Why I am not using synfig anymore

why I am not using synfig anymore

first of all I appreciate all of you and
your work I know little c++ and when I
looked at the source it was just mind
blowing that how much time and effort is
gone into this program
so let’s start by pros and the tings that
I found interesting about it
1 the audio quality
as a person who worked with Adobe animate
the audio quality is ausome in synfig
2 the simplicity and speed of synfig is very
nice like animate and least would take 500mb
to 1G of ram but synfig is very speedy
3 the best part is its free and opensorce
like it is very nice that it’s free and lots
of people can access it it’s just awesome
and also it’s opensorce it’s grate that you
can see inside of the program that you are
using and also it means that ther is no
4 it a great program for animated icons and
simple graphics
5 the gui (expect text boxes) is friendly and
nice like I see lot of open source software
that look like 90s and they don’t even have
a dark mode but synfig gui is nice
6 very friendly people in the forums and
very nice forum and wiki

so now let’s go to cons

1 first of all the main thing that made me
Ammmmm very frustrated was lack of lipsync
like I don’t know why but like every open source
animation software is using papagayo
papagayo is dead out dated even the exe is even
more out dated the appimage dosent work
and there is only the bugy source code that
has alot of bugs
the only open source software that uses other
lipsync software is open toonz but opentoonz
vector animation just sucks
and enve dosent have a lipsync tool
(some one made something for it but it uses
liberofice to it and you need to pay
for it sreach Google
for the video(it uses papagayo too ))
I think the best new and open source papagayo
alternative is rhubarb
and it need to be add to the synfig
2 svg to sif
I have lot of svgs of my last animation
in svg and I wanted to use and import some of them
to synfig the synfig svg import is very bad
color nodes scale and every variable in svgs
become distorted
but the inkscape svg to sif is better
but also groups transparency can’t be transferred
and also outlines become distorted
and there will be a black layer in front of
your shape
the svg to sif is also out dated
3 not having live movement and text boxes
like it’s very hard to place something somewhere
you want when you can only guess where it lands
and also that’s the same with text boxes
they need to be live and can be changed with
mouse like blender

like there were only these three problems
but they are very bad and don’t get me
wrong Iam a open source / linux fan boi and I loved
to be able to switch from animate to an open source
alternative but sadly I couldn’t
I will say it again I appreciate all of your
work and time
and I really liked synfig
BTW a good NEWS that I heard was that in 1.6
update lot of these problems will be solved
I may come back

thanks alot I didn’t wanted to offend anyone
and if I did iam very very sorry :disappointed:
it was just summary of my experience:)

What was your experience?same?better?

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At least for one time someone is constructive in his criticism :slight_smile:

For the cons:
1 - I think it is possible to use Rhubarb, just need to check the file format.
2 - Svg import could simply be removed as the Inkscape export to Sif is more efficient. It would be less confusing!
3 - Live rendering could be improved (and it should!)

Don’t hesitate to check new versions, as it is free by definition it will cost nothing :wink:

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Yes, it is. And it seems to be pretty simple to implement it. I wrote some directions here.

As SVG is not only produced by Inkscape, I don’t know. Besides, nobody maintains both codes (Inkscape plugin and synfig’s SVG importer). As I don’t want to learn Inkscape code for now, I’ve been working on improving the synfig side. First making it more C++ than C, like using references and classes instead of pointers, for example.
I didn’t pushed some other commits I already did because real life is on the way and I’m focusing on finishing the fix for copy-and-paste issue.
But some improvements to-be-pushed:

  • fix stroke width for multiple path segments in <path>
  • fix z (and missing Z) command in <path>
  • implement s, S, T, t commands for <path>
  • fix wrong tangents for q, Q commands for <path> (but not perfect)
  • fix missing outlines for <rectangle>
  • implement <circle>

I have to do yet:

  • <ellipse> support
  • fix A, a commands for <path> (the last one remaining)
  • improve a bit the style and the transform parser

Once we confirm that 1.4.x is stable, we could try it (and break again lol).
There could create a history pollution in current implementation, but I’ll try to solve it with the future Color Dialog, so it could be extended to other widgets. I’ll resume this work once the copy-and-paste is finally finished.
This request could help here too: To show continuous bounding box as we transform objects in synfig · Issue #2141 · synfig/synfig · GitHub


What took me out of Synfig was the very particular way of setting keyframes. The very concept of keyframes (in the synfig terminology) and waypoints is overcomplicated. Direct function curves manipulation is impossible and one cannot add keyframes (in the general animation terminology) to just an especific channel. A simple bouncing ball animation is an exercise in complex system analisys! :sweat_smile:

Animating more then one object or curves is disheartening. Adjusting an error or retiming some vertex will make you cry… :cold_sweat:

Synfig’s powerfull parameter association is hidden by obscure naming convention, limited documentation and poor interface.

I used in class and was a disaster!

Is sad but now I’m using krita and I´m just very happy about the new animation features in version 5.0. Those features are so simple but easy to use and teach! And installing krita on windows just works (OpenToonz is another installation hell for the students!).

Inkscape and synfig would be a fantastic pair but synfig is a pain. Enve is doing a more welcoming environment. I still think that synfig is more powerful but power is nothing without control. :cry:

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Yeah I tried enve too it’s more adobe flash like but it dosent has the fraction of synfig
User base and because of that there aren’t that much tutorials on the net and also it dosent have a fourm like synfig and the worst part is that it totally dosent have a lipsync tool at least synfig has this bugy papagayo but enve no
Overall I think it has a very good potential to become widespread but it’s still very new
Opentoonz is grate for raster animation but the vector mode no maybe if you darw everything inside Opentoonz you could get some results but importing svgs is totally messed up i never forget the face of a green monstrosity that it made out of my character :rofl::rofl: I don’t know how but it just
Change my orange character to something green and the head was connected to a arm :scream: I never worked with krita thanks for your suggestion

I find synfig easy and fun to use. Its graph editor and drawing tools have rooms for improvement, but like I said, it’s fun to use.
Sometimes things get painful when the whole program crashes though.

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Does it happen often with 1.4.1 ? We tried to mitigate the crashes as much as we can :frowning:

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It doesn’t happen often but occasionally…

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You can! But first you should ‘separate’ the channels (via Composite converter).

Ugh. It didn’t capture the menus :stuck_out_tongue: I’ll screenshot again (fixed)

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I don’t think that’s true, if given time you can create complex animations in Synfig too.

I don’t know much about character animation and lipsync but, I tried to learn about how After Effects does this, and they have a popular plugin called Joystick and Sliders which will simply the face rig. I am pretty sure that something like Joystick and Sliders is possible in Synfig (thanks to converts and linking), someone needs to work it. Auto lipsync would a hard part, because we need to study the audio for that.

I think this only happens for specific shapes which will have inner looped vertices, and we have to manually change it’s blend method to Alpha Over.

My thoughts:
(Generally for open source softwares maintained by communities)

The problem I see is that, these softwares are created by developer, and so the software might feel engineered. Might not be user friendly, but they have lot of potential. Most of thing that I learnt about Synfig was either reading on forum or looking at issues on GitHub. Also there isn’t much valid information available for Synfig, which also might make you feel that it had less value. @Khemardi is doing a great job making tutorials.

One thing I would also mention is Synfig is vector animation software which has ability to do tweening. And it’s features must be used, but most people use it focusing on raster (cutout and skeleton deformation type). With just a little amount of development related to vector graphics, Synfig can be best tool for vector animation and in field on motion graphics.

I would also like to know about Synfig users who have been using it for years and learn from there work and experience.


Yeah I wold be possible but it’s a very hard way and my focus is on character animation and character animation is harder and more complex

After effects has a bunch of plug-ins (one of them is rhubarb)for lipsync and better than that the adobe animate has a built-in lipsync tool and it’s just soooo ez to use just give it a symbol with moth shape in it and done it will automatically do the lipsync process the auto lipsync is not hard it is here in the opensorce community I made two other posts about papagayo and rhubarb in this forum but I explain it anoder time so rhubarb is a piece of opensorce software that can automatically lipsync a audio file it dosent need a duiloge (as they say “you can provide Rhubarb Lip Sync with the dialog text to get more reliable results”)
I like it alot because first
It’s totally automatic
It’s simple and reliable
It’s using a very creative way to analyze the audio I really suggest you to read there github
I even made a c++ code that would read through the rhubarb dat file (its on the fourm)but because I don’t know anything about synfig code I did continue it (and I’m noob in c++🤣)
In my opinion it shouldn’t use linking because rhubarb dosent have a gui it would be hard to edit any mistakes so It should use keyframs

Yes I really appreciate the hard work and the time that gone in to synfig the opensorce community is very interesting and nice place
I found alot of tutorials about synfig in lot of platforms youtube fourms websites etc and that’s a very good point about synfig the thing is the animation community and especially the vector animation is small so the softwares are expected to have bugs and less features

Ouch! Yes, we can! :blush: “Why didnt i figured out this solution by myself!?” is my feeling now. Response: first, I´m dumb :joy:; second, I was trying to explain animation to my class and not how synfig works! :cold_sweat: Its a great workaround, Rodolfo, but it is quite challenging to someone who never animated before!

Thank you for this clever way of doing this!

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Synfig is a great software overall but some things are just very confusing and its missing some features. what i wish is Synfig be combined with Enve - It is a new open source 2D animation software and is very easy to use straight forward and it is made by a single developer

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Having choices is always good and nothing is wrong with using more than one tool. We just have to always keep in mind that, the more you use Synfig and tell people about it, the more interest it will get and more interest will lead to even more developers and artists so that eventually we’ll have greater development.

I like to compare Synfigs development to Blender. I remember Blender 2.4 when people would loose interest because it was too complicated to learn and the interface wasn’t the best either, but look at Blender now. Imagine if the developers didn’t stay committed and artists switched to a different tool. The fact is that I use many different software, including Synfig. But I continue to promote Synfig because I believe that one day it will become the software it was meant to be: powerful, robust, flexible and reliable.


I totally agree with @Khemardi . Synfig on its own is an amazing piece of software. And as synfig community grows, better documentation and rapid development will follow. A strong and growing community is the key for the success of any open source software.


Well, Synfig animates by ‘posing’ not via frame-by-frame (although it can be -painfully- done…).
I finish the ball ‘poses’ via graph directly because I myself think it’s easier, but one could do it by moving the ball vertically to desired height, as I did for horizontal movement.

The only ‘catch’ was to decompose the Vector, that Synfig doesn’t do automatically/by default unlike it does for Transform value type.

Could you show me how you would do it in other software?

I saw in Moho and I find it supercomplicated.

I’d tried enve once (last year) and I could even animate anything lol (obviously I didn’t watch any video or read anything about how to do it).

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I found this guy’s adobe animate tutorials very helpful

It’s about frame by frame and it’s simple


Oh, nothing special then. The only thing is that one should create a new group for each frame and set an ‘auto switch’ similar how I showed here.

As frame-by-frame was never the Synfig focus, we could create a toolbox/panel that could provide buttons for this purpose, like: new frame at current time, new layer (in traditional image concept) aaand… I can’t see anything more XD

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Yeah the synfig animation side is nice and in my animations I didn’t found that much use for frame by frame but it’s essential for some animation styles and a upgrade is appreciated :smiley::crazy_face:

Thx for sharing! That is best tutorial i have even seen :smiley:

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