Quesions about picking up Digital Fusion

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  09 September 2013
Quesions about picking up Digital Fusion

We're using After Effects here and we're interested in adding a node-based compositor to work with alongside Ae as needed. Eventually we might switch over to the node-based compositor as the primary app.

We work primarily in motion graphics but are now doing 3d render pass compositing in most jobs which is a pain in After Effects. Also very annoyed by cases where you would like to use a single matte with 20 AE layers - your choices are either duplicate the matte 20 times or pre-comp and use set-matte effect, which is very restrictive.


We are considering:
-Nuke: Great but expensive, especially NukeX
-Autodesk Toxik/Composite: Really fantastic interface and features. Comes for free with 3ds Max or Maya. But no apparent development and most likely abandoned.
-Blender Compositor: Pretty decent considering it's free.
-Fusion (of course).

At the moment we're most interested in Fusion because of:
-Wealth of Features - including Motion graphics capabilities
-Plugins - seems to have a lot of 3rd party support and supports some AFX plugins too
-Low price - comparatively
-Generation / Dimension both look very powerful, again considering price tag!

I had a couple of questions though, and was wondering if anyone could share some info and advice?
-Development: it seem's the latest release of fusion was 9 months ago. What's the state of development like? Are there often patches released? For example: Vray. Actively developed. Nighly build every day!

Price: How do you buy fusion? You can't buy directly from Eyeon? I have seen the actual price listed on ToolFarm.com but nothing on the eyeon site.

Subscription: Is it worth it? This is related to the 'development' question. Are there many features added throughout a 12 month contract or is it probably better to just update every other release?

PLE: I have heard there is a Personal Learning Edition of Fusion but can't find anything about it. Not offered anymore?



I am very interested in hearing any opinions anyone would like to share regarding Fusion / Compositing.

Thanks for reading!
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Michael Wentworth-Bell | 3D Artist & VR Designer | Melbourne, Australia

Espire 1: My VR Stealth game - CGTalk thread
 
  10 October 2013
I am currently a compositor at EdenFx, which uses Fusion as its primary compositing tool, and I evaluated Dimension for inclusion in the pipeline at Blue Hemisphere 3D.

Fusion is still in active development. There's supposed to be a new release very soon, in fact. Releases aren't coming rapidly, but if there's a significant bug uncovered, then they'll push out an update pretty quickly from what I've seen. Their development cycle seems to be slower than The Foundry's, but it definitely is progressing.

You'll probably have to email Eyeon to arrange your purchase. I'm not sure why they haven't automated their ordering, but their sales department seems to be pretty responsive. I exchanged some emails with them during my Dimension evaluation, and I didn't have any trouble getting a hold of them. They were very helpful in getting the necessary licenses to me and giving me a live demo.

The value of the subscription probably depends on how tightly the software is integrated into your pipeline. Here at Eden, the pipeline is very automated, and Fusion is a crucial part of it. Having expedited access to support seems to be well worth it to the pipeline dev; they've solved a couple of problems with him overnight when we had a deadline pending. They've also worked closely with him and our editor to hammer out issues with their shot review tool, Generation.

I can't answer the question about the PLE, but I found the demo to be sufficient to learn the basics and evaluate it for pipeline purposes. Had Blue Hemisphere lasted long enough, I would likely have recommended it to replace our Nuke rentals.

Oh, and I should mention that, as a Nuke user, it only took me about two weeks of production use to achieve basic competency, and after about two months, there was little I could in Nuke that I could not match in Fusion. I did have some very experienced supervisors to help me out when I got stuck, though.
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Bryan Ray
www.bryanray.name
 
  10 October 2013
the last fusion updates where all tagged as point updates but got more new stuff then autodesk releases with a major new version. (see changelogs here and here)

here is the link to the learning edition
 
  10 October 2013
Thanks for your replies - really appreciate it!

@ Bryan: Thanks for such an in-depth response and for sharing your opinion and experience with Fusion. Really helpful!


@ Michael:
Thanks for those links. I didn't see any mention of the learning edition on their site, so really appreciate it. I downloaded it on the weekend and got an email from their staff within 20 minutes answering a bunch of other questions I had.

Thanks again for your help guys!
__________________
Michael Wentworth-Bell | 3D Artist & VR Designer | Melbourne, Australia

Espire 1: My VR Stealth game - CGTalk thread
 
  10 October 2013
Fusion

Hello! Fusion 7 is coming out in a few days. I have posted some discussions about Fusion's 3D compositing and re-lighting capabilities. See the link below. Hope that helsp!

http://www.youtube.com/user/TheAlkesh007

Alkesh.
 
  10 October 2013
Originally Posted by TheAlkesh: Hello! Fusion 7 is coming out in a few days.
Alkesh.


i think you get this wrong: next week is "only" a webinar where eyeon will show whats coming to Fusion7. from my experience with eyeon this doesnt mean they will release it the same day or near that day. it can take weeks or month after the announcement to a real release
 
  10 October 2013
Thanks...I guess I got too excited when I saw "7" after so long since 6 came about. Thanks. I will amend some other posts now.
 
  10 October 2013
Thanks Alkesh,

I've watched the first of your videos and it's really great to see the 3d and projection features in detail. Thanks for sharing, looking forward to seeing the rest of them over the week!
__________________
Michael Wentworth-Bell | 3D Artist & VR Designer | Melbourne, Australia

Espire 1: My VR Stealth game - CGTalk thread
 
  10 October 2013
Thanks! I am glad you found it to be useful. Hope to continue maling more discussion videos!
 
  10 October 2013
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