Voice-O-Matic originally reviewed in Issue 38 is an easy to use
yet powerful lip-sync plug-in for 3ds Max. It works by analyzing
audio files and identifying ‘visemes’ (mouth shapes created to
make specific noises) which it uses to drive morph targets,
keyframing as it goes. The bright and simple interface and
standard Max workflow provide a very efficient format that
you’ll fell right at home with.
The new release doesn’t
boast any groundbreaking new features – which isn’t entirely
surprising, considering the original did everything so well. But
it does have enough tweaks to keep the software up to date and
warrant minimal upgrade price for existing users.
The most notable adjustment to the package is an intensity
scroller for each viseme which lets you adjust how subtle or
extreme each face shape is. Beyond this there is support for the
LWV audio format (which adds text data to audio tracks for more
precise speech recognition), audio tags for each viseme so that
you can be sure you are picking the correct sound, simplified
viseme mapping and the ability to use the Max 8 keyframe tangent
type on all the Voice-O-Matic produced keys.
Compared with its competitors, Voice-O-Matic 2 does very well.
Functionality and ease of use set it very high to begin with,
but it is its solid incorporation into the Max workflow that
gives it the edge over its nearest rival, Magpie Pro.