Animate Pro 3 is looking great, but as a license holder to Harmony (and animate pro 2, actually) i am concerned about overlap between the two products, to the point where i am unclear what the benefit of Harmony Standalone (non-studio usage, individual user) is over the new animate pro release.
maybe there’s a secret Harmony upgrade on the horizon, but please assuage my concerns and reassure Harmony users about why it remains the “elite” product from toonboom – or maybe Harmony standalone is more or less equivalent to A.P. 3 at this point?
Unless you are using the 3d functionality (for which you really need a license of maya).
Also harmony has a particle system.
I also assume you still cannot share files between animate pro 3 and harmony (this ability was removed with animate pro 2)
Perhaps harmony will be adding bitmap layers and tools to it’s next incarnation. This would seem logical to solidify the pipeline with storyboard pro, and would give TVPaint a run for it’s money.
Anime studio 9.2 has point animation and smart bones (amongst many other features), both would be welcome in harmony to be sure.
CelAction2D is the go to software for cut out animation, certainly in the UK where it’s the market leader for this style of animation. However it lacks drawing tools, relying on other software to create the artwork. Surely toon boom’s R&D budget can stretch to a copy of this software to see where harmony’s cut out workflow can be improved.
This is the opportunity for harmony to push back to the forefront of animation technology.
even though i can’t really utilize the 3d toolset as i am not a maya user, i can see the potential for its usefulness. particles are also pretty good, especially combined w/ the network webbing compositing possibilities.
I still think animate pro, harmony and harmony networked should be the same product. Installed from the same installer and differing only in the licensing, with certain modules and functionality being enabled as you progress up the food chain.
All the development would go into one product. Harmony would get the latest technology first as their elite product, and be filtered down through the licensing system, to animate pro, when deemed appropriate.
All of these professional level products MUST be able to share files, especially progressing from animate pro to harmony. Going in reverse the modules unavailable in animate pro would of course be disabled, and greyed out.
I remember while talking to Lily at last year’s Siggraph in LA it was brought up how bitmap drawing tools and layers were a very requested feature in their products and since Storyboard Pro now has them its really only a matter of time before it shows up in at least Harmony.
There are still some powerful features in Harmony v10 that Animate Pro v3 doesn’t have. It has particles, more node effects, and importing 3D files along with moving them around in 3D space. The import of 3D files still make it the perfect fit with Storyboard v4 which also the same capabilities. I would hold off until they announce the next version of Harmony before being concerned.
These are some pretty beefy updates to Animate and Pro. It does kind of give me some buyers remorse because I recently jumped to Harmony. However, if Harmony got some bitmap drawing tools or some of the brush options found in Storyboard Pro in an update, that would totally rock my face off.