New user of DaVinci Resolve, explain-like-I'm-five. =)

Have installed and followed instructions for setting up Resolve 12 on my Windows 7 16gb ram computers with GeForce 760 gpu.

Initially, Resolve would not recognise my .mp4 / .avi files, only finding single image files. The .mp4 and .avi files will load and run in VLC and / or Blender.

I restarted the program, at which point it could find the files - but the thumbnails for the files were red with an exclamation mark and would not load. There were a couple which displayed correct thumbnails, but on clicking on the files the thumbnails turned to red with exclamation mark - and would not load.

Restarting my computer and reloading Resolve returned me to my initial condition: Resolve would not recognise my .mp4 / .avi files, only finding single image files.

These are files of mostly less than 100mb each, some only lasting for a couple of minutes.

Does anybody know why Resolve can't detect or load my files?


  • The exclamation mark behaviour sounds like codec issues. Which version of Quicktime is installed? Any other codec packs installed?
    – Gyan
    Commented Nov 3, 2015 at 20:49
  • QuickTime Player is at 7.7.8 and is constantly updated by Apple's updating software. I have some codec packs installed for FFmpeg, though I couldn't really name them. Can you recommend something that should be installed for Resolve? Commented Nov 3, 2015 at 22:52
  • What does codec packs installed for ffmpeg mean? Or did you mean ffdshow?
    – Gyan
    Commented Nov 4, 2015 at 4:52

2 Answers 2


From your post I am not sure why Resolve wont recognize your files...but you should transcode your footage anyways before ingesting into Resolve.

Even if you start with highly compressed source media, you should transcode to something less compressed, and that will put you in 4:2:2 at least vs working with 4:0:0. ProRes or DNxHD codec will give you files that are much less compressed, and will yield the best possible results in color correction.

  • Could you please be a little more prescriptive? What programs should I use for this? What file types? Again, explain-like-I'm-five. =) Thank you! Commented Nov 3, 2015 at 22:55
  • Adobe Pr/Ae & Resolve - '15 Mac Pro. Even if media comes in compressed, I transcode w/ Prelude/Media Encoder - usually to ProRes 422, which is a low compression codec. Just like RAW & JPEG files; ProRes files are larger than mp4s for the same footage, but your comp easily reads all the information for playback without having to decompress. Codecs like ProRes use a color subsampling method that essentially records more info about the colors as it writes them; more information on the colors in your footage, the more malleable, and more options in color correction. Bit depth is also a factor. Commented Nov 4, 2015 at 5:34

Davinci Resolve does not support all common video file formats, unfortunately. It tends to emphasize the more professional codecs and those found in recent digital cameras.

You can view the full list of file formats supported in Resolve version 15 here:

You'll notice that in this list:

  • For AVI - only Cineform and uncompressed formats are supported
  • For MP4 - only H.264 and H.265 formats are supported

If your video is not one of those formats, unfortunately you need to convert it into a supported format – formats like DNxHD or ProRes are high-quality and good for editing. Tools like VirtualDub2 or FFMPEG (if you don't mind using the command line) will be helpful. There should be many tutorials on the web for using those to convert between formats.

(As an aside, it would be great if you could frameserve videos into Resolve, but I haven't seen anyone mention that that's supported.)

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