Let’s talk about some other techniques to know in DaVinci Resolve! This program can create anything you can dream of. That is why it is my go-to when it comes to editing projects. But I don’t need to tell you why you should use this program. It’s all about changing the speed of your clips and taking your audience for a wild ride. Thankfully, there are multiple ways to do this. Today, I will show you how to speed up a clip in DaVinci Resolve.
Why Change The Speed Of Your Clip?
Changing the speed of a clip in film editing can be a great tool to have in your filmmaking toolbox. It’s an awesome way to manipulate time and add flair to your videos. Whether you want to slow things down for a dramatic effect or speed things up to amp up the excitement, adjusting the clip’s speed can make a world of difference.
Ramp Up The Energy
Let’s say you’re working on an action scene. By adjusting the speed to be faster, you can add a sense of exhilaration to your audience, keeping them engaged with the character. A huge part of filmmaking is having the audience be able to feel what your character is feeling. Thankfully, this is a really cool edit trick that is easy to do and won’t destroy your budget.
On the other hand, slowing down your clip can give the audience more time to absorb and feel a scene. If you want to linger on a shot, it’s a visual cue to your audience that this clip is important. It can also heighten the emotion, bring attention to detail, and build suspense.
Sometimes on set, we film a scene, and it’s entirely too long. But we need to keep it so we don’t lose the essential information to the story. A great way of doing that is to speed up the clip. It can help keep the narrative while also trimming down unnecessary air time.
High-action scenes and fight sequences can greatly benefit from speed ramping. It can cover up a majority of the slower movements actors, and stunt people have to make to keep them safe. Once speed ramped, it’s just as high intensity as if it were all happening in real-time. Slowing down a clip can also benefit a scene like this to emphasize movements. The iconic scene in The Matrix where Neo bends backward to avoid oncoming bullets is a great example of showing how slowing down a scene can be effective.
Learning this skill as well as reversing your clip can amp up the quality of your film and challenge you to work in different ways of storytelling. If you want to add creative ways of emphasizing your film, this is definitely worth trying.
How To Speed Up A Clip In DaVinci Resolve
Let’s start with the option on the Cut page.
Method 1: Speed Adjustment Tool
- If you’re on the cut page, right-click your clip and select Change Speed
- A speedometer icon will show up under your timeline preview window
- Double-click on 1:00 to enter a new speed, or use the left/right arrow set and drag in either direction to change the speed
- The new duration of the clip will be shown on the right
- To start over, if you entered the wrong time, hover over the speedometer and click the reverse arrow next to the time. Or click on the “Reset All” button
The following three options will all be done on the Edit page.
Method 2: Change Clip Speed
- Right-click on your clip and select “Change Clip Speed”
- Double-click in the speed box and type in what speed you want the clip to be. 100% is regular speed, and anything higher will make the clip faster (the frames per second and duration of the clip will change accordingly below. This will differ from the Cut page as we are entering percentages instead of numbers 1, 2, and so on. You can also use the left/right arrows to drag the speed faster or slower
- Click Change to save
Pro Tip: Up and Down Arrows
When you drag your left/right arrows to adjust your speed, on the side, you will see an up arrow to indicate you are speeding up the clip or a down arrow to indicate you are slowing a clip down.
Method 3: Using Retime Control
- Right-click on your clip and select Retime Controls
(Keyboard shortcut: Cmd + R for Mac or Windows + R for PC)
- Your clip now says Speed Change with a 100% at the bottom
- Click on the arrow next to the percentage, hover over Change Speed, and choose how you want to retime it
Pro Tip: Change The Speed For Part Of Your Clip
If you want to adjust only part of your clip, follow the steps below.
- Move your playhead where you want the change to start.
- In the drop-down menu, select add speed point
- Your clip is now broken up into two parts (if your playhead was in the wrong spot, simply drag your speed point left or right to adjust it)
- Click the drop-down arrow next to 100% and choose your speed
If you have more than one speed point, make sure you select the speed point that sits before the clip you want to change
Method 4: Retime Curve
- Right-click on your clip in the timeline and select Retime Curve
- Click the arrow next to Retime Frame and select Retime Speed
- Click on the curved line with the anchor point in the center
- Opt + click (Mac) Alt + click (PC) on your flat line to create a new control point (click and drag your point left or right if it’s in the wrong spot)
- Drag the lines to the right or left of the control point up or down to retime. You will now see a harsh line, and the straight line is now selected. Click on the curved line to turn it into a curve
- To smooth out the curve, drag one of the dots next to your control point outward.
- Repeat these steps to create smooth curves or retime other parts of your video
Make sure you have clicked on one of your control points to see the curve associated with that point. It will be highlighted in red
As I have mentioned, there are many ways to accomplish different tasks in DaVinci Resolve. Blackmagic really wants its program to be accessible and easy to use for any kind of filmmaker. I hope you found this tutorial helpful and that you will find new ways to use these techniques in your films moving forward. Let us know in the comments some of your favorite films that change clip speed! Happy filmmaking!