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What editing software should you be using?

Alan Parry

The debate has been raging for a few years now, and Resolve only seems to be getting better and better. But which software should YOU be using for your next edit?

Right, Adobe. Love them or hate them you probably cant live without them. Sure Resolve has come a long long way, and is a pretty solid option for editors looking to cut their teeth, and its colour grading tools are industry standard.. no arguments here. But there’s a reason why when you go to most agencies, Premiere is the app you’ll be using.

If you work with anything that isn’t video, sound you need to clear up in Audition, Motion graphics or VFX you’ve created in After Effects or hell, elements from Photoshop or Illustrator…. guess what! Adobe has got you covered. Dynamic link has well and truly spoilt me. No longer do I need to re-render compositing work or versioned motion graphics elements.

Premiere gets meme’d on a lot… and I wont pretend that’s entirely unjustified, but how many times have you looked at a colleague’s timeline after they’ve complained about Premieres performance only to find they’ve loaded it up h264 mp4s and all kinds of other codecs, skipped any kind of proxy creation and just started piling into the edit, effects, colour.

50% of the problems you hear about with premiere are USER ERROR

Adobe is old and shabby, its that battered screwdriver you keep in a drawer because it seems to fits 90% of the screws in your house. The code needs an update sure, but let us not forget the backlash apple incurred when they overhauled Final Cut….

And I should point out Black Magic hasn’t always been an angel when it comes to stability and performance. Anyone who has used their cards or cameras for that matter can attest to how finicky they can be. Updates can regularly be as buggy or worse than Adobe.

We could argue all day about which one we think is better, but the reality is they both have the same but different applications. Most of the industry (if you’re working on corporates, adverts, TV, etc.) is Premier and Avid (booo) based. You’ll probably never see a job listing asking for Resolve editing experience. With that being said, if you’re starting a company or a freelancer and not reliant on After Effects then Resolve is a free and infinitely powerful tool to have in your arsenal. Being able to start and finish a project in a single program can’t be understated, even I will attest to doing the awful round trip dance between programmes and how late its kept us in the office before.

At the end of the day, learning resolve or premier, at least well enough to get your job done, should only take days if not hours.

What you should be focused on is your actual editing and not which software you're using. Hell, software can come and go… I already mentioned the fall from grace final cut saw. The skills an editor really needs are entirely transferable. Picking your cuts, weaving a story, adapting to limitations, finding creative solutions and.. yes.. troubleshooting technical hiccups. All of these are entirely platform agnostic.

Resolve does have a free version, so if you're a student, content creator or just looking to save cash… it's a no-brainer. But be prepared to be told your next project has to be cut in premiere and brush up on those round trips… it'll save you a lot of headaches in the future!