The Difference Between CGI and Animation: Which One Is Better?

Both CGI and 3D Animation contribute to the completion of a 3D scene. CGI includes a lot of elements: dynamic visuals and static scenes.

Whereas 3D animation only creates movements for 3D objects or 3D characters. But what is the crucial difference between CGI and animation? This article will give the most straightforward answer.

What is CGI technology?

What is CGI technology?

CGI is the acronym for Computer-Generated Imagery. It can create any static (2D or 3D) and moving visual element. Nowadays, it often comes with 3D visual effects and realistic 3D graphics to make live-action films.

The director can replace the actual actor, object, environment element, etc., then add visual effects thanks to CGI technology. 3D modeling is the most popular term in CGI.

It is a process of creating any 3D character, object, surface, and surrounding element in films or videos. When watching a movie, you can easily define CGI. They are fictitious monsters, aliens, the universe, and even cheering crowds in a football stadium.

In general, they will apply CGI techniques to make the scene that the filmmakers cannot shoot directly.

See more: what is a cgi pole?

What is 3D Animation?

What is 3D Animation?

3D animation adds motion to a character, object, or anything in a three-dimensional environment. It can create smoother and more realistic footage. 3D cartoons such as Frozen, Mulan, Up, Minions, etc., are good examples to understand.

3D animation software helps the artist to move any part of the character or object on crucial frames separately. It can match CGI to make amazing frames.Compared with 2D animation, 3D animation contributes to creating 3D scenes that are extremely beautiful, smooth, and vivid.

They have a certain depth and bring the most realistic and close feeling.3D animation and 3D rendering need a 3D model. However, artists will use the best 3D rendering software to turn that model into 2d images instead of adding motion.

What are CGI and animation used for?

Although there are specific differences, the relationship between CGI and 3D animation is complementary. Both of them can provide motions to generate a more realistic output. Animation and digital art tools make CGI more efficient and less time-consuming.Here are the fields people often use CGI and animation:

  • Films and movies
  • Game environment
  • Medical explainer purposes
  • eLearning modules
  • Outer space or universal simulation
  • Real estate – virtual home building
  • Marketing purposes
What are CGI and animation used for?


Is animation better than CGI?

Many people say that CGI is better than traditional animation. CGI can provide a better and flashier look. CGI has enormous scope and helps to create more complex and realistic outcomes.

Is CGI considered animation?

The CGI process has multiple tasks, including 3D animation. 3D animation is a type among many animation techniques: 3D, vector-based, etc.

Is CGI easier to animate?

It depends on the complexity of the project. It may be simple when you have a model with some frames. But the work becomes more challenging if you have more characters and scenes. It is very time-consuming to hand-draw each frame, make up a model, rig it, and render it.

In conclusion, CGI and animation have distinct functions, methods, and processes. CGI and animation are valuable and popular in medicine, entertainment, marketing, and real estate. If you have any questions about the difference between CGI and animation or need 3D product rendering services, don’t hesitate to contact us to have expert advice.

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