20 Best Free 3D Animation Software 2021

| September 24, 2019

updated on May 7, 2021 at 10:58 am

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Animation is one of the most prominent visual art forms of the modern era. An animator needs to understand the composition of motion and rendering tools as animation requires a profound knowledge about 2D and 3D models. The main point is to convey the message and have the aptitude to tell stories.

In this article, we offer you an overview of the 3D animation programs available in the market. In case you are more inclined to traditional programs, we have included 2D animation programs.

Here is a compilation of 15 best free options of animation software programs, including 2D and 3D animations for Windows and MAC.

18 Best 3D Animation Software with Motion Capture and Keyframe Animation 2021

Product Name 3D Animation Software Price Free Trial Beginner’s Friendly OS
Blender Blender is free 3D animation software for PC Available Tutorials available on its website regarding how to use the software.  Mac OS X and Windows
Powtoon Price starts at about ₹1135 per month   Available Powtoon 3D animation software for beginners offers step by step video tutorial over how to get started.    Windows, Android, iPhone/iPad, Mac, Web-based
Source Filmmaker Free 3D animation software   Available In the beginning it is going to be tough but with time and practice, you can master the skills required for using this free 3D animation software. Windows (Steam)
Autodesk Maya Pricing plans start at ₹11,065 per month   Available   Auto Desk Maya offers a powerful 3D package, which is not very easy to learn.    Windows, macOS X, RHEL, and Fedora.
Toon Boom Harmony Pricing starts at ₹925 per month 21-day free trial Toon Boom has been designed for professionals in the field of animation and has industry standards attached to it.  Windows, macOS X, Web  
K-3D K-3D is free 3D animation software for Mac.   Available Built on popular rendering motor ‘Motorman’, K-3D is good free 3D animation software for beginners also. Windows, macOS, source code (for developers)  
VideoScribe by Sparkol   Monthly Plan starts at ₹1245   7-day free trial Short video tutorials available on the website of the software for turning a blank canvas into beautiful animation. Web-based, iOS, Android, Windows, macOS X  
Biteable Premium plan for around ₹570 a month.  Unavailable Biteable is simple to use and absolutely beginner friendly. Online, macOS X, Windows  
KeyShot KeyShot is free 3D animation software for beginners.   Available KeyShot is not only easy but also the fastest 3D rendering animation software.   Cloud, SaaS, Web, macOS X Windows  
OpenToonz     Free 3D animation software Available OpenToonz is beginner friendly 2D animation software.   Windows, mac OS X  
Animaker The Startup plan starts at about ₹1350 per month    Free plan is available for individual users.     Animaker software is easy to use and end users can take help of video tutorials to further ease the learning curve. Cloud, SaaS, Web
Synfig Studio   Free 3D animation software for beginners.   Available   Synfig Studio offers professional edition for developing high quality animation content. It is more friendly for those with the prior knowledge of animation making software for pc. Windows, Linux, and macOS X    
Pencil2D Pencil2D is a free animation software for beginners Available Pencil2D is simple in design and easy to use. You also got access to multiple instructional videos for learning how to use the software. Windows, Linux, and macOS X      
Toontastic   Toontastic is an easy to use free 3D animation software solution   Available Toontastic is a story telling application, specially designed for kids. It’s a great 3D animation software for beginners.  Android; iOS  
Animation Desk   Free 3D animation software Available Animation Desk has an intuitive interface with good number of pencil sketching and pencil test animation tools that make it one of the best 3D animation software for beginners. Android, iOS, Mac and Windows
Aurora 3D Animation Maker   It’s a free animation software for PC with 3 paid support plans based on the number of units. Available This animation software for PC is beginner friendly. Windows 7,8,10 (32-bit and 64-bit) & Mac OS  
Mixamo Free animation software for PC   Available Ideal animation software for professional game developers. Windows and Mac  
Adobe After Effects   Buy the software at a price of around Rs 31109 per year on Techjockey. Available for a seven-day period   Adobe After Effects offers video tutorial support under two different categories-   Experienced Beginners   Select the Beginners option for learning the tricks of the trade.    Windows 7/10 (64-bit) and Mac OS version 10.13, 10.14, 10.15
Rive Two paid plans are available.
Yearly plan at Rs 1030 and a monthly plan for Rs 1545
AvailableRive is a powerful animation app preferred mostly by developers and designers. There are good number of video tutorials available to help beginners understand how to use the product. Windows
Daz StudioDaz Studio animation app for PC is available for free of charge. AvailableDaz Studio offers fast animation processes that are more ideal for professionals and experienced users. Windows 7, 8, 10 & Vista (32 bit and 64 bit). It also supports Mac OS X 10.6 and above for 32 bit as well as Mac OS X 10.7 and above 64 bit

Nowadays most animation software is compatible with multiple devices. PCs, with operating systems such as Windows and Linux, are compatible with most of the best animation software. Here are some of the animation software solutions that are compatible with PCs.

  • Blender

animation apps for pc
#1 of 18 Best Free Animation Software for PC 2021

Best for sculpting, rigging and scripting

Blender animation is a 3D animation software, open-source and free in nature. It is comprised of critical tools like simulation, modelling, video editing, motion tracking, compositing and rigging for making 3D animations. Inbuilt also are these options for animation pipelines in 2D format.

Aside from tools for rotating camera at 360 degrees, panning and tracking tilting, there are also available in Blender features for doing object tracking. The Python API helps with customizing the user interface for quick navigation even while you work on different projects.

Blender has been created in such a manner that both beginners and expert animators can work on it effortlessly. 

Key Features:

  1. High-end production path tracer for realistic rendering
  2. Designed for powerful animation
  3. Industry-standard realistic simulation
  4. Customizable user interface.

Pros

  1. Blender is apt for animation and has quality skinning, fluid simulation, smoke simulation, rigging, soft body simulation, particle simulation, and match moving features
  2. Video editing and composition are also be performed seamlessly in Blender
  3. Develop video games, with the help of Blender’s integrated game engine 
  4. Perhaps one of the biggest pros of Blender is its addons: this software is seamlessly customizable. 

Cons

  1. With so many incredible features, Blender can sometimes be overwhelming 
  2. Like other advanced animation software, it takes some learning and training when it comes to getting the hang of Blender. 

Pricing: Blender is a free and open source 3D animation software.

Platforms: Windows, macOS X. 

  • Powtoon

Best for doing advanced animations like CGI animation

animation apps for pc
#2 of 15 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Powtoon is a web-based animation video and presentation software, which provides animators a cloud-based platform on which they can create animations for several different purposes such as online advertisements, presentations, informative videos, video guides, tutorials, and manuals.

This 3D animation maker online has a user-friendly interface with the help of which animations can be created and shared easily. This free animation maker also provides features to create, save, and share animated videos with the help of Google Drive. Powtoon animation software provides various presets and tools such as clips, images, voice-overs, soundtracks, and sound effects to assist animators in different projects.

Key Features:

  1. Download completed videos as MP4
  2. Privacy Control
  3. 24×7 Priority Support
  4. Commercial Use Rights
  5. Third-Party Resell Rights
  6. Upload Custom Fonts
  7. Advanced Animation
  8. Royalty-Free Libraries

Pros

  1. Easy to use
  2. Produces very professional looking videos.
  3. Excellent tool for presentations, automatic storage, easy handling
  4. Easy to use
  5. A lot of tools and features available.

Cons

  1. The free version can be updated to include new features
  2. Interface can be worked upon further

Pricing: Powtoon pricing has a free plan and four paid yearly subscription options: Starter at about ₹1135 per month, Pro at about ₹1348 per month, Pro+ at about ₹4186 per month, and Agency at about ₹7025 per month.

Platforms: Windows, Android, iPhone/iPad, Mac, Web-based

  • Source Filmmaker

best animation software for pc
#3 of 15 Best Free Animation Software for PC 2021

Best for making animation VFX films or comedy sketches with characters 

This is one of the most exciting 3D animation programs available on Steam game engine. This free animation maker lets animators create a movie inside the game engine. This free animation software for windows uses all the different assets present in the game. So that the assets of the game can be configured by SFM in the movie and vice versa.

Key Features:

  1. Instant rendering and preview
  2. Completely free to download
  3. Manages entire workflow needed to make a movie into one single system
  4. Virtual movie set with lighting, characters, props and cameras

Pros

  1. Easier to learn
  2. Effects and lighting are already there and easy to set up
  3. Has a steam workshop

Cons

  1. Software needs to be updated as it is based on the source engine
  2. Since it is a 32-bit best animation app for PC, it is prone to crashes
  3. Effects, maps, props and characters are of low-resolution
  4. Limited support and online guides

Source Filmfare Pricing: It’s a free 3D animation software for beginners.

Platforms: Windows (Steam)

  • Autodesk Maya

best animation software for pc
#4 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for doing powerful texturing and simulation

3D animation software Maya is one of the leading free animation making software for PC in the market with industry-standard animation quality. Maya is best used for adding animation and visual effects into commercial movies. After attending a basic course, using the software is much easy and hassle-free. Maya 3D animation software is for not just commercial movies but also video games, tv series, etc. 

Key Features:

  1. Inbuilt procedural effects
  2. Readymade graphs
  3. Bifrost Fluids
  4. Interactive hair grooming
  5. Deep adaptive liquid simulation
  6. Bifrost Ocean Simulation System
  7. Maya n Cloth
  8. Bullet Physics
  9. Cached Playback

Pros

  1. Maya with its free form approach for 3D modelling helps with applying modelling layers in a hassle-free manner.
  2. Modelling organic characters and rigging can be completed with ease using built-in poly tools set in Maya.
  3. It also provides Paint Effects, which lets you make 3D shapes by drawing free hand. 
  4. Fast and seamless rendering is also one of the biggest pros in Maya.

Cons

  1. The dreaded learning curve of 3D. It’s here in Maya, too. 
  2. The node editor can be cumbersome to work with at times
  3. Scene hierarchy needs more work. 

3D Animation Software Price: Maya is free animation maker for students and educators. For other animators, Maya also offers a free trial for these plans; Monthly at ₹11,065, for 1 year at ₹87,668 and for 3 years at ₹2,36,619

Platforms: Windows, macOS X, RHEL, and Fedora.

  • Toon Boom Harmony

3d animation maker
#5 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for drawing 2D animations

Toon Boom Harmony is a user-friendly 3D animation software for beginners and pros that helps create art pieces, storyboards and short animated clips. Although the software might look complex in the beginning, it provides a gamut of different tools to explore creative roads. It offers vectors as well as bitmap tools for projects.

Key Features:

  1. Revolutionary vector and bitmap drawing technology – Brush Engine
  2. Advanced colour palettes and paint options
  3. 2D and 3D integration to make professional animation
  4. Cut-out animation tools
  5. Traditional paperless animation.

Pros

  1. It provides a plethora of different drawing and animation tools
  2. Recording and audio editing is not possible

Cons

  1. Due to the multitude of tools and features, Toon Boom can take some time and training to get used to
  2. Glitches occur if your computer software is not updated enough.

3D Animation Software Price: Toon Boom harmony provides 21 days free trial after which, it offers three annual plans – Harmony Essentials at about ₹925 per month, Harmony Advanced at ₹2350 per month, and Harmony Premium at ₹4330 per month.

Platforms: Windows, macOS X, Web.

Best Free 3D Animation Software for Mac

MAC is considered to be the ideal device for animation due to its robust configuration and seamless rendering capabilities. In fact, some of the top Hollywood film production houses use 3D animation software for MAC for their animation requirements. Here are some free animation software solutions for MAC / iOS.

  • K-3D

3d animation maker
#6 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for 3D modelling and animation

K-3D is a 3D-modelling and animation making software that combines built-in plugins with a visualization pipeline architecture to provide a flexible yet powerful platform for animation artists. This free 3D animation software allows users to create unique combinations in their work.

K-3D offers several features to make an artist’s work as easy as possible.

Key Features:

  1. An advanced undo/redo function
  2. Properties that can be adjusted interactively
  3. A node-based visualization pipeline.

Pros

  1. It provides a robust pipeline architecture
  2. Provides a plethora of inbuilt plug-ins

Cons

  1. UI can be improved upon
  2. New updates would enhance the experience.

Pricing: It’s a free 3D animation software for Mac.

Platforms: Windows, macOS, source code (for developers)

  • VideoScribe by Sparkol

VideoScribe by Sparkol Image
#7 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for drawing whiteboard animations 

VideoScribe by Sparkol is one of the best whiteboard animation software programs available in the market. VideoScribe 3D animation software for Mac offers users efficient tools to create, upload, and edit videos with the help of its cloud-based services that can be accessed from anywhere.

Key Features:

  1. Premium images
  2. Import music & fonts
  3. Work offline
  4. Save project online
  5. Record voice-overs
  6. Image library
  7. Publish to web
  8. Video resolution options
  9. Royalty-free music collection

 Pros 

  1. Every option gives you access to the full program
  2. Option to purchase the program outright
  3. Simple five-step interface with many DIY features
  4. Unlimited downloads, hosting, and creation
  5. Extensive library of audio and visual elements including soundtracks

 Cons 

  1. Features are basic
  2. The interface is limited to whiteboard style videos drawn with a hand
  3. Watermark cannot be removed in the free version

3D Animation Software Price: It offers a free 7-day trial, after which it offers three plans; Monthly Plan for ₹1245, Yearly Plan at about ₹570, Quarterly Plan at ₹2485

Platforms: Web-based, iOS, Android, Windows, macOS X

  • Biteable

Biteable Imageanimation making software for pc
#7 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for adding studio-quality effects to animation & VFX

Biteable is one of the most user-friendly and straightforward 3D animated video creator software that can be used for several purposes. With Biteable, animators get tools for adding colours, texts, photos and sounds in videos in a drag-and-drop template.

Key Features:

  1. Provides a specialty template for animating logos, creating high-quality presentations and slideshows with incorporated video elements 
  2. 85,000 footage clips available in its database 
  3. Share projects on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter 

Pros

  1. Provides customizable branding options
  2. Access to its extensive media library
  3. Social sharing options
  4. Offers templates and text overlays.

Cons

  1. Doesn’t offer collaboration tools
  2. Drag & drop options aren’t available
  3. Lack of privacy options 
  4. No voice-over or background score options available

Pricing and Plans:

There are two primary plans available for Biteable. The free version allows you to create five projects for monthly use. On the other hand, a premium plan is about ₹570 a month, offering the option of HD quality shares and unlimited uploads.

Platforms: Online, macOS X, Windows

  • KeyShot

animation making software for pc
#9 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for making 3D renderings in real-time

KeyShot is an easy-to-use 3D rendering and 3D animation software programs that allows animation artists to create from simple models to sophisticated and visually stunning projects. One of its best features is that it provides real-time 3D rendering, which displays results as soon as it is finished. This decreases the time taken to create and complete the project.

Apart from this, KeyShot provides several other features for animation and 3D rendering.

Key Features:

  1. Tools for both 2D and 3D animation
  2. It comes with HDRI lighting for enhanced illumination and adjustment of an object or a scene 
  3. Virtual camera control for the simulation of physical camera behaviour
  4. Dynamic virtual mapping for the simulation of real physical appearance of a site
  5. Focused caustics to ensure objects and scenes are suitably lit.

Pros

  1. Suitable for creating fast, accurate and amazing visuals.
  2. Featuring a real-time 3D rendering workflow

Cons

  1. Doesn’t provide in-built templates  

Platforms: Cloud, SaaS, Web, macOS X Windows

Pricing: KeyShot is an entirely free animation software for Windows.

  • OpenToonz

OpenToonz Image
#10 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for changing picture styles & doing image processing

OpenToonz is a free and open source animation software that provides animators all the necessary tools for 2D animation. As it is open source, it lets developers and expert animators customise the software to suit their requirements.

Key Features:

  1. Scan different types of images within the product
  2. Produce affected incident light
  3. Create wavy distortion
  4. Change picture styles

Pros

  1. Provides all the necessary tools for 2D animation
  2. Being an open source software, it can be customised to suit the requirement of users.

Cons

  1. The features and terminology that OpenToonz uses can take time to learn

Platforms: Windows, mac OS X

Pricing: OpenToonz is completely free and is open source 3D animation software.

Best Free 2D Animation Software

Animation was usually in 2D form before movies like Incredibles, Toy Story and Ice Age made 3D animations immensely popular.

In fact, some of the most popular children’s cartoons such as Mickey Mouse, Aladdin, Snow White, etc were made using traditional 2D animation techniques. Hence, 2D has become an integral part of animation. Given below are some of the top 2D Software Solutions.

  • Animaker

Animaker Image
#11 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for creating standout characters with 3D character animation

Animaker software is one of the most user-friendly free 3D animation software solutions. The best part about the software is its drag-and-drop UI. It can help animators create different types of animations with its modules extending to advertisements, manuals, and tutorial videos. 

Moreover, it provides an extensive database of templates and animated objects. It isn’t limited to 3D animation but also offers tools to create 2D cartoons, infographics, and whiteboards.

It also provides additional features with the business account, which also contains the option to create 30-minute-long videos.

Key Features:

  1. Whiteboard video maker
  2. Massive library of characters and templates
  3. Infographic maker
  4. Drag-and-drop user interface

Pros

  1. It has a wide variety of infographics to use
  2. Drag-and drop interface, 
  3. Easy to customize and navigate around
  4. It has ample tools for creating an animation
  5. Pre-designed templates make it easy to narrate storyboards to the audience.

Cons

  1. Sometimes, the pre-viewing makes the video lag
  2. Character animations could be made more varied.

Pricing: Animaker provides a free plan and three annual plans – Personal at about ₹850 per month, Startup at about ₹1350 per month and Business at about ₹2770 per month.

Platform: Cloud, SaaS, Web

  • Synfig Studio

Synfig Studio Image
#12 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for vector tweening

The best 2D animation software, Synfig Studio is available for free of cost. The software can be used easily by both seasoned animators and beginners too. There are two versions available for free downloading- Development and Stable version. In the Stable version, you would find all essential features necessary for completing basic projects.

On the other hand, the development version provides some state-of-the-art experimental features for those who want to try their hand at innovative tools.

Key Features:

  1. Multiple layers of content
  2. Creation of cut-out animations from bitmap images
  3. Enables addition and syncronising of narration and background score to the video.

Pros

  1. There is no need to worry about limitations as the free to use software supports around fifty layers for doing simple and advanced animation.

Cons

  1. Few tutorials are available in the market to start making animation for beginners.

Price:  It’s a free 2D animation software.

Compatibility: Windows, Linux, and macOS X

  • Pencil 2D

Pencil 2D Image
#13 of 18 Best Free Animation Software for Windows 2021

Best for making 3D animations hand drawn using vector graphics

Pencil 2D is a free and open-source animation software used for doing vector and bitmap animations. Create stunning animations with the software’s pen, brush and colour tools.

One of the best features of Pencil 2D is that its user interface is intuitive and minimalistic. Anyone, whether a beginner or an expert, can easily be able to understand and implement the features and tools it provides.

Key Features:

  1. It provides useful tools such as layers, a keyframe, colours, onion skinning, workplace toolbars and panels making it an efficient suite 
  2. Pencil 2D delivers a clean and orderly timeline layout where new frames can be created seamlessly on layers
  3. It enables switching of raster and vector workflows 
  4. The software provides cross-platform compatibility.

Pros

  1. It offers tutorials in multiple languages, such as English, Spanish and Portuguese 
  2. It provides a clutter-free user environment to work on 
  3. Animators can easily switch between vector and raster workflows. 

Cons

  1. It doesn’t provide a shape tool through which animators can draw shapes.

Price: It’s a free 2D animation software

Compatibility: Windows, Linux, and macOS X

Free 3D Animation Software for Android

With support from the best Android application software, end users have this option of creating animated sequences with ease. Free 3D animation software for Android can be used easily on smartphone devices. Here are some of the best 3d animation software free:

  • Toontastic

Toontastic Image
#14 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for creating 3D characters

The top 3D animation software, Toontastic, designed by Google Android and iOS users, provides a friendly user-interface to help animators tell stories using brilliantly executed animation characters and objects.

Key Features:

  1. 3D drawing tools for designing characters
  2. Photos and custom characters
  3. Soundtrack with dozens of built-in songs
  4. Three Story Arcs for digital storytelling (Short Story, Classic, & Science Report)
  5. Video sharing option of photo library to share with family and friends

Pros

  1. It is FREE and easy to use
  2. Encourages imaginative play
  3. This best animation app for PC is exciting, engaging and motivating for elementary age children
  4. Allows to share story online
  5. Unlimited choices to animate

 Cons

  1. Hard to record in groups
  2. Mood music overpowers character’s voices
  3. No pre-planning or brainstorming prior to creating story. Animating the characters and editing needs performance, some may find it difficult
  4. No text tools provided.

Pricing: It is free and easy-to use 3D animation software for Android.

Platforms: Android and iOS

  • Animation Desk

Animation Desk Image
#15 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for making storyboard animations and frame to frame animations

Animation Desk is another 3D animation software for Android that enables animators to create cartoons and animated stories on smartphones. It is a user-friendly software application where users can seamlessly create animation videos from scratch. It lets animators create artificially rendered graphics videos, PSD layers. 

One of its best features of this best animation app for PC is to allow the import external clips and photos to your project as a layer layered form.

Key Features:

  1. More than 45 different brushes help to make unique animation in various forms.
  2. Lets users turn drawings into animations on their iPads 
  3. Specially designed keeping students and amateurs in mind
  4. Supports four frame rates (or FPS, frames-per-second) from 3FPS to 24FPS and includes pre-loaded dynamic or static backgrounds
  5. Optimized for use with Adonit, Ten One Design, and Hex3 styluses.

Pricing: It’s 3D animation software free for Android

Platforms: Apart from Android, it is also available on iOS, Mac, and Windows

Best Free 3D Animation Software for PC

  • Aurora 3D Animation Maker

3D animation software
#16 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for color toning & 3D character design

Use Aurora 3D Animation Maker for drawing stunning animations. Manage the length, playback and speed of all your animations with this best 3D animation software for PC and mobile. GIFs, image sequencing or designing web banner, you can perform all these design tasks successfully with Aurora 3D drawing software.

This 3D animation software for PC further helps add amazing special effects to text and logos. Professionals use the best animation software for PC to design web pages, edit videos and give limitless particle effects to their works.

Key features of Aurora 3D animation Software:

  1. Key frame animation for controlling different aspects of animation.
  2. Particle effect for adding splendid effects to animated videos.
  3. Internal animation style through actions such as fade, swing, rotate, beat and pulse.
  4. 3D manipulator for controlling the positioning of objects.
  5. Animation templates for drawing 3D title animation.

Pros:

  1. Quickly create eye catching animations even if you are not trained at using any 3D animation software.
  2. Intuitive interface that offers multiple templates for creating animations from scratch.
  3. Simple to use and free hand shape tool for giving shapes to objects.
  4. Use the software for multiple purposes such as creating movies, websites or presentations.

Cons:

  1. Doesn’t support video rendering

Pricing: The price of Aurora 3D animation software depends on the number of units you want and the required features.

Platforms: Windows & Mac OS

  • Mixamo

Animation software for PC
#17 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for drawing skeletal rigs

Cartoon characters, realistic images, or sci-fi content, you can create all types of animation videos using one of the best 3D animation software free for PC, Mixamo. Give life to all your animated video characters in illustrations and graphic art with this 3D animation software.

Sliders built-in within the software help with slowing down or speeding-up of animations for giving a closed/open appearance to animated objects. The software is also the best for developing professional-quality illustrations, games, movies, 3D characters and rigs.

Key features:

  1. Automatic character rigging for uploading custom character.
  2. Motion captured animations for controlling how each motion looks and feels.
  3. Export option for downloading characters in multiple formats.
  4. Requires no coding hassle.

Pros:

  1. The software is best for quick prototyping or developing production ready assets.
  2. It is easy to create customised characters using the software. 
  3. Rigging tool is very easy to use and offers pretty quick results. 

Cons:

  1. Not suitable for working on mobile devices.

Pricing: Mixamo is a free 3D animation software that does not require any monthly or yearly subscription.

Platform: Windows and Mac

  • Adobe After Effects

Best 3D animation software
#18 of 18 Best Free Animation Software 2021

Best for adding visual effects to motion graphics

Adobe After Effects 3D animation software designed to add motion graphics and other kinds of visual effects to videos. You can also add dynamic movement to objects and interesting expressions to make the content livelier.

The 3D animation software Adobe After Effects offers inbuilt tools for creating rich videos with neon signs and underwater objects. The tool is further helpful in removing large objects. The motion blur feature of this best animation software for PC is quite useful in giving a realistic feel to video content.

Key Features of Adobe After Effects 3D Animation Software:

  1. Use this animation software for PC to draw complex shapes
  2. It is easy to refine edges with the Roto brush selection
  3. Content aware fill option for removing unwanted parts from a video
  4. Luma matte and make for cutting objects as well as creating a transparent background
  5. Helps position 2D layers in a 3D space

Pros:

  1. This 3D animation software helps create outstanding transition effects
  2. It is easy to track objects for inserting animations
  3. Adobe After Effects is one of the best 3D animation software for PC, as it integrates well with other Adobe applications.
  4. Precise tools are attached with the platform for developing good quality motion designs.

Cons:

  1. Timeline interface can be problematic at times.

Platform: Windows 7/10 (64-bit) and Mac OS version 10.13, 10.14, 10.15

Price: Adobe After Affects CC is available for ₹ 31109 at Techjockey for one user per year.

Best Free 3D Animation Software for Beginners

  • Rive

Best for character rigging & 3D character animation

Create animated icons, game characters, onboarding screens and sophisticated interactions with Rive animation app. The 3D animation software freely lets you do regular modifications and iterations in a hassle-free manner. Thus, you don’t have to create any codes for building such designs.

The free 3D animation software helps with not just doing runtime manipulations but also animating all kinds of objects, mechanic or organic. One of the most robust features of Rive animation software is animation mixing that allows for blending and layering of 3D animations.

Key Features of Rive Animation Software:

  1. Online application to make remote access super quick
  2. Forking capabilities for sharing files
  3. Automated revision history
  4. Skeletal animation for transforming vector/raster images
  5. Vertex and meshes deformations
  6. Trim path for motion effects
  7. PSDs import for drawing order and preserving layers

Pros:

  1. Real-time collaboration support for teams to check how assets get rigged
  2. Support for vector graphics that helps with developing resolution-independent animations
  3. Interactive animations consume less space
  4. Easy to change the speed of an animation anytime the need arises
  5. Option for connecting data with graphics makes it easy to change colours and swap images

Cons:

  1. Bug issues while doing SVG imports
  2. Documentation processes not fast enough

Pricing: Rive currently has two paid plans available. They are-
• Yearly plan at Rs 1030
• Monthly plan for Rs 1545

Platforms: Rive is an online 3D animation platform that is web based

  • Daz Studio

Best for developing detailed characters and doing dress modelling

Use Daz Studio animation for selecting the right kind of animation for your frame. The free animation software for PC offers a range of customization tools for creating beautiful animations, whether of people, environment, vehicles, animals, etc.

In the free 3D animation software, you would find rigged and textured 3D characters as well as models for building quick animations. With the software’s studio-class processing capabilities, you can develop amazing photorealistic images.

Key Features of Daz Studio:

  1. Transformer tools
  2. Library for motion capture files
  3. Material and light simulations
  4. Face transfers
  5. Hexagon delete accessory
  6. Facial expression interface
  7. Morphing capabilities
  8. Realistic human figures

Pros:

  1. Character creator for storyboards that lets you draw all kinds of characters
  2. Easy to capture facial and full body animations in one take
  3. Extensive collection of human figures in 3D format is helpful for drawing realistic images
  4. Tutorial videos available for understanding how to use the application
  5. User friendly interface

Cons:

  1. Importing animations oftentimes doesn’t give accurate results

Pricing: Daz Studio is one of the best free animation apps for PC

Platforms: Daz animation app for PC is available for Windows 7, 8, 10 & Vista (32 bit and 64 bit). It also supports Mac OS X 10.6 and above for 32 bit as well as Mac OS X 10.7 and above 64 bit.

FAQs

  1. What is animation?

    Animation can be defined as an illusionary effect of motion, that is produced with the help of sketches, images and shift in poses. These images (known as frames) are strung together and changed in succession at an extremely fast pace so that our eyes perceive it as a continuous scene.

  2. What is animation software?

    Animation software enables artists to create scenes, frame-by-frame, with the help of still images. It is then strung together by the software to create an effect of transitory motion. While traditional animators draw each sketch frame-by-frame, modern animation uses techniques, with which, on image can be modified to transition into the next, smoothly.

  3. How many types of Animation Software are there?

    There are two main types of animation software available in the market:
    1. 2-dimensional (2D) Software: This type of animation software uses the 2D model. i.e. width and height for animation. In simple words, it gives an impression of a flat, sketch-like scene. This type of animation uses linear shades and shadows, rather than defined and realistic perspectives.
    2. 3-dimensional (3D) Software: 3D animation software uses advanced techniques, where the scenes and characters are more defined and visually realistic. To put it simply, 3D animation imitates real life rather than a picture or sketch. Animations produced by a 3D animation software has defined shadows, shades and perspectives.

  4. Where is animation software used?

    1. In advertising: Modern advertising uses a number of different animated characters to grab the attention of the audiences. Animation can evoke desired emotions if executed properly. Audiences can be influenced by their emotions. Hence, animation is a great tool for adverts.

    2. For entertainment: a. Television programmes and cartoons have increased manifold in the last few decades and especially cater to the younger generation.
    b. Animation serves an important utility of narrating stories of all types, comedy, dramatic or satirical, in the form of short films to older people.
    c. Feature length video and film animations can be created using the software’s 3D/2D animation capabilities.
    d. The software can further be used easily in video/console games, smartphones and computers.

    3. For education and training: Animated sequences often work well within the field of education and training, when sensitive or thought-provoking treatments of a subject are needed.

  5. Can I get free animation software online?

    Yes. There are a number of free and open-source animation software online.

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