The January 2018 and October 2017 releases of After Effects (version 15.x) roll out exciting new features for visual effects artists, graphic editors, and animators. Read on to know about a quick introduction to the list of new features and enhancements introduced in this release.
For a summary of features introduced in earlier releases of After Effects CC, see Feature summary | Earlier releases.
After Effects can now import the following video formats:
- ARRI ALEXA Mini MXF/ARRIRAW: You can import footage shot by ARRI ALEXA Mini camera in MXF/ARRIRAW format (ARRIRAW codec in an MXF container file) into After Effects.
- HEVC (H.265) QuickTime: You can import HEVC codec footage in QuickTime (.mov) format such as footage shot by iPhone or iPad with iOS 11 into After Effects.
After Effects maintains audio sync when you play or export a footage recorded with a variable frame rate such as a video shot on mobile phone. If there is a significant difference between the video and audio frame rates, maintaining audio sync may cause variable frame rate footage to stutter.
If you want a smooth playback, you can choose if After Effects preserves audio sync with the following steps:
- Select footage in the Project panel.
- Select File > Interpret Footage > Main.
- Click More Options.
- In the dialog, set Variable Frame Rate Mode to Preserve Audio Sync (default) or Smooth Video Motion.
- Click OK.
You can only use the variable frame rate audio sync feature for footage in an MPEG-4 (.mp4) container. If you use variable frame rate MPEG-4, H.264, or HEVC/H.265 footage inside a QuickTime (.MOV) container, you can sync audio by importing the footage as an MPEG file:
- In the Import dialog, set Enable to All Files, and set Format to MPEG.
- Select the QuickTime file and click Open (macOS) or Import (Win).
For smooth audio sync, make sure that the frame rate data is accurate.
This release provides fixes to a host of issues. For more information, see List of bug fixes in the After Effects CC 2018.0 (January 2018) Release.
- The Create VR Environment and Extract Cubemap tools now reduces GPU memory use by generating the intermediate cubemap in 3:2 format instead of 4:3 format, if the Use Edge Blending option is disabled. This allows 6K VR (monoscopic) workflows possible at medium quality on GPU with only 4GB of memory.
- Third-party effects no longer use the SmartFX API to qualify for GPU acceleration via the Mercury GPU acceleration API.
- When color management is enabled, JPEG, PNG, PSD, and TIFF and other still-image format footage are now assigned the sRGB IEC61966-2.1 color profile if there is no color profile embedded in the footage.
- The Set Poster Frame button in the Essential Graphics panel is now named Set Poster Time. If you press the button, it only sets the time of the composition from which the poster frame is rendered. The poster frame is not rendered when you press the button, it is rendered when you export the Motion Graphics template.
Import JSON data files into After Effects to drive interactive animations inside the application. The JSON file format is flexible and can contain static data easily represent database such as election statistics, survey results, or weather reports. MGJSON can be created and imported for time-based sampled data from data sources such as fitness trackers, telemetry, and motion capture. These data files can be used as footage, to create animations, pie charts, sliders, or create high-quality motion graphics in After Effects.
To learn more, see Data-driven animation.
Change the way you work with keyboard-driven editing with the new visual keyboard shortcut editor. You can assign shortcuts to keys to suit your requirement and simplify the keyboard-driven editing process.
To learn more, see Visual keyboard shortcut editor.
To learn more, see Expression access to path points on masks, shapes, and brush strokes.
Create Nulls From Paths panel enables you to create expression-driven animations without having to write expressions yourself. The panel creates nulls for each path and shape point. This script automates the linking of these nulls using the new expression access to paths points and creates interactive animations.
To learn more, see Create Nulls From Paths panel.
Premiere Pro does not require After Effects to be installed on the same computer to render most Motion Graphics templates exported from After Effects. However, there are certain requirements to render without After Effects. You can confirm on export that your template meets the requirements.
Motion Graphics templates now have scripting access.
To learn more, see Motion Graphics templates.
Support for Team Projects 1.0 includes various improvements to auto-save functionality and other improvements.
- You can now browse through the auto-save versions of your project in Team Projects.
- You can change an earlier auto-save version to the current version of a Team Project.
- You can create a Team Project from an auto-save version.
- Team Projects in After Effects now includes Sync status.
- You can now assign collaborator badges from the Toolbar.
To learn more, see Team Projects New features summary.
Maxon CINEMA 4D Lite, which is included with After Effects, has been updated to version R19. Changes include:
Viewport OpenGL enhancements, BodyPaint 3D now uses OpenGL for painting, Updated Spline Tools, Live Link, Take System, Parallax Effect, Vertex Color tag support, and Import Alembic 1.6.1 and FBX 2017.1 files.
To learn more, see Cinema 4D and Cineware.
You can use the new text input improvements to enter text in text layers more efficiently. The text improvements include:
- Switch between right-left and left-to-right text direction
- Font ligature and Hindi digits support
- Simplified Text Engine options to support the new character and paragraph options
To learn more, see Creating and editing text layers.
The Font menu in the Character panel now includes a preview of the fonts. Along with the preview, the new Font menu also allows you to:
- Set fonts as favorites, and show only your favorite fonts.
- Show only fonts downloaded from Typekit.
- Choose the style for the font family such as Regular, Italic, Bold, Light, and Oblique.
To learn more, see Font menu.
After Effects has made it easy to get you started with your first project with the new getting started experience. A new Start screen helps you speed through the project setup process so you can start animating right away. The Composition panel now displays buttons for creating a composition; or creating a composition from footage. You can directly click one of the buttons to get the work going.
The Import Footage dialog has a new Create Composition option, which automatically adds the footage you import to a new composition.
- The After Effects UI uses a new Adobe Clean font.
- After Effects offers easy identification of shy layers (layers with shy switch enabled). Shy layers are represented by a bold line in between visible layers when the Hide Shy layer option is enabled.
- Mercury Transmit video preview in After Effects supports 10-bits per channel color output when using 10-bit capable preview hardware, like the AJA Io 4K. On Windows, you can also use a secondary monitor for 10-bit color preview if the GPU and monitor of the machine support that color depth.
- The Show Start Screen When Opening a Project option in General menu has been removed.
- Video footage from ARRI, RED, or Sony cameras once again retains custom source settings when exchanged with the latest version of Premiere Pro CC.
- After Effects no longer automatically installs Character Animator CC. You can install Character Animator from the Creative Cloud desktop application along with other desktop applications.