Effect3D Studio Review

Not for a pro...or anyone else

Submitted by FRC James on Sat, 2007-10-13 17:28.
Author's Product Rating:
Ease of Use: 
The lowest price: 89.95$
You can buy it at RegNow for that price.
Light, quick loading; Simple good looking interface; Many pre-scripted effects;
Cannot resize tiny window; Menus will take a day to learn what they mean; Lack of documentation; Very little capability; Buggy

First allow me to introduce myself. I work in an engineering field and use computers 18 hours out of the day. At work I use 3D CAD and other similar software. In my free time I have done freelance graphic designing and website development. I also am a member of a local robotics club...etc. In other words, I am the quintessence of "geek."

The first thing you will notice when starting up the application, is an absolutely tiny view port and workspace. I spent a good 5 minutes trying to find a corner to stretch, and upon failing, spent another 5 searching for a menu or configuration option to allow me to enlarge the window. However, there appears to be no such option, a huge drawback for me especially, along with most other users.

Using the layout will only take a few minutes to get used to, but it will be a frustrating time. The entire interface uses symbols instead of worded menus or options. Albeit, it does look nice, but waiting a second over every symbol for a tooltip is a pain. There are keyboard shortcuts to most of the functions, which greatly speed things along once you learn them.

Learning Curve
While the software greatly mimics Swift3D and other low-cost effects generators, it is just as confusing and slow to learn as Adobe After Effects. Most of the effects are pre-scripted, as are the shapes, textures, and just about everything else. It took me an evening of tinkering to successfully learn how to create custom effects.

Output Quality
The effects created in the end can look nice; however, they rarely look as good as the examples. In comparing the time it took to create a rocket ship taking off in Effect3D to the time I would expect the same thing to take in Blender 3D, I was wholly disappointed. Special textures tend to be jumpy and shading is marginal.

One Last Drawback
The software is also slightly buggy. For example, if you hit open project twice, it will instantly crash the application.


It was a good idea to try to consolidate the features of many 3D design programs into a small light app, but Reallusion has failed miserably with Effect3D. Don't spend the money and go look for an open source app.