As Pro 8 vs Toon Boom AP 2

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JaMike
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Post by JaMike » Wed Jul 20, 2011 8:44 pm

GCharb wrote:One piece of software I would like to have a look at is the next release of harmony standalone, which should sale around 3500 USD but seems like a very powerful piece of software, but again, no point animation in it.
They're charging $3500 for Harmony Standalone?!?!? But it's just an unlocked Animate Pro!!! You have to pay DOUBLE just so you can be compatible with your employer?!?!?!
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GCharb
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Post by GCharb » Wed Jul 20, 2011 9:03 pm

JaMike wrote:
GCharb wrote:One piece of software I would like to have a look at is the next release of harmony standalone, which should sale around 3500 USD but seems like a very powerful piece of software, but again, no point animation in it.
They're charging $3500 for Harmony Standalone?!?!? But it's just an unlocked Animate Pro!!! You have to pay DOUBLE just so you can be compatible with your employer?!?!?!
It has much more features then TBAP!
If it was TBAP unlocked I would not be so interested in it! :)
http://beta.toonboom.com/professionals/harmony
The new bone and curve deformer looks sweet too.
Plus it has a new fx set and sdk for developers, saw a demonstration, very impressive!
JaMike
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Post by JaMike » Wed Jul 20, 2011 9:19 pm

GCharb wrote:It has much more features then TBAP!
If it was TBAP unlocked I would not be so interested in it! :)
http://beta.toonboom.com/professionals/harmony
The new bone and curve deformer looks sweet too.
Plus it has a new fx set and sdk for developers, saw a demonstration, very impressive!
Ah, they must be changing their ways, then - last time I used Harmony it was exactly the same as Animate Pro, except for a couple of irrelevant (to an animator) features - the big difference was that Animate Pro was deliberately made incompatible with Harmony, so people were forced to pay more if they wanted to freelance for big studios.

But even then, I can't see what they could put in that would be worth $3500. The deforming isn't better than Anime Studio, as far as I can tell, and their 3D was never as good as a real 3D program or even After Effects.

What did you see that was so good? Did you try the new features or did you just see them demo it?
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GCharb
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Post by GCharb » Wed Jul 20, 2011 9:35 pm

saw a demo in Montreal, asked a few questions and was pleased with the answers.

The curve deformation was very interesting, as it would allow you to just lay-down curves on a model and deform it at will, allot like point deformation.

The 3D in TB is far better then ASP, and they also improved on it in Harmony 9, added several ways to deal with it and better shading for render.

The price I had was an estimation at the time, since the final price was not fixed yet.
aji
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Post by aji » Wed Jul 20, 2011 9:50 pm

In animestudio also we can create keyframe animation
quickly by using a dat file(created or modified in notepad and save with
.dat extension)
I think drawing tools (around 16 tools) in anime studio is toooooo superb..by which images can be easily modified and reused.
So we can create frame very quickly than any other softs.
With management skills we can create contents quickly in anime studio

..sorry for my english
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GCharb
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Post by GCharb » Wed Jul 20, 2011 10:02 pm

aji, first, don't be sorry for your English, it is fine, mine isn't perfect either, never stops me from writing! :)

ASP is definitely a great software, best bang for the buck.

It is easy to learn and use, it is powerful, has a feel to it you wont find anywhere else.

And though I am curious about what is happening in other software development, I am pretty sure I will stick with it for quite a while.

This said, in regard to this thread, one must admit that Toonboom Animate Pro is also a good piece of software.

The question here is to ask whether the original poster wants to do hand animation, if so, then Toonboom is the clear choice.

If he is looking to produce tons of quality animation on his own, with the best quality possible in the least amount of time, then ASP is, IMHO, the way to go.
aji
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Post by aji » Wed Jul 20, 2011 10:10 pm

It is better to start with Animestudio.
It is great and confident building tool. We can see our progress in the very first day of the usage. After a perfect knowldge,we can go specilised areas ..and learning other softwares such as Toonboom. We can use Toonboom
or Flipbook for keyframe animations that using along with animestudio.
The most better idea i think is that drawing keyframes in paper and scan and trace them in a image editing software then import into anime studio as image sequence...
JaMike
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Post by JaMike » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:42 am

GCharb wrote:The question here is to ask whether the original poster wants to do hand animation, if so, then Toonboom is the clear choice.

If he is looking to produce tons of quality animation on his own, with the best quality possible in the least amount of time, then ASP is, IMHO, the way to go.
Well, since he said he can't draw, and he wants to produce South Park style, I guess the best option is Anime Studio! :)

PS. Thanks GCharb, for your other answers - very interesting.
LillyTB
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Post by LillyTB » Sat Jul 23, 2011 10:21 pm

Hi everyone,

Just wanted to give a different perspective on the discussion about Toon Boom here. Of course I'm biased, but I think that there are a few things that I can clear up.

One thing you guys might find interesting is that South Park is actually 3D toon-shaded, it's not even made with 2D software. Though, interestingly enough, they do their storyboards using Toon Boom Storyboard Pro.

Regarding Animate Pro and Harmony 9, we decided to invest in building some powerful new tools for Harmony 9. One of these that was discussed was the 3D integration. We're not trying to replace a 3D software, what we're trying to do is to integrate with it. The reason that this is interesting is that there are times when you want to do things like backgrounds and props in 3D. Let's say for example that I have a character who's standing in a 3D environment, and part of that environment is in front of my character, part of it is behind. I can't simply render out an image sequence of that 3D background and composite it together with the character, I need to mask out the part of my character that is behind the environment.

This is where working in a 3D space comes in really handy, because Harmony will automatically do all that, saving you tons of time in the 3D rendering and compositing stages.

The new Deform tools are also very cool and fun to work with. We have the ability to create a bone-style deformer similar (but more sophisticated) to what you would see in Toon Boom Studio. But then you have the added ability to create curve-style deformers as well. And you can scale the width of the bones, as well as the length of the bones.

The particle system is also really very interesting. You can plug in any drawing layer that you create in Toon Boom, or any imported drawing, into the particle system to multiply that drawing. Add effects like gravity, wind, velocity, blur, animated transparency, animated colour, and many more, and things become very interesting.

Then the new pencil lines are also so much better than what we had before. You have a pencil line that you can animate from the centre of the line, just like you could with the old pencil line, but now we have the added flexibility of having varied thickness (which supports pressure sensitivity from your tablet). Also you can put texture on the pencil lines, which creates a very nice look because when you fill in a textured pencil line, it fills right to the centre of the line.

And these are just the new features. These features don't mention the animation tools, the multiplane, the animated camera, the lip sync, the rigging tools, the built-in compositing, and other features that have caused studios and individuals around the world to choose this software over others.

As a freelancer, you may also take advantage to contact the sales team (or even to contact us through the studio that you're working with) in order to take advantage of specials on pricing.

Our tools are not just for hand-drawn, or frame-by-frame animation, we are particularly good at creating cutout characters due to the built-in compositing that we can do in the software.

I saw earlier in the thread a discussion about being able to animate a mouth. We have the ability to make a really cool setup, through the built-in compositing, that lets us cut off drawings based on other drawings or certain colours in other drawings. That allows us to create a mouth that you can swap, but you can still animate the teeth and the tongue independently from the mouth. You could even have a setup where you have a tongue layer that is both inside and outside the mouth, even though it's on only one layer. You can do this through the sublayers.

And something that you might find interesting is that when you post on our forums, the person who's responding to you (i.e., me) is the Product Manager who has the final word on what new features do or do not make it into the software. And I sit right next to the programmers. So in a way, you've got a direct ear to the programmers with us, too. Or, more importantly, a direct line with the people who get to tell the programmers what to do. :)

Just food for thought!

~Lilly
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GCharb
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Post by GCharb » Sat Jul 23, 2011 11:08 pm

Second time a software representative comes on the forum to comment on their product, I find it very cool.

I did ask a few questions on TB forum and Lilly was prompt to respond every time and I thank here for that!

Now, I had a good look at TBAP demo, went through the online video tutorials, well done btw!

Very powerful software, with many of the tools I used to work with in classical animation.

One of the things that I find invaluable in ASP is the ability to animate points over time, we call it point animation. It allows us to do one or several pass of cut-out animation then tweak things on top of it.

On TB forum I asked if there was anything like that in TB, Lilly told me no, but suggested a workaround, which was to sort of freeze an inbetween and tweak it as a new inbetween, which I did, worked ok, but not as flexible as point animation.

Are there any new tools in harmony 9 that could do just that, that is do an animation pass on top of cut-out animation to fine tune details, like secondary motion, or facial expressions etc. without having to create new in-betweens or new drawings and tweak them?

Perhaps the new deform tools you are referring to, like the curve style deformer, which I saw In Montreal some weeks ago, seemed very impressive!

Is there a possibility to get a demo of Harmony 9, and also, any way we could have a price comparison with Animate Pro?

Thanks for taking the time to come here.
JaMike
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Post by JaMike » Sun Jul 24, 2011 8:14 pm

Hi Lilly, thanks for giving your input!
LillyTB wrote:We're not trying to replace a 3D software, what we're trying to do is to integrate with it.
Do you need to own a 3D package to use all of Harmony's features?
LillyTB wrote:We have the ability to create a bone-style deformer similar (but more sophisticated) to what you would see in Toon Boom Studio. But then you have the added ability to create curve-style deformers as well. And you can scale the width of the bones, as well as the length of the bones.
So the Studio bones are the same as Anime Studio, can you explain if and how the other Harmony deformer features you mention are better than Anime Studio's system?
LillyTB wrote:As a freelancer, you may also take advantage to contact the sales team (or even to contact us through the studio that you're working with) in order to take advantage of specials on pricing.
So that's a discount on the $3500 price mentioned earlier in the thread? Is a 60% discount possible like you have on Animate Pro sometimes? What's the upgrade cost from Animate Pro?
LillyTB wrote:And something that you might find interesting is that when you post on our forums, the person who's responding to you (i.e., me) is the Product Manager who has the final word on what new features do or do not make it into the software.
Are there other TB forums on the net where users hang out? I don't mean to be funny, but compared to this place, the TB forums are a bit quiet.

My final question is, are these Harmony features coming to Animate Pro? And if so, when?

Thanks for answering!
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GCharb
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Post by GCharb » Sun Jul 24, 2011 8:31 pm

From what I gathered, many of the new tools in Harmony 9 wont get into TBAP 3, which is sad really.

They have a standalone Harmony 9, which has all the tools in the TB tool-set, but at a higher price.

Also, many of the features she mentioned we already have in ASP, but I must admit, with my time spent in the demo, that they are usually better build then in ASP.

But, price compared, you get better bang for the buck with ASP, there is still no point animation in TBAP 2, maybe something will solve that in 3, it seems like it.

TBAP 2 has better drawing, better 3d integration, much better frame by frame animation, I love the color registration you get in it and it has node based compositing build with tons of fx and real stereoscopic tools.

On the other hand, I find it a pain in the butt to work with compared to ASP.

Hard choice really.
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Post by crsP » Mon Jul 25, 2011 11:28 am

JaMike wrote: So the Studio bones are the same as Anime Studio...
No they are not. You only get forward kinematics with the bones in TBS, in AS you get both forward and inverse kinematics.

I don't know what the features on TBAP are like compared to ASP, but I would agree that many fall short of the mark in ASP - 3d for example.
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Post by GCharb » Mon Jul 25, 2011 2:20 pm

crsP wrote:
JaMike wrote: So the Studio bones are the same as Anime Studio...
No they are not. You only get forward kinematics with the bones in TBS, in AS you get both forward and inverse kinematics.

I don't know what the features on TBAP are like compared to ASP, but I would agree that many fall short of the mark in ASP - 3d for example.
Like I said, TBAP has better tools overall, better drawing, 3d, stereoscopy, compositor etc.

But is is less user friendly then ASP, has no point animation, which is a no seller for me.
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Post by Manu » Mon Jul 25, 2011 2:38 pm

I have to admit that I can't really get a grip on the sprawling Toon Boom family. The Harmony page is full of corporate language, but I struggle to see what it actually does. Is there a demo or are there any online tutorials that can give me a feel for it?
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