Blackmagic DaVinci Mini Panel

  • 2017

  • Product
    Commercial and Industrial

Commissioned By:

Blackmagic Design

Designed In:


The DaVinci Resolve Mini Panel is a cinematic quality control panel for the manipulation of motion picture light and colour. Designed for feature films, television and music videos and costing a tenth of similar systems, it is the last word in the democratisation of professional colour control, editing, and finishing.

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  • Hollywood quality colour control suites can cost over $30,000. Small enterprises simply cannot afford to invest in such technology, forced instead to rely on inferior hardware or mouse-based UIs. This not only limits creativity, but hinders post-production speed and efficiency, vital when operating on shoestring budgets and tight schedules. Blackmagic Design remains resolutely focussed on empowering creative people with affordable video technology. To meet a price of $2995 with The Mini Panel's suite of professional features and performance, a disciplined approach to engineering, assembly and manufacturing was employed. The result is a highly affordable, fully equipped cinematic quality colour control panel.

  • Post-production is a delicate interplay between technical skill, creativity and efficiency. Typically, efficiency is improved with direct control via physical inputs leading to bulky, intimidating devices ill-suited beyond the studio. Low cost panels rely on software UIs, forcing users to dig through endless menu layers to find specific tools. The Mini Panel combines fast, direct control with a highly portable form factor, consolidating deeper features and sophisticated image diagnostics into dual 5” LCD touchscreens. Paired with a comprehensive set of intuitive physical controls, colourists must no longer compromise creativity, performance or efficiency in the studio or on challenging on-location assignments.

  • During high pressure post-production colourists must remain focused on the moving image, continually aware of the implications changes have on a scene's quality. Pared back to its essential elements, the top surface is deliberately minimal: a rational, distraction free workspace for intuitive, error-free operation. The striking CNC machined anodised aluminium chassis is a dramatic counterpoint to the main workspace and a metaphor for the precision software it houses; a professional studio presence inspiring confidence in the most demanding client. In a subtle reference to DaVinci Resolve's control of light, elegant edge chamfers dance around the perimeter of the panel, capturing refined highlights and shadows.

  • Professional colourists, working with demanding clients and strict schedules must continually balance creative ambition with production efficiency. The deeply nuanced nature of video colour control means that to keep this equilibrium an instinctive approach, attuned to such subtleties, is required. With three perfectly weighted trackballs located for a natural link between hand, eye and GUI, The Mini Panel allows users to hold moving images in their hands. Each assembly features an optical grade lens and precision z-axis ring for simultaneous real-time adjustment of lift, gamma and gain ensuring subtle changes, which are difficult to articulate with mouse and keyboard, are achieved quickly and accurately.

    Post-production demands long hours of continual grading. Informed by anthropometric study, the Mini Panel is a considered solution, offering efficient use and natural ergonomics to relieve fatigue and long term stress. Angled for optimal clarity, dual 5” touchscreens reduce overhead reflections while a 5° control surface with generous front landing promotes a comfortable working posture. The hierarchical control layout puts oversized buttons for common adjustments at the fingertips for quick, intuitive access without releasing the trackball. Custom engineered magnetic encoder knobs allow extremely fine colour adjustments and direct access to deeper features, promoting discovery, experimentation and learning.

    The Mini Panel ships with a free version of DaVinci Resolve software. Created in partnership with Hollywood studios, it has been the standard in post-production for over thirty years. An essential tool in the workflows of productions like Oscar award-winning 'Moonlight', 'Jason Bourne' and HBO's 'Westworld', it has been used on more high end feature films, television commercials, music videos and episodic productions than any other system. Organised into logical work zones for each stage in the post-production workflow, DaVinci Resolve is embedded with powerful non-linear editing, colour correction, media management and 'live on set' multi-camera tools, making it a virtual hub for the entire creative process.

    Resilience in a range of unforgiving locations and hectic film sets is essential. CNC machined from aircraft-grade aluminium, The Mini Panel's chassis facilitates exceptional structural integrity and a highly accurate datum for consistent positioning of critical controls and displays. The high-pressure die-cast control surface enhances the panel's perceived quality while providing a tactical durability that demands confidence. A custom powder-coat finish eliminates glare from overhead lighting and provides tactile contrast to the highly polished trackballs and soft-touch silicone buttons. Back-lit for legibility in dark studio environments, the durable keypads minimise user errors and reduce eye strain.