Video Copilot Element 3D v2.2

(3) Review:

Video Copilot Element 3D - featured

Lightning-fast 3D Particle Array System and Text Generating System for Motion Design and Visual FX Artists

Element 3D allows users to import OBJ file or 3D objects created in Cinema 4D into Adobe After Effects and clone, manipulate, and distribute them with it's unique particle array system. Element 3D's user interface is well-designed and easy to use, and the Open GL rendering allows users to quickly create beautiful 3D text and complex particle arrays with dynamic reflections, shadows, and texture mapping, all inside After Effects! Element 3D is great for new users, as it's easy to jump right in and it's a lot of fun to explore, but has deep and complex features that will allow artists to create never-ending variations. Element 3D is a lot speed and power for a modest price!


real 3d

v2 date banner


motion design 2

3d noise & deform

3d bend & twist

pro shaders 2

reflection maps



transfer modes


sub-surface scatter


What's New in Version 2.2:

  • Updated for Adobe CC 2015
  • Group Symmetry Creation Mode
  • Dynamic Group Folder Reflections
  • Matte Reflection Mode
  • Updated UI with speed improvements
  • Matte Shadow with Alpha Channel
  • Improved material visibility options
  • Save Group Folder as E3D file
  • Export OBJ Utility
  • Improved C4D support file support with animation
  • Randomized Raytrace samples for multi-pass motion blur

What's New in Version 2.0.2:

  • Fixed graphical corruption on UI preview.
  • Fixed incorrect texture sizes on retina Macs.
  • Fixed incorrect Aux channel position on sub meshes.
  • Fixed crash when updating scene in UI.
  • Fixed crash when opening Scene Setup on Windows 7 without SP1.
  • Fixed wrong VRAM display on Mac.
  • Fixed crash on comp with over 8 lights.
  • Fixed texture too large warning popup not showing in all cases.

What's New in Version 1.6:

Element 3D v2 System Requirements


  • After Effects CS5, CS5.5, CS6, CC, CC 2014, CC 2015, CC 2017, CC 2018
  • Mac 10.7.5 (absloute minimum) - High Sierra
  • Windows Vista, 7 (service pack 1) and up


  • JPG 8-bit
  • PNG 8-bit and 16-bit
  • After Effects layers can be used up to 32bpc

3D File Formats

  • OBJ
  • C4D R12 & Up


  • Nvidia & ATI – Minimum 512MBs VRAM
  • Nvidia GeForce 200, 400, 500, 600, 700, 800, 900 Series (Some restrictions apply)
  • Nvidia Quadro and Quadro FX Series (Some restrictions apply - Check supported GPU list below)
  • ATI Radeon HD 4600 Series and Later for Windows and Mac

Supported GPU list


For ideal performance we recommend at least a GeForce GRX 285 or ATI Radeon HD 4600 with 1GB of VRAM.


It is possible to use Element on a network render farm but we do not recommend or support it because inconsistencies of GPU rendering. Since Element renders with impressive speed on a single GPU it is ideal to pre-render any 3D elements before pushing to the render farm.

3 reviews
67% of reviewers recommend this product
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Customer Reviews

Fast And Efficient

Element 3D is probably one of the best investments you will make. If you are a motion graphics designer, visual effects artist, or even just a graphic designer. This program will extrude any 2D image as long as it has masks. It automatically extrudes any text you throw at it. The only thing that you may expect, but should not, is to understand that Element is limited. As Andrew Kramer mentions, Element 3D is a bridge. It is a way to have a lot of steps in 3D done for you. Its a way to get an object/animation into After Effects super fast, real time, with plenty of capabilities in opengl rendering. Pros -Fast Real Time Rendering -Automatic Texturing and UV Mapping Cons -Does not have modeling capabilities -incomplete, so still being developed for more features which may end up increasing its cost

Would you recommend this product to a colleague? Yes

By: Robert Merritt
Date: July 07, 2014

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Not What I Expected

Every tutorial I see that uses Element shows these objects being fractured and crumbling. Element can not do this! I didn't find out until I purchased the program that you have to use another 3D program to fracture the object. Completely useless. I don't want to spend another $3000+ to get a big 3D program. Besides this huge misleading advertising, Element also crashes on me. A LOT.

Would you recommend this product to a colleague? No

By: Gretchen Nichols
Date: February 21, 2014

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Review by Steve Jarratt at 3D World

PROS: Capable of handling dense objects, Extensive texturing toolset, Excellent results with the built-in shaders CONS: Various issues with OBJ format, Objects don’t cast shadows, Doesn’t support baked animation Element 3D is a game-changer. It offers terrific results quickly and easily, which for time-starved artists is a real benefit Full Review: http://www.3dworldmag.com/2012/10/23/element-3d-review-after-effects-plug-in/

Would you recommend this product to a colleague? Yes

Date: November 05, 2012

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