Friday, 2 May 2014

SYNAPSE CIRCUIT CRAZYTALK ANIMATOR 2 PIPELINE EDITION REVIEW

Above: A demo of a 3D camera making animations look simply amazing!
SYNAPSE CIRCUIT
ANIMATION SPECIAL PART ONE: REALLUSION CRAZYTALK ANIMATOR 2 PIPELINE EDITION
PRICE: $299.95. Upgrade from $179.97.

Good afternoon, Synapse Circuit Readers. How are you today? I hope that all is well with you! As promised here’s the review of Reallusion’s phenomenal CrazyTalk Animator 2 Pipeline edition.

INTRODUCTION
CrazyTalk Animator 2 (Pipeline Edition) has evolved over the years from animating heads, to full bodied characters and to an amazing 2D animation software that can be used by just about anybody with the desire to create animations for presentations, web media, school projects and budding animators looking for a cost effective way to get started.

When I saw the preview in February of the latest incarnation I was blown away! I know, I know... The words “blown away” is very much a cliché but when you see what this fantastic program can do you too will be blown away and moved to purchase this great software! As always, the review could stop here as I have given away the ending but if you have been reading my previous reviews of CrazyTalk then you will understand that the only conclusion is...



ANIMATION STUDIO
Essentially that’s what CrazyTalk Animator 2 is; a complete animation studio that has a fantastic interface that makes it very easy to get started. The main interface is divided into: Project; Actor; Animation; Scene and SFX.

The simplest way to start is by dragging one of the pre-made characters (Actor) onto the stage; from there you can drag ‘n’ drop a predefined animation onto the actor and see the character animate before your very eyes! What’s more you can not only use 2D but 3D animations too!



Once you have added an animation to your actor you can then choose to add a scene or background. Again, it’s simple matter of dragging and dropping. Through expanding the timeline you can adjust the timings of the animation. If you have ever used Adobe Flash then you will find that CrazyTalk Animator 2 is a chinch!


3D
Because of the new 3D aspect you can animate from any angle! This is a remarkable attribute to the animations that you create!

Yes, I think that at some point I will get around to creating an animated series along the lines of the Simpson’s, Futurama, South Park, etc. Yes, I love watching animated series! I am a big Futurama fan and I am fascinated with how it is done; the thing with Futurama is that it is a little hit and miss and I often find myself wondering if I can do better. I might quit writing about tech and start my own animation company! Lol!

Anyhoo... ...your animations can now look like the ones you see on TV!

With the 3D view tool you can see an overview from different angles so that you can place actors and props with precision. Naturally, you can change the angle of the actors to suit.

ACTORS GENERATION 1 & 2
There are two types of actors in CTA2: G1 and G2. G1 is the older 2D actor and G2 is the 3D; you have to bear in mind that when you create your own heads for the G2 model is that you need the heads in different angles in order to simulate 3D.

Yes, of course, you can create your own characters using the Character Composer which is more effective than using a picture.

SCENES
What’s great about the scenes is that the props in them can also be animated! The actors can interact with the props for a convincing animation.

You can bring in a still or video background but, as you’d expect, you can’t get the actor or actors to move around inside like a 3D based scene.

In addition to props you can drop in video clips on a prop TV screen – it’s awesome! The mind boggles as to what you can do with this remarkable software.

THE PIPELINE
You’re probably wondering what the “Pipeline Edition” means... Righty ho! In a nutshell the Pipeline Edition hosts great features that will be of use to the professional. Did you know that CrazyTalk Animator along with iClone is used all over the world by television program producers? Absolutely! What the Pipeline Edition does is to allow you to import motions from iClone and other 3D software that you can then drag ‘n’ drop onto the actors, create your own characters, and customize characters from one template and compatibility with Flash! That’s not all! You can render the animation in different styles such as black & white, neon, retro, line and a few others!

CONCLUSION
HEAD BLOWN!!! Reallusion’s CrazyTalk Animator 2 keeps going from strength to strength. If you are serious about animation then I wholeheartedly recommend the Pipeline Edition. In fact I’d even go as far to say that if you have never done animation and you want a way in then opt for the either the Pro or Pipeline version simply because you will not outgrow it anytime soon. Instead of paying over the odds in this day and age CrazyTalk Animator 2 is a solid investment. There is so much going for it that that it would take me a 50 page chapter! However, take comfort in the fantastic tutorials on offer from the Reallusion site in video form: from the beginner starting to more complex projects.

The Standard version retails for $49.95 or upgrade for $29.97.
Pro, $179.95 or upgrade for $107.97.

The Standard version is great for children of all ages to get into the wonderful world of animation! As a parent you could be responsible for the next Nick Park!

Again, if you are a filmmaker / media producer then CTA 2 Pipeline is a no brainer.

The Reallusion content shop will enable you to add models, characters and more to the already awesome software!

SCORE: DOUBLE PLATINUM



STOP THE PRESS!!!!
CrazyTalk Animator 2.1 is now available for the MAC!!!! Read about it here: CTA2 MAC
COMING SOON...
Smith Micro, Poser Pro 2014 Review... Stay tuned...


THANKS FOR READING... IN THE MEANTIME...
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