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  • “The future of Adobe After Effects” at IBC

     Dave Navarro updated 13 years ago 6 Members · 6 Posts
  • Barend Onneweer

    September 14, 2008 at 8:34 pm

    Hi all,

    Last friday I was at IBC for a couple of hours and I sat through a 30 minute presentation at the Adobe stand that was titled “The Future of Adobe After Effects” – anticipating the announcement that will be announced on september 23rd.

    I’m assuming since it was a pretty public thing that it’s okay for me to do a quick recap of what was shown.

    User Interface

    The general look of the interface is slightly cleaner and more space-efficient compared to CS3. Less rounded corners. Not as spartan as, say Nuke but a subtle improvement anyway.

    The entire UI seems searchable now. So you can type “Fill” into the Timeline Window searchbox and the Timeline Window will show all parameters for all layers containing the term “Fill”. If you’ve got a lot of layers and you’re smart about naming them this could also help find layers quickly.

    Navigating the 3D camera is now similar to a 3D app using a 3-button mouse.

    Underneath the label in the Composition Window there’s a “breadcrumbs” panel showing the comps that go into the current comp, and the comps that the current comp goes into. Sort of a mini-flowchart that helps navigate through a complex project. Nice touch.

    You can now enable separate keyframes and curves for X, Y, and Z position.


    Ever used 3D objects in Photoshop CS3? Me neither. But you can import an obj. into Photoshop, move it around, light it etc.

    They’ve reworked the raytracing renderer in Photoshop CS4, and a 3D layer with it’s lighting setup in a PSD imports live into AE CS4 – where you can then animate the 3D object, have it rotate, do camera moves etc. It uses the Photoshop raytracing engine for rendering. So it behaves somewhat similar to 3D Invigorator in the sense that it’s still essentially a 2D layer.

    A lot of work has been done for CS4 to integrate the Macromedia applications with Adobe’s own tools. The animation tools in Flash are much more consistent with the way AE works. For those who do a lot of work in AE for web output: you can now export a multilayered AE comp to a Flash project – and AE will create a .fxl file that contains all the separate rendered layers that import directly into Flash. In the past you’d have to export all the individual layers manually.

    Device Central has been improved. I don’t use it so I couldn’t really tell what the point was – but it’s now a lot easier to preview your work for specific devices and make adjustments for specific devices.


    Imagineer Systems Mocha AE comes bundled with AE CS4.

    Premiere Pro CS4

    I also saw a demo of the new Premiere. In short the big thing was meta-data. A really cool gimmick is the automated voice recognition that can convert any spoken word in the soundtrack to written text which is inserted into the meta-data. So if you’re looking for a shot where someone uses a specific word or phrase, you can now search the dialogue using the search tool… Freaked me out. Very cool if you do documentaries with huge amounts of footage and interviews.

    Remember, you read it first on the COW!


    Raamw3rk – digital storytelling and visual effects

  • Roland R. Kahlenberg

    September 15, 2008 at 1:30 am

    Heya Barend! Thanks for the news. I was invited to the beta but it’s now a 12GB+ download that includes all the other apps. That sucks!

    Looks like there are some nice things there for AE. It’s also kinda strange to see how frequently they’re updating AE these days.

    Photoshop seems to be getting better. How many of you are wishing that Photshop becomes the new AE? Haha, Just kidding! – the leader in customizable royalty-free animated backdrops

  • raffi lex

    September 15, 2008 at 8:32 am

    Great post, am very impressed with the new camera orbits, and the 3D cross funtionality between PS and AE, as now in CS3 you can only export 2D to after effects, so seems a little useless, not to mention that textures are not working correctly with kmz files exported from sketchup. I wish PS would support more 3D import formats like Catia and pro E.

  • Chris Ruckert

    September 17, 2008 at 4:07 am

    Mocha AE bundled?!

    hey, is there any link to the beta?

  • Tim Kolb

    September 17, 2008 at 12:27 pm

    Only certain betas are public.

    The CS4 suite is still a protected beta program.

    Director, Consultant
    Kolb Productions,

    CPO, Digieffects

  • Dave Navarro

    September 17, 2008 at 11:12 pm

    There was a rumour that it was 64-bit, is it true?

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