiere Pro is its Timeline component.
This feature can produce sequences from a wide range of sources, including audio, graphics and video clips. When using the timeline feature, clips for video will have thumbnails and audio clips will have waveforms.
You can effortlessly alter and enjoy total creative control of clips with the source monitor, and locate titles, transitions and stacked clips within the program monitor. And you can zoom in and out for easy adjustments with professional-level precision.
3. Automatic Features
Adobe Premiere Pro gives you every tool you need to bring your creative vision to life, so narrowing it down to five total benefits was a struggle!
Tools for color, graphics and sound let you easily edit every element of your content, while compatibility with other Adobe apps offers access to Photoshop, After Effects and Audition.
The Color Match feature allows for seamless color correction, while automatic Audio Ducking makes mixing voiceover and dialog against background noise a breeze.
And don’t stress if your clips have inconsistent sound — simply go to the Loudness section and click Audio Match to alter the volume to the audio type.
Auto Reframe is another cutting-edge feature that detects the movement in your video and reframes clips for various aspect ratios.
And we can’t overlook the advantage of Adobe Creative Cloud integration, which allows editors and designers access to a wide range of benefits, including built-in templates, additional storage, frequent updates and more.
4. Plugin Compatibility
One of Premiere Pro’s most appealing features is its compatibility with third party plugins.
This not only promotes an easier video-editing experience but also lets you take your content to the next level with programs like Vashi Visual’s 12-pack Audio Presets, which takes the hassle out of polishing up dialog.
Flicker Free is another essential plugin available with Premiere Pro, which removes flicker from your content to ensure smooth transitions.
Another notable feature of Premiere Pro is how it lets you organize and optimize your workflow.
By housing editing, approvals and post-production in one spot, your workflow will be more streamlined than ever. And more than 300 thirty-party tech partners ensure you have everything you need at your fingertips.
We briefly discussed Premiere Pro’s drag-and-drop design earlier and it’s something you shouldn’t take for granted. You can easily drag and drop a variety of different folders into the Project panel to keep even the most scattered jobs organized.
Cons of Adobe Premiere Pro
1. Pausing During Export
While you can continue working during export when using some editing software, you need to adjust your settings to work while exporting in Premiere Pro.
This can be done through the Media Encoder app by going to the Export menu and clicking Queue.
2. Subscription-based Pricing
A Cloud subscription supported by a monthly or annual payment plan is required to use Adobe Premiere Pro.
However, you can download Premiere Pro for free and conduct a trial run for up to a week to see if it’ll meet your project needs and expectations. And you’re in luck if you’re a teacher or student — you can take advantage of discounted pricing with savings up to 60%.
Loyal Premiere Pro users would stand firmly behind the belief that the third party plugins are worth more than whatever fee you pay.
And keep in mind that Adobe Premiere Pro offers an extensive line of plans that cater to individuals, businesses, teachers, students, photographers and filmmakers.
3. Desktop-only Trial Run
Although you can’t deny the benefits of a free, seven-day trial, you can deny the flexibility. On-the-go editors who frequently travel won’t enjoy the luxury of mobile use, as Adobe Premiere Pro’s free trial only operates on desktops.
Boasting a state-of-the-art mix of color correction and audio post-production tools with the ability to add visual effects and motion all within a single platform, it’s easy to see why DaVinci Resolve is one of the most popular content editing tools around.
Developed by Blackmagic Design, DaVinci offers the robust toolkit top-performing professionals need while operating on an intuitive user interface even beginners can master — making it perfect for a variety of users.
Its cloud-based workflow maximizes solo and team workflows on the same timeline, while enhanced subtitle features bring so much more to the table. And that’s only the beginning!
Let’s dig a little deeper into DaVinci Resolve’s benefits and drawbacks.
Pros of DaVinci Resolve
Like Premiere Pro, DaVinci Resolve also operates on an easy-to-use drag-and-drop system that’s ideal for beginners and professionals alike.
In addition to being suited for Mac and PC operational systems, DaVinci also works on Linux, which brings a little more flexibility than Adobe Premiere Pro.
2. Color Grading
All video editors understand the impact of color grading in portraying the multi-colored warmth of a sunset or the romantic color palette of a love scene. Because DaVinci was founded on the need for color correction, its color-focused features are impeccable.
You’ll start with the primary color wheels, located at the lower left portion of your screen, to balance color with high-level modifications of color and brightness.
This will also help you reach a neutral start while reducing undesirable tints. Each of the four wheels corresponds to a section of the tonal range, allowing you to easily adjust different parts of the image without affecting the whole.
By design, DaVinci is a node-based program, which gives you the luxury of nearly endless exploration across a variety of tools available in 2D and 3D — something we’ll cover in a little more detail below.
3. 2d & 3d Titles
Timing is everything when it comes to editing. Thankfully, the latest version of DaVinci Resolve comes equipped with a generator that produces punctual, infallibly timed titles and subtitles that run like clockwork.
You can produce your own by simply navigating to the upper left corner of your screen and opening the Effects Library. Next, navigate to the Text Generator then just drag and drop it onto your timeline just above your video tracks.
You’ll now be able to start typing via the inspector and editing the specs however you see fit, whether you want to modify the text size, color or font.
And don’t fret if you don’t feel confident or familiar enough to make adjustments on your own just yet — You can also select from an array of already-built, expertly crafted 2D and 3D fusion title templates that let you easily create the stunning cinematic look reserved for the finest of films.
4. Free version & Supported Media
Despite being free of charge, the free version of DaVinci Resolve is loaded with highly prized features, allowing you to edit up to 60 frames per second in high resolution. This means you can conveniently edit a variety of frame rates with ultra-HD clarity.
You also get to enjoy many of the color correction tools included in the paid-for version, including color warping, HSL and luma. Even if you’re working on a team, you can still take advantage of this top-tier software completely free thanks to collaboration-enabled features that let multiple users work on a project simultaneously.
The extensive list of formats DaVinci Resolve supports is another innovative feature that sets it apart from other content editing software.
With DaVinci, you can achieve high-quality results from an impressive line of video formats, including ARI, MP4, CDX, and more. You can also leverage 32-bit processing for high-quality, expert-level footage that captures a broader range of colors with more vibrancy.
There’s also a paid version called Davinci Resolve Studio for those requiring more features.
5. Fusion & Fairlight
Fusion and Fairlight make the magic happen when it comes to motion and visual effects. Because DaVinci’s workflow operates on a node structure, you can showcase immense visual effects without the hassle of needing to make changes to each individual layer by simply modifying connected nodes.
This means you can complete everyday edits like retouching and repairing, or enjoy an elevated experience when creating animating titles, mixing tracks or adding characters to 3D scenes. And you’ll also get to edit audio within its own tab when you use Fairlight.
Cons of DaVinci Resolve
1. Geared to Pros
Although DaVinci has an intuitive interface, the wide selection of tools may be overwhelming to beginners.
Additionally, a lot of DaVinci’s features cater to the pros with professional-level audio and motion tools that may intimidate those new to the video editing game.
DaVinci Resolve can’t compete with Premiere Pro when it comes to integration.
Because Adobe is built to work with everything from After Effects to Audition, Premiere Pro users can enjoy seamless integration across a variety of different programs, while DaVinci Resolve users can’t.
3. Resource Intensive
All content editing programs require a lot from your computer, so they can be quite resource intensive. Because of this, there may be glitches or crashes.
Video Editing Software FAQs
- Is Premiere easier than DaVinci Resolve?
Both are fairly easy to use for beginners, but if you’re used to layering and other Adobe programs, Premiere Pro would better suit you.
- Can DaVinci replace Premiere?
Although DaVinci comes with a ton of built-in features that make it exceptional for editing, loyal Premiere Pro users would argue the integration benefit of Adobe cannot be replaced.
- Is DaVinci Resolve used by professionals?
Yes, DaVinci Resolve’s work can be seen in The Hunger Games. However, because Premiere Pro has been around longer and features greater plugin support, video editing experts rely heavily on Premiere Pro as well.
So Which Video Editor is Better? Our Recommendations
Premiere Pro and DaVinci Resolve undoubtedly come with their fair share of pros and cons. Both have an intuitive user interface, minimal learning curve and modern tools that make them game-changers in the world of video editing.
Premiere Pro is the choice for users accustomed to layering, more advanced features and other Adobe programs, while DaVinci is great for editors who prefer everything on a single platform.
Although DaVinci’s built-in features are appealing, the advanced editing tools as well as the plugin and third-party support of Premiere Pro make it our favourite video editing software.