Adobe Systems Inc. has announced the release of After Effects 5.5, the latest update to the company’s motion graphics and visual effects software. The software is Mac OS X native and is expected to ship in the first quarter of 2002.
After Effects 5.5 sports new features, including multiple views, colored shadows, stained glass lighting, and the “Advanced 3D Renderer,” which is used to create high-quality intersecting layers. The new version also sports improved input and output options — including Advanced RealMedia export and integration with Alias|Wavefront’s Maya software, as well as Discreet’s 3ds max. After Effects 5.5 also features additional 16-bit per channel file formats, including Maya IFF, RPF, SGI and QuickTime. The new version of After Effects includes a new Effects Palette, which helps users organize and apply effects. Eight new effects have also been developed, including Color Stabilizer, Advanced Lightning, Grid and Roughen Edges.
Some effects, like Color Stabilizer and Advanced Lightning, are exclusive to the After Effects 5.5 Production Bundle, as is Zaxwerks 3D Invigorator Classic — a 2D to 3D artwork conversion tool.
Adobe also announced the Adobe Digital Video Collection 6.0. The new version sports the latest revisions to Adobe After Effects and Adobe Illustrator, as well as Adobe Premiere 6.0 and Adobe Photoshop 6.0.
Mac system requirements call for a PowerPC processor (multiprocessor Power Mac G4 recommended); Mac OS 9.1 or higher (or Mac OS X 10.1); 128MB RAM (256MB or more recommended); 120MB available hard disk space (500MB recommended); CD-ROM; 24-bit color display; QuickTime 5.0.
Adobe After Effects 5.5 will carry a suggested retail price of US$649 for the Standard Version, and $1,499 for the Production Bundle.
Upgrades from After Effects 5.0 will cost $99 for either the Standard or Production Bundle versions; upgrading from the Standard to the Production Bundle version costs $899. The Adobe DV Collection Production Bundle will cost $1,999 — the Standard version will cost $1,199.
Adobe noted that French, German and Japanese versions are expected to ship simultaneously with the English version — expect a separate announcement regarding pricing and upgrade details for those versions.