Company: Digital Anarchy
Pros: Runs near real-time. Inexpensive.
Cons: Mac-only. Delivers nothing new. Most editors will already have these effects.
PlasmaFX is based on Mac OS X’s incredibly efficient Core Image system, which is part of what drives the operating system’s graphics engine. This allows Digital Anarchy’s latest set of plug-ins to run in near real-time (in SD) and allows for super-fast rendering. It also means that they’re Mac only.
The FCP/Motion versions are based on Apple’s FxPlug plug-in system – so require the latest versions of either: Final Cut Pro 5.1 or Motion 2.1 with the latest updates applied. They also run efficiently in After Effects – but the performance isn’t as impressive as it is in Apple’s applications.
There are 26 filters in PlamsaFX, ranging from Active Solarize and Anarchist Edge to Topology and X-Ray. There are variations on many names you’ll recognize here: from Cartoon FX and Poser Art to Bleach Bypass, Technicolor (with two- and three-pass versions) and Old Film.
In fact, you’ll probably recognize all of the plug-ins here. There’s not a single one that we haven’t seen many times before in collections from the likes of Boris FX or The Foundry – and chances are that if you’ve been editing or compositing for a while, you’ll already own equivalents to PlasmaFX’s filters.