Linux Apps

Natron – An Adobe After Effects Alternative for Linux

Natron Video Compositing Software for Linux
Written by Martins D. Okoi

You must know by now that none of Adobe’s products are available for the GNU/Linux platform but that has not stopped open source enthusiast all around the world from being just as productive as Windows and Mac users.

This is because the open source community is filled with a series of alternatives worthy of their articles in their own right and that is why it is with pleasure that I introduce to you, Natron.

Natron is a cross-platform open source application for video composition and editing just the way Adobe After Effects is.

It was founded by Blackmagic Fusion to be free, portable, and cross-platform; and to offer robust-enough and efficient tools for compositors to achieve high-quality results and fast rates.

Natron features a familiar theme-able User Interface that is easy to navigate and customize and it includes support for multiscreen display and Retina display on MacOSX.

Features in Natron

  • FOSS: Free and open source with source code available on GitHub.
  • Cross-Platform: Run it on GNU/Linux, Mac, and Windows.
  • Support for free & open source OpenFX plugins including OpenFX-Yadif deinterlacer and OpenFX-Vegas SDK samples.
  • Support for commercial OpenFX plugins including KeyLight (by The Foundry), GenArts Sapphire, etc.
  • Supports dozens of formats including TIFF, JPG, PNG, EXR, FFmpeg, and DPX.
  • OpenColorIO library for colorspace management.
  • 32 bits floating point linear color processing pipeline.
  • Multi-pane to handle multi-layered EXR files.
  • Multi-view workflow.
  • Fast and responsive app window.
  • Renders multiple graphs at the same time.
  • Real-time playback.
  • An embedded tracker node for multiple-point.
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Future releases will bring a couple of major features including:

  • 3D workspace support for cameras, 3D tracker, 3D cards, and camera mapping.
  • GMIC integration via an OpenFX plug-in.
  • Natural matting; which involves the process of extracting a foreground without necessarily a green/blue-screen as background.

Check out the rest of Natron’s features on its website’s about page.

If you’re ready to take Natron for a drive you should know that you will require an OpenGL 2.0 compatible graphics card if you would want to do anything beyond software-only rendering.

As for architecture and OS type – you’re definitely good to go. So hit the button below to grab a version for your Linux workstation.

Download Natron for Linux

Commercial support is available to those who would like access to ticket-based support, trainings, and several custom features. Learn more on that here.

What do you think about Natron and do you know about any other Adobe After Effects alternatives we can add to our GNU/Linux apps list? Engage us in the comments section below.

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About the author

Martins D. Okoi

Martins Divine Okoi is a graduate of Computer Science with a passion for Linux and the Open Source community. He works as a Graphic Designer, Web Developer, and programmer.