Yanobox MoType Review

Yanobox’s MoType is a cross-platform plug-in which is accessible through the FxFactory marketplace. If you’re not familiar with FxFactory, it is (from their website) “a revolutionary visual effects architecture powering hundreds of plug-ins for Final Cut Pro, Motion, Final Cut Express and Adobe After Effects”. Basically, you install the software on your Mac and then add and manage plug-ins.

If you’d like to see this plug-in at work, head over to http://www.yanobox.com/Motype/ for a nice looking demo.

MoType does a great job of creating quick motion titles which would otherwise not be possible to do in FCP or would take a long time. I tested the cross-platform plug-in in FCP, Motion and AE but like the way it works in Motion better than FCP. In After Effects, the first time you add the plug-in to a layer, you will get a notice saying “Please disable the “Render Multiple Frames Simultaneously” option when using FxFactory plug-ins.” Hopefully in a future update, FxFactory plug-ins will support this extra functionality for even faster render times.

So this plug-in is pretty powerful and comes with the ability to customize many different aspects of your title such as drop shadow, random characters, motion, blur, particles, an auto-animated camera and a cyclorama (which is a background for those not familiar). You can start with one of 30 unique presets in 720p but there are also 10 duplicate SD versions. After you enter your text you can go ahead and start adding some flare to your title. If you want to create a full screen title, the best place to start is the “Cyclorama” section to add a background. After that, you can customize random characters; the way your title comes in and whether it does so by letter or word; the option to add a trailing blur which adds a very nice touch to your incoming titles; a slew of different particle presets which act as a nice separator from your BG or video and also add some texture and movement to your title; and you can finish it off with some custom camera moves.

For further customization, every section can be meddled with without having to add a single keyframe. There are start and end values that are adjusted to avoid keyframes and they work really well. Colors of all elements can be changed, but something like a gradient can not be overlaid onto an element.

As for speed, MoType is really fast for a third party plug-in and performs well in the timeline and extremely smooth when using the “Quick View” window in FCP.

Cons: For being a title based plug-in, you can only add one line of text to your title which means you have to make text smaller or use the plug-in multiple times to generate a second line; a small work-around to do this is to duplicate the first layer after you’re completely finished customizing your title, change and reposition the text and finally disable the “Cyclorama” section. This way the camera movements will be kept the same and the BG from the lower layer will show through. I would also like to see the ability to add custom backgrounds in 3D space (you can add a solid BG layer to a lower track and still use the “Cyclorama” feature but that’s about it) and finally support for the “Render Multiple Frames Simultaneously” option in After Effects would be nice.

Overall, I’m very please with Yanobox’s MoType and I plan to use it to generate titles for many of my future projects. For $99, there’s a lot of customization to be found inside this plug-in and also the ability to create some really great looking titles in a pinch. Over the course of this review I’ve overcome the slight learning curve and feel very comfortable playing around with the settings and I plan to explore the really simple camera and particle controls in greater depth.

You can grab a free trial of MoType at http://www.yanobox.com/. Remember, you need to have FxFactory installed on your system in order to use this.