Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

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MadPanic

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Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostMon Jul 13, 2020 6:04 pm

For the life of me, I cannot get resolve to reliably export to AAF for use in an external DAW. Why is this standard interchange workflow such a royal pain in the **** (not just resolve I should add). I have been trying to do this now for 2 days and am at the end of my tether. It shouldn't be like this.

I have tried, Cubase 10.5, Nuendo, and Logic Pro X (and FCPX).

This is the issue I am currently facing.

Project was edited in FCP7 and delivered as an fcp.xml. The movie files are all MXF format and the field recorder sound are polywavs.

This imported perfectly (more or less) in Davinci resolve. I imported the field recorder sound,I setup all the tracks and set to work pairing separately recorded audio with clips where needed and started balancing dialog, adding atmos, spot fx etc in fairlight. All good.

However, for this project, I am creating many sounds and doing sound design which is outside the scope of fairlight, and I have been doing this in Nuendo. I keep going back & forth creating, rendering, importing etc, so I thought it would make sense to switch the sound design to Nuendo for this project.

I have tried the export to protools, avid AAF, file export=>aaf, even to fcpx xml & re-importing as suggested here: https://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=65414.

Now with fcpx xml, FCPX seems to bring everything in ok, but obviously incapable of any decent DAW export workflow (either AAF or OMF). Logic Pro X however, can, but it can't deal with MXF files. I have even tried transcoding to Prores and exporting fcpx but then some elements vanish, and some have timing issues (i.e. start on the clapper board instead of the marked regions). It's a mess, a total mess. Nuendo has no hope of importing the output from Resolve.

I went to FCP 7 and exported the original edited project as OMF and Nuendo is happy as Larry, but of course, I can't use that because I've moved the project forward in resolve.

Can anyone shed a ray of light on an interchange workflow that will actually work? I really like resolve and have used it entirely to produce, but just want to use an external DAW for this project without having to go back to the original edit and repeat my work.
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boywonderproduction

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostMon Jul 13, 2020 7:31 pm

I am in the same boat. Have read every post a thousand times and contacted BM customer support and the bottom line is this does not work in DaVinci Resolve. You can get it out to pro tools but it won't reconnect to original audio files nor will you have any of the metadata. Davinci has a lot going for it but this is one really big strike against it.

Good luck. If you find an answer let me know!!
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Ognjen Mihovilić

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Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostMon Jul 13, 2020 9:25 pm

It was a big stuggle but we’ve made it work for Pro Tools.

Export aaf with mxfs for pro tools. That’s the only way, I’m afraid. Than export aaf from Pro tools the second time for Nuendo.
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Paul Draper

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostMon Jul 13, 2020 10:16 pm

FWIW, I gave up on AAF (mostly)- on these platforms or others. Have found this to be inconsistent /buggy depending on exactly what is going from where to where. YMMV obviously. In any case, in the case of round tripping from Resolve Studio to Nuendo:

I avoid the AAF debacle all together by exporting a movie from Resolve at the res /codec I want for best Nuendo playback, and adding multi-track audio as part of that export, ie, instead of selecting the 'main output' stereo option, Resolve can also usefully select 'Timeline' audio tracks. I make as many of these as there are tracks in Resolve (eg, music temp, VO, FX, wild, etc). This also prints any audio work that may have been done on each of the timelines in Resolve, including level changes, fader levels, fx, automation, plugins, whichever ... I tend to use a little of this just for general balance before doing a full mix in Nuendo.

Then open this multitrack movie in Nuendo. It imports the movie into a video lane & also drops each 'timeline' into separate audio lanes. Very simple. Then mix, make music, use NR, etc. Master and bounce back out as a stereo file into the relevant Resolve media dir at whichever LUFS required. Duplicate the timeline and drop in the new audio master. Works perfectly and without any AAF fuss.

I can also keep Resolve and Nuendo open together. This also means that if I need to tweak that stereo master for any reason, Nuendo can easily bounce again over the top of the same master if required, Resolve then updates the new mix in the same Timeline. Works for me.
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Ognjen Mihovilić

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 7:15 am

But that way you loose the ability to extend audio clips in Nuendo which is not acceptable in our workflow. But it can be done.

Just try the PT export with mxf files and than from PT to Nuendo. It works.... for some reason we never managed to get it into Nuendo directly.
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PieroLass

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 8:15 am

Anyway in the professional field, you don't work alone, so it's quite normal that after editing someone else do the sound editing and mixing in pro tools. This passage is always a nightmare, each time you find new problems that you see for the first time. The export to pro tools is what makes a bad choise editing in davinci, otherwise is a perfect software, but not been able to make this passage easily is very problematic and I dont think this way fairlight get more chance to replace pro tools. AAF to pro tools might be problematic for Black magic to solve, for reasons that I cant imagine, but software like x2pro solved the problem for final cut x quite well in my experience. Maybe we need a solution like this, because video makers would benefit to stay in fairlight, not moving anything, but for cinema, documentaries and even tv at the end of the editing you cant avoid to find some audio guy that only works on pro tools since 20 years and want an aaf with metadata from the original audio files. And while they wait the aaf you are getting mad try to find what roundtrip works, why there are some stereo files that are mono, why the are some files missing, why there is any metadata and so on....
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Reynaud Venter

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 8:16 am

When exporting an AAF for other DAWs constrain the Timeline and do not use mixed rate media - only use media with matching sampling rate (e.g. 48kHz) and bit depth (e.g. 16bit).

Do not include compressed media such as mp3, AAC or FLAC and only use uncompressed LPCM on the Timeline.

Remove all audio transition effects, always use the Clip's fade handles.
Remove audio media spread across Track Layers, ensuring that only a single layer is present.

The ProTools preset provides two options for audio:
Linear PCM = Broadcast Wave
Embedded in AAF = MXF

The Avid AAF preset only uses MXF media.

If using the default video option (DNxHD) with the ProTools preset and intend on importing the AAF in to Nuendo, Steinberg provides a paid "Video Decoder for Avid DNxHD" plugin. Alternatively, export a separate reference video file in a different format, or use the Avid AAF preset which provides additional options.
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PieroLass

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 11:39 am

Hi Reynaud,
thank you for your advice for having a proper aaf for pro tools. Do you have any idea how to get also metadata from the original audio files?
Thank you again for your help!!!
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neversoberkid

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 12:45 pm

So I work with guys who use ProTools and what I usually do is export the Premiere XML from Resolve when I'm done with the offline edit, and then bring that to Premiere and export an OMF / AAF from there that they'll be able to access. Exporting direct from Resolve has never worked for me in terms of an audio workflow for me, and I've tried on multiple projects and multiple exports (Pro Tools Deliver Presets, etc.).

Kinda accepted the fact that this is exactly why Resolve will never be adopted as a "pro level" edit suite - most people at that level send their files off to specialised post houses to do mixdowns and clean ups and no way in hell should they risk something like this in their workflow during a crunch.
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Jim Simon

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 1:18 pm

MadPanic wrote:I am creating many sounds and doing sound design which is outside the scope of Fairlight


I can't solve the problem, but I'm curious what those missing capabilities are?
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Reynaud Venter

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 1:18 pm

PieroLass wrote:Do you have any idea how to get also metadata from the original audio files?
Production audio synced within Resolve will follow the source video file name and metadata.

All audio media placed on a Resolve Timeline will retain the original file name (but can include a Resolve track number prefix), and embedded description, time reference, and other metadata when creating an AAF with associated media.
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PieroLass

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 2:49 pm

In most of the situation with fiction and documentaries I have to synch video and audio, after that is not possible to get the audio metadata back... So maybe Black magic can to add the possiblity to flatten sync clip like we can do with multicam clips....so there is an hope for audio meta data. Anyway in my latest test with davinci 16.2.2 i wasnt able to send aaf with metadata even with audio files on timeline, not synched...I will try once again.
Since is a problem each professional editors have when they have to send an aaf to pro tools could be usefull to start a guide on how to do it and how to solve problems, maybe can save many editors to spend many days, stressing, tryng to figure out how to survive this task.
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Ognjen Mihovilić

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 6:34 pm

So, to repeat myself...

We have been trough this problem many times on this forum with some success.

The only way AAF works from Resolve is:

1. AAF for Protools
2. Disable Video export
3. AUDIO FILES - MXF OP-Atom files (IMPORTANT!!!) - if you use WAV Clip ID will be lost and PT won't relink files.

From the metadata you will get:
1. Timeline timecode
2. Source TC
3. Clip gain
4. Crossfades

All disabled clips from the timeline will be present in PT AAF and PT wont be able to know that they are just disabled clips. Ignore them or delete unused clips before AAF export.

Subframe edits will be rounded to frames. YOu have to redo them in PT.

That's it. No more, no less.

If you work in a different DAW you have to go to PT first than export AAF from PT.

Best regards,

Oggy
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MadPanic

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 7:56 pm

Jim Simon wrote:I can't solve the problem, but I'm curious what those missing capabilities are?


There are so many, such as effect sends, group tracks that can be further grouped, track versions, it works properly with external Mackie controllers like the x-touch, much better control over automation data, you have full integration with midi musical instruments and samplers, in place rendering of tracks, the user interface is so much more advanced allowing you declutter a complex project quickly and still have bold visual representation of where things are, built in waveform editor, ability to open in external wav editor, fine transposition of audio events, you have full control over the order of insert / send effects, the list goes on.

Yes, fairlight sort of has some these things, but it is years behind. Don't get me wrong, I really like fairlight and love the whole integration concept of Davinci Resolve. I have done much mixing work in fairlight / resolve and really like the syncing / polywav channel selection capabilities. It all depends on the project really. I tend to do most things in fairlight these days, but for the bigger projects, I prefer a dedicated DAW for Audio. For the DAW, I have only used Cubase / Nuendo (and years ago Soundtrack pro). I have Logic Pro X, but just don't get on with it.

File interchange has been a problem right from the start in the media industry. You get a group of vendors agree on a loose standard then they all implement it slightly differently, build their own customer loyalty base, and let the standard become only partially useful. It's as annoying as screwdrivers. There used to be two types, flat blade & cross blade, everyone was happy. Then there was slightly different cross blades, then hexagonal, & triangular and star shaped etc etc. It just makes things a nightmare for the person who just wants to tighten or loosen a screw. The same is true of file interchange. One thing I really like about Blackmagic is their direction towards open standards, so I am hopeful they will address this issue. The more interoperable a program is, the more people will be drawn towards it, not the other way around.
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MadPanic

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 8:07 pm

Ognjen Mihovilić wrote:If you work in a different DAW you have to go to PT first than export AAF from PT.


I have gone through the process you describe with the exception of the quote above, and this really is the heart of the problem. AAF or OMF, *should* be an open interchange format, also things like FCP xml. If software supports it, there should be no need for Package A to export AAF then have to get an intermediate Package B to import the AAF only to then export AAF for package C to read it!

It *should* be a simple case of the vendors supporting a common interchange format. The reason these things just don't work is likely down to the way the specifications are interpreted and implemented.

I don't have protools I have Nuendo so I can't do that last step.
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Ognjen Mihovilić

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 9:04 pm

Take the PT demo and see if it works.

I totally agree with your statement about aaf. I’m just trying to help you out since I had the same problem. Blackmagic should have fixed this long time ago but this is all we got...
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Paul Draper

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 9:10 pm

Ognjen Mihovilić wrote:But that way you loose the ability to extend audio clips in Nuendo which is not acceptable in our workflow. But it can be done.

Not at all .. [though I respect that many may have nuanced workflow requirements]. However:

When importing into Nuendo from a multi-track bounce as mentioned, the waveforms occupy the entire timeline in the bounce range; I then use strip silence to give the overall project a bit of obvious shape around the audio clips, but of course any of these can be stretched back out to reveal 'air' or otherwise around each individual clip.
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MadPanic

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostTue Jul 14, 2020 11:03 pm

Ognjen Mihovilić wrote:I’m just trying to help you out since I had the same problem.


Oggy,

Thank you, I really do appreciate your help, any implied tone is only the frustration with the issue, not with anybody's contribution to this thread.

When I re-read your process however, actually there was one thing I wasn't doing and that was saving the audio as MXF OP-Atom files, so I tried an export with those settings. Again it failed, but I moved the error dialog box by accident and saw that the underlying import seemed to fail on a particular track (8). I skipped this track and it imported (haven't verified the integrity because track 8 is now missing).

I went back into resolve and scanned the whole of track 8 and there was a very short ( 8 frames) clip that was disabled on this track. I have re-exported and tried importing into Nuendo. This is with the prores transcoded version of the media clips not the original MXF (that still doesn't work), but I have actually managed to get much further than previously.
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Ognjen Mihovilić

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostWed Jul 15, 2020 5:39 am

Great to hear that! Many times AAF fails because of such things as disabled clips, subframe edits, different framerates, corrupt files...

Sometimes resolve just ommits for no reason some files and we realise that when we see the final mix...

But it’s never consistent. It should be fixed if Resolve is to be a professional tool.

The good thing is that when you find workflow that works it gets easier for the next project or episode...
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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostWed Jul 15, 2020 7:08 am

Please BMD make this problem a thing of the past.
Lets make Resolve a true professional NLE one and for all!
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Wiebe van der Vliet

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Re: Resolve just won't export to a DAW properly

PostWed Sep 02, 2020 5:40 pm

I have been struggling with this problem as well.
When I export an embedded AAF or none embedded from Davinci Resolve some files come up missing in Pro Tools.

I find that when exporting XML we seldom experience missing files.
What we do now is export a XML from resolve to premiere and create an AAF in premiere. This seems to work for us.

It is irritating to have to do a work around like this, but I think it is worth mentioning in case anybody else hits upon this problem.
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