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AFTER EFFECTS WISHLIST

Aug 31, 2009 8:39 AM

What features would you like to see implemented in After Effects? New ideas for plugins? Interface changes? Post 'em here!

Let's keep bug identification to individual posts, as these will probably be addressed more readily. Let's use this thread for specific ideas about ways that AE can be improved and expanded.

These Forums are for users, not Adobe employees, so don't forget to also fill in an Adobe feature request form.

To view the Wish List posts prior to September 2009, look here.

 
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 2, 2009 7:25 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    Hi!

    I was wondering when we'll have the new 3D camera preset - the one that people use those glasses to "see things getting close".

    I believe that if we work on our compositions always  in a 3D space using that camera, it can output the image sequence already set for these technology.

    Thanks

     
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    Sep 2, 2009 7:31 AM   in reply to tbsaad

    What you are talking about is called stereoscopy, and cannot be acheived that simply. But know that it's already possible to do it in AE,and that the process have been simplified by a free script available on the web, or a pay plugin available on the toolfarm online store.

     

    It's not  new "3D preset" or 3D camera, the stereoscopy involves the use of 3 cameras in the same 3D world, one of each eye, linked together.

     
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    Sep 2, 2009 7:35 AM   in reply to Sébastien Périer

    Hi!

    Thanks for the fast response.

    Hey, that's the name! Stereoscopy! I'm from Brazil and wasn't sure how it was called in english.

    Can you provide the names of those tools (the free script and the plugin)? I'd like to try that feature ASAP.

    Thanks again!

     
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    Sep 2, 2009 8:16 AM   in reply to tbsaad
     
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    Sep 4, 2009 8:38 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    1) Swatches

    2) Scale tool to work like AI, ID and PSHOP

    3) Ability to Import/Export Precomps (or share from a database of linked precomps) rather than a collect and import.

    4) All Layer Styles to be moved to the effects pallette. I find it laborious to access layer styles in AE

     

    Thanks for asking!

     
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    Sep 15, 2009 3:43 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    It would be great if AE could interpret images with more than one alpha channel. For instance, Cinema 4D places the depth map and object buffers in the alpha channels. However, AE only reads the first alpha channel and interprets that as transparency.  It would be great if AE could read the other alphas and let me decide which one (if any) is transparency.  Or if I just wanted to import Alpha #5 from an image, it would let me.

     
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    Sep 15, 2009 4:00 PM   in reply to Navarro Parker

    As a workaround, you can export your animation and passes as an EXR sequence, and import it inside AE and then use the EXtractoR plugin to select the pass you wanna use.

     
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    Sep 16, 2009 11:25 AM   in reply to Sébastien Périer

    Thanks for the info. C4D doesn't support layered EXRs yet.  So layered TIFF and PSD are the main way to get 32-bpc HDR multi-layer multipass images out of Cinema.

     
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    Sep 16, 2009 11:38 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    I don't know the political nature of the different CS divisions at Adobe, but it would be super keen if you and the Photoshop team could get on the same page.

     

    AE is always a version behind in supporting the latest PSD features (like CS4's Vibrance adjustment).  Would be also great if you could make some of the Adobe RAW controls available as 32-pbc AE plug-ins -- such as White Balance, Recovery, Fill Light, Blacks, Clarity, and the aforementioned Vibrance.

     
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    Sep 16, 2009 11:43 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    This one is pretty simple, and like 64-bitness, hopefully already on the books.  But EVERY AE plug-in needs to work in 32pbc color. There's really no excuse for some plugs to support only 8-bit color in 201x (whenever CS5 comes out).

     
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    Sep 20, 2009 1:31 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    My #1 request:

    Please give us an NLE in after effects (a simplified Premiere RT panel or whatever).

     

    I find it amazing that 90% of AE plug-ins work in Premiere if just stick them in the common-mediacore folder. If I could have real bezier masks, track mattes and adjustment layers in Premiere there would be very little need to even go into AE for most film/movie oriented projects. This makes me thing that a merge wouldn't be that out of the question or that hard.

     

    Either that or fix  AE so when you import a premiere pro project or it knows what the AE dynamic linked files are and where they are. It's backwards to have the Premiere CS4 'replace with ae' function clippled because it has no idea what to do with AE projects.

     

    Mainly this is related to Adobe having complete film/tv workflow.that isn't such a pain. IF you have dynamic linked media in your .prproj then import it into AE wouldn't you think AE would know the AE file is?

     

    Beside the obvious (native 64bit, real 3d space and 3d model import, 3d text at least)

     
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    Sep 20, 2009 1:33 PM   in reply to joshtownsend

    Also whay can;t we have photoshops brilliant curve/hue sat picker in AE?

     
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    Sep 23, 2009 8:16 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    Here's my two cents:

     

    1.

    Disc preview.

     

    This would work as the opposite for RAM preview, so that AE would basically render the comp in to a temp folder in order to be able to run the preview in real time. This would be useful in situations in which there is not enough memory for a complete RAM preview. I know about disc cache and have it turned on, but many times AE won't use disc cache since it thinks it's faster to use ram. It's frustrating in situations in which you don't get disc cache but you don't get a full RAM preview either. Basically this could work simply as a way to force AE to render something in to disc cache.

     

    I know I can always render the movie out to preview it like this, but instead of specifying output module settings, file locations and then opening the rendered file in a video player software, it would be so much easier to just hit a keyboard shortcut and let AE take care of everything, similarly to what Premiere does when you render the timeline. I want to make clear that this shouldn't in any way replace RAM preview, but simply be available as an option for those situations in which RAM preview doesn't cut it.

     

     

    2.

    Timeline folders.

     

    The ability to organize layers in the timeline into folders, in order to make the timeline easier to navigate. We have folders in the project window and they are great, why not extend that functionality in to the timeline too? I bet that in most projects the timeline has much more items than the project window does, which makes it very important to be able to keep the timeline tidy. A timeline folder would simply be a visual way to group layers inside folders. This way a 100 layers could be displayed as a single folder layer if necessary. Vertical screen estate is very valuable in the days of wide screen displays, and this would help make better use of it.

     

    3.

    Spatial snapping.

     

    We have the ability to snap the CTI in the timeline and we have the ability to snap layers to the grid. I think it would be great if there were an option to snap objects geometrically in to each others too (in the comp window). Smart guides and snapping similar to Adobe Illustrator would be fantastic!

     

    Thank you and keep developing the greatest software in the world!

     
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    Sep 28, 2009 2:40 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    Being able to easily convert 3D motion from a camera movements in 2D motion.
    3D softwares allows to export camera and null but compositions are usually 2D.

     

    Best regards,

     

    Léon

     
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    Sep 28, 2009 7:44 AM   in reply to noel_d3

    3D softwares allow to export camera and nulls for 3D compositions but we need 2D motion for link null to masks, effects, stockshots etc ...

     
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    Sep 29, 2009 7:37 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    > What features would you like to see implemented in After Effects? New ideas for plugins? Interface changes? Post 'em here! <

     

    My projects have grown in complexity, 30-50 layers now instead of 10-20, and I find it difficult to stay oriented as my eyes move from left to right, trying to keep track of which keyframes are attached to which effect in which layer.

     

    Mostly I just wish Adobe would dedicate more development energy to fixing everything that's broken, doesn't quite work as promised, or is too complex to be used by most users. Perfect After Effects and streamline the existing systems instead of adding more complex stuff to satisfy niche users.

     

    bogiesan

     
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    Sep 29, 2009 3:13 PM   in reply to bogiesan-gyyClL
    I'd like a shorcut to select all layer above/below.

    I suggest

     

    Ctrl + alt + shift + up

     

     



     
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    Oct 2, 2009 4:23 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    I'd like to see Growl support on the Mac.

     
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    Oct 5, 2009 1:44 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    At our studio we would LOVE scripting access to more options of the render que items!

    We've got several work arounds right now, such as importing projects with the rendersettings and outputmodual presets saved, or saving the same presets on all of our farm machines....BUT

    If we could access the output file types, qualities, and other aspects of rendering with scripts we would explode with happiness!

     

    -Anthony

     
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    Oct 6, 2009 6:48 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    1. coloured marks

    2. more than 99fps comps

    3. the ability 2 import more than 32k pics and an improvement in time

    4. better dynamic link support. (not just importing hole comps, complete functionally as example: change the PP made cut in AE)

     
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    Oct 6, 2009 1:14 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    I would like to read the work area length in a field on the center of it.

     

    http://img14.imageshack.us/img14/2751/aefx.gif

    Attachments:
     
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    Oct 8, 2009 1:46 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    I would like to be able to open/fold out a PreComp within a Composition as if it was a folder tree.

     
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    Oct 8, 2009 2:29 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    I would also like easy access buttons close to the timeline to make new Solids, Text, Shapes, Nulls, and Adjustment Layers, Lights and Cameras.

     
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    Oct 8, 2009 3:01 PM   in reply to matsjacob
    > I would also like easy access buttons close to the timeline to make new Solids, Text, Shapes, Nulls, and Adjustment Layers, Lights and Cameras.

     

    Are you aware that theyre are keyboard shortcuts for all of these?

     

    New solid layer

    Ctrl+Y

    Command+Y

    New null layer

    Ctrl+Alt+Shift+Y

    Command+Option+Shift+Y

    New adjustment layer

    Ctrl+Alt+Y

    Command+Option+Y

    New text layer

    Ctrl+Alt+Shift+T

    Command+Option+Shift+T

    New light

    Ctrl+Alt+Shift+L

    Command+Option+Shift+L

    New camera

    Ctrl+Alt+Shift+C

    Command+Option+Shift+C

     

     

    See "Keyboard shortcuts".

     
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    Oct 8, 2009 9:09 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    I would love to see some development put into optimizing AE for color correction.   I truly think it's fundamentally good enough to compete with Apple Color and win, but some interface work has to be done to get it there.  Here are a few things that occurred to me:

     

    Increase the size of the interface element for Curves, Levels, Hue Saturation, etc.   Each of these filters has a custom interface element in the effects controls which exists at a fixed size.  This can be very frustrating.  The curves box in particular is FAR too small, but the hue-saturation one is not a whole lot better. 

     

    Give the color correction effects access to masks.  Some other effects do this, and it would simplify color-correction worlflow greatly to not have to make multiple copies of a layer, or a number of adjustment layers.  A simple drop-down menu at the bottom of each of these effects that said something like "limit effect to"  and then a menu to select a mask and an "invert mask" checkbox.  Easy, and VERY helpful.

     

    Invent a key command for "match in- and out points to..."  In other words:  lets say I make an adjustment layer, but I'd like it to have the same in and out points as the layer below it.  I can frame over to the first frame and hit OPT-{  then frame over to the last frame and hit OPT-} or use shift drag.  Neither of these methods are fast or reliable.  May I suggest option-clicking, a paradigm similar to the option-drag "replace layer" feature from the project window to the timeline.  In other words, if you select the adjustment layer in the timeline and option-click any other layer, it will match its in and out points to that layer.

     

    Beef up Hue/Saturation.  When you get a chance, check out Apple Color's "Secondaries" tab, specifically the "hue curve" "luma curve" and "sat curve" tabs within it.  These three are roughly equivalent to the Hue & Saturation filter within AE, but the combination of curves-style control and MUCH bigger interface elements makes for a more powerful and more efficient tool.  I wouldn't be at all unhappy if Adobe straight-up copied Apple's implementation of this for a better Hue/Saturation filter. 

     

    Scopes:  Yes, I know Color Finesse has them.  However, CF is quite limiting in that its interface cuts you off from the rest of AE, which can make it unusable for many things (matching, for example).  Vectorscope, multichannel histogram, and waveform monitor would be great.  I'd love them all in a separate interface tab like, but separate from, the effects controls, all automatically looking at whatever is in the comp window at the moment.

     

    "Take a Snapshot" & "Show Last Snapshot" on steroids:  This might be better suited to a dedicated "Color Correction" module within AE a la Brainstorm, but what I'd like is the ability to store and play back multiple snapshots, do side by side comparisons, adjust the split screen, move the comparisons around.  In this respect, don't shoot for Apple Color.  Their implementation is more flexible but more time consuming.  The trick is that in order to be useful, it has to be flexible and FAST.  I think the best reference in this respect is dedicated color correction systems.   The best implementation I've seen thus far is on the Baselight.

     

    Apparently, AE not have a 3-way color-corrector built in?  CF does, but again, accessing it means essentially leaving much of AE behind.  I'd love to get those three little wheels in the Effects Control window.  CF's "simplified interface" would be a great place to do it, but at the moment, it's all text.

     

    One media-specific one:  Put the RED controls somewhere other than in the "Interpret Footage" panel where they're removed from everything else.  Personally, I'd love 'em as an effect.  Effects>>Color Correction>>Red Raw Controls.  It would have a little drop down menu a-la Adobe Camera Raw which defaults to "As Shot" and sets the sliders accordingly. 

     

    This last one is more complicated, and again this might be better suited to a dedicated CC module, but I'd love a way to lock the position of footage in the timeline without losing the ability to add or modify filters, masks, etc.  During color correction, it is easy to accidentally change the in- and out-points of footage while setting in- and out- points for multiple adjustment layers simultaneously.

     
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    Oct 8, 2009 9:28 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    One other color-correction related feature request:

     

    I'd love to have an adjustable sample size for the color sampler in the info palette.  It would probably be sufficient to simply shove a few options in the contextual menu for the tab.

     
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    Oct 8, 2009 9:49 PM   in reply to Arivl
    > I'd love to have an adjustable sample size for the color sampler in the info palette.

     

    Good request.

     

    In the meantime, you can press Ctrl (Windows) or Command (Mac OS) to sample a 5x5 area.

     

    And, if you want to change these values, you can change the numbers in the text preferences file:

     

        "Eye Dropper Sample Size No Modifier" = "1"
        "Eye Dropper Sample Size With Modifier" = "5"

     
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    Oct 8, 2009 10:15 PM   in reply to Todd_Kopriva

    Actually that does it just fine for me!   Thanks Todd.

     

    Now...got a secret way to increase the size of the curves interface box that I don't know about?  :-)

     
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    Oct 8, 2009 10:24 PM   in reply to Todd_Kopriva

    Todd_Kopriva wrote:

     

    > I would also like easy access buttons close to the timeline to make new Solids, Text, Shapes, Nulls, and Adjustment Layers, Lights and Cameras.

     

    Are you aware that theyre are keyboard shortcuts for all of these?

     

    New solid layer

    Ctrl+Y

    Command+Y

    New null layer

    Ctrl+Alt+Shift+Y

    Command+Option+Shift+Y

    New adjustment layer

    Ctrl+Alt+Y

    Command+Option+Y

    New text layer

    Ctrl+Alt+Shift+T

    Command+Option+Shift+T

    New light

    Ctrl+Alt+Shift+L

    Command+Option+Shift+L

    New camera

    Ctrl+Alt+Shift+C

    Command+Option+Shift+C

     

     

    See "Keyboard shortcuts".

    Yes, I'm aware of them, but they're not really one hand user friendly and not very easy to remember along with all the other shortcuts you use. When working in the timeline I always have one hand on the mouse and the other on the keyboard, therefore easy acces buttons would be great!

     
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    Oct 9, 2009 10:50 AM   in reply to Arivl

    >Scopes:  Yes, I know Color Finesse has them.  However, CF is quite

    >limiting in that its interface cuts you off from the rest of AE, which

    >can make it unusable for many things (matching, for example).

    >Vectorscope, multichannel histogram, and waveform monitor would be

    >great.  I'd love them all in a separate interface tab like, but separate

    >from, the effects controls, all automatically looking at whatever is in

    >the comp window at the moment.

     

    Have you checked out our Test Gear product? It gives you just what you're describing, all within standard AE-style dockable windows. Demo version is available for download.

     

    >Apparently, AE not have a 3-way color-corrector built in?  CF does, but

    >again, accessing it means essentially leaving much of AE behind.  I'd

    >love to get those three little wheels in the Effects Control window.

    >CF's "simplified interface" would be a great place to do it, but at the

    >moment, it's all text.

     

    The Color Finesse Simplified UI does have the wheels: twirl open Parameters, twirl closed HSL, and then twirl open Hue Offset and you'll see them. Curves are also available in the Simplified UI, in addition to all those *&%$! sliders. Unfortunately AE CS4 twirls everything open by default, so it can be hard to see everything that's available.

    Bob Currier

     
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    Oct 22, 2009 10:09 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    How about faster scanning of the Initializing Animation Presets sequence? It currently takes my AE an additional 30 seconds to initialize every time I launch or when I import a project into another project.  Couldn't this cached somehow?

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Oct 22, 2009 11:10 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    It would be handy to be able to choose the lenght of a composition quickly from the timeline -without the need to open the composition settings dialog box.

     


    I see two ways of doing this: one would be to have a number display similar to the CTI time display (that is located on the top left side of the timeline window) located in the right side of the timeline window. The other way could be simply giving us handles to the timeline that one could drag to adjust the composition lenght (similar to the way that adjusting layer/clip lengths work).

     
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    Oct 30, 2009 5:11 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    This may be considered a bug - but if it was abolished it would most definately be the single greates improvement Adobe could make to After Effects!

     

    Please please please Adobe - get rid of this plague of an error.

     

    After effects has been the keystone of my creative career for over a decade and I have encountered the "Unable to allocate space for a A x B image buffer" for the best part of that period.

     

    But I have always managed to get round the issue by tweaking the memory and cache settings - right through to AE CS3

     

    But now with CS4 - it has returned - and the preferences dialogue has changed - so I can't make the same adjustments - why why WHY?????

     

    And now I can't render projects that worked fine in CS3

     

    Please - can't Adobe just resolve this issue once and for all and get rid of it.

     

    Here's hoping.

     

    Casey

     
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    Oct 30, 2009 7:59 AM   in reply to Caseyscot

    Casey, we recently announced that the next major version of After Effects will be a 64-bit application. That has a lot of ramifications for getting rid of the image buffer error that you're referring to, since  a64-bit application can address as much memory as you can install. (See "Future versions of After Effects will be 64-bit only".)

     

    Regarding the changes to the Memory & Multiprocessing preferences for After Effects CS4: The changes were intended to make adjusting the preferences easier. Most people had a hard time understanding the old preferences.

     

    If you're having trouble, please bring the question over to a thread in this forum other than the wish list thread. Be sure to tell us what OS you're using, whether you've updated to After Effects CS4 (9.0.2), how much RAM you have installed, and what frame sizes you're working with (and other factors that affect RAM usage).

     

    First, check to make sure that Render Multiple Frames SImultaneously is off and RAM To Leave For Other Applications is set to a very low number. You want to give a single rendering process of After Effects all of the RAM that it can take so that it can render the frame that is giving you the error.

     
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    Nov 2, 2009 9:33 AM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    open/fold out a PreComp within a Composition as if it was a folder tree. so i can see the changes right in the already open viewport rather than having to open 2 composites. timing things in a precomp to elements of the main comp would be sooo much easier then.

    it should work just like the layers in photoshop.

     
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    Nov 8, 2009 6:19 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    Color, color, color.

    I would love to see more... wait "more?"... right now there's none at all.  I would like to see some new features which would let us choose better colors like the swatch books and the color guide from Adobe Illustrator. There's no way in AE to pick good colors and color relationships. It would be FANTASTIC if we had swatch book schemes like Illustrator's Middle Ages, Earthtones and Ancient swatches to choose from. To be able to make our own custom swatch books. And it would be mind boggling to have an AE version of Illustrator's Color Guide letting us generate colors based on a primary color and a scheme like Complimentary, Triad, Shades, etc.  Don't bring up Synthetic Aperture's Test Gear 2, that doesn't really cut it. Don't know what else to say about it. I feel like repeating myself and shouting i!. Why on earth wouldn't AE have any kind of color tools?

     
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    Nov 17, 2009 4:26 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    How about import support of RTF styled text?

     
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    Nov 17, 2009 10:02 PM   in reply to Andrew Yoole

    I have always always wanted to have an output to video from the composition window. The reason for this is to align different matts and also when I distorting images that I'm going to use as projections you need some kind of output to know what is happening. I do understand that it would only play still frames or rendered sequences in ram but this would be fine. Oh the time it would save me as at present I have to make a small distortion the render it out as a movie or still and then project it calculate how far off it is and repeat again and again.

     
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    Nov 18, 2009 2:02 AM   in reply to Todd_Kopriva

    I second that emotion. When I came to work this morning, all my renders from last night (deadline today) had failed due to this highly irritating "bug". Its just plain crazy that I cant trust the software to do what I tell it to do, dispite avalable workarounds. I don't want to babysit my render que all night. I hope Adobe is taking this seriously. I mean this issue has been around for a while and it's not like it has improved. Please, please, pretty please FIX NOW!!!!!!

     
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