In this review, we'll go in-depth to explore the key differences between the two most popular free video editing programs. Hitfilm has more functionality and therefore, is capable of creating more complex videos. If you need something easy to learn and get the hang of, then DaVinci Resolve is the better option.
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Alrighty, hold onto your seats folks! In this epic battle of video editing programs, we'll be taking a deep dive into the differences between the two contenders: Hitfilm and DaVinci Resolve. Think of Hitfilm free (used to be called express) as the beefed-up superhero with all the fancy gadgets, capable of creating the most complex and jaw-dropping videos out there. Meanwhile, DaVinci Resolve is the friendly neighborhood video editor, perfect for those who want to dip their toes into the world of video editing without feeling like they're drowning.
By the end of this article, you'll be able to make a more informed decision on which one to choose. To hear my verdict, skip to the conclusion at the bottom of this article.
DaVinci Resolve is a comprehensive NLE (non linear editing) software that combines multiple functionalities, including editing, color correction, visual effects, motion graphics, and audio post-production. The software's sophisticated, contemporary interface is user-friendly for beginners and highly powerful for professional editors. DaVinci Resolve provides a streamlined workflow that eliminates the need to learn multiple applications, reducing editing time and improving output quality. Moreover, the software supports camera original quality images throughout the entire process, providing editors with high-quality content.
DaVinci Resolve is a highly regarded professional-level video editing software that has gained popularity amongst industry professionals. Its versatility and innovative tools make it the software of choice for many current blockbusters, Oscar winners, TV shows, and commercials. Despite its professional-level capabilities, DaVinci Resolve also provides a free version that has made it a preferred tool for ambitious enthusiasts.
Mastering DaVinci Resolve requires an investment of time, effort, and expertise, but the outcome is a highly efficient workflow that enhances editing capabilities. The software's combination of video editing, motion graphics, color grading, and audio production makes it a comprehensive tool for editing professionals. However, mastering the software's unconventional video interface and workflow conventions requires practice and patience.
Just like DaVinci, Hitfilm is an all-in-one video editing program that can assist in multiple functions including but not limited to editing, color grading, VFX, motion graphics, and some audio processes. The Hitfilm suite is created by FXhome - which has since been acquired by Artlist in 2021, offering a comprehensive set of features that are derived from Premiere Pro - it even has a similar interface. Unlike DaVinci, Hitfilm family includes three distinct versions, each tailored to different user needs and budgets, from the free version to the professional-grade software.
There are also plenty of free resources such as preset and template available online to hep you improve your skills as a Hitfilm user.
Now, I won't compare the two since they're both great in their own ways. However, I will say that DaVinci Resolve is a little more demanding than HitFilm Express when it comes to hardware. Here's why:
In comparison, HitFilm Express is a little less demanding. The minimum recommended requirement for Apple users is macOS 10.13, while PC users should have at least Windows 10 64-bit. Ideally, you'll have a dedicated graphics card, but the program claims you can use it with as little as 4GB of RAM. However, based on personal use, I recommend having at least 8GB of RAM to avoid any lag.
As for DaVinci Resolve, you'll need a minimum of 16GB of RAM for Windows users, while Mac users can get away with 8GB. But, if you plan on using Fusion-related features, you should double those figures. Also, Mac users should have a device that supports Metal or OpenCL 1.2, and Windows users will need a decent (or above average) graphics card from NVIDIA, AMD, or Intel, with at least 2GB of VRAM.
Lastly, if it doesn't meet requirements, don't worry too much. I once used DaVinci Resolve on my old Acer Aspire 5 with just 8GB of RAM and an integrated graphics card, and it ran perfectly fine (with a bit of lag). So, give both of these programs a try and see which one works best for you!
HitFilm Express has a user-friendly interface that is easy to navigate, especially for beginners. The toolbar is virtually identical to Adobe Premiere, making it a familiar environment for those who have used other video editing programs before. The UI is approachable and each feature is laid out clearly in a user-friendly font size. This hit-the-ground-running approach makes HitFilm a clear winner when it comes to putting the tool in your hands.
On the other hand, DaVinci Resolve has a steeper learning curve due to its more complex and cluttered interface. While it does offer a timeline similar to many other basic video editors, new users may feel lost if they do not know how to find and use all of its features. There are many tabs, windows, and options to navigate through, which can be overwhelming for those who are not familiar with the program. However, once you learn how to use the various tabs and windows, the workflow in DaVinci Resolve makes perfect sense and it is an incredibly robust system.
Both Hitfilm & DaVinci support the most commonly use file formats including but not limited to MPEG-1/2, DV, DVCPRO, AAC, AMR, PCM, WMA, MPEG and Dolby Digital (AC-3), AVC/H.264 and MPEG-4 Part 2.
While HitFilm is targeted towards the casual video editor - think vloggers, YouTubers, and influencers - it still manages to offer a decent range of features that are easy to use. Its user interface is straightforward and simple, making it a great option for beginners who want to edit videos without being bogged down by complicated tools and functions.
DaVinci Resolve, on the other hand, is a more complex software designed for professionals who need more advanced tools and features to accomplish their work. The interface can seem overwhelming at first glance, especially for those who are new to the software or the industry. But once you learn the ropes, you'll find that the depth and range of features that DaVinci Resolve offers is unparalleled.
That said, if you're a casual video editor, it's likely that much of DaVinci Resolve's powerful capabilities will go unused. It's designed to accommodate the demands of a professional workflow, and while it's certainly possible to use it for simple video editing projects, it might not be the most efficient option.
While DaVinci Resolve's free version has a lot to offer, there are other video editing softwares out there that come with more functionality + user friendliness. Out of all the alternatives, FXhome's Hitfilm is definitely the best substitute if you're looking for a more capable and professional software. After all, Hitfilm is still the industry leading free NLE and It has additional features that DaVinci Resolve's free version doesn't offer. Hitfilm also doesn't require the same investment in time and effort to learn because it's easier to learn.
Yes, DaVinci Resolve has been and still is being used in 100s of Hollywood films which include Avatar, Love & Mercy & Pirates of the Caribbean just to name a few. For years, DaVinci Resolve has been a go-to tool in the industry for Color Grading. The reason for this is because Davinci provides industry-leading color correction tools which are engineered specifically for film.
While professional Colorists and VFX artists still opt for the paid Studio Version, the free version is more than sufficient for most enthusiast users. Even the paid version is now way more affordable than when it was first introduced, with the price of a dongle previously reaching a whopping $1k (which still works, by the way).
DaVinci Resolve is one of the most popular NLEs because of it's editing capabilities which is similar to Premier Pro's. DaVinci Resolve has everything you need to edit all sorts of videos, which is why it's used by famous YouTubers, Hollywood editors and professional post production companies.
With linear editing, color correction and audio post-production features, as well as the ability to add custom visual effects and motion graphics - all integrated within a single platform, it's no surprise then, that the software has become one of the most popular options in the industry. In fact, you can see the power of DaVinci Resolve in action in many blockbuster movies that have won multiple accolades, including Avatar & Deadpool.
When it comes to choosing between HitFilm and DaVinci Resolve, both are fantastic free NLEs to consider, especially if you're a first time video editor. They both have all the essential tools, functionality, features and effects needed to create a videos at a professional level. Another factor to consider which not usually though of wen comparing video editing programs is the interface. Both DaVinci & Hitfilm offer a user-friendly interface which are customizable in terms of dimension, layout and position, making them beginner-friendly options. But ultimately, your decision should be based on your project requirements and goals.
If you aspire to become a professional filmmaker and wish to explore creative editing, DaVinci Resolve should be your go-to choice. It not only introduces you to the workflow that most industry professionals use but also helps you learn the basics.
However, if you seek a dependable software to edit your videos and want to build your own effects from scratch, HitFilm is the way to go. Additionally, it caters to those who prefer to think outside the box and avoid mainstream options.