Natron or Blender Node Compositor


This is not meant to start a A software Vs B software debate.

As I am not familar with a software like Nuke or Natron, I will like to know is there anything that such software can do that Blender’s Node Compositor cannot.

I am just weighing the pros and cons of learning a new software such as Natron. Is it worth learning?


Learning Blender Compositor only makes sense if you plan to use it in combination with 3D. If you only plan to do compositing I guess you are better off with Natron, even though I never tried it. But at least from the pure purpose of the 2 apps you can probably say that Natron really focuses on comp, whereas Blender is meant to be used together with 3D.
On the other hand because you have a full blown 3D app, a very capable motion tracker etc. Blender does have some advantages. What Blender’s compositor is lacking is cache, canvas compositing, proxy scale and some de-clunkyfication of the workflow.

I see… Thanks for the reply.

sebastian_k is right, but you should also consider that Natron is a dedicated compositing app. Blender is not.

Therefore, Natron can focus on being really good at compositing, and can improve compositing features, While Blender tries to recreate all of the other feature that might be in another 3D app.

As for workflow, it probably wouldn’t be that bad to make your models and materials in Blender, track a camera in Blender, and then render out the frames and import them into Natron for compositing.

These are the reasons why once Natron becomes more feature complete (and I learn it), I’ll be switching over for compositing.

Also keep in mind that Natron is still very early in it’s development and does not have a lot of tools yet. but it’s definitely worth learning. Hopefully it grows into as powerful a tool as Nuke is.

Ton even had a chance to play around in Natron at Siggraph this year. The other guy is Alexandre Gauthier-Poichat, lead developer of Natron.

natron and some help from the Blender Foundation.

I recent downloaded Natron RC2… it is looking promising.

Where can someone go to learn the work flow? Ive been searching and I can not find a tutorial. I do not understand how a render engine uses other nodes as they have their own. I see no exporter for the file format Natron needs.

Try looking for NUKE tutuorials. Thats how similar Natron is to NUKE.

After some research, it seems the difference boils down to Natron doing real time compositing, where as Blender requires you to render to see you final results.

Since I’m coming back to Blender to edit my video, Natron seems to be IMHO an unnecessary step in my work flow.
I’m investing my time in learning Blender. Why be distracted by something else?

Blender does it as much real time as Natron, unless your elements are render layers that need to be rendered before you can use them. If viewer does not update after changing something check your settings.

When you need to do more intricate comp work Natron probably is more able. And when you need really heavy tools try out Nuke noncommercial.

Natron is a lot faster than Blender, but it is missing some features. NUKE non-commercial is a good choice if you can work with the license.

you can and should also take a look at Blackmagic Designs Fusion, also a great node based compositor. with some limitions fully useable for private, hobby, research and commercial work

An advantage to something like Nuke or Fusion is that their keyers are much more user friendly (I think) than those found in Blender. If you’re doing a lot of greenscreen and are on a budget, I’d look into Fusion. Natron is pretty good, but some of it’s tools just are not there yet.

It’s a replacement for the compositor, not the shader node editor.

EDIT: Oops, didn’t read date close enough, replied to a post from a year ago. :frowning: