Review Price free/subscription
RealIllusion CrazyTalk 4
While iClone 2 is fun and potentially useful, the other Reallusion program I have today is without question the creepiest thing I’ve seen in months.
CrazyTalk 4 also has an even lower minimum specification than iClone 2, requiring a Windows PC running XP, 2000, ME or even 98SE. You'll need at least a Pentium III 500MHz, 128MB RAM and 300MB disk space.
The idea is pretty simple. You import a facial portrait, which can be of yourself, any other human, and even animals, paintings or cartoon characters, basically anything with a face that includes two eyes and a mouth. The program prompts you to position four reference points on the image, at the corners of the eyes and the corners of the mouth. There are also options to adjust colour balance, exposure and rotation, but to be honest you’re far better off doing these in a proper image editing program. You can also mask out area of the image that will not be animated, and change the background and foreground colour.
Next, you can choose a base facial expression from a catalogue of presets, some of which have crude animations or graphics attached, such as flames, steam out of the ears or clown makeup.
For the actual spoken words, you can import recorded sound in PCM WAV format, and only in PCM WAV format. Why it doesn’t have the ability to handle other formats, especially the popular MP3 format, is anyone’s guess. The program does however include a function to automatically convert text into speech, and to be fair it works a lot better than I though it would, but naturally everything comes out sounding like Steven Hawking.