How to Make an Animated Speaking Avatar to Make Your Character Alive

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The world of animation has changed rapidly since the creation of animated speaking avatar models. You can have animation or video where you have a character that is supposed to speak. One can easily apply a voiceover to make it happen, but the avatar remains static. Once you apply the lip-sync techniques, it makes your animated speaking avatar come to life.

According to linguistics morphology, there are sound inflections in our speech that require certain mouth poses. The mouth poses are the shape of our mouths when we utter certain syllables to produce the phonics or the sound of a word or voice. Although different people have several types of mouth morphology during a speech there seems to be a common pattern. The animated speaking avatar is designed to reflect these morphological features during the animation to match the voice in the background.

The animations use mouth poses to reflect different sounds and need to be graphically designed and assigned to certain symbols. They are created in a way that a certain mouth pose is designed in symbols and a single symbol can have multiple keyframes to make the animation.

The lip-sync videos are useful for creating explainer videos. Rather than you are showing up your face and explaining things, it’s become a trend nowadays to use an animated character. It also helps the explainer to reach the audience with organic-looking, but yet less emotionally connecting videos.

The video creator does not need to use a green screen or apply makeup before recording a video. You simply need to record audio and then create the character animation to match your audio. There are also platforms at which you don’t even need to record audio. Instead, you can just use text to be converted as speech.

Part1 How you can use an animated speaking avatar in your video

If you are producing a video that requires animated characters, then you can use software that produces the facilities to animate your character. There are character templates that you can choose from, or you can design your character to suit your content. An animated speaking avatar can be placed in any part of the video. If your video contains more visuals to be unique and standard, you can also switch the animated character on and off during the video frames.

There is software that you can use to create your avatar, customize it and then use it in your videos as needed. A few products allow you to use photographs to design avatars as well. You can use a real-life character in animation and design it to lip-sync into your video. An animated speaking avatar is a good option to use diverse types of characters speaking in different genres of videos. You don’t want to dump your audience with the same face coming over and over in all your videos. You can create different enjoyable avatars to speak out for you in the different videos of yours.

You have to get yourself used to one of these platforms and its design and graphical elements. Once you have learned how to use these platforms, you can easily integrate your animated speaking avatar into your video production.

Let's have a look at some of the platforms that are handy for video production with animated avatars that can lip-sync with your audio.

Part2 5 Best animated speaking avatar lips sync

These are five of the best animated speaking avatars lip-sync platforms with distinct options. Depending on your needs and the facilities available, you can choose one and use it for better production.

1. DemoCreator

The primary function of the democreator was to act as a screen recorder. However, there are other functions in the democreator that adds value to your work. You can start the program and then go to the built-in video editor. You can either have a target window, custom size, or full-screen editing option.

There are stickers in the program which you can use for social media, gestures, gaming, education, background and to produce animation effects. There are video and voiceover syncing functions as well.

You have to download the program and install it onto your computer. Once you have installed the program, you will need to open the program and import the video you want to lip-sync or connect your audio with. You can also directly screen record to get the video. You will need to have your mic tested and well connected if you want to add your voiceover in real-time.

You can drag the sliders back and forth to fit your voice and video together. If you have a pre-recorded audio and video, you can also crop and drag both the audio and video clips to desired positions to make sure that your animated speaking avatar is perfectly aligned with the audio with the best lip-sync.

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Pros

● It has flexible screen recording.

● You can capture videos directly from your webcam.

● It has the most video and recording features.

● Easy to use interface.

● You can download updates for free.

● Can record with a magnifier to record specific parts of the video.

Cons

● The mic doesn’t switch off automatically after recording, but the webcam goes off. You have to switch the mic off manually, considering privacy.

2. Adobe Animate's Auto Lip-Sync feature

You have to download the software first and then start using it with the built-in functions. The adobe program comes with an AI-assisted function that helps the animators to get what they want. As Adobe is one of the leading digital production companies, this particular product also has the high quality that comes with all Adobe products.

You can either import characters and mouth poses from files or you can design them from scratch. The first step is to draw different mouth poses and label them. You have to build your character on the bone so that it looks more naturalistic when it functions. After drawing each mouth shape to suit your needs, you will need to convert each of them into graphic symbols. The most important part of this procedure is to create a master mouth symbol so that it acts as the foundation for all symbols. All other mouth poses, or symbols will be related to this master mouth symbol.

The higher the number of symbols you have created, the better your animations look organic. In the end, your audience must feel connected to the character, audio, and content of your video. To do this, the program has a lip-syncing dialog where you can do the viseme mapping. All of these will help you in designing your animated speaking avatar.

After the viseme mapping is done, you can now import your video and audio into the program. You will then need to assign different visemes to different sounds inside your audio file. Once you have done that, you have an option to select the auto lip-sync option. The AI-powered system goes to work and produces the end product.

You can also control an animated character to assign your own movements captured by your camera through the character animator. Each character is recorded which is also called the puppet. You can manually add gestures and other movements to your existing puppets as well.

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Pros

● With a higher range of adaptability, you can do everything from simple animations to complicated ones, all in one place.

● You can have quick stacking times on your platforms because of the records with smaller sizes, but with smooth pressure. This is particularly good when you have to send content through networks.

● Customized, yet familiar toolset. People get used to the site and the platform is a typical one for having all necessary modules.

Cons

● HTML5 has replaced it, which means not many people would want to use it on a website.

● The battery usage of the product especially on cellphones is remarkably high.

● It doesn’t support products from Apple, and it is also replaced mostly in 2020; not many new people would want to learn it.

● There are other platforms that have much automation to do tasks that are manual in this product.

3. Dribbble

Dribbble is another good platform to make your animated speaking avatar to include in your videos and make it visible to the world. Dribble is one of the largest platforms and communities out there. There are all levels of work, and you can visit dribble for inspiration and community. There are different UI designs and visual designs.

The advantage of having your shots posted on dribbble is that it has millions of members in there are and produces a potential for your work to be highlighted. You can also hire other people on the platform to design characters for you. Your animated speaking avatar on dribble can attract others so that you will get a job or project awarded to you on dribbble.

You have to create a membership and can also follow their courses on design work. There is extensive support by experts and mentorship by other users as well. Their certified product design course of 12 weeks will make you a professional and allow you to work and earn. There are live mentorship sessions and weekly video sessions from which you can polish up your skills and career. Dribbble is a wonderful platform if you have designed an animated speaking avatar and want to post it, or you want one done for you by others. There are various categories that you can browse by and select the kind of animated character you want. You can also use these characters in other software and programs to edit your videos and to make your own characters.

Although dribbble is not an ideal animated speaking avatar-making platform, it provides you the space to access tons of such characters which you can use in your projects, and to post your own animated characters to the world.

virtual

Pros

● It is one of the best networking tools for designers; you can host a meeting in your location as well.

● Simple and authentic.

● Once logged in, everything is simple and easy to understand.

● Each project has a consistent preview, making it easy to communicate with the employer or employee on dribbble.

● The layout and theme of the site remain the same which makes it feel kind of familiar for everyone.

Cons

● There is too much to look at which can be a distraction.

● Upload sizes are limited; you cannot upload animations of all sizes.

● Allows comparison with bigshots; it can sometimes be demotivating if you are a new designer up there and wanted to compare your product with the experts.

● The portfolio section can be improved.

● To utilize the networking features, you have to pay a monthly or annual subscription.

4. iClone

It is one of the software products gaining fast attention. The product is a 3D animation software, and it can be used for various purposes. It not only helps to produce 3D character animations but also includes the lip-syncing feature that can bring animated speaking avatars to life. With the tools available on the platform, you can do sophisticated artwork.

You can either record video and audio in real-time or import the files and work with them. Importing 3D models and characters is also an option where you can create your own characters and symbols from scratch as well. The freeform body morphing feature in the platform allows you to animate and move your puppets or characters with just the mouse.

You can add more individual personalities to your character by assigning various motion variations and reflecting the effect you need. Here is also motion blending technology that allows you to blend motions seamlessly.

An interactive character animation feature that creates runtime solutions that look real called the Human Ik is also available with the iClone software. There are human Ik reaching targets, human Ik motion layer editing, body puppeteering, direct puppeteering, mixmove, and other options available to make your animated speaking avatar much more reliable and organic.

The motion modifier and body mocap features in the program allow you for extra fine-tuning of your avatar. After you have imported your character to the platform or have designed it within the platform, you can add all these features to sync your audio with lip-syncing to your video or character animation.

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Pros

● The updates are compatible with previous versions. You don’t lose any work due to compatibility issues while updating from former versions.

● The user-friendliness and the appearance are welcoming features.

● The quality of the product has improved drastically over the years and is becoming a powerful tool for animators.

● It's kind of an all-in-one solution.

Cons

● There are smaller bugs in the new versions that are fixed in the next version which can take its own time.

● The Human IK sounds like it is considerably basic. The custom-made characters often show up faults.

● It can feel slow in times.

5. Anireel

One advantage of Anireel is that you don’t need to make your animated speaking avatar from scratch. You can use the scripting application feature to turn your scripts into quick animations. There is also text to speech facility available so that you don’t even need to add voiceovers manually. Without having to record an audio file, you can simply engage your character to make the moves and produce the speech just with the text.

You can also do dubbing sessions on this platform. There are different voice options to choose from and that reduces the hassle of having to hire experts at much-expensive rates to do your voiceovers. The platform is used mostly for explainer videos, the kind of videos where you use characters to lip-sync with your audio.

As with many other digital products, the Anireel is also launched by Wondershare, a leading digital company. The product has a lot of rich and funny features to fiddle with creativity. Creating, editing, and finishing an animated video has been made easy with Anireel. Since 2003, Wondersare has been offering a lot of solutions. The technology used includes updated and latest versions of artificial intelligence and machine learning which improves the processing capacity and quality of the elements being edited.

The cost for various levels of applications might vary but it's worth the money to work with. With the paid version, you can work with different assets in an interactive manner such as adding, removing, and modifying the colors of your characters, changing the sizes of your frames and pitch of the audio, and much more.

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Pros

● It’s a customizable tool that you can rearrange for your convenience.

● Most features are drag and drop which saves your time.

● The video creation seems effortless.

● Dubbing and other audio options are made easy through text-to-speech functions.

Cons

● The effects on character animations are limited.

● You cannot integrate it with other software platforms.

● There is little support when you need one.

Conclusion

Making an animated speaking avatar is not as difficult as it used to be. It is easy with a few pre-built functions which make the life of the animator easier. There are different platforms offering distinct types of services and products. You can choose the ones that best fit your interest. The ones with more automated tools like text-to-speech functions, artificial intelligence, and machine learning can be the most convenient ones.

Related FAQs


1. What is closed captioning?

As explained earlier, closed captions in a video can be enabled or disabled as required, and can even be formatted for improved visibility or to match the theme of the video. Closed captions for a video are saved in an independent file, typically with the *.srt extension.


2. How to deal with the auto-caption process failure?

While making auto-captioning, you can try to stop the transaction process if the program fails to recognize it. Then launch and sign in to the software again and check your transaction time.

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