How to Split Audio Channels / Tracks in DaVinci Resolve (Explained!)

Often times we record multiple audio – in-built camera microphone, external microphones like booms, lavaliers, etc, for our scenes or events.

And when it comes to post, you realize that your stereo track has “left” channel sounding good, whereas the right one sounds either muffled or has a lot of background noise. And you’d want the left channel audio to be in the right channel as well.

Or…

You might need certain recorded channels like – mono, stereo or 5.1 – to be split into dedicated tracks, to individually work on them for a more granular control.

Or…

You might want to solve the issue of one sided hearing of your audio.

Today we’ll see how to split your audio channels and tracks in DaVinci Resolve.

Let’s dive right in.



Before we start, you should know a bit about the different audio formats and channels with respect to how DaVinci Resolve handles them.

Various Audio formats and Channels:

FormatChannels
Mono1 Channel
Stereo2 Channels – Left and Right
5.16 Channels – Left, Right, Center, LFE, Left Surround, Right Surround
7.18 Channels – Left, Right, Center, LFE, Left Surround, Right Surround, Left Surround Rear, Right Surround Rear
Adaptive TracksUp to 24 Channels

A Very important thing is – you must use the correct track format in the timeline to match the audio format.

For example…

If you have a stereo audio clip in the media pool, and if your audio track in timeline is set to mono, then when you drag and drop the audio clip onto the track, obviously you’ll have only one channel, to match the track format. You’ll lose the other channel.

Similarly, when you have a mono audio clip and drag and drop it over a stereo audio track, you’ll have 2 channels displayed with one of them being empty!

Make sure to match the track format to the clip audio format. (More on that later).

But before even dragging and dropping your audio clips to the timeline, you must determine the audio format of your clips.

First set right the clip format and then determine the track format.

It all starts with the clips in the media pool.

How to Check Audio Format and Channels in DaVinci Resolve?

  • Import your audio and video clips into the media pool.
  • Right clip on the desired clip -> select “Clip Attributes…“.
  • Click on “Audio” tab.
  • Check the “Format” and “Source Channel“.
  • The “Format” will reveal “Mono”, or “Stereo”, or “5.1”.
  • The “Source Channel” will reveal the number of channels based on the format.

If you click on the “Embedded Channel 1” dropdown underneath “Source Channel“, it will expose the number embedded channels this clip might have.

Let me explain…

If you had 2 different microphones recording audio (which is formatted as Stereo), then the dropdown will display those many number of embedded channels to choose from. You’ll have to select each channel and listen to them to round in on the best sounding one.

Sometimes, a mono audio recording might be wrongly mapped as stereo, which will result in one of the channels being empty.

How to Convert Stereo Audio into Mono Channel in DaVinci Resolve?

  • Go to “Fairlight” page (can do in “Edit” page as well).
  • Click on “Media Pool“.
  • Right click on your stereo audio.
  • Select “Clip Attributes…“.
  • Click on “Audio” tab.
  • Under “Format” select “Mono” instead of “Stereo”.
  • Under “Source Channel”, select the channel which has your desired audio, in this case, “Embedded Source Channel 1”.
  • Click on “Ok“.

Now the stereo audio is converted to a mono channel audio clip. Now you can drag and drop this clip into the timeline. (Keep in mind that the track which receives this clip should be configured to “Mono” as well).


How to Fill Right Channel Audio with Left in DaVinci Resolve?

Let’s say, you record a stereo audio (dialogue of your actor) in 2 microphones (the second microphone is generally for a backup).

When you play the clip in Resolve, you’ll find that one of them (Left Channel, for example) might be better compared to the other.

Now you want the left channel audio to be filled in the right channel audio for a better sound.

Or…

Let’s say, your microphone recorded a dialogue in a stereo format with only one channel (with the other channel somehow empty). Now when you play this back in Resolve, you hear audio on only one side. But you want to hear audio from both the sides.

For the above cases…

Let’s see how to fill the second channel with the audio of the first.

  • Go to “Fairlight” page (you can do the same in “Edit” page as well).
  • Click on “Media Pool”.
  • Right click on your stereo audio.
  • Select “Clip Attributes…”.
  • Click on “Audio” tab.
  • Under “Source Channel”, go to the second dropdown and select “Embedded Source Channel 1” (which is the same as the first dropdown).

This will ensure the right channel audio is filled with the left channel audio and vice versa.

When you place this clip on the timeline, a single audio track with 2 channels will be created. If you are placing it on an already created track, then you will have to make sure the audio track is set to “Stereo“.


How to Split Stereo Audio into Dual Mono Tracks in DaVinci Resolve?

If you want to have separate audio tracks for each channel for a stereo clip (instead of a single track), you can do so by converting it to dual mono channels. This is how you split a stereo into dual mono:

  • Go to “Fairlight” page (you can do the same in “Edit” page as well).
  • Click on “Media Pool”.
  • Right click on your stereo audio.
  • Select “Clip Attributes…“.
  • Click on “Audio” tab.
  • Select “Mono” from the “Format“.
  • Set “2” for “Tracks“.
  • Click on “Add“.
  • For the first “Mono” track, select “Embedded Channel 1” or the one which has the desired audio.
  • For the second “Mono” track, select “Embedded Channel 2” or the one which has the desired audio.
  • Delete the “Stereo” track.
  • Click on “Ok“.

Now you’ll have dual mono tracks with different audio in channel 1 and 2.

When you drop this clip on to the timeline, 2 audio tracks will be created for each track. You can manipulate them separately.

You can follow the same procedure for multiple clips in your media pool, which require the same operation.


How to Batch Split Audio Channels in DaVinci Resolve?

  • Go to “Fairlight” page (or “Edit” page as well).
  • Click on “Media Pool”.
  • Select all of your required clips.
  • Right click on any audio clip.
  • Select “Clip Attributes…”.
  • Click on “Audio” tab.
  • Add 2 mono tracks with your desired audio under “Source Channel”. Click on “Ok”.
  • All the selected clips will be batch converted to dual mono clips.

How to Split Mono Audio into Stereo in DaVinci Resolve?

If for some reason, you recorded a dialogue as a mono track. But later you feel that you need to do a lot of post production works which might demand you to have a stereo clip with 2 audio channels.

So this is how you split a mono audio into a stereo in Resolve:

  • From your “Media Pool”, right click on your audio clip.
  • Select “Clip Attributes…” & click on “Audio” tab.
  • Select “Stereo” from the “Format”.
  • Under “Source Channel” for second channel, select “Embedded Audio Channel 1” or the only audio channel available (which is same as the first one).
  • Click on “Ok”.

Now when you place this clip on the timeline, make sure the receiving track is configured to “Stereo”.


How to Split 5.1 or 7.1 Audio into Individual Tracks in DaVinci Resolve?

5.1 has 6 audio channels and 7.1 has 8 audio channels.

When you drag and drop a 5.1 audio clip on an audio track, it will have 6 channels within the same track. It becomes difficult to work with different channels in the same track.

Here, you’d like to have separate tracks for each channel to change levels individually. Which means you need to split the 5.1 into 6 mono channels.

So, let’s see how to split a 5.1 or 7.1 audio into individual tracks:

  • Go to “Fairlight” page.
  • Click on “Media Pool”.
  • Right click on your stereo audio.
  • Select “Clip Attributes…”.
  • Click on “Audio” tab.
  • Select “Mono” from the “Format“.
  • Set “6” for “Tracks”.
  • Click on “Add“.
  • Under “Source Channel”, for all the 6 “Mono” tracks, select appropriate embedded channels.
  • Delete the “5.1” track.
  • Click on “Ok”.

Now when you drag and drop this clip on to the timeline, 6 new individual tracks will be added!


Till now we saw how to split audio when the clips were in “Media Pool”.

The next natural questions is:

How to split audio clips when they are already part of a timeline with all the edits in place?

  • You can right click on the clip (inside the timeline).
  • Select “Clip Attributes…”.
  • Change the format to whatever you want, like “Mono”.
  • Under “Source Channel”, select appropriate embedded channel.
  • Click on “Ok”.

You’ll note 2 things:

  1. “Add” is disabled – because since it is already part of an audio track in timeline, you can’t add new tracks. (This can be only done from “Media Pool”).
  2. Inside a stereo track, converting a stereo clip into a “Mono” will leave one channel empty.

Go ahead and convert the track to “Mono“. This is how you change the track type in DaVinci Resolve:

  • Right click on the track header (in this case A1)
  • Select “Change Track Type to” -> “Mono”.
  • After changing the track to mono, it will have only one channel.

How to Split a Stereo or 5.1 or 7.1 Audio into Individual Tracks After Finishing Editing in the Timeline?

After you’ve done all your audio editing and now a need arises to split the tracks.

You don’t want to go to “Media Pool” and split them and then again place them in the timeline because it’s very time-consuming.

You can split your audio into separate tracks with the help of “Convert to Linked Group” and then unlinking the groups.

This is how you do step by step:

  • Go to the “Fairlight” page and right click on the audio track header which has your stereo or 5.1 or 7.1 clip.
  • Select “Convert to Linked Group“.
  • This will split the channels into their dedicated tracks.
  • All the tracks are linked because when you click on one track header, all the tracks will be selected.
  • To unlink them, go to the menu “Fairlight” -> select “Link Groups”.
  • Click on the linked tracks ( a border is highlighted).
  • Click on “Unlink“.
  • All the tracks are now individual!

There is another work-around to it.

If you want to separate a stereo clip into 2 mono tracks, then add 2 empty audio tracks above or below the original one. Copy the original stereo into the 2 empty tracks (Select the clip and “Alt – drag” or “Opt – drag” to the empty tracks for copying).

Right click the copied track and select “Clip Attributes” to change the format to “Mono” with one embedded channel. Do the same to the other track and select the other embedded channel.

This way you’ll have 2 separate mono tracks with 1 original stereo (you can mute the original – to have it as a backup).


You may also be interested in the below posts:

How to Sync Audio / Clips in DaVinci Resolve (Quickly)?

Can DaVinci Resolve Import / Export Mp3? (+ Helpful Tips)

Does DaVinci Resolve Have Free Music? (Read This First!)

How to Reverse & Retime Audio in DaVinci Resolve (Must Read!)

How to Normalize & Balance Audio Levels in DaVinci Resolve? (Quick Tips)

All About Audio & Video Clips’ Link in DaVinci Resolve (Must Read!)

How to Make Voice Deeper in DaVinci Resolve? (For Beginners)

(Quickly) Remove Background Audio Noise in DaVinci Resolve

Fix Audio Recording Issues in DaVinci Resolve (Step-by-Step Guide)

Zoom Techniques in DaVinci Resolve (Each Under 2 Minutes!)

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