Good things come to those who wait?

Fusion 7 is close to a release. It will go beyond Nuke in some aspects (great stereo tools bundled for free and an impressive-looking scripting console/debugger), finally catch up in other parts (a modular GUI and UV unwrapping in 3D space) and contain lots of fixes and overdue improvements.

Fusion? You know, the compositing software next to Nuke?

Fusion has always beaten Nuke in terms of speed and versatility in a broadcast / commercials area. But eyeon software‘s weird and cryptic marketing, dated website, their unwillingness to communicate a roadmap combined with the fact that Fusion hasn’t been updated for close to two years has pissed off their user base and made most of the industry switch to the software that initially only high end VFX shops were using. There they can profit from a large freelancer base, lots of talented R&D people, 3rd party training and a company that is upfront about future developments and schedules.

And if you’re doing high end VFX you’re just served well with Nuke, no matter how much faster Fusion would be. The motion graphics crowd on the other hand is still served well by AfterEffects. By now, Fusion’s at the bottom of a downward spiral of “less users – less interest of 3rd parties – less tutorials and plugins – less users” that I think is hard to recover from. Eyeon’s latest efforts to tap into the Avid community seem to bear fruits though but the GUI and feature needs of those folks clearly clash with regular compositing artists.

But here’s eyeon software, back from the dead so to speak, with at least a changelog and some videos about what we can expect in Fusion 7. I’ll talk more about the release once I’ve put it to the test myself.

what's newFor now, the “What’s new” PDF instills the feeling that eyeon’s marketing is still bonkers. They start up with the tiniest change. The cool stuff is at the end of the PDF. And it actually touts the standard multi-document (MDI) style of Windows applications as a new feature. Seriously folks, Fusion has had that interface for years and nobody loves it because a crash on one comp pulls down the whole application and nobody has the screen space to lay out two comps side-by-side anyways. This reeks of “grasping at straws” to inflate the feature list which wouldn’t be necessary at all. Fusion 7 promises new 3D tools, UV unwrapping, (screen space) Ambient Occlusion and many GUI improvements and it will include Dimension by default – eyeon’s stereoscopic and optical flow toolset that gives Occula a run for its money. It also seems as if I can update some of my Fuses and macros with new API features.

Stay tuned for a thorough review of different aspects of the Fusion update.

Tags: ,


  • Marcus says:

    I’d love to hear more of your thoughts and in-depth review of fusion 7, and how it compares/differs from nuke. Especially with the newly revealed dramatically altered pricing model.

  • Stefan says:

    Hi Marcus! Since I am probably as clueless as anybody concerning the future that Blackmagic Design has for Fusion, I have refrained from overanalyzing Fusion 7. Maybe they’ll give it a dramatic makeover by next NAB, merging features with DaVinci? Will they compete with Nuke? Or rather with AfterEffects? Who knows! So while I think Fusion 7 as it was released by eyeon wouldn’t have made a dent in the Foundry’s business (it has hardly any real improvements to the 2D toolset and the 3D renderer might have been rewritten but with GPU-accelerated physically correct raytracers on the market and the new Element3D for AfterEffects it feels outdated already) I think it’s no use lamenting that too much. The future of Fusion seems bright but too uncertain for any long discussions from me. I’ve only got so much hours in a day 🙂

  • Mark says:

    Hi Stefan, love the tutorials! Just tried your 3point-imageplane script in F7 and it does nothing, works OK in 6 though, any ideas?

  • Stefan says:

    Hi Mark! That’s probably due to the new Lua interpreter in Fusion 7. It no longer accepts the syntax “for x in something do”. I’ll need to update my scripts… in the meantime, you can try doing it yourself: replace both lines that read “for i,t in toollist do” with “for i,t in ipairs(toollist) do”. That should fix it.