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Todd Kopriva

After Effects CS4

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There are significant upgrades to the multi-processing system (Todd? Specicifc link? :) ), so that you can tweak memory/CPU usage for max. performance or keep using other applications. You can now set how many processors and how much RAM (up to 4 GB per processor/core) you want to use.

 

Memory & Multiprocessing preferences

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Thank the maker - the cartoon effect at last. Where's me credit card?

 

Here's my take:

 

The Cartoon effect was written using the same foundational technology that underlies Pixel Bender.

 

So, rather than thinking about the time spent on the Cartoon effect as being just spent on the Cartoon effect, think of it as time spent by our best people on implementing, testing, and improving a platform on which all sorts of fast and flexible effects are being built. Effects that can be shared (now) with Flash and (soon) with Photoshop and (later) with Premiere Pro.

 

If you want After Effects to use your GPU effectively and provide an easy way for users to create cross-application effects, then you should be happy that time was spent on the Cartoon effect.

 

(P.S.: Mostly you should check out the Labs site for Pixel Bender stuff, but there is a little bit of information in the "Plug-ins" section of After Effects CS4 Help on the Web.)

Edited by Todd Kopriva

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When CS3 came out, there was also a very bad reaction to the tools collectively known as "Puppet".

One user was particularly harsh. And then just a few days ago, he said he had seen it in use for very demanding (and cool) projects and it worked very well. Very honest on his part.

So, just ignore the name. Think of it as something that could make a Livetrace-like thing, but is mostly an example of the GPU work that's taking place at Adobe (PS CS4 is full of good use of GPU, though not directly related to this)

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So, just ignore the name. Think of it as something that could make a Livetrace-like thing, but is mostly an example of the GPU work that's taking place at Adobe...

 

The internal name (before marketing got hold of it) was "video abstraction effect". It's useful for doing subtle, non-cartoony things, too.

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The internal name (before marketing got hold of it) was "video abstraction effect". It's useful for doing subtle, non-cartoony things, too.

 

And can you post the internal/research name for Puppet too?

That would give the halo of seriousness it should have had.

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You know, I get the feeling that AE is the "poor bastard child" of the Adobe product line. Features come first to their other products before making an appearance in AE and even then, it's a kludge.

 

The ability to move around between apps easier and some of the new features in PS, AI and AF make it worth upgrading my suite, but almost nothing in AE moves me.

 

By years end, Adobe needs to announce they are doing a major overhaul, including full 64-bit support and MAJOR improvements to AE in CS5 and that it's two to four years away to set proper expectations. Otherwise, it's time to start taking a serious look at some of the competitors who seem to move much more quickly than Adobe (I guess that happens when you get as big as Adobe).

 

I've already posted this on the Adobe forums in the wishlist, but Adobe needs to build (or buy) a full blown raytrace renderer common to all their apps as good or better than anything on the market and give AE the ability to work with 3D objects as true 3D objects (not 2D renders of 3D objects). We need the ability to warp layers in 3D, extrude everything, and use 3D lights and cameras on everything. I don't expect to be able to model stuff in AE, but I would like to move, rotate, bend and light 3D objects.

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I don't think that AE is the bastard child. I think Adobe, like any software company, has to schedule their development cycle. The fact of the matter is, AE makes a lot of us good money. Sure, there are things I would like to see (Nodal-based approach, stronger 3D integration, et more) but, I cannot deny that it does work better than any other similar tool in it's area.

 

I have used AE since Cosa days and I am still convinced Adobe has taken AE and done lots of good things with it. More will come as well I am sure. Now, this doesn't mean I am going to jump on this particular upgrade but, I will continue to use CS3 and my collection of fabulous plugins I have collected.

 

-gl

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I agree with the general tone of _gl's post.

 

Now, it's easy to demonstrate that many features are directly based on input from mograph members (and others, of course). From Separate XYZ to 3 button camera navigation. Other features are new concepts to address problems mentioned here (like diving through "liquid" animation hierarchies like shape groups or text animators/selectors, both examples of highly nested and contextual parametric stuff).

 

It's reasonable to say that, in the same way, that there were *other* features that were taken as seriously as the ones mentioned above. But perhaps making them with high quality standards -so they are truly usable in production work instead of a marketing trick- may take more time.

Think about it: the poll in which the AE team asked you guys what you want for the future of AE was about a year ago.

 

Meanwhile, there's plenty of super useful stuff in CS4. I couldn't go back to CS3. Not for any spectacularly shiny thing - it's more of a Gestalt thing :)

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If you want After Effects to use your GPU effectively and provide an easy way for users to create cross-application effects, then you should be happy that time was spent on the Cartoon effect.

 

Thanks for the info Todd, and I would be ecstatic the cartoon filter is full of this excellent technology but . . .

 

. . . as I'm a UK punter, I'm wondering why I'm paying double what US designers are for all these essential features though?

Edited by zook

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well actually... if you consider the value of the US dollar, your paying about triple :)

 

Thanks Ace :blink:

 

I know it's no banging on at Todd about the pricing, who's doing a fine job explaining the ins and outs of the upgrade (appreciated) but the Adobe Customer Service people don't ever reply to emails and the poor chap on the end of the phone is as helpless as the rest of us. Never mind, that's capitalism for you.

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The good news is that you can invert the direction - Stu gets into the details in this post:

http://prolost.blogspot.com/2008/09/ae-cs4...-backwards.html

 

Ah. I was't being sardonic or bitchy. I think that this is a great new workflow feature, something I have been wanting. (like the "up directory" button they added in cs3) I find it really funny that Stu is bitching about making AE more like a nodal compositor ("GIVE ME NODES!") while on this board, we are super dying to get more 3d ("More like c4d!") I think Adobe is in between a rock and a hard place... Making the app like either of those ideas would change the workflow dramatically and isolate a whole group of customers. I would argue that AE definitely gets used more for timing based design and animation (you know... Motion graphics, and stuff...) then high end film compositing where the source is the same length.

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Are all Mac people working on intels now? Or is anyone else having heart palpitations over the layout in the thousands of dollars for a software upgrade?

 

I would think so. PPC is like a commodore 64 now (and probably worth the same). I gave one of our G5 towers the other day to the intern because it's not even worth the shipping costs to ebay it.

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So easy to be generous when your company buys your hardware.

 

Either way it's still my money. It can either go in my account or in my business. So there's nothing different about it what-so-ever.

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