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After Effects w/o the Suite

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Stephen KendallAfter Effects w/o the Suite
by on Jan 21, 2012 at 10:15:20 pm

I am intrested in purchasing after effects cs5.5. However i read a post on a different site that implied if you dont have the complete suite, you will struggle in using the product by itself. Said it will keep asking you to use different programs w/in the suite. Does anyone know if this is true? Dont want to waste the $ if its not going to work. thx

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Scott RobertsRe: After Effects w/o the Suite
by on Jan 22, 2012 at 3:50:42 am

Of course it will work as a standalone product. It is not dependent on any other application. Example - may who use Final Cut Pro use After Effects to do VFX.

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Michael SzalapskiRe: After Effects w/o the Suite
by on Jan 23, 2012 at 3:23:24 pm

You don't need the suite to do AE work.
However, if you're not part of a team of people working on video, you will want some of the functionality of the other programs in the suite.
Let me explain:
AE is not video editing software. For most any project, you will want to do some editing. So you'll need some editing software. However, it doesn't need to be Premiere (although, I prefer it for working with AE,) it could be Final Cut, Vegas, Avid, etc.
AE is not audio editing software. For any project, you will want audio. Again, your audio program doesn't need to be Premiere or Audition.
AE does not do compression very well. You'd want to render uncompressed out of AE and use a different program to do your final deliverable. Again, the Adobe Media Encoder isn't necessary. I quite like Quicktime Pro for some compression and it's less than $40. Which software you choose would depend on your needs. (I usually just use the Adobe Media Encoder.)

I hope that makes sense and helps you with your decision.

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Stephen KendallRe: After Effects w/o the Suite
by on Jan 23, 2012 at 8:52:36 pm

ok thx for your help, that makes sense..

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Walter SoykaRe: After Effects w/o the Suite
by on Jan 23, 2012 at 3:47:57 pm

To add to Scott and Michael's points, there is one big feature that requires a suite and will not work with standalone product installs -- Dynamic Link. If you want to use Dynamic Link between Premiere Pro and AE, you must install either Production Premium or Master Collection.

Personally, I wouldn't be interested in running AE as a standalone product -- having Photoshop and Illustrator in addition to After Effects is very valuable for motion graphics work.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
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