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Alternatives for AE addicts?

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Chris Jacek
Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 7, 2013 at 3:41:46 pm

I'd like to hear input from long-time After Effects users/lovers who have experience with other effects software. Anything out there that you believe to be in the same ballpark as AE? Or at least with the potential to get there in the not-too-distant future? Since AE is a cross-platform product, it would be nice to compare "apples to apples" so to speak, and keep the Motion love out of this discussion.

Professor, Producer, Editor
and former Apple Employee


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Chris Pettit
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 7, 2013 at 3:54:12 pm

Here's a thread from a few days after the announcement:

http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/378/416#644

Might be helpful. Lot's of discussion re Motion, but other things too. IMO, there is no truly apples to apples alternative

Yet.


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Jim Hines
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 7, 2013 at 4:10:26 pm

I've been testing this and that and I believe "Nuke" is the logical alternative to After Effects for main stream "Hollwood" "professionals".

Hit Film and Motion - will work just fine for many situations that are still professional but maybe on a so-called "lower end".

Blender is amazing - simply amazing.


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Rainer Schubert
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 7, 2013 at 8:52:16 pm

Blender is really going on to be real alternative. I use more and more often.
I agree.
I am interested in Nuke also, but never had it on my hands.
If I find the time in near future, I will test that also.
Heard a lot good voices about it.


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walter biscardi
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 7, 2013 at 10:30:51 pm

Smoke 2013 is an excellent replacement, just need to convert your workflow over to Node based. Check out the Autodesk learning channel on YouTube for tons of in-depth walkthroughs and tutorials on the product. Mac only though if that matters.

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author, Chef.
HD Post and Production
Biscardi Creative Media

Foul Water Fiery Serpent, an original documentary featuring Sigourney Weave...
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Walter Soyka
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 7, 2013 at 11:38:07 pm

[Chris Jacek] "'d like to hear input from long-time After Effects users/lovers who have experience with other effects software. Anything out there that you believe to be in the same ballpark as AE? Or at least with the potential to get there in the not-too-distant future?"

Ae is used for so many different kinds of work, this is a difficult question to answer. Ae is flexible enough that you can use it for design, motion graphics, effects, compositing, coloring and finishing. I think that one of Ae's biggest strengths is that flexibility.

The other posters here have mentioned a whole stack of other apps, from Motion, Blender and Hit Film to Smoke and NUKE. Depending on your needs, other options might include Eyeon Fusion, Boris RED, and Avid DS.

While there's a degree of overlap among these applications, they all have unique benefits, too, and I'd find it hard to call any one of them a replacement for another. I use both Ae and Smoke, and I'm starting with a bit of NUKE as well, but I consider them more as complements than replacements.

What sort of work do you use After Effects for?

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Gustavo Bermudas
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 12:38:16 am

Smoke for Mac, I might be wring though, doesn't seem to do any particle generator, unless you use Sapphire plugins. Flame it seems it can.
I wish Autodesk realizes that they have the golden opportunity to release Flame for Mac (with Lustre), at 21st Century prices, you would forget there's a thing called Creative Cloud.


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Todd Kopriva
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 5:43:22 am

As Walter suggests, it's not quite right to think of Nuke as an After Effects replacement. The two programs have rather different roles, and they are good complements for one another.

Here's a post from Steve Forde, After Effects product manager on how Nuke and After Effects relate:
http://blogs.adobe.com/aftereffects/2012/12/comments-on-top-feature-request...

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Todd Kopriva, Adobe Systems Incorporated
After Effects quality engineering
After Effects team blog
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


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Gustavo Bermudas
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 6:24:38 am

I think the questions to ask are:

1. Can Nuke do everything AE does?

2. Of those things that Nuke cannot do, are they features existing only in the AE CC version?

3. How important those features are, is there a workaround in Nuke, or using another software that's not AE?

4. Can AE do everything Nuke can do?

5. How big is the difference between points 1 and 4?


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Lance Bachelder
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 6:43:31 am

Well NUKE is over $4,000 US so it better do something AE doesn't?

Cracks me up all the CC naysayers that are looking for alternatives and will look at a program with a cost that would pay for over 6 years of CC!

Lance Bachelder
Writer, Editor, Director
Downtown Long Beach, California
http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1680680/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1


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Rainer Schubert
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 12:43:28 pm

My main concern with CashCow (CC) isn´t the price.
Ever paid good money for good solutions/software (and would have paid double or triple the price of my MCs, which is more than 4500$ here in EU).
All the other lacks are:
Losing freedom of choice, lifelong dependency, losing sw after quitting, the "take all or nothing" philosophy...
I even don´t like this kind of business model.
I want to buy and have a foreseeable future.
I don´t want others to follow.
I don´t want to follow the hardware necessities Adobe can dictate in the future.
You already wrote somewhere in this blog, that it doesn´t matter for you to lose done/old projects.
For me it´s the base of my business to have full, editable access to my archive.
And I think there are a lot others within the same situation.


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Shawn Miller
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 3:15:00 pm

[Lance Bachelder] "Well NUKE is over $4,000 US so it better do something AE doesn't?

Cracks me up all the CC naysayers that are looking for alternatives and will look at a program with a cost that would pay for over 6 years of CC!"


There's also the annual maintenance agreement, which, I believe is $1000.00 per year...

Shawn



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Walter Soyka
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 5:35:06 pm

[Lance Bachelder] "Well NUKE is over $4,000 US so it better do something AE doesn't? Cracks me up all the CC naysayers that are looking for alternatives and will look at a program with a cost that would pay for over 6 years of CC!"

And the really good stuff is in NUKE X -- lens distortion correction tools, FURNACECORE, GPU acceleration, 3D camera tracking, 3D particles, point cloud generation...

That's a touch over $8,000 (13 years and 4 months of CC), and you could get two CreativeCloud subscriptions for the cost of the annual maintenance fee.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Aindreas Gallagher
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 9, 2013 at 12:37:32 am

[Walter Soyka] "And the really good stuff is in NUKE X -- lens distortion correction tools, FURNACECORE, GPU acceleration, 3D camera tracking, 3D particles, point cloud generation...

That's a touch over $8,000 (13 years and 4 months of CC), and you could get two CreativeCloud subscriptions for the cost of the annual maintenance fee."


granted the little people are reaching -

but to be explicitly honest: you sound like someone who can afford a lot of these bills walter. you sound like an ideal CC monthly rental customer.

I almost doubt it touches you, and on many, many good months it would never touch me. I think I don't earn like you, but I earn pretty good.

there are months where I don't earn so well - I do pretty good work, but the idea where on some months I amn't tossing a bill for a few weeks?

there are those months. I think you are possibly generating on a business scale that is different.
I find I also think that adobe has set its sights on a certain market, and that the rest of us, with certain habitual fears, can eat cake.

Fine that i didn't like apple making an intellectual pancake out of editing, but watching adobe kneecap charities, education, later point practitioners, and those slightly fearful of a never ending bill that turns off the actual lights that let them keep the lights on...

It's good times.

That said: I get that you like adobe software. I do too.

But It is becoming incredibly hard to like the people that make it.

http://vimeo.com/user1590967/videos http://www.ogallchoir.net promo producer/editor.grading/motion graphics


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Walter Soyka
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 9, 2013 at 2:56:21 pm

Aindreas, I'm probably veering off-topic now, but here goes anyway. I promise I'll ask an on-topic question at the end.

On price, this thread is kind of all over the place. We've got serious discussion of Blender (free) all the way up to Flame (nearly $100,000, including hardware, excluding maintenance).

Lance's observation, and my point in discussing NUKE X pricing, was just that some of the so-called replacement options cost an awful lot more money than years of subscription. When you include on-going maintenance fees, it costs more than indefinite subscription. Even if you eventually drop your maintenance on the alternate product, your net lifetime cost may well still be higher than sticking with CC until death do you part, all for just one application.

Put another way, I could fund a CC subscription for myself and one lucky descendant per generation to my great-great-great-grandkids until the year 2179 for what I'd pay upfront for a Flame 20AE with no maintenance.


[Aindreas Gallagher] "but to be explicitly honest: you sound like someone who can afford a lot of these bills walter. you sound like an ideal CC monthly rental customer. I almost doubt it touches you, and on many, many good months it would never touch me."

Everybody has bad months, but ironically, I think it's people like you and me who are already established and earning income at this who can better afford perpetually-licensed tools.

I don't know about you, but when I started out, I maxed out credit cards buying computers and storage and monitors and decks and thousands and thousands of dollars of software. $50/mo would have looked pretty good to me then, instead of spending thousands of dollars that I didn't have upfront.


[Aindreas Gallagher] "Fine that i didn't like apple making an intellectual pancake out of editing, but watching adobe kneecap charities, education, later point practitioners, and those slightly fearful of a never ending bill that turns off the actual lights that let them keep the lights on..."

I think CC is quite good enough for me now as-is, and I think emotions aside, CC would be a very practical business choice for a lot of us here. That said, one of my favorite quotes of all time is from Thomas Edison: "There is always a better way."


Back on topic:

I've seen a couple people mention Blender, and that sidesteps this entire sub-discussion on price and licensing, as it is free and open-source.

I think it's pretty cool to have a compositor built into the 3D rendering pipeline as Blender's is, but is anyone here actually using Blender for motion graphics or stand-alone compositing?

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Lance Bachelder
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 9, 2013 at 4:15:19 pm

I agree with Walter here, it's actually easier for me to make low monthly payments than to spend approx. $600 outright every year for an upgrade. Adobe went pretty fast from CS5 to 5.5 to 6 and if you didn't jump on the usual NAB announcement upgrade deal right away or upgraded every few years like me you paid a big penalty - my price to buy CS6 upgrade was gonna be over $900 which is why I jumped on the $29 monthly special last summer.

My monthly bill goes to $49 next month which kinda sucks but since Premiere Pro CC is actually a GREAT NLE and one I plan on using regularly I'm totally cool with it. I'd actually pay the $49 month just for Premiere, all the other apps I use to make a living like Photoshop, Illustrator and AE are a bonus.

Lance Bachelder
Writer, Editor, Director
Downtown Long Beach, California
http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1680680/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1


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Jim Hines
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 9, 2013 at 4:33:41 pm

Blender has a thick outer shell regarding it's learning curve. That shell in recent updates has become much, much thinner. Especially with cycles rendering as it applies to the node editor, compositing, texturing and more. Once you get past the outer shell - getting some actual work done inside of it is much, much smoother.

But to more precisely answer your query - Blender + After Effects CS6 + Element 3D is a workflow quantum leap upgrade.

If I were an educator - particularly public school - I would be lobbying strongly for a Blender curriculum. Everything about editing/motion graphics/compositing/vfx/3d modeling - can be taught with that one "free" program. It's the real deal.

Rock on!


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Chris Pettit
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 10, 2013 at 12:26:35 am

I keep hearing this, I'm going to have to spend some time studying blender, thanks for the post


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Todd Kopriva
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 9, 2013 at 11:52:51 pm

> they are raping education and charities, they are acting like a pretty scummy bunch of guys.


That crosses the line.

I am glad that people on this forum are having a debate about various software offerings. That's good for everyone, including us.

But to use such vile language is completely inappropriate.

I will no longer participate in this forum as long as such personal and disgusting insults are allowed to stand here.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Todd Kopriva, Adobe Systems Incorporated
After Effects quality engineering
After Effects team blog
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


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Gustavo Bermudas
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 6:30:09 pm

[Lance Bachelder] "Well NUKE is over $4,000 US so it better do something AE doesn't?"

Price is not an indication of anything these days, DaVinci Resolve used to be $250000 and now it's free, and it can do way more than most color grading softwares.

Nuke at $4000 can do more things in composting than Avid DS as well


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Walter Soyka
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 1:21:09 pm

[Gustavo Bermudas] "I wish Autodesk realizes that they have the golden opportunity to release Flame for Mac (with Lustre), at 21st Century prices, you would forget there's a thing called Creative Cloud."

I use Smoke, but I don't think Flame at any price could replace CC. They solve different problems.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Gustavo Bermudas
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 6:43:40 pm

[Walter Soyka] "I use Smoke, but I don't think Flame at any price could replace CC. They solve different problems."

We're talking in a compositing context, obviously if you need to do web design and publishing is a different deal.

I use Flame Premium sometimes, when I'm allowed, and compared to Smoke for Mac Flame feels complete, honestly you're totally contained in that environment, no need to go to another application, unless you need to generate some graphics in Photoshop and Illustrator, but most of the time with CS3 you're more than fine, so I don't think there's a need for CC.

Smoke for Mac is great but it feels there's a lot of stuff missing compared to Flame. The problem is Flame at $70000 (no hardware), it's starting to become obsolete in the VFX industry, since everybody is using Nuke, I got to talk with many top compositors that used to work in the now bankrupt LA VFX houses, and even though they used propriety software, on their own they all swear by Nuke, and most prefer Nuke than the proprietary ones.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 8:06:09 pm

[Gustavo Bermudas] "I use Flame Premium sometimes, when I'm allowed, and compared to Smoke for Mac Flame feels complete"

No doubt. A lot of my Smoke feature requests are Flame hand-me-downs: 3D tracker, projection, IBL, Action GMasks, particles...

Like you, I'd really want a software-only Flame on Windows or Mac at the right price, but that's a topic for a separate thread!


[Gustavo Bermudas] "honestly you're totally contained in that environment, no need to go to another application, unless you need to generate some graphics in Photoshop and Illustrator, but most of the time with CS3 you're more than fine, so I don't think there's a need for CC."

Flame sessions are often backed up by other departments generating assets: rendered assets coming from the CG department, images from graphics, roto from NUKE, audio from the sound department...

CC provides a comprehensive toolset for all those disciplines.


[Gustavo Bermudas] "It's hard to replace because we're so used to it, and sometimes we don't have the time to learn the new workflow, but if you're forced to work without it you'll find a way not to need it."

My point is that Ae has some great features that make me NOT WANT to replace it. I keep using Ae because it is simply the best at a lot of the things that keep my clients happy.

You could give me a five- or six-figure Flame system for free, but if I were animating text or vector graphics, or integrating with C4D, or building animation with expressions, or extending the application with scripting, or working on a custom large-format raster, I'd still do it on Ae.

Horses for courses...

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Gustavo Bermudas
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 8:24:34 pm

[Walter Soyka] "My point is that Ae has some great features that make me NOT WANT to replace it. I keep using Ae because it is simply the best at a lot of the things that keep my clients happy."

That's great!

I though we're having a debate on AE alternatives, not a post of convincing anyone on stop using it.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 8:38:27 pm

[Gustavo Bermudas] "I though we're having a debate on AE alternatives, not a post of convincing anyone on stop using it."

Touche!

The theme of my 87 posts in this thread is that Ae is different things to different people, probably moreso than the other apps we're discussing here, and that some context around how someone looking to replace Ae uses Ae now would be important to the discussion.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Aindreas Gallagher
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 10:09:58 pm

[Walter Soyka] "some context around how someone looking to replace Ae uses Ae now would be important to the discussion."

sure, but the interesting point - no more than with PS - is whether different segments of what was the AE market - large, slightly slow, swiss army tool with a million little knives, magnifying glasses, old code - decide to hive off to different tools to meet their own particular segment needs.

I find it a stronger argument with PS - the new painting, vector tools appearing, then with Ae - but lets see what the market provides us over the coming years.

As to say - adobe may have unleashed a wide incarnation of the law of unintended consequences here.

you'd think they almost believe there is no one who can successfully steal their lunch - a meal they are trying to force feed millions - to mix metaphors a little.

but the idea that adobe aren't generating unforeseen new entrants for their core software competence, and new visibility for those entrants, by their actions lately - there's no way that's not happening as we speak.

that's really healthy. I simply can't wait to see more of it.

http://vimeo.com/user1590967/videos http://www.ogallchoir.net promo producer/editor.grading/motion graphics


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Sandeep Sajeev
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 9, 2013 at 6:18:56 am

Walter,

A Projection Node that can be loaded into Action is available on the Area Smoke Discussion Forum. This is a Flame Projector that has been exported out - giving Smoke the ability to perform Camera Projection.

PM me if you can't find it and I'll send it across.

Best,
Sandeep.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 9, 2013 at 3:04:28 pm

[Sandeep Sajeev] "A Projection Node that can be loaded into Action is available on the Area Smoke Discussion Forum. This is a Flame Projector that has been exported out - giving Smoke the ability to perform Camera Projection."

Thanks!

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Aindreas Gallagher
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 12:21:39 pm

motion is realistic. You can go a pretty long way in motion, and its hard to describe how much faster than AE it is.

AE is just an archaically slow piece of software these days - check out Oliver Peters and Simon Ubsdells tests - its jaw dropping.

Motion for me - I'm ignoring the whole windows thing. Primarily because of windows.

If this is in an educational scenario - Motion on as many seats as you like to cover about 70-80% of AE mograph, post and fast turnaround. the techniques they develop in motion should be pretty broadly applicable relating to camera handling, timing, keyframing, effective greenscreen work, particles, also its trivial for a facility to have motion on board. It represents an extremely cost effective package to develop core post production skills. Also It might actually start to get some industry play in the next few years. And then a smoke license or two to cover pretty much everything else you can think of?
I'd say you might have to time roster smoke, because if they have sense, the students will be fighting each other to get time on it.

That should more or less get you out of CC pretty handily?

http://vimeo.com/user1590967/videos http://www.ogallchoir.net promo producer/editor.grading/motion graphics


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Jim Hines
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 3:27:13 pm

Motion is a great program - and - wait for it - $50 - whaaaat? - You heard right - $50 dolla - too bad it's Mac only. Gawd I disdain Apple lol. Course I could spend a couple grand for a Mac station and it would be justified by everything Motion can do for $50. Great application.

Rock on!


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Shawn Miller
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 3:31:13 pm

[Aindreas Gallagher] "AE is just an archaically slow piece of software these days - check out Oliver Peters and Simon Ubsdells tests - its jaw dropping."

You may not have seen Stephen Smith's reply to the results of that test on the Motion forum:

http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/170/873182

"[Stephen Smith] Here is the problem with his test. It is an Apples to Orange test due to the card. ATI 5870 is optimized for Motion.

That card is not optimized for After Effects. Here is the list: http://helpx.adobe.com/x-productkb/policy-pricing/system-requirements-effec.....

I used both After Effects and Motion. And the card makes a big difference. After Effects was slow for me when I did most of my work in Motion. After FCPX I switch to a Premiere and AE workflow. A matter of fact, Premiere's real time playback was sluggish at best. When I switched over to a NVIDIA Quadro 4000 card I saw dramatic improvement in playback in AE and Premiere. Now when I jump back into Motion for a legacy project to make changes I can tell that it is sluggish. Some crazy big projects won't even render and I have to take it into a different edit bay that has a card Motion likes.

It is not about the program but what the artist can do with the program."

Shawn



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Rainer Schubert
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 12:45:58 pm

Anyone here who has experience in EDIUS?
As I haven´t heard much about it, I would be interested to know more about...
http://www.grassvalley.com/products/nlesoftware
http://www.grassvalley.com/news/press/releases/view/1812-grass-valley-relea...


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Herb Sevush
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 3:01:04 pm

Frank Gothmann, who posts on the FCPX debate forum as well as a bunch of others, is an Edius proponent.

http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/335/53736

For me, I just want a timeline that flies, no delays, no stuttering, great trim tools, no beachballs or waiting cursors. It has to go through the footage like butter, no matter what the source codec, size, framerate, filter applied. Especially with IO since I just want and need to watch whatever I do (also with AE) on a broadcast monitor. And when I go at 32x speed to fly through material (which Edius can do) I also want as little latency on my external monitor as possible. The only NLEs that do all that is Edius and, at least with native media, Final Cut Classic Media Composer. FCPX and Premiere CS6 are terrible in that respect.

http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/335/53696

Edius cuts Prores, DnxHd or any other QT flavour like butter. Actually, it handles pretty much anything and doesn't bog down. And yes, it has AAF in and out. It also imports FCP 7 xml.

http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/335/52276

I'd also suggest to look into Edius if you have the time and regularly edit on windows (or play with the idea of maybe editing under windows), It is an extremely versatile and powerful NLE that can make your life a lot, lot easier and it is a textbook exampe of how stable and reliable windows software can be, no matter what your hardware environment is. If you're coming from FCP7, you should be up and running within a day or two, they're very, very similar in approach.

Herb Sevush
Zebra Productions
---------------------------
nothin' attached to nothin'
"Deciding the spine is the process of editing" F. Bieberkopf


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Rainer Schubert
Re: Alternatives for AE addicts?
on Jul 8, 2013 at 5:21:32 pm

Tx a lot...


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Jim Hines
Smoke vs NUKE
on Jul 8, 2013 at 2:43:48 pm

Smoke is a spectacular piece of software. Why Autodesk doesn't port their software to a Windows environment is beyond me. I would choose Smoke as a far more comprehensive alternative to AE. [Timeline editing, motion graphics, 2 examples] NUKE - although very powerful, great features - is more of a compositing alternative - I should have clarified that in my original response - the fact that it is cross platform makes it a more logical substitute for AE in that regard. IMO

Rock on!


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Walter Soyka
Re: Smoke vs NUKE
on Jul 8, 2013 at 5:29:58 pm

[Jim Hines] "I would choose Smoke as a far more comprehensive alternative to AE. [Timeline editing, motion graphics, 2 examples]"

Speaking generally, if you're looking at motion graphics, I'd have to say that Ae is far more comprehensive than Smoke. If you're looking at editorial plus effects, then certainly Smoke is more comprehensive than Ae -- but Pr/Ae is a pretty potent combination and may or may not be a better solution, depending on your needs.

I love Smoke. It's a nicely-designed application with some really good tools. The ConnectFX workflow is elegant. The UI is built for speed and it's very comfortable to work in.

However, like every other application mentioned in this thread, Smoke has weaknesses and idiosyncrasies that make it a poor choice for some kinds of work that another app may be better at. Please note that I think this is true of Ae, too -- which is why I'm also using Smoke and NUKE in the first place!

Smoke may be a good alternative for some uses of Ae, but not all. I've used Ae in some capacity on every Smoke project I've done. Others I know supplement Smoke with NUKE.

I'd like to see this conversation get more specific, because I think Ae is pretty hard to replace as an all-around motion package, and I think that Smoke and Ae are different enough that pushing Smoke as a general Ae replacement does neither Smoke nor Ae justice.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
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Gustavo Bermudas
Re: Smoke vs NUKE
on Jul 8, 2013 at 7:03:59 pm

[Walter Soyka] "'d like to see this conversation get more specific, because I think Ae is pretty hard to replace as an all-around motion package, and I think that Smoke and Ae are different enough that pushing Smoke as a general Ae replacement does neither Smoke nor Ae justice."

It's hard to replace because we're so used to it, and sometimes we don't have the time to learn the new workflow, but if you're forced to work without it you'll find a way not to need it.


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Jim Hines
Re: Smoke vs NUKE
on Jul 8, 2013 at 7:27:36 pm

When I say Smoke is a more comprehensive alternative to AE I mean vis a vis NUKE.

Truth be told there is currently no "better" alternative to AE that I'm aware of. Ease of use, cost to implement, platform agnostic - It is best of breed - with Motion coming in second and Hit Film lagging behind but headed in the right direction.

Dollar for dollar, pound for pound CS6 - 64bit - Mercury Playback Production Premium Suite is the best "post house in a box" solution I've had the pleasure to work on.

But I'm also not a big Hollywood blockbuster VFX post house either. I'm speaking strictly for my needs. Which are, relative to the big boys, minimal.


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Walter Soyka
Re: Smoke vs NUKE
on Jul 8, 2013 at 8:14:51 pm

[Jim Hines] "When I say Smoke is a more comprehensive alternative to AE I mean vis a vis NUKE."

Jim, I do apologize for my poor reading comprehension.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
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