SVG Sit-Down: Blackmagic Design’s Dan May Explores Addition of Instant-Replay to Davinci Resolve Solution

Feature promises new way to produce replays, add postproduction capabilities

Blackmagic Design had its usual bevy of new products at NAB 2024, highlighted by a new instant-replay feature within the latest version of its Davinci Resolve solution for editing, color, VFX, motion graphics, and audio. The feature combines the company’s HyperDeck studio recorder with Resolve software to open up a new way of producing replays and also layer in postproduction capabilities. Blackmagic Design President Dan May sat down with SVG during the show to discuss the new capabilities.

Blackmagic Design’s Dan May: “The guy sitting next to the TD is doing replay for the live event while somebody in another country could be doing social media because they’re downloading the Resolve files in real time.”

Tell us about the new replay system, which seems exciting.
We wanted to figure out how we could make editing faster for news and sports and whatnot within Resolve. Then, it became how do we do multicam editing faster? That would be great to do. With Resolve, we already do live production, so how do we integrate that more? As we started looking at replay solutions where you’re kind of doing these basic cuts, we had this epiphany of using Resolve to do replay. Now we can edit faster with Resolve, and we can do replay for a live production.

What makes it different?
We’re basically using software on a laptop or a computer in Resolve to do the replay in an all-Blackmagic world. We have an ATEM [Mini switcher] doing the live switching, and we have the iso files being recorded somewhere, whether it is to an internal Blackmagic ISO ATEM or a HyperDeck. The big change for Resolve is, rather than editing finished clips, we’re pointing them to folders where the clips are continuously growing because we’re still shooting live. It feels like a normal replay, but, because it’s Resolve, we can do titles, we can do fusion effects, we can add stingers, we can color-grade. We can do anything we want.

In addition, we can either just push highlights to social media via Resolve directly, or we can push it back out via one of our other boxes, like a multi-studio 4K mini, and then to an ATEM, which would do the actual replay in the live event. It’s kind of an à la carte approach to start doing cool things: the guy sitting next to the TD is doing replay for the live event while somebody in another country could be doing social media because they’re downloading the Resolve files in real time. It’s really powerful and is much different from buying just a replay box.

How can people access the Replay feature?
Resolve 19 is in beta, so people can download it, start playing with the software, and then put some multicam clips down to see how they would be doing replay. You could literally just buy an ATEM Mini Extreme ISO that has internal recording in H.264, and you can start playing with replay. It’s not a tremendous investment for somebody serious about looking at our replay solution to say, What do I need to do to start testing this and start working with it?

And how can it improve postproduction?
It helps with post because all of the isos are in a Resolve project and ready to go for post. It’s part of our constant evolution to solve problems and take advantage of the technologies we have, whether it is acquisition, live production, or postproduction. How can we use these tools to benefit customers in a way that maybe another company, which is all-live or all-post, can’t? Being able to combine these technologies and use the strengths of these brands that we’ve acquired over the years and put them together in a powerful way is a big goal for us.

Can you discuss the physical controller?
It originally started out as a multicam editor, and we had always talked about how to make multicam editing faster and cut between different cameras. Then it became how to get to the end of a clip real fast. We wanted to have enough capabilities so that an operator [accustomed to other systems] can’t say they can’t use it because it doesn’t allow them to work the way they are used to working.

The good news is, we’ve worked on this for months and months, and the feedback so far has been really good.

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