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How can I bring Resolve to work properly?

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Fabian Engeler
How can I bring Resolve to work properly?
on Feb 26, 2017 at 1:32:12 pm

Please take your time to read through my request, because I'm this close (fingers really close together) of giving up and just smashing the whole computer.
I'm currently working on a bigger project - 12 interviews, each about 10 minutes long. I edited it all and I'm currently colour correcting a little bit as the last step before the finish.
But now I run into problems I never did before.

As I said, my interviews are about 10 minutes long, consisting of individual clips which I've exported as 1080p DNxHD 185 Mbit/s Quicktime files from AE and then imported into Resolve. One project per interview.
When I first make masks and track them (usually 3 nodes with 1 mask each, mainly for brightening or darkening the image) everything works as usual, I mean the automated tracking method is awesome.
But of course, when my supject moves its head rather hard or moves left and right on its chair, I have to adjust the mask manually.
Now, as I did on previous projects, I start keyframing the mask. And that's when it gets really annoying.
If I make too many keyframes - sometimes 16 keyframes in a 1.5 min long clip is enough - Resolve uses up almost all of the 32GB RAM and barely functions anymore. Sometimes I'm lucky enough to save, but at some point I can no longer make any new changes, or otherwise when I try to save the project, the RAM-usage will go through the roof and Resolve sends me the error message "Davinci Resolve failed to save project 'Project Name' ".

All my source files are located on an external hard-drive connected via USB 3.0.

On a previous project I had no problem with resolve whatsoever (I think it was version 11) and there I had my whole project (about 30 minutes) in one timeline and everything worked out fine. The workflow is exactly the same.

I already followed some tips on the internet regarding Playback Resolution, Cache Render, installing the current CUDA driver and else. See below the specs regarding my setup.

I hope someone can tell me what the hell I'm doing wrong that I just can't get a workflow as I had before.
If you need any more information, let me know.


Windows 7 64bit SP1
Intel i7 3930K @ 3.2 GHz
32.0 GB RAM
NVIDIA Quadro 4000

Davinci Resolve 12.5

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Marc Wielage
Re: How can I bring Resolve to work properly?
on Feb 27, 2017 at 1:23:20 am

I think there are a whole lot of potential issues here.

1) you may be stressing out your hardware to the point where you just need to get a bigger computer (bigger GPUs, more RAM, faster CPU). It's possible doubling your RAM alone might help.

2) If the 30-minute project causes the computer to crash, try slicing it up into three 10-minute projects, then at the very end, create a master timeline consisting of the first three timelines and render those. It should "in theory" work.

3) long, long single shots are very trying and complicated to track. A ten-second shot is pretty straightforward, but once you hit a minute+, it takes a lot of time and skill to really track the shapes well. In some cases, you can break the shapes down into multiple shapes, then cut and paste the tracking and then make manual changes if necessary. I have done maybe 90-second or 2-minute shots before, and the problem there is dealing with occlusion and creating masks to obscure the window when other people or edges of walls get in front of the character being tracked. It can be done, given enough patience and time.

4) BMD will probably tell you that you're better off using newer operating systems instead of Windows 7, so you might try backing up your entire system and switching to Windows 10 and see if that's an improvement.

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Fabian Engeler
Re: How can I bring Resolve to work properly?
on Feb 27, 2017 at 9:37:23 am

Hey Marc

Thanks for the response.

Just a small clarification, It's not just longer projects, I get issues sometimes in projects that are just one 2-minute long clip. The 30-minute one was a reference regarding a previous project where I didn't encounter any issues. And currently I'm not thinking about updating the hardware, especially since it's not my personal computer.
Maybe it's easier if I cut the long takes into smaller ones, I usually already work with seperate masks for complicated shapes.

I'll look into updating the OS, I'm sure that could improve things.
I'll keep you posted on my progress.

If you think of any other possible solution, I'll be happy to know.


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Marc Wielage
Re: How can I bring Resolve to work properly?
on Feb 27, 2017 at 10:51:07 am

DNxHD 185 is a pretty light-duty codec and should not be that hard for most systems to handle. Beyond upgrading your RAM, your CPU, and your GPUs, I'm stumped.

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