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  1. https://youtu.be/z5nBA45DvRo Andrew Kramer has announced a November release for Video Copilot's Element Version 2. Element is an Adobe After Effects plug-in that offers realtime GPU based 3D rendering, right within the After Effects application. Version 1 was a big hit but had obvious drawbacks in that with realtime GPU you can not generate shadows or reflections... well, with V2 he appears to have jumped those hurdles, and threw in realtime sub-surface-scattering and refraction as well! The shadows, refraction and SSS look pretty nice, and the reflections use a bit of a 'cheat' as realtime raytracing is still unobtainable. It is kind of amazing! Prices and upgrades have not been figured yet, and the release date is 'November'... Element 1 was less than $700. What does this mean for A:Mer's? It offers a possible 'alternate render' solution, something some users may never need- others may have been longing for... PLUS- the fact it is REAL TIME is a bit of a bonus! Another new feature being that obj imports in Element will support accompanying .mat files... which A:M's obj exporter is capable of generating. Element ALSO supports .obj sequence imports- so exporting actions, textures, and models from A:M looks all possible... and with Elements new 'physical' materials users may want to leave some of the attributes blank for texturing in Element with their robust presets and easy manipulation. Element V2 may be 'luring' users from C4D, Max, modo, Maya for their rendering needs. Among other new features(there are many I am missing) is a 'primitives' generator, but Element does not claim to be a modeling program at all. The 'speed of realtime' is actually limited by your graphics card and the speed of your After Effects... as he demonstrates at :25 where loads the engine model into his AE RAM-preview... that is the 3D renderer working 'zippity-click' FAST!!! The render QUALITY may be open for debate, especially with inaccurate non-raytraced reflections, and 'who-knows' about the anti-aliasing smoothness (I have Element V1, renders were 'not bad' from what I saw... I got busy learning other apps and it fell thru the cracks...) But from what we can see in this demo... renders look pretty good! Still are some features users are requesting... would be good to see mdd support... but Element V2 looks like something to keep an eye on as a complimentary program to A:M!
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