Roundtrip Premiere Pro to Davinci Resolve Color Grading Workflow

In this video editing tutorial, we’ll cover how to use Davinci Resolve to color grade a project that has been edited in Premiere Pro. We can export AAF or XML from Premiere and import a full project directly into Davinci Resolve to take advantage of it’s amazing color grading power and then export that AAF or XML right back into Premiere Pro so we can finish adding titles, captions, finishing transitions, cut tweaks, and more before exporting the finished movie, film, or YouTube video. It really is an amazing workflow and allows you to use the incredible power of Davinci Resolve without fear or worry on your next video editing project!

 

Export XML or AAF from Premiere Pro

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After you finish cutting together your project in Premiere, go File>Export>AAF or you can go File>Export>Final Cut XML and choose to save either file (you only need one!) where you have your project on your hard drive.

Import AAF or XML into Davinci Resolve

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Jump into Davinci Resolve and create a new project and you will jump right into in the Media module (button to the left of the four on the bottom toolbar) and you want to go File>Import AAF, EDL, XML… find our file we exported from Premiere and hit “Open”. Leave the “Load AAF/XML” dialog box as default and hit “OK”.

Color Grading in Davinci Resolve

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You will be dumped into the Edit module after this XML or AAF file is loaded where you will see your clips in the timeline. Move from this module to the Color module (third from the left in the bottom toolbar) and use the very many tools here to make a color edit to your clip(s). TIP: Watch the video above to see me explain a little of the grading I did to these clips and how I quickly copied it across the other clips.

Export AAF or XML from Davinci

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After you have your clips graded, go the to Delivery module (last in line on the bottom toolbar) and you can choose any of the preset export templates from the top left. I usually use the Premiere XML option, but something has bugged out in the latest Davinci (12.5 is what I’m using in this tutorial) or in the latest Premiere Pro (CC 2017 is what I’m using in this tutorial) and XML seems to be impossible to use. It trips an error message seemingly no matter what options I export with. I use the AVID AAF preset and I knock out the audio in this export and choose where I’d like to save the .AAF file and the videos files that will export alongside this file. TIP: See the video above to see how to make sure you select all the video clips, add the job to the render queue and then actually render out the video clips.

Importing AAF or XML with Color Graded Clips into Premiere Pro with Timeline, Edits, and Cuts

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Once Davinci Resolve finishes exporting the video and the .AAF or .XML, you want to head back to Premiere Pro and right-click inside of your Project Bin and choose “Import” and then select JUST the .AAF or .XML file depending on what you exported from Davinci. Along with your .AAF or .XML file, Premiere will automatically load in all the color graded video clips as well as a new sequence with all the videos clips perfectly in place as they were in your original sequence. At this point I like to just copy all the video clips and paste them into my original sequence where I have my good sound. I am then ready to finish my edit here in Premiere Pro with a fully color graded project.

Make sure you watch the full video above and see exactly what I did to make this all work! Thanks for stopping by and checking out tutvid!

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