at a Glance
Price: $1,499 Production Bundle/$649 standard
Platforms: Macintosh and Windows
Impression: Adobe After Effects is an absolutely
essential component in any effects and compositing workflow.
After Effects 5 takes this essential suite to the next
level with incredibly powerful new tools. It's a pleasure
to work with, and, of course, its features make it one
of the all-time great applications for video professionals,
whether you're new to After Effects or thinking of upgrading
from version 4.1, whether you use the standard edition
or the Production Bundle.
Benefits: AE 5 is a dramatic improvement over AE
4.1, which wasn't at all bad to start with. The new
3D compositing, parenting and expressions features make
it a truly valuable tool for the most complex work.
For the Production Bundle, the new effects alone justify
the $800 difference in price from the standard edition,
but you get a whole host of other advanced features
included in the deal: keying tools, time displacement,
rendering and particle simulation tools, motion tools
and, of course, 16-bit per channel color.
Render times can be excruciatingly long, but we hope
this will be rectified with the next release of the
ICE accelerator board for AE. The Advanced Renderer
is still in beta. And the Render Engine (for network
rendering) supports only image sequences.
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JULY 11, 2001
After Effects 5 Production Bundle
[Page 6 of 8]
The layer turned into a 3D layer and
with a text layer (also 3D).
can also specify material properties that define how a light affects
the surface of a layer, as well as how layers interact with lights.
You can define and animate Ambient, Diffusion, Specular and Shininess
The layer with depth of field
the camera side, you can create multiple cameras, each with their
own individual properties, such as a wide-angle 15 mm preset or
a 200 mm lens. In addition to standard preset lenses, you can create
and save custom camera presets. The cameras themselves can be animated,
as well as their properties, and you can cut to different cameras
at any time.
Depth of field affects all of
the layers in a camera's view so
that any content outside the primary focus area is blurred.
TO PAGE [ 1, 2,
5, 6, 7,
a message in the Creative Mac World
Wide User Group.
Dave Nagel is
the producer of Creative
Mac and Digital
Media Designer; host of several World Wide User Groups, including Synthetik
Studio Artist, Adobe
Mac and Digital
Media Designer; and executive producer of
Media Net family of publications.