Adobe After Effects vs. Autodesk 3ds Max

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
Adobe After Effects
Score 8.8 out of 10
N/A
Adobe After Effects allows users to create cinematic movie titles, intros, and transitions, remove an object from a clip, start a fire or make it rain, or animate a logo or character. The vendor states that with After Effects, users can apply motion-graphics and animation to any digital object.
$20.99
Per User Per Month
Autodesk 3ds Max
Score 8.6 out of 10
N/A
Autodesk offers 3ds Max, 3D modeling and rendering software for design visualization, games, and animation. The vendor states that users can produce professional-quality 3D animations, renders, and models with an efficient and flexible toolset to help create better 3D content in less time.
$235
per month per user
Pricing
Adobe After EffectsAutodesk 3ds Max
Editions & Modules
Annual Plan (Paid Monthly)
$20.99
Per User Per Month
Monthly Plan
$31.49
Per User Per Month
Annual Plan (Prepaid)
$239.88
Per User Per Year
Monthly Subscription
$235
per month per user
Yearly Subscription
$1875
per year per user
3-Year Subscription
$5625
3 years per user
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
Adobe After EffectsAutodesk 3ds Max
Free Trial
NoYes
Free/Freemium Version
NoNo
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
NoNo
Entry-level Setup FeeNo setup feeNo setup fee
Additional DetailsFlex pricing available for limited usage. Minimum plan $300 for 100 tokens. 3ds Max costs 6 tokens per day.
More Pricing Information
Community Pulse
Adobe After EffectsAutodesk 3ds Max
Considered Both Products
Adobe After Effects
Chose Adobe After Effects
[Adobe After Effects] is a beast and VEGAS Pro is just a baby when compared to Adobe. It doesn't match [Adobe After Effects] when it comes to the feature and performance it offers.
Autodesk 3ds Max
Chose Autodesk 3ds Max
Back when 3d programs were becoming more powerful and stable, 3d Studio (yes, it was 3d Studio before it was 3ds Max, more on that later) and Maya were owned by different companies. At that time, you had to
Top Pros
Top Cons
Best Alternatives
Adobe After EffectsAutodesk 3ds Max
Small Businesses
Autodesk Maya
Autodesk Maya
Score 8.1 out of 10
Onshape
Onshape
Score 9.0 out of 10
Medium-sized Companies
Blender
Blender
Score 9.2 out of 10
Onshape
Onshape
Score 9.0 out of 10
Enterprises
Adobe Animate
Adobe Animate
Score 7.8 out of 10
Rhino
Rhino
Score 9.0 out of 10
All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
Adobe After EffectsAutodesk 3ds Max
Likelihood to Recommend
7.8
(34 ratings)
8.8
(10 ratings)
Likelihood to Renew
9.2
(2 ratings)
10.0
(1 ratings)
Usability
8.6
(3 ratings)
6.0
(1 ratings)
Support Rating
9.9
(7 ratings)
10.0
(1 ratings)
User Testimonials
Adobe After EffectsAutodesk 3ds Max
Likelihood to Recommend
Adobe
Adobe After Effects is well suited for creating short video projects that require intricate animation, like 5 minute or 1-minute countdowns, credit roll-ins, outros, and video bumpers. It is also useful for creating animated elements that can be incorporated into video projects, like animated key titles. For longer videos, I would recommend using Adobe Premiere Pro instead.
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Autodesk
I've used many 3d programs I've not found any more capable or well suited for about anything you throw at it. I've had scenes with over 20million polys that I can work in just fine. It's well suited to produce absolute photorealistic renders especially when you pair it with plugins like V-Ray Render. One area where is may not be as suitable is if you have to model something in a coordinate space that is a long way from 0,0,0. Max is not double precision, so when a model is very tiny or very large or a long way from the origin, odd things occur. But, this is easily mitigated by modeling near the origin or reducing or enlarging the scene by some factor to make it not too small or too large. Then, after you are finished, you can scale it up or down by that factor again and export a perfectly scaled model for use in some other program
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Pros
Adobe
  • After Effects is great for creating motion content once and easily exporting it to various formats such as web, broadcast, GIF, etc.
  • After Effects is the industry standard for motion graphics. While I’m an Apple user and have used Motion in the past it is not as feature rich and most clients will expect you to use After Effects.
  • After Effects is great for complex UI animation. Tools like principle and Flinto are great but are quite cumbersome for complex UI animations.
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Autodesk
  • 3ds Max includes some of the inbuild modifiers which can be very good in the case of beginners.
  • 3rd party Rendering support makes 3ds Max a powerful software for rendering out realistic images.
  • Autodesk 3ds max in comparison to its rivals is lightweight and fast, also the animation case also.
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Cons
Adobe
  • I would like the Re-Link file structure to mimic Premiere.
  • I would like to see native .obj importing and manipulation.
  • I would like to see better audio editing available within Adobe After Effects. if it could be given a separate layer/panel.
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Autodesk
  • working in 2d is very frustrating and unreliable. It just lacks the precision
  • How scaling affects units (or doesn't) There needs to be a way for modifiers to address a change of scale in the object.
  • Booleans are not intuitive. Especially for architecture, creating an opening and putting a door or a window is an incredibly cumbersome process.
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Likelihood to Renew
Adobe
I will renew my use of After Effects since it's affordable and always has been reliable. They also always continue to update new features and add new things to compete with other software out there. I also like all the 3rd party plugins out there that keep my interest for the future and new toolsets and creative solutions.
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Autodesk
It satisfies 95% of my 3d visualization need. The left over 5% is handled by a few other programs. If Max just can't perform a specific task I can do that elsewhere and then bring it back to Max to finish up. But, it's rare that this occurs in my work
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Usability
Adobe
If you have a good computer setup then the program gives you no issues whatsoever. Only if you decide to run multiple tasks on a lower end unit will you then get bottlenecking which really isn't Adobe's fault to begin with. I used to have problems in the past but with newer technology, it has since been a smooth ride.
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Autodesk
This is not a 3ds Max fault, it's like any powerful software, "you have to spend time to learn it." It, like most all others as powerful, have a "learning curve" that can be steep depending on your knowledgebase. I'm glad it's not "so simple a caveman can use it" or I'd be out of business. Everyone in the world would have it and my skills would not be needed. Having said that, it's as intuitive and any other software. If you understand 3d principles, 3ds Max will not be difficult to wrap your head around. It uses normal and expected conventions
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Support Rating
Adobe
Adobe customer support is wonderful. They genuinely care about their product and the end user experience. The products they create have always been innovative and continue to improve. They have a huge chunk of the user market in their field and still strive to improve. This is such a big deal for me and other small business/organizations that need their products and don't have a large voice on our own.
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Autodesk
I have contacted support many times and have had a good experience. They have always been helpful
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Alternatives Considered
Adobe
I find Adobe After Effects to be superior to iMovie and Final Cut Pro in that I am able to do much more with the software. It isn't as limiting as the other two. I also like that it isn't an Apple product. Personally, I'm not a huge fan of Apple. There is a bigger learning curve with After Effects, but once you get the hang of it, there's really no comparison.
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Autodesk
In Autodesk 3ds Max you can do camera animation with ease, its complex in Cinema 4D. Even I think same with light setup. Setting up light is quite easy in Autodesk 3ds Max as compare to Cinema 4D. Overall Autodesk 3ds Max is less complex in compare to other 3D softwares.
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Return on Investment
Adobe
  • Adobe After Effects has a great impact on business as maximum work can be done in one software
  • To run this software you need to have good configuration system
  • Motion Graphics, 2d Animation and video editing can be done in one software
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Autodesk
  • Allows us to meet deadlines quickly - render times are minutes, not days.
  • Digs into profits due to licensing fees - just a single seat can set us back thousands.
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ScreenShots