Category Archives: Newton

Newton 3 reviewed by Rocketstock

Here’s a review of Newton 3 by Lewis McGregor

He’s conclusion:

To some extent, Newton 3 reminds me of an open-world video game where the player’s choices can alter what will happen at any given time. While there’s usually a direct start and endpoint for many effects within After Effects, with Newton 3, you can obtain a new result, and thus a new animation, on an infinite scale. I don’t try to be stubborn with my reviews, but I most definitely won’t gloss over the downfalls of a product.

But with Newton 3? I’m just not seeing it. To import several shapes, apply real-world physic simulations with a click of a button, and then render them within a few seconds is a game changer for me. I can’t picture when I wouldn’t use this plugin for most future animations. I’ve had Newton bookmarked for so long that the original bookmark refers to the older version of the plugin. I can only wonder how great my previous videos could have been if I had purchased the plugin sooner.

You can read the full review here:

Lewis also did a great tutorial: “10 Minute Crash Course: Newton 3 After Effects Plugin” of Premiumbeat.

apply a mask on an Illustrator layer in After Effects

Dealing with Illustrator files and shape layers in Newton

You may know that you can use Adobe Illustrator files with Newton for Adobe After Effects. You can do this by using different techniques like converting them into shape layers.

It’s important to know that the more your objects are complex, the slower your simulation will be.
Also, you won’t get better results if you use complex objects in your simulation. And by complex, we mean plenty of path vertices and detailed Bezier curves.

So, what are the best practices?

Use a mask


You can apply a mask to your Illustrator layer so Newton can interpret its outline correctly.
You can also use the auto-trace function of Adobe After Effects.
If you copy/paste the path from Illustrator, you should use before the “Simplify” and “Cleanup” function in Illustrator to have the most optimized shape.

Note that here, what’s inside the robot has been removed since we don’t need it for the simulation. The mask only cover the outline of the artwork.

apply a mask on an Illustrator layer in After Effects

Converting your Ai files to shape layers


You can convert your Ai file to shape layers.
But be sure to ONLY send to Newton what’s needed. You can simply hide the path or the groups that you don’t want to use in Newton and unhide them after the simulation is complete.
In this example, mouth and eyes are not needed for the simulation and will be unhidden after the simulation is complete.

Also, always try to simplify the transformation applied to your shapes. In most cases it is recommended to have the inner transform  of a shape (transform properties of groups for example) set to the default values and use layer’s transform instead.

Watch for self-intersecting shapes!


Newton prevents to load shapes and masks that have self-intersecting path or orphan vertex. It will warn you if one of the paths cannot be correctly interpreted. You’ll then have to manually modify it.
Be careful when working with paths created using tools like the cutter tool in Ai!

Creating proxy version
of your objects


Best pratice to use complex Ai vectors is to replace them by a less complex version of them and simply parent them to the original ones.
Just like in this breakdown.

Need more tips and tutorials?
Check our Learn page!

Free script: Prepare Soft Bodies

Prepare Soft Bodies is a small companion script for Newton3 that prepares a shape layer (or multiple) for a soft body simulation in Newton.

Tutorial : Balloons with Newton2

In this example, I wanted to illustrate the “gravity scale” feature of Newton2 and also Connect Layers using balloons.

Newton’s Cradle

Reuben on Twitter was “Gutted to find out that Newton won’t allow me to make a Newton’s Cradle!”

Newton2 and macOS 10.5 Catalina fix

So, you have upgraded to the last version of macOS 10.5 Catalina. But suddenly when you launch After Effects you get that message that tells you that you cannot run Newton.

Now, the bad news:  support has been dropped for Newton2.
The good news, you can still use it with macOS 10.5 Catalina, here’s how!

→You can use aescripts manager to install it and register

→Or you can go to your security preferences into macOS to allow Newton2 to run it (more info here):

– You have to launch Adobe After Effects and macOS will say that Newton2 is not signed.
-Click cancel
-Go to your security preference.
-MacOS will ask you if you want to run Newton2.
-Click Open Anyway


Note that if you have the same message with Newton3, you just need to download and update to the last version.

Or you can upgrade Newton and get up-to-date features!


Need more tips and tutorials?
Check our Learn page!

Tutorial: Textless effect

Remember the amazing “Textless” short by Gareth Smith & Jenny Lee?
Well, here’s our own tutorial that recreates the workflow to achieve this amazing effect where the content of a sign is falling drove by physics.
We are going to use Adobe After Effects, Mocha AE to track the sign and Newton3 for the physic simulation. Adobe Illustrator to vectorize the artwork and Adobe Photoshop to clean up the sign using the content aware tool.
That’s a lot of tools for an amazing result. But don’t worry, everything is going to be quite easy to do.

“Textless” by Gareth Smith & Jenny

If you need more in depth about the tracking with Mocha AE, check the great tutorial of Mark Christiansen at School Of Motion:

Get Newton for Adobe After Effects:

Link to the video used in this tutorial .

Get Rift for Adobe After Effects:

Music: Otis McDonald.

Want to ask something? Contact us!


Our friends from Motion Café invited us on their show to talk about our history, our products and do some demos. Finally, we had so much to say that we did 2 shows!
In the first we talked a lot about our history and Newton. Valentin was able to come back to the genesis of this product, show a little moment of history with the first video made with it and also the first version of our tool. We also have show more technical things as well as tips.

(Video is in french but you can use the subtitles option to translate it)

In the second show, we came back to Newton and in particular to the (new) skater’s setup. We then talked about Pastiche and LayerGenerator with new features, and we ended with a little tour of ConnectLayersPRO!

You can find these videos on the Motion Café Youtube channel.

Newton 3 is live!

We are happy release today Newton 3, the third version of our physics engine for Adobe After Effects!

Here’s a quick tour through the new features.

More info on the product page!

Newton 2.2 update

What’s new?


  • Fixed conflict with some Mocha-related extra plug-ins
  • Fixed numerous bugs with shape layers (including anchor point issues, incorrect interpretation of rotated shape)
  • Fixed bug with layers having 0%-scale at t=0
  • Fixed bug with Desired Length property of spring joint


  •  Completely rewritten shape layers code (shape transform properties are now correctly interpreted)
  • Adjusted GUI appearance to better match latest AE versions
  • Updated internal GUI library (from Qt4.8 to Qt5.6)
  • Tabbed docks/panels can now be moved by group (when multiple docks are nested)
  • UI Theme option removed (in prefs dialog)
  • Added new preference for Comp Bounds color
  • Added warning message when the scene contains a lot of polygons (> 2000),  that suggests to use the Use Convex Hull option
  • Replaced all dashed lines in the preview with solid lines (selected bodies and joints, gravity tool)
  • Added an informative message above the preview to inform the user when Newton is loading settings
  • Updated documentation
  • Added CC 2015, CC 2015.3 compatibility

Dropped support for AE CS5 and AE CS5.5
System requirements: mostly the same as the system requirements for AE CS6.
CS6 being the oldest supported version. On Mac: OSX 10.7 and later. On Windows: Windows 7 and later

Platform Specific Changes

Mac OS X

  • Dropped support for OSX 10.6. OSX 10.7 or later is required.


  • Added a setup for installing the plug-in and all required components

This update is FREE, you can download it from

Newton 2.1 update

We are happy to announce that we’ve updated Newton to version 2.1!

What’s new?

  • Settings are not tight to a composition anymore! We added a Load Settings dialog that allows you to choose between layerID (AE internal identifier, comp specific), layer index or layer name, when importing settings file.  In previous versions only layerID was used.
  • Randomizer: Allows you to randomize the value of mostly any settings in Newton.
  • Copy/Paste body settings
  • Copy/Paste joint settings
  • Loads of bug fixes
  • FREE

The  complete list of change can be found on Newton2’s product page on aescripts “version history”.

You can download the update from


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