I'm underwhelmed with it due to the fact that I can't get a RAM-Preview to play in real time, and because of the fact that Pr also has playback (dropping frames) issues, and Dynamic Link only works between equivalent versions, I won't be using the new suite for much of anything until these basic problems get fixed.
But, I have nothing to compare Ae to. I'm on Mac. What is a comparable design tool and compositor that is faster and doesn't get in the way of creativity?
Perhaps I'm in the minority but life hasn't been nearly as much doom and gloom on my system with AE2015. I do still wish Adobe would bring back the old yellow/orange text/keyframes highlight color or give us the option to define our own color - even with the brighter blue options it is still straining on the eyes.
Other than that, I've finished 2 projects with the new release so far and it's yet to crash on me - knock on wood. And navigating the timeline is noticeably faster and more responsive.
Keep at it, Adobe. Though there's still lots of work to be done, this is a step in the right direction.
This is some good critique. You put some time and effort in your post. Now, you might want to be a little more specific about what you mean by "sluggish". Then, you could also elaborate on what you mean with a "smooth, modern & fast creative environment". Like this, everybody can take your suggestions and help thinking on them!
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Nathan Clark wrote:
If this release was meant to revitalize After Effects and provide a smooth, modern & fast creative environment, Adobe has failed.
A worrisome question is how long Adobe expects this new architecture to last? Is this really going to be the core of After Effects for the foreseeable future? For an application that has felt slow and dated for several years already, perpetuating such a mediocre user experience is only going to drive users away.
I challenge Adobe to concede its failings on AE’s re-architecture and to give it another shot.
This isn't the full architecture change. This is the first step. Interactivity is now separate from rendering. This is huge, but it is just the first step.
Once the bug fix release comes out in July, it should be a much smoother experience and then we can all wait for the near future release with even more changes. Some more info is here on the page where they discuss the removal of the old and busted multiprocessing: features not available in After Effects CC 2015 (13.5) | After Effects region of interest
Also, some more info that might help you deal with some of the new changes: all about previews in After Effects CC 2015 (13.5) | After Effects region of interest
Also, for me, the snappiness in the interface and the improved expression handling DOES make this new version a joy. The fact that I know they're on the road to greater things adds to that joy.
There are several issues that make After Effects feel dated, but I’ll focus on what we expected to be addressed: responsiveness.
Responsiveness or “snappiness” is one of AE’s main shortcomings. The principal offender being mouse lag, which occurs in the viewport and the greater interface.
The below screen captures were recorded at 60fps, then interpreted at 10fps for playback.
I’ll start by demonstrating mouse lag in the viewport. For this example, let’s first take a look at performance in AE CC 2014 (18.104.22.168). In a simple scene with just one solid, mouse operations result in noticeable lag.
Moving over to AE CC 2015 (22.214.171.1247), the lag is compounded by the new architecture. Now we have the usual interface lag between the mouse and the solid’s bounding box. But additional lag is introduced between the bounding box and the actual pixels.
This behaviour extends beyond the viewport. Below is a demonstration of poor responsiveness during basic timeline manipulation.
How this gets in the way of creativity is mostly psychological. Moving a solid across screen doesn’t necessarily take more time with this lag. But the experience feels slow and unresponsive. The idea of “snappiness” is about smoothness as much as speed. UI’s that fail at responsive interactions feel dated and frustrating to work with.
Side note: The viewport demonstrations were achieved using a mouse macro recorder and “playing back” the mouse actions in both versions of After Effects. Gif versions are available here
Way to shut down the true believers! Nothing like actually showing them how utterly tiresome AE is to work with!!! Where do they find these guys...
I absolutely state this now... The next patch will not fix any of this. These guys live in cloud cuckoo land, and ignore all evidence no matter how conclusive. Your original post was spot on. Let's be frank, Adobe don't care about AE, it's not one of their core apps and has a small user base.
AE can't do even simple tasks well, import.... Slow.... Playback..... Slow.... Render... Slow... And can't even animate a solid!!! It's a complete unfunny joke. Who has time to wait around for this mythic version that will never appear!
If you want to see a lesson in corporate denial read the "known bugs" page released yesterday. They really need a new dev team right now...
We had a demo of Fusion at NAB, chalk and cheese with interactivity and ease of use. Just need to get my head back in the nodal compositing space I left in Shake! We are going to start trialling a Resolve - Fusion workflow and see if we can post some how -to's for AE users. Be good to get some direct comparisons with workflows and motion graphic jobs.
Watch this space...
This isn't the full architecture change. This is the first step.
Let me correct your spelling: First mis-step.
Responsiveness or “snappiness” is one of AE’s main shortcomings.
Absolutely! Ironically these speed changes are pretty useless since AE takes too long to think over some things elsewhere. To be fair, though, Apple screwing around with OSX as well is probably not making any developer's life easier...
Think that's hugely optimistic calling this the first mis-step..... 2014 wasn't exactly a glowing example of coding! A good example of how to blame everyone but themselves for it's poor quality!
Apple can be blamed for RAM preview issues, no doubt. How about import? Slow, unresponsive especially with large image sequences (still not shown as truncated lists), or the fact it just stops working? The collect files issue? General RAM responsiveness and not being released by AE? This was happening in Mavericks... And before. It's the only app we use that sucks the computer dry and then doesn't release memory. Rendering? Slow, unreliable and again sucks up RAM and slows everything to a crawl. If our machines are rendering C4D for instance, you can still read emails, paint in Photoshop... Pretty much do most things. Hit render on a AE comp and it's like someone stuck their hand and your computer with a fist full of poo, and starting flicking!
It is a great tactic though, release a new version which is so bad you are clambering to get back to the version which is just moderately bad compared with the absolute horror show you just falsed on your customers! Genius...
*lol* Don't spell it out too loudly or it might give someone ideas... Agree, though, it sucks. Adobe apps never before were in such bad shape... Even if there were bugs in older versions, you could at least work, but this time you can't sometimes even get the programs to launch, much less use them...
It's embarrassing on so many levels... If they had a single ounce of corporate responsibility they would withdraw this version now. Or at least offer compensation on CC subscriptions until they can get a product capable of even the simple functions it is intended for.
It would earn them some much needed respect and make us all more likely to help them out of this mess. Instead you will get denial, pointing blame somewhere else, statements about AE team size and the continued draining of the trust of users.
You can't charge for something this bad and not lose respect... Especially with a culture of burying your head in the sand and ignoring all the clear evidence in front of your face!
It's embarrassing on so many levels... If they had a single ounce of corporate responsibility they would withdraw this version now.
Won't happen. You would probably need to get millions of users to cancel their subscriptions to trigger any reaction...
Of course it won't happen, and that is why this merry-go round will continue... This has finalised our plans to move away from AE. Currently trying to get that concession from the wonderful sales team! We only want to pay for Photoshop and illustrator. They can keep the rest.... Utter junk.
It is the same on Windows with this new AE 2015 version! It is frustrating to work with.
Nathan - you definitely deserve props for taking the time to do screengrabs and for a second you had me convinced... but I decided to do a similar test - though admittedly not as thorough as yours. Also, I used shape layers instead of solids to make it a little more challenging for AE. Not sure what kind of hardware you're running AE2015 on, but on my system, the UI performance has been outstanding. I'm running a dual x5690, 48GB RAM, windows 8.1, quadro 5000 with dual 27" monitors.
I do notice on even yours, dc, that the box lags behind the control points movement. I have discontinued my CC subscription since the blue-keyframe debacle and removal of certain export functionality, so I am back to CS5.5. So maybe this was introduced with the CC's, but when I move a box (or just about anything for that matter) the contents move in-sync with the handles. There is zero lag and the interface (up through at LEAST CS6 and I believe CC) was completely butter smooth.
So I don't understand posts like the OP's when they say:
... After Effects had become archaic in its UX; with a slow and glitchy working environment that hampered creativity. Addressing this issue was almost unanimously a user priority.
I never experienced this with After Effects ... ever. It ALMOST NEVER crashed, was very responsive, and a joy to use for the most part. Was this sluggishness on previous version just on Mac's or something? When it became the opposite of this was the introduction of the blue color-scheme, etc. (speaking of Macs.)
This performance is mirrored across macs and projects. Not an amazing performance increase for months of work recoding...
One slight caveat to these results, there seems to be a particular issue on the 5k iMacs with displaying the viewport at 200%. Obviously viewing HD at 100% on a 5k monitor is not great so you need to zoom it up.
This seems to be the cause of the black flash frames and erratic playback.
It works fine in 2014 zooming 200%, playback is not effected at all.
It's clear by Nathan's screen recordings that he's using OSX. But what wasn't clear and would be helpful for the Adobe AE team in addressing his otherwise we'll-thought concerns are the specifics of his system.
[personal attack removed by moderator]
Almost as charming as implying he was lying for some reason....
your words, not mine. I was actually quite impressed by his well-articulated concerns.
So impressed "he almost had you convinced". People don't take time out their days to come on here for fun. The least you could do is show some respect, that is the exact performance we also get in the viewport.
He is showing performance on a mac xxxxxxxxx ...
Pay at least a little attention otherwise you are just wasting everyone's time.
I won't resort to ad hominem (don't need to of course), Orchard, but I will point out the irony and hypocrisy in your statement ...
If you would CAREFULLY read my post (or "pay at least a little attention"), you would know that is NOT AT ALL the question I asked, or reason for my post. I know HE is using a Mac/OSX. But the basis of Nathan's entire original post was that "... After Effects had become archaic in its UX; with a slow and glitchy working environment that hampered creativity. Addressing this issue was almost unanimously a user priority."
As I mentioned, this was not my experience ... at all. (Nor that of quite a few people I know using AE on the Win OS). Quite the opposite in fact. So, my question was, IN GENERAL (since he was indicating this was the feeling of a lot of users, not just HIS system(s) ), was this perhaps an issue on Macs? Perhaps some kind of incompatibility between as OSX change and AE. (It's not like that hasn't happened before.)
Hope that is clear enough now. So, could you (or anyone) perhaps address my actual question please? Thanks.
It is... As you can see from my reply you choose to ignore for the chance at a witty retort.
There is at least one clear mac only issue with playback on iMac 5k's. Screen tearing, black flash frames and poor playback and audio due to viewing the viewport at 200%. This is also seen on Mac Pro 2012's with similar lagging viewports you have shown and we have replicated.
The one fly in the ointment is the guy further up saying he is getting it on Windows, but not enough info from him.
There has also been the well documented Yosimite RAM handling issue which has been widely discussed on here, and was at least partially a reason to rewrite RAM preview.
You can kind of see why it's hard for Adobe to localise these issues with so many conflicting reports....
I was all set to write it off to Mac OS issue but it does seem some Windows users are reporting similar issues...
And just to be clear I was answering Nathan's original post and his quite clear evidence. Supplying actual case studies of our own.
There didn't seem to be too much point in replying to someone with no point of reference as they aren't even using the software in this discussion.
Woah, I never imagined I'd stir up such heated passionate responses.
I should have included this in my original post, sorry. I've experienced these ongoing issues on 4 machines I've used in the last couple of years, all under OSX:
- 2012 Mac Pro with Nvidia GTX 970 (work daily driver)
- 2013 Macbook Pro core i7 (work laptop)
- 2008 Mac Pro (old work daily driver)
- and a high spec X79 Hackintosh (home)
Also, a colleague of mine uses a fully specced mac pro 2013 in the grading suite and has had similarly janky experience inside After Effects. (Luckily for him, his daily software is outside Adobe's umbrella and performs beautifully I hear.)
These are all relatively powerful machines. It's clear that whatever drives AE's interface (on OSX) is dated and not making optimal use of the hardware. You can clearly see the super slow redraw rates in my earlier screen captures. Woeful.
I don't know if the problem is limited to OSX. Regardless, if this core rewrite is all Adobe's got… then I'm just about ready to abandon After Effects all together.
Nathan, I'm not sure what's going on in your case with the laggy performance. You say it's just a basic scene with one solid? If I make that the performance does not look at all like what you are showing. There is no lag, no responsiveness issues. There might be in bigger comps but certainly not in an empty comp with just a solid.
I wonder if it might be a Mac/OSX problem? I'm on a PC and not even a super high-end one. I'll try see what it's like next time I'm using it on a Mac.
Bumping this. AE's UX continues to be rubbish despite several updates. Such a continued let down.
AE's UX continues to be rubbish despite several updates. Such a continued let down.
I'm sorry to hear your finding the interface so frustrating to work with. I find that it's served me well since AE 1.5. It was a little annoying to not have the Time-Vary Stopwatch at first, but AE 2.0 took care of that.
As far as the UX looking dated goes, I used to make fun of how Avid Media Composer looks the same today as it did back in 1997. Until, of course, Apple did what they did to Final Cut Pro a little more than five years ago. When your livelihood depends on an application, there is a very, very strong argument to be made for consistency in an application's appearance and feature set.
… then I'm just about ready to abandon After Effects all together.
I have to ask: what would you use instead?
(Oh, yeah, they're all gone.)
But in all seriousness...
I guess part of that answer depends on what you're using AE for in the first place, right? Motion graphics, 2D animation, character animation, DVD menu design, Blu-Ray menu design, composing, color correction, video graphics, title design, 3D finishing, digital signage... what am I missing?
I'm guessing by dated he means slow and unresponsive... No multi processing, slow gui, slow rendering, slow playback, can't import image sequences over SANs! So yes I would suggest using any of that software over this Frankensteins child of a program!