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Anime Studio Pro 6

About.com Rating 4 Star Rating

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Anime Studio Pro 6

The Bottom Line

While Anime Studio Pro 6 offers valuable tools that meet the demands of the professional animator, hobbyists or small-time animators won't see much difference between Pro and Debut. If you're uncertain, definitely take advantage of the time-limited free trial to be sure Pro's enhancements are what you need.

Pros

  • Allows onion-skinning, necessary for quality animation.
  • Adds new camera and bone options.
  • Builds on IK/bone features for greater flexibility.
  • Features video / motion tracking.

Cons

  • Not as much expanded capability as expected.

Description

  • Offers a wider range of animation tools targeting professional studio animation.
  • Introduces enhanced features such as auto-shading, allowing for 3D effects.
  • Powerful LUA scripting introduces customized tools and effects.
  • Retains benefits of Debut version while removing many limitations.
  • Refines the bone-based animation system for better motion.

Guide Review - Anime Studio Pro 6

After trying and reviewing the new release of Anime Studio Debut, I took a stab at the upgrade to see if Anime Studio Pro 6 was worth the $199 retail price. At 4x the price you'd expect 4x the functionality; while you don't quite get that from Pro, it still packs in features valuable to professional animators.

Some of the primary differences between Anime Studio Debut and Anime Studio Pro are that Pro allows onion-skinning on frames and features morph targets, realistic auto shading, and LUA scripting while building on Debut features such as integrated lip-synching, bone systems, and sequencing. The Pro version also removes many of the limitations inherent in Debut, allowing for greater freedom in publishing animations of diverse formats.

The LUA scripting is by far the most valuable addition, and will likely turn out to be Anime Studio Pro's shining feature. Scripting allows you to create your own tools, plug-ins, effects, and modifications to existing tools. This kind of versatility, flexibility, and customization is something you don't often find in animation programs, and it has the potential to build community by sharing user-designed scripts and add-ons.

All in all I'd have to give Anime Studio Pro a 4-star rating, slightly lower than Anime Studio Debut's 4.5-star rating; I was expecting to be completely wowed, and I wasn't. Freelancers, hobbyists, and other animators with simple needs won't find much difference between the two, and Pro's features would be more perks than anything else. For high-end professionals with a wide range of needs and demanding requirements, though, Anime Studio Pro 6 will definitely provide the expanded functionality and studio-style tools necessary to produce quality animations.

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