Sunday, August 27th, 2017 Posted by Jim Thacker

Flowbox releases Flowbox 1.5

Flowbox has released Flowbox 1.5, a big update to its rotoscoping software, adding the option to track or view roto shapes individually, plus the option to export shapes to After Effects.

The update also introduces a number of workflow and performance updates, including support for multi-threaded caching and background rendering, and a new LiveQC system for inspecting work close up.

An intelligent, artist-friendly roto tool
Released in 2016 after several years in alpha, Flowbox was one of last year’s most interesting new products.

Developed by a team including former staff of Poland’s Alvernia Studios, it includes a well-thought-out set of roto drawing and animation tools, and an intelligent ripple editing system.

The software is now in use at studios including broadcast animation firm Awesome, Inc and VFX houses NoLabel and Real Image Production.

New in Flowbox 1.5: track or display roto shapes individually
To that, Flowbox 1.5 adds the option to track roto shapes individually, plus the option to isolate individual shapes or groups of shapes in the viewport, along with the corollary – the option to make shapes invisible.

In addition, roto shapes can now be exported to After Effects as well as Nuke.

There update also adds LiveQC: a new system for checking fine details on roto work displaying a close-up of relevant part of the frame in a separate viewport, shown at 00:40 in the video above.

The display is automatically stabilised, and can be panned and zoomed independently.

Workflow improvements and performance boosts
The update also introduces a number of workflow improvements, including the option to create custom names for nodes in the node graph; and to adjust lifetime properties for shapes from the timeline.

The software also now supports multi-threaded caching to speed up loading and playback of footage, along with multi-threaded background rendering near the current frame.

Flowbox doesn’t put a figure on the speed boost, but at 00:10 in the video, you can see 130 2K frames loading in in a few seconds.

Due in future updates: integrated mocha planar tracking, B-splines
In addition, Flowbox has licensed Imagineer Systems’ mocha SDK, the planar tracking technology also used in tools like HitFilm Pro, and aims to complete integration work “in the next [few] months”.

Support for B-splines is also planned for the next release.

Pricing and availability
Flowbox 1.5 is available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. It is rental-only, with prices starting at $46/month.

At the time of posting, Flowbox is also offering a 50% discount on annual subscriptions: you can find more details, including the offer code, via the link below.

Read an overview of the new features in Flowbox 1.5 in Flowbox’s newsletter

Read a complete list of new features in the online changelog