I'm currently creating a portfolio for a master's program whose software arsenal includes "Stop Motion Pro" for those who choose stop motion animation as the medium for their thesis. I was wondering if anyone on the site has used this software, and if so, what your thoughts are about its quality. I appreciate the feedback.
Here's a link for the software, if you're curious:
I used Stop Motion Pro on my Windows PC for years. It was very good, and did everything I needed, including being able to shoot 2 sets of images for Frontlight-Backlight and for stereo 3d. But they were never able to release a native Mac OSX version. I had used a Mac G5 at work for post production, and when I left I bought a Mac Pro (2008) to use with After Effects/TV Paint/Final Cut Pro. I kept using the PC and Stop Motion Pro in the studio for my frame grabbing, but eventually it died, so I moved my Mac into the studio and used Dragonframe, and got a later iMac for post production and internet. Both do much the same things and I am happy with either one, but I only have Macs now so I use the software that runs on OSX.
I never used the latest version of StopMotion Pro, Eclipse, I had the first version and up to the one before Eclipse came out. So I can't say if it is very different to use. I don't know if it has the lighting and motion control functions that DF has, but I never use those anyway so it wasn't an issue. But my feeling is that SMP is no longer able to afford to do as many updates, as it has lost most of its market share. I know the guys who developed it are no longer working full time on SMP as they were for a while, they have day jobs and just do it as a sideline. Dragonframe has become industry standard.
I looked at the website, and I see they are keeping up pretty well with support for newer Canon DSLR models, including the R series mirrorless cameras.
There is firmware for the R and RP that gives a much higher resolution live view (1920 x 1280), which I would benefit from when doing very small moves. (My EOS 7d manages 1056 x 704 which is better than many.) I know the firmware works with DF, Canon even mentions it, which is surprising. Camera makers are mostly unaware of how stop motion animators use their still cameras. I think that indicates how much DF has become the industry standard. The firmware may work with SMP too, but I don't know.
This is extremely helpful; thank you so much for elaborating and giving me the lay of the land when it comes to the details. I'll be using a Nikon for capturing frames (a gift from a family member), and admittedly, since I am only a beginner I am not entirely familiar with much of the terminology you are using. However, I'm confident that as I gain experience, this will most certainly come in handy. The University I'm going to listed Stop Motion Pro as the software their labs came equipped with, so I wanted to get an idea if I should begin practicing with the program, or go with Dragonframe. Again, thank you so much for the information; I will most certainly apply it the best I can as I move forward.
I had a conversation going with Poul at Stop Motion Pro if it would be possible to buy a national wide licens for use at schools in Denmark. And we went quite far with it. I made a UI incorporating the logo of the Danish film institute, but the project was put down, others went with the cultural funds.
But later I learned that Poul succeeded to sell a country wide license to schools in New Zealand so some good came out of the efforts after all :)
I liked SMP and I wonder if Poul actually bought magpie pro from Miquel Grinberg the lipsync software is very much the same. I can recommend that!
But if you're in doubt of what to buy - you could give Tahoma2D a chance it's freeware. And can do everything you need to begin with!! And a hell lot more....
Requires a canon DSLR - so put the money in camera, lens and lights for a start.