Cambridge Animation Systems has announced Animo 4.0, the newest version of their flagship cartoon animation system. Available this month from Cambridge and their distributor network, the new version includes a number of new features, greater performance and the ability to output work in Flash format. Animo 4.0 users now can reduce their Flash file output size and optimize their content for the low bandwidth of the Internet through special controls such as disabling filter nodes and disabling animation of any bitmap image. Users will also have independent control of ink lines and painted regions, as well as control over the color, width and generation of ink lines. Theres a high demand for Flash output that does not compromise the quality of the original animation, says Simon Ruffles, Cambridges marketing manager. This implementation will give producers the freedom to leverage their Animo work for presentation over the Internet. Other new features in Animo 4.0 include: VectorEditor, where the user edits vectorized drawings that are used primarily for Flash output, but can also be applied in traditional scenes to achieve a different line style; Off-peg scanning, which provides more accurate registration of scanned drawings via support for flatbed scanning without the use of a pegbar; TWAIN scanning support, where all Animo scanning applications (ScanLevel, ScanBackground and PencilTester) now support TWAIN scanner drivers as well as ISIS; Color line scanning, where drawings can now be scanned in color to provide line-color information for ink-and-paint applications; Lip-syncing with the SoundBreakdown module, which now features interactive replay of phonetic breakdowns for animators to use their own head and mouth drawings; and other enhancements such as speed improvements within the Director module. For more information visit www.cambridgeanimation.com.
Dan Sarto is Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network.