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NEWS • Oct. 08, 2001
Electric Rain Ships Swift 3D 2.0
3D Flash utility adds modeling features, RAViX II rendering

by David Nagel

Electric Rain has released version 2.0 of Swift 3D. The program was the first tool available that could open 3D files and export them to the Flash format as animations using a variety of shading techniques. The initial release of version 1.0 was for Windows only, but the company later followed it up with a Mac release. Now, with version 2.0, Macintosh and Windows versions have been released simultaneously.

The latest release offers a number of new modeling tools. Version 1.0 had few the ability to generate primitives but was primarily geared toward importing objects created in other programs. But version 2.0 adds the following tools:

  • Extrusion and Lathe Editors
  • PostScript font support
  • Targeted cameras and lights
  • Extended primitive selection
  • Automated timeline scaling
  • Non-uniform scaling of objects
  • Numerical positioning of objects
  • Ability to animate materials.

Version 2.0 also gains new rendering capabilities. It's powered by the RAViX II rendering engine, which Electric Rain touts as "the fastest and most versatile 3D to vector conversion available." It includes the ability to render in two-, four- and full-color cartoon fill modes. It also adds the following enhancements:

  • Shadow rendering for self, plane and object shadow casting
  • Specular highlights for cartoon fills and gradients
  • Line weight, color and detail settings for control over wireframe output
  • Up to 50 times faster rendering while handling 250,000+ polygon models
  • Previewing system to view and edit rendered scenes before writing a file.

Swift 3D 2.0 is available now for Macintosh and Windows for $159. For more information, visit http://www.erain.com or http://www.swift3d.com.

Dave Nagel is the producer of Creative Mac and Digital Media Designer; host of several World Wide User Groups, including Synthetik Studio Artist, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign, Adobe LiveMotion, Creative Mac and Digital Media Designer; and executive producer of the Digital Media Net family of publications. You can reach him at [email protected].

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