Knowing how to change volume is a crucial skill when editing videos. However, knowing the methods I’m going to share with you in this article will make you a much faster editor in DaVinci Resolve.
If you’re simply here for a quick fix:
To change the volume of your audio in DaVinci Resolve, go to the “Edit” page and select the clip you want to adjust in the timeline. Open the “Inspector” tab (top right-hand corner), click on the “Audio” sub-tab, and adjust the value next to “Volume“.
Click on the link to go directly to a specific method:
- The Pull Method (Inaccurate, but quick)
- Use the Mixer Tab (Gives a great overview)
- Use “Normalize Audio” (The best method to start with)
- Change Audio Using Inspector Tab (Most precise)
- “Nudge” Audio Levels (Extremely handy)
- Keyframe Audio (Important to master)
1. The Pull Method (Inaccurate, but quick)
This method is not very precise and accurate in changing the volume in DaVinci Resolve. However, it’s really quick!!
Here’s how to do it:
- On top of the timeline’s audio, you should see a thin white/gray horizontal line. If you hover your mouse over it, your mouse cursor should change to another icon (two triangles).
- If you can see the line, try hovering over different spots on top of the audio.
- When you have found the line, left-click your mouse and drag your mouse up to increase the volume, or drag the mouse down to reduce the volume.
- When moving your mouse up or down, you will see how many decibels you are increasing or reducing the volume by.
- Now release your mouse and play the audio. If you think you still need some tweaking, repeat the same steps.
If you’re a bit more of a control freak, you should check out the following solutions:
2. Use the Mixer Tab
You can view all the audio tracks you are using and also control their sound using the Mixer tab.
If you want to control the sound of your audio, music, and effects in one place, the mixer tab is your best friend.
Here’s how to change your audio volume in DaVinci Resolve using the Mixer:
- In the top right corner, click on “Mixer.” Now you should see it open next to the timeline editor.
- If you have multiple audio files, such as music, microphone audio, and effects, you should see all of them in the mixer tab.
- You can individually change the volume of each audio file by selecting them and dragging the slider up or down.
- If you want to control the volume of all the clips, you can drag the master volume up or down to change the volume.
- The “master” is the one called “Bus1” by default.
- You can see my nice color illustration below on what the different sliders control. Notice the “Bus1” has two colors 😉
The next method is one I use ALL the time:
3. Use “Normalize Audio”
This is one of the best methods to change the volume of your audio files in DaVinci Resolve. It’s reliable, easy to do, and a great quick-fix option.
Here’s how to change the volume of your audio using Normalize mode:
- Right-click on the audio file and select the “Normalize” audio option.
- Now a pop-up window will open. First, click on the drop-down menu, select “Sample Peak Program,” and set the “Target Level” to the highest allowed volume.
- For YouTube, you want the volume to get as close to 0 dBFS as possible; however, I usually leave some extra room by setting it to -2.0 dBFS and then doing a test.
- Click on “Normalize” to apply the settings.
This is an excellent way to adjust the volume of your audio clip quickly.
However, I also recommend learning the following methods, as they have their strengths in some situations.
4. Change Audio Using Inspector Tab
If you want to change the volume of your videos accurately, changing it using the inspector tab is the way to go.
The inspector tab is a centralized control panel that you can use to retime, zoom, rotate, use composite modes, and more on your videos. You can also change the volume of your audio clips using the Inspector tab.
Here’s how to do that:
- Select your clip in the timeline by left-clicking it.
- Now, click on the “Inspector” tab in the right-hand top corner and select the “Audio” sub-tab.
- Open the sub-sub-tab “Volume” if it’s not already:
- You will find a slider under the Volume section. You can drag the slider to the right to increase the volume or to the left to decrease the volume of your audio clip.
- You can also change the volume by using a decimal number if you only want to change the volume ever so slightly.
The next method is one I’ve not been using a lot. However, I realize it has its strengths if you use the shortcut:
5. “Nudge” Audio Levels
If you think your audio is almost perfect but needs just a slight tweaking, here’s how to do that:
- Click on “Clip” (top left-hand corner) > “Audio” and select “Increase Audio Level 1dB” or select “Increase Audio Level 3dB.”
- Alternatively, you can also decrease the audio by selecting the option.
To speed up your workflow, here are the keyboard shortcuts for both Mac and Windows below:
- Increase Audio Level 1dB= “Ctrl”+”Alt”+”=”
- Increase Audio Level 3dB= “Alt”+”Shift”+”=”
- Decrease Audio Level 1dB= “Ctrl”+”Alt”+”-“
- Decrease Audio Level 3dB= “Alt”+”Shift”+”-“
- Increase Audio Level 1dB= “Option”+”Command”+”=”
- Increase Audio Level 3dB= “Option”+”Shift”+”=”
- Decrease Audio Level 1dB= “Option”+”Command”+”-“
- Decrease Audio Level 3dB= “Option”+”Shift”+”-“
The shortcut keys will undoubtedly be helpful for making quick adjustments when editing.
For the last method, I’ll show you how to keyframe audio! This is very important that you master if you want to make the best possible videos:
6. Keyframe Audio
Keyframing is one of the keys to a great video —it also drastically shortens editing time.
Instead of cutting the audio into different parts because you want to change the volume, you can create a smooth transition from one volume level to another on the same clip!
Here’s how to do that:
- Click on the clip in the timeline to select it.
- Go to the part of the video where you want the audio to change.
- Open the “Inspector” tab again and click on the Diamond icon (keyframe) in the volume section. It should turn red to indicate it has been turned on.
- This is where the audio will start to change.
- Now go to the point of the video where the volume should be loud or low. Then adjust the volume to the desired level; a keyframe is automatically created (you only need to click on the diamond the first time).
- Now the volume will start adjusting on the first keyframe and be finished on the last keyframe. The distance between them regulates how fast of a transition it will be.
The options with keyframes are endless, and it’s up to you how to use them.
If you are new to DaVinci Resolve, I’ve covered everything you need to get started in this tutorial.