Price When Reviewed: 1400
Pros: Simple interface, with a powerful engine, intuitive workflow. Supports a wide variety of source files.
Cons: Product available as a download only.?There’s no PDF manual (all help is HTML-based), and no cross integration.
Kinemac is 3D real-time animation software that runs on Mac OS X. The software is available as a download only and suffers a slightly convoluted install procedure. After copying the application to the relevant folder it must be authorized by dropping a registration text file in the Kinemac folder. It’s no great labour, but not exactly slick. At present, there are no plans for a Windows version.
As a new piece of software with no user base, printed literature would be a massive help to anyone trying Kinemac out. It’s a shame, then, that the company has neglected to provide a downloadable PDF of the manual for those who would rather print off and have all the information easily accessible.
These minor gripes aside, once installed, Kinemac is refreshingly simple to get to grips with. Anyone who has used a timeline-based program will instantly recognize the usual conventions. The interface is split into four main areas – the Stage, Sprite, Inspector, and Bezier windows. To create animations, you can drag-&-drop image, movie, audio, and text files onto the stage window. The application supports a wide range of file formats.
You can manipulate or amend imported objects directly using keyframes in the Sprite (timeline) window. Detailed adjustment of objects is done through the Bezier window (below), which also allows you to manipulate curves.