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The great news about version 8 keeps coming in!
After Effects guru, Eran Stern, has done a course on 3D Typography for the lynda.com training site. Eran compares six methods for creating 3D type inside of After Effects.
The six methods are:
The After Effects CUDA Ray Tracer
Zaxwerks Invigorator PRO
Video CoPilot Element 3D
Eran builds a hero frame in Photoshop, then shows you how to build that same frame and animate it inside of After Effects using each of the six methods. This unique course is a fantastic resource because Eran rebuilds the same project six times, comparing each method and discussing the advantages and limitations.
Eran also points out special features that are outside the scope of his project, but which show you how far beyond 3D text that you can go with each plug-in involved.
Here are some snippets of what Eran says about Zaxwerks 3D Invigorator PRO v8.
"I really love this effect. I think it is very intuitive and the new version is much faster and more responsive. It performed very well in our tests."
"Invigorator PRO is quite unique in terms of render options. It actually supports both Open GL as well as Ray Tracing. I think Zaxwerks has one of the most realistic results."
"The plug-in's 3D unified space is very useful in terms of shadows and shading, and we got excellent results. Note that we barely scratched the surface here. This tool can do much more."
"Invigorator PRO has so much to offer, it would be almost a crime not to give you at least a glimpse of the extra features. For example, you can import 3D objects, bend layers, also add reflections, refractions, complex textures and much more."
"This version of Invigorator PRO is without a doubt a game changer for 3D inside of AE."
Thank you Eran! You rock!
If you'd like to watch Eran's excellent course, (we highly recommend that you do!) please go to http://goo.gl/wnBm3R
If you don't have a lynda.com membership Eran has offered a free trial through this link: http://lynda.com/trial/EranStern
SPECIAL NOTE: Eran was given an advance copy of 3D Invigorator PRO v8. As we ready this software for release we noticed that some of the limitations he mentioned in his course are no longer limitations of the soon-to-be-shipping version.
For instance, Depth of Field will be in the shipping version so there's no need to fake it. Invigorator's Shadow Catcher feature enables you to cast shadows from Invigorator objects onto AE's 3D planes so you get an even better unified 3D look. Also, Invigorator PRO's renderer has been further optimized so the rendering times are even faster than he reports. In some cases much faster.
Go Zaxwerks rendering elves!