Maya Compositor


Does anyone know why Alias decided to remove the Composer compositing component of the software found in early versions? Was it just a matter of spreading themselves too thin in terms of trying to create a package that could do everything? With XSI you have the built in compositor but I heard that it isn’t good enough to use as a primary source (similar to their built in paint program)


You’ve hit the nail on the head. The XSI Compositor (a.k.a XSI FX) is just nice to do some quick 'n dirty comps but nothing more. One of the drawbacks of having a built-in compositor and using it solely for compositing work you will need to load in the whole 3D application which will use up unneccesary RAM and will slow down you computer.
The strength is that you when you’re not really in to compositing but do need to seperate out your scene into layers because of speeding up renders or similar reasons and do not have access to or do not want to learn a compositing package you can still comp your stuff together in a not so difficult and organised way without leaving the familiar environment of XSI.


Thanks goodbyte for your reply-

What about Alias’ external compositor, Maya Digital Fusion? Why did Alias sell it to Eyeon (if it is even the same package??) I’m just starting to get into compositing and I’m a Maya user so I am trying to find one that shares a common UI or workflow with what I’m familiar with. I am also very familiar with Photoshop so perhaps I should go with after effects if there is no compositor which Maya users can jump to that shares common components…


Maya Fusion and Digital Fusion were almost identical, except for some Maya GUI stuff like marking menus and mouse/hotkey controls. As fas as I remember Alias decided to discontinue Maya Fusion, because everyone had already chosen his/her favourite compositing package.

Digital Fusion (DFX+) is still very close to the way one works in Maya (in terms of node structures, connections, flow charts, scripting language, …) and it’s actually my favourite compositing software to do complex stuff. Eyeon Software will announce Digital Fusion 5 at Siggraph. OpenGL acceleration and the new 3D core sound very promising.



Thanks for the info Dirk-

I am a student and was thinking of picking up the edu version of DFX+ since its more in my price range as opposed to Digital Fusion but I was wondering what the differences are between them?? Can you do a lot of the same things in DFX+? (any personal comparisons based on your own experience with the two would be most helpful:) Thanks!


Hope I am not spreading wrong information here. AFAIK Digital Fusion comes with all plug-in packages and supports floating point image calculation. DFX+ comes with a set of standard compositing tools and is limited to 8 or 16 (?) Bit calculations. I have worked with both packages in the past and from my experience you’ll most likely only need some of the extra tool packages you can buy for DFX+.

Anyway, I’d suggest to contact the folks at Eyeon Software. They are really nice guys over there and will be able to answer your questions in more detail :slight_smile:



Is good if alias take Maya live as a separate product and put a compositor that like Maya Live you can load and unload… The truth about MayaLive? Nobody use it!


Composer was never part of Maya. It was a Wavefront product that was a totally separate application. It was around long before Maya came around. Also they stoped updating it around version 5.5 that came out before Maya 1.0 came out so it was just a matter of time before they killed it totally. It was a decent compositor, but it was falling behind when Shake came out.

As for Maya Fusion, Alias never owned it. Alias needed a compositor on the windows platform to complement Maya because they allready had one on SGI. They licensed Digital Fusion and made it’s gui more Composer like and added support for maya features like iff, etc… It made it easier for people moving over from SGI. Alias finally decided to give up on the compositor business on the SGI side so they didnt need one on the windows side anymore. Eyeon just merged many of the Maya Fusion features into Digital Fusion.


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