Adobe unveils After Effects 7.0

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Adobe’s $3.4 billion purchase of Macromedia is starting to have an impact on the software giant’s product line. The latest version of After Effects, unveiled by Adobe tuesday, includes Flash Video export among its new features.

“As we look at the longer term, some of the trends we see are for rich media,” said Jim Guerard, vice president of product management, Web and video solutions, for Adobe. “Over the last 12 to 18 months we’ve seen an explosion in growth-rich media instead of static media.”

A tool for producing motion graphics and visual effects for film, video, and the Web, Adobe After Effects 7.0 also includes a re-designed, unified user interface and expanded support for OpenGL 2.0.

According to Adobe, users of After Effects 7.0 can eliminate overlapping windows and palettes, rearrange panels, save custom workspaces, and control UI brightness. OpenGL 2.0 speeds production time by accelerating the on-screen rendering of 2-D and 3-D composites and offers high-fidelity support for blending modes, motion blur on 2-D layers, anti-aliasing, track mattes, and shadows.

Adobe executives said the new features of After Effects target the three main goals they had for the application: maximize productivity; offer powerful tools; and provide production excellence. New users also played a role in developing After Effects, according to the company.

“One of the key challenges is how to make After Effects powerful enough for experienced users, but still accessible to newer users,” said Guerard.

After Effects 7.0 requires Mac OS X 10.3.9 or 10.4. It’s available immediately for $999 for the Professional edition and $699 for the Standard edition. Upgrade pricing is $199. Standard users can pay $499 to upgrade to the Professional edition.

This story, "Adobe unveils After Effects 7.0" was originally published by PCWorld.

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