Choosing between professional video editing software can be a bit overwhelming, we know. Any pro video editing app carries a ton of features plus advantages and disadvantages compared to others. But which editor is right for you? Read on for a look at two of them – VEGAS Pro and DaVinci Resolve Studio, comparing features and honestly exploring some
pros and cons of both.
|VEGAS Pro||DaVinci Resolve Studio|
|Purchase Option vs. Subscription||One-Time Fee and Subscription Options||One-Time Fee|
|Workflow||Intuitive, logical, and easy to learn||Steeper Learning Curve|
|Timeline||Extensive hardware decoding with support for AMD, Intel, and Nvidia||Hardware decoding with Nvidia CUDA and AMD OpenCL|
|Automatic Scene Detection||Yes||Yes|
|AI-Driven Upscaling to 4K||Yes||Yes|
|360° Editing / VR Support||Yes||Yes|
|Unlimited HD & 4K Content Downloads||Yes (in 365)||No|
|Text to Speech||Yes (in 365)||No|
|Unified Color Grading Panel||Yes||Yes|
|Complete Set of Color Grading Filters||Yes||Yes|
|LUT Import / Export||Yes||Yes|
|Built-In Camera LUTs||Yes||No|
|Built-In Look LUTs||Yes||No|
|Planar Motion Tracking||Yes||Yes|
|Included External App Integration||Yes||No|
|BORIS FX Primatte Keyer||Yes||No|
|Adjustment Tracks||Yes||Adjustment Clips|
|Optical Flow Slow Motion||Yes||Yes|
|Mesh Warp Tool||Yes||Yes|
|Black Bar Fill (for vertical footage)||Yes||Yes|
|Extensive Audio Effects||Yes||Yes|
|Multicam Audio Synchronization||Yes||Yes|
|Included External App Integration||Yes||No|
|GPU Acceleration for AVC and HEVC||Yes||No|
|Wide Format Support||Yes||Yes|
|Share Online||Yes||Yes (no Facebook)|
|Live Streaming||Yes (with VEGAS Stream)||No|
|Cloud-based Storage / Organization||Yes||Yes|
|Minimum System Requirements|
|Minimum System Requirements|
|Platform||Windows 10 64-bit||Windows 8.1; Mac OS 10.10.5; Linux CentOS 6.6|
|Processor||6th-Generaion Core i5 or AMD equivlanet or better. 2.5 Ghz 4 Core Minimum||Socket 2011-v3 Core i7 or AMD equivalent or better|
|RAM||8 GB, 16 GB recommended; 32 GB for 4K||16 GB|
|GPU||• NVIDIA® GeForce RTX or GTX 9XX series or higher with 4GB • AMD / ATI® Radeon with 4GB and VCE 3.0 or higher (Radeon Pro series with 8GB for HDR and 32 bit projects)||4 GB of GPU VRAM|
|Drive Space||1.5GB hard-disk space for program installation||512 GB SSD minimum|
|Other||Microsoft .NET Framework 4.0 SP 1 (included)|
|Internet Connection||For registration / activation||No|
You used to buy software on a physical media, like a floppy disc or CD. These days, you get most of your software through direct downloads. Downloading means the convenience of not having to go anywhere to buy a physical product or wait for it to arrive if you ordered it online – you have the software you want in minutes. But it also offers flexibility in how you pay for it.
When you buy a disc, you pay for the product once and you have it forever. But these days, you have more options. You can still pay a flat fee once and then the software is yours, known as a perpetual license. But more and more software producers offer a subscription model, where
you pay a monthly or annual fee which is generally much less than the up-front cost if you buy it outright. With this option, you can often access software which would be too expensive to afford if you paid up front. There’s a trade-off here; if you stop your subscription, you lose access to the software. Also, the subscription fee, over time, can add up to more than the flat fee would have.
But you also get automatic updates any time there’s a new release of the software, whereas if you paid a flat fee, you’d have to pay at least an upgrade fee to update your perpetual license to the new version. Both have their advantages and disadvantages; you have to decide how best to proceed with your budget needs.
VEGAS Pro can be yours forever for a one-time price of $399, or it’s available via VEGAS Pro 365 for a monthly subscription fee of $34.99 per month charged annually or $19.99 on a month-to-month basis. The DaVinci Resolve Studio price is a flat fee of $295.
Working with video editing software isn’t just about features; it’s also about the editing experience and how well it matches the way you want to work or what seems to make the most sense for you. Great editing apps should be easy to work with, freeing you to unleash your creativity rather than worrying about how to use your tools. You want a program which makes things easier and lets you decide how best to work.
We think this is a feature in its own right, because as we said, software which helps by making it easier to work in provides a better experience than a program which hinders you by making it more difficult to work than it should be.
VEGAS Pro was designed from the ground up to work the way the user wants to work. Users say it’s really intuitive because rather than locking the user into a way of working, it gives you many different ways to accomplish most tasks, so whatever you prefer, you can do it.
DaVinci Resolve Studio works more like traditional editors, with emphasis on using a “source” window or clip trimmer to pre-trim clips and then send them to the timeline. Also, you generally only have one way – again, the traditional way – of accomplishing many tasks. These days, some of the built-in functions of that style can affect the workflow and the learning curve.
A really flexible app lets users arrange the interface to work the way which makes the most sense for them, putting windows where they want and making the workspace truly their own, especially on multiple monitors.
VEGAS Pro enables you to arrange your interface however you need, and you can set up all your tools where you want, keep your scopes and meters handy, put your preview on whichever monitor you prefer, and set things up your own way – no matter if you have two, three, four, or even six monitors in your setup.
While DaVinci Resolve Studio does give you the option of spreading the interface onto a second monitor, you’re limited to only two, you can’t rearrange the interface much or place your tools or scopes where you’d like them to be; the interface is what it is.
Pro editors need a quick and nimble timeline, one with playback as close to real time as possible, with few or no dropped frames, even with a lot of video streams and effects added. Editors want to work quickly and not wait for effects to render or footage to be transcoded. They need a flexible timeline that will take any file format, can be arranged however the editor wants, and won’t bog down the editor with unnecessary steps or unwieldy tools.
VEGAS Pro was specifically designed for speed and flexibility. The editor can arrange and rearrange tracks at will and mix and match file formats on the same tracks. Simple touches like automatic crossfades on overlapping video make defining transitions almost instant, and easy to adjust, instead of having to retrim clips or pull the “handles” common in other editing apps – though in VEGAS Pro, trim handles are also available under the event hamburger menu if you prefer that style of editing. While the DaVinci Resolve Studio timeline is drag-and-drop, its design is most efficient when using the two-point and three-point editing common to the earliest computer editing apps. It’s a style of editing which promotes efficient thinking and planning. DaVinci Resolve Studio separates video and audio tracks; this style of organization can affect while editing clips in complex project. To create transitions in DaVinci Resolve Studio, you right-click and choose a length from choices in a menu, rather than organically dragging clips or ends of clips into each other.
Modern, large-format, highly compressed video formats mean taxing computers to their maximum when working with them. Today’s editing apps leverage the power of your computer’s graphics card to take care of some of the video processing, like decoding video and effects rendering, freeing up the CPU to perform other tasks, giving you a faster, smoother editing experience.
VEGAS Pro is the only editing app leveraging Intel, AMD, and Nvidia graphics cards to decode AVC and HEVC video for real-time playback, as well as accelerate numerous GPU-enabled effects, so you get smoother playback even in complex. VEGAS Pro offers automatic GPU configuration and a GPU driver update utility, so taking advantage of GPU acceleration is easier than ever. DaVinci Resolve Studio employs hardware acceleration and decoding using Nvidia CUDA and AMD OpenCL GPUs.
Storyboards make the first step of video editing – the rough cut – easier and more intuitive. They let the editor select, arrange, and experiment with the order of clips in the project’s media pool just like arranging photos on a desk, making it easy to assemble a rough cut before ever working the timeline.
The storyboards in VEGAS Pro are quick and easy and allow for a playback preview of a sequence right from the media pool without having to go to the timeline. Vegas Pro also updates the timeline every time you change the storyboard, and uniquely, updates the storyboard every time you change the timeline, or any time you choose to do so manually. DaVinci Resolve Studio does not offer storyboards.
Effective professional video often involves the use of text and titles, from crediting talent and crew to providing the audience extra information. Creative and dynamic use of text can take video to new heights. VEGAS Pro features a professional title generator with a built-in library of slick, professional presets you can customize to fit your project’s needs. DaVinci Resolve Studio also includes a professional title generator suitable for professional needs.
Instead of forcing you to scrub through a previously-rendered video file to find and mark scene changes, VEGAS Pro applies AI technology to automatic scene detection, doing that work for you.
VEGAS Pro then makes splits or subclips or inserts keyframes in the video file at the scene changes, saving you tons of time. DaVinci Resolve Studio also offers automatic scene detection.
Automatically transform voiceover audio into subtitles and text overlays with amazing accuracy in multiple languages.
Exclusively in Pro and Post
Generate synthesized multi-lingual voiceovers for immediate inclusion in your project. Auto translate your text into several languages for localization.
Exclusively in Pro and Post
Access over 1.5 million royalty-free stock video assets, music tracks and sound FX ready to use in your projects.
VEGAS Edit: 20 assets a month | VEGAS Pro: Unlimited HD | VEGAS Post: Unlimited up to 4K
Use the VEGAS Hub mobile app to upload videos and images directly from your iOS or Android device for immediate download to your timeline.
Need a professional voice to narrate your video or provide spoken information, but don’t have time to audition talent? Text to speech technology can transform written text into dynamic speech, complete with personalities, accents, and proper moods. The easy-to-use Text to Speech tool in VEGAS Pro 365 lets you choose between dozens of different voices, accents, languages, and narration styles for a seamless spoken presentation, and can even translate text into different languages.
DaVinci Resolve Studio doesn’t offer text-to-speech.
High-resolution video formats like 4K and UHD are great, but they come with large file sizes and need a lot of storage space. VEGAS Pro and DaVinci Resolve Studio both offer cloud storage options so you can upload your footage to online storage. You’ll no longer need a shelf full of external storage devices, and it makes collaboration with your team members easy!
VEGAS Pro utilizes VEGAS Hub, a cloud storage solution you can access from the VEGAS Hub window or from a mobile app. DaVinci Resolve Studio also offers cloud storage with access through the DaVinci Resolve Project Server.
VEGAS Pro 365 gives you access to a vast library of stock, royalty-free HD and 4K video, with unlimited monthly downloads, so you can always find that perfect clip to take your video project to the next level.
With DaVinci Resolve Studio, you must go to outside content providers.
Summary: VEGAS Pro allows you to arrange the interface according to your preference, maximizing productivity. Leverage the power of GPU acceleration, storyboards, automatic scene detection, and much more.
One of the core functions of an editor is to correct and grade color, smoothing out problems and adding grades for intentional effect, style, and mood. Even black and white imagery needs creative control of contrast, light, and dark. Your pro editing app should give you outstanding control over your image’s color, lightness, and darkness.
Most video editing software gives you color control tools; a great editing app puts all of your most important tools all in one convenient place for the most efficient color correction and color grading possible.
VEGAS Pro offers the new, improved Unified Color Grading panel, which gives you curves, contrast, exposure, color sliders, color wheels, the ability to import LUTs, and many other tools right at your fingertips in a single panel, dockable panel. Combined with the enhanced adjustable Vectorscope Skin Tone line, the new logarithmic exposure control which emulates camera exposure, and the improved two-way auto-contrast tool, the Unified Color Grading panel offers an incredibly powerful color correction and color grading workflow. DaVinci Resolve Studio evolved from industry standard DaVinci color grading tools and provides editors with an incredible, complete set of color correction tools and scopes beyond what VEGAS Pro offers.
The most modern professional footage features High Dynamic Range (HDR), bringing out the most detail possible in both the brightest and darkest parts of your images. You need HDR support to keep you on the cutting edge.
VEGAS Pro operates in the Rec. 2020 and Rec. 2100 color space and supports HDR10 and HLG HDR formats, letting you precisely monitor your accuracy with HDR-ready video scopes. DaVinci Resolve Studio also supports HDR10, HLG, and the Rec. 2020 color space and uses HDR-ready scopes.
A color management system keeps your color workflow consistent from beginning to end, including encoding and screen specs, metadata, and other definitions vital to managing your color.
VEGAS Pro adopts the Academy Color Encoding Systems (ACES) 1.2 standard developed by the MPAA, designed to be the industry standard. DaVinci Resolve Studio uses Resolve Color Management, a non-ACES environment.
Look-Up Tables (LUTs) apply a set of specific color characteristics to footage without changing the underlying video. You can store color correction and color grading looks as LUTs and share them between users of cameras, monitors, editing apps, and other software. LUTs are often necessary with LOG or other video formats.
VEGAS Pro supports import and export of LUTs in .cube format, so you can import and share color looks with industry-standard equipment and software. VEGAS Pro comes with a built-in set of Camera LUTs for correct baseline images for footage from specific cameras. VEGAS Pro also includes a built-in set of Look LUTs to emulate popular movie looks. DaVinci Resolve Studio also supports import and export of LUTs in .cube format.
Summary: Unified Color Grading Panel ensures all color grading tools ready at your fingertips. VEGAS Pro also works in the industry-standard ACES 1.2 environment. Get the popular looks you want quickly with built-in LUT sets.
The cutting edge of video production often requires robust tools to produce video effects, for everything from epic space battles or superheroes in flight, but also for much more subtle effects and image-sweetening you never even notice. For years, pro editing apps required you to go to outside software for all but the most basic visual effects. Today, look for an NLE which gives you amazing VFX capability without having to leave the timeline.
Isolating and tracking objects in moving images allows all sorts of FX possibilities, like adding effects or color correcting to single objects, or pinning text or other objects to points in the video and moving them along as though they’re part of the image. Automatic tracking saves you from having to keyframe all of that, letting you do in minutes what would have taken hours.
Planar Motion Tracking in VEGAS Pro automatically adjusts the shape of masks as objects in the image change shape, letting you pin to objects in video even when perspective changes. For example, place a poster on a wall of a building and the poster will change perspective to match the changing perspective of the wall as you go by it, or even around a corner. DaVinci Resolve Studio, through its Fusion page, also offers planar motion tracking. Fusion also allows you to import and track 3D models.
Shaky footage isn’t always the end of the world. Professional editing apps offer powerful video stabilization tools, so you can often fix the wobble and recover smooth video.
VEGAS Pro offers advanced professional video stabilization, letting you salvage footage you thought you couldn’t use. DaVinci Resolve Studio also has a professional video stabilizer.
Slow motion is a time-honored way to add drama, tension, or excitement to a scene. Some of the most effective slo-mo involves the ramping of speed down and up for spectacular temporal transitions.
VEGAS Pro offers velocity envelopes for ramping speed up and down, and also Optical Flow Slow Motion for truly cinematic slow motion. The frame rate of cinema, usually 24 fps, doesn’t work well when slowed down, because there aren’t enough frames per second for glass-smooth slo-mo. Optical Flow Slow motion analyzes the footage and creates the extra frames needed for smoothness. DaVinci Resolve Studio gives you the ability to ramp footage up and down, and also offers optical flow slow motion.
Imagine adding a custom moving ticker to a building marquee or mapping an actor’s face onto wall or even a rock. A mesh warp tool lets you do just that.
The Mesh Warp Tool in VEGAS Pro not only lets you map objects, you can correct all kinds of different distortions in your video, or even create distortions for incredible effects. DaVinci Resolve Studio offers the Grid Warp Tool, a very similar tool, on its Fusion page.
Chroma Key is one of the oldest and most-used visual effects techniques in the business. It lets you remove a solid-colored background and replace it with any other image you like, letting you put your actors or subjects into any world or environment you choose. You can even use it combined with CGI to create a virtual set.
VEGAS Pro comes equipped with BORIS FX Primatte Studio, an extremely powerful chromakey plugin used in such blockbuster films as the Lord of the Rings trilogy, the Harry Potter movies, and Spider-Man. Primatte Studio automatically analyzes green or blue screen footage and adjusts lighting to correct unevenly lit screens. It employs powerful edge correcting, light wrapping, and manual transparency tuning for perfect, seamless keys into the background of your choice. It integrates the award-winning Mocha masking and planar tracking system. DaVinci Resolve Studio comes equipped with the Delta Keyer in its Fusion page, also a powerful and advanced built-in chromakey tool.
Useful Tips: The Ultimate Guide to Chroma Key and Green Screen
When adding visual effects, sometimes you want the same effects to apply to the contents of multiple video tracks so that all of your image layers take on the same look.
Adjustment Tracks in VEGAS Pro let you apply a chain of effects to a dedicated track, thereby also applying those effects to the contacts of tracks underneath. DaVinci Resolve Studio uses Adjustment Clips to achieve similar functionality.
Cutting edge software takes advantage of advancements in artificial intelligence (AI). For improved effects and even asset management, the integration of AI means a faster, more powerful, smoother workflow.
VEGAS Pro integrates the new Deep Learning modules to enhance its powerful new visual effects. Use Colorization to bring new life to archive or other monochrome footage, and apply filters in styles like Picasso or Van Gogh with the new Style Transfer FX. DaVinci Resolve Studio leverages the DaVinci Neural Engine, applying neural networks and AI to tasks like upscaling and speed warping.
Summary: Planar Motion Tracking and Optical Flow Slow technology that VEGAS Pro offers will satisfy every video editors' and VFX artists' creative needs. Adjustment Tracks and Artificial Intelligence-powered toolkits also provide powerful functionality.
Find out how highly acclaimed director Macgregor created the revolutionary series of sci-fi short films One Minute Worlds.
Most video editing apps have basic audio editing tools, but for full-featured audio editing, they require you to work in a separate app. A full Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) gives you everything you need for producing polished, professional sound, but is often a separate program from the video editor.
VEGAS Pro has all the tools of a full DAW. Record and automate audio in a multitrack environment with input buses, professional metering, punch-in recording, and more. The Fairlight page in DaVinci Resolve Studio offers an impressive professional array of multitrack audio tools and metering, but not multitrack recording.
A robust soundtrack requires a full set of effects tools.
Both VEGAS Pro and Davinci Resolve give you a wide variety of audio effects. From EQ to compressors and more, a solid collection of audio effects will let you sweeten and perfect your sound.
Audio buses let you assign audio tracks to them, and then you can adjust them all at once by applying effects or changing the volume at the bus level.
VEGAS Pro gives you up to 32 of each auxiliary audio, input, and effects buses – 96 buses in all.
You can assign tracks to buses in any combination, even inside other buses. DaVinci Resolve Studio also offers an array of audio buses.
VEGAS Pro now includes SOUND FORGE Audio Studio, an extremely powerful, feature packed audio editing program, integrated with the VEGAS Pro timeline. You will not find a more powerful toolset for audio editing than in VEGAS PRO combined with SOUND FORGE Audio Studio.
Summary: VEGAS Pro comes with a full DAW and offers multitrack recording, and combined with SOUND FORGE Audio Studio,
gives you the most powerful audio editing tools in any NLE.
Some of the most common delivery formats in use today are AVCHD, MP4, H.264, HEVC and Apple ProRes. A robust editing app gives you the choices you need to deliver the formats clients and platforms require.
Both VEGAS Pro and DaVinci Resolve Studio offer export to a wide variety of formats, with customizable templates for any use.
DaVinci Resolve Studio also offers exports to Blackmagic RAW, Apple ProRes, Avid DNXHD and other professional formats.
Useful Tips: Best Video Formats: Choosing What's Best for You
Leverage your graphics card to help carry some of the load of rendering, saving you tons of time when exporting.
VEGAS Pro cuts render times up to half by leveraging GPU acceleration for encoding into AVC and HEVC formats. Hardware encoding is available for HDR presets as well.
DaVinci Resolve Studio also leverages your GPU to encode and render effects, but it does not support as large a selection of GPUs as VEGAS Pro.
Got ambitions to be an influencer or live vlogger? Want to broadcast events or live tours? VEGAS Pro comes with VEGAS Stream, a sophisticated app which lets you move beyond a simple webcam to multiple cameras, video play-ins, and dynamic graphics, switching with ease between cameras and remote presenters. Stream to popular conferencing services and apps, and even edit your live event and upload it to your favorite social media and other sites. DaVinci Resolve Studio does not offer live streaming.
A lot of today’s video delivery world means streaming video on popular streaming sites like YouTube and Vimeo, or on social media sites like Facebook. Each platform has specific format and upload requirements.
Both VEGAS Pro and DaVinci Resolve Studio make it much easier to cut through all the red tape of formats and specs for each site, exporting your project straight from the timeline to the correct format for each platform, and then automatically uploading the video to your account, saving you steps.
VEGAS Pro has an option to upload to YouTube, Vimeo, and Facebook, while DaVinci Resolve Studio has options for YouTube and Vimeo only.
Summary: VEGAS Pro utilizes GPU acceleration for encoding, cutting render times up to half! Then share your work through social media with automatic render presets and uploads to your accounts. Take advantage of VEGAS Stream for live broadcasts and events.
|VEGAS Pro||DaVinci Resolve Studio|
|✓ Intuitive timeline||✓ More like traditional editors|
|✓ Faster editing||✓ Outstanding color correction|
|✓ GPU decoding for more real-time playback||✓ Upscalable with DaVinci hardware and controls|
|✓ ACES 1.2 environment||✓ Wider format support|
|✓ Extensive native VFX||✓ Integrated Fusion FX capability|
|✓ Full digital audio workstation||✓ Multi-platform – Windows, Mac, Linux|
|✓ GPU encoding for faster renders|
|✓ Boris FX Primatte Keyer|
|x Non-traditional||x Non-customizable interface|
|x Doesn't integrate with Adobe apps||x Fewer VFX tools|
|x Windows-only||x Fewer audio tools|
|VEGAS Pro is recommended for:|
|VEGAS Pro is recommended for:|
|✓ People making the jump up to pro software|
|✓ Small and large video production companies|
|✓ Editors who work on the fly|
|✓ Post-production professionals|
|✓ Independent feature-film producers|
|✓ People needing an all-in-one solution|
|✓ Audio editors|
|DaVinci Resolve Studio is recommended for:|
|DaVinci Resolve Studio is recommended for:|
|✓ Multi-platform users (Windows, Mac, Linux)|
|✓ People who work primarily with ProRes or DNxHD|
|✓ Feature-film and television editors Large post-production houses Users of Blackmagic RAW|
- VEGAS Pro 19
- VEGAS Stream
- SOUND FORGE Audio Studio
- Boris FX Primatte Studio
Exclusive in subscription:
- Mobile to timeline (50GB)
- Royalty-free stock content
- Text to speech