iClone 4 pro – Edtech Review
|June 5, 2011||Posted by Mr Buzz under Blog, EdTech Reviews, Edtech stuff|
We loved Reallusion’s CrazyTalk Animator Pro that much we decided to venture even deeper into the world of 3D animation via the company’s ‘iClone 4 pro’. Some of the product features include 3D filmmaking, environment productions, motion & interactivity, and video effects all via instant virtual sets.
As Teachers we love tutorials – and with learning something new in mind, iClone 4 Pro provides you with some super videos in which to get started. We really appreciated this because we are new to this field of 3D character and set building. Your older students will be able to access them in order to let their ideas flourish. Nevertheless, moving into this kind of creation can be quite complex and its not for the fainthearted as ICT experience is clearly required. In saying this however, you wouldn’t buy this product if you clearly didn’t know what you were doing – but as we will explain later on: this is an engaging and accessible piece of software.
We liked the interface. Its not cluttered with complicated sub menus or complex words. The tabs at the top allow you to consider what stage, set and actor to use and the scene manager allows you to build some beautiful creations. Your students will be so proud of what they can achieve (as long as they invest time in trial and error).
Real-time render options provide a nice and easy way to experiment with ways in which to add real depth to your creations. Further advanced options like transparency, reflection and high dynamic range images provide professional looking outcomes. What must be included in this review is the absolutely amazing HDR image-based lighting. We were blown away with what can be created with this option.
You can create mythical fairytales, sci-fi backdrops, underwater scenes and whatever else your imagination can think up. The ability to create professional looking features is definitely possible and from an educational perspective we think that it fits quite nicely with our target audience of teenagers. Whilst other software is more powerful, they are more complex and that’s a key appealing aspect of iClone 4 – its accessibility. The ability to create detailed 3D characters results with the user feeling almost proud of what has been achieved – and this level of engagement is exactly what the best teachers do: engage!
Yet again, Reallusion has built lip sync technology into the software and the ability to control facial expressions by certain moves with the mouse is nothing short of brilliant. The way in which this adds depth of expression for your characters is really powerful.
Overall, we wish we had the time to get to know this software to provide an overview that it fully deserves. It allows your imagination to become reality (albeit on a PC screen). Older students, particularly those in Further Education will (as long as they have the determination to really get to grips with iClone 4 Pro) run and run and run with this terrific software.
Click here for links on Youtube.com
The RRP for the software is priced at £179.99 but its currently £128.67 on Amazon at the time of writing.