Synfig – 2D animation software

Synfig is a vector based 2D animation package. It is designed to be capable of producing feature-film quality animation.

The software eliminates the need for tweening, preventing the need to hand-draw each frame.

Synfig can be used for all aspects of the production of animations except story-boarding and editing. It has a powerful high-dynamic-range compositing system which allows users to add all sorts of special effects and shading directly in the software while maintaining spacial and temporal resolution independence.

Synfig stores its animations in a non-standard xml-based-format, which includes natively vector graphics and additionally raster graphics, referenced to external stored bitmaps.

Features include:

  • Standard tools for freehand drawing: Draw shapes, select colours, fill areas etc.
  • Spatial resolution-independence.
  • Temporal resolution independence – use of keyframes to reduce the workload.
  • Pentablet-friendly tools.
  • Path-based Gradients.
  • Supports a multitude of layers of various types; geometric, gradients, filters, distortions, transformations, fractal and a few others.
  • Simulating soft-shading using curved gradients within an area.
  • Wide variety of real-time effects which are added via layers.
  • Control and animate the width of lines.
  • Link any related data from one object to another.
  • Saves to animated graphic formats like MNG and GIF.
  • Output targets include JPEG, PNG, GIF, BMP, PPM, DV, OpenEXR, ffmpeg (MPEG1), libavcodec (AVI), imagemagick (MIFF), yuv420p, MNG, and others.

Support: Documentation
Developer: Robert Quattlebaum, Adrian Bentley and contributors
License: GNU GPL v2 or later

Image of Synfig Studio

Synfig is written in C++. Learn C++ with our recommended free books and free tutorials.

Return to Animation Tools

Popular series
Free and Open Source SoftwareThe largest compilation of the best free and open source software in the universe. Each article is supplied with a legendary ratings chart helping you to make informed decisions.
ReviewsHundreds of in-depth reviews offering our unbiased and expert opinion on software. We offer helpful and impartial information.
Alternatives to Proprietary SoftwareReplace proprietary software with open source alternatives: Google, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, IBM, Autodesk, Oracle, Atlassian, Corel, Cisco, Intuit, and SAS.
GamesAwesome Free Linux Games Tools showcases a series of tools that making gaming on Linux a more pleasurable experience. This is a new series.
Artificial intelligence iconMachine Learning explores practical applications of machine learning and deep learning from a Linux perspective. We've written reviews of more than 40 self-hosted apps. All are free and open source.
Guide to LinuxNew to Linux? Read our Linux for Starters series. We start right at the basics and teach you everything you need to know to get started with Linux.
Alternatives to popular CLI tools showcases essential tools that are modern replacements for core Linux utilities.
System ToolsEssential Linux system tools focuses on small, indispensable utilities, useful for system administrators as well as regular users.
ProductivityLinux utilities to maximise your productivity. Small, indispensable tools, useful for anyone running a Linux machine.
AudioSurveys popular streaming services from a Linux perspective: Amazon Music Unlimited, Myuzi, Spotify, Deezer, Tidal.
Saving Money with LinuxSaving Money with Linux looks at how you can reduce your energy bills running Linux.
Home ComputersHome computers became commonplace in the 1980s. Emulate home computers including the Commodore 64, Amiga, Atari ST, ZX81, Amstrad CPC, and ZX Spectrum.
Now and ThenNow and Then examines how promising open source software fared over the years. It can be a bumpy ride.
Linux at HomeLinux at Home looks at a range of home activities where Linux can play its part, making the most of our time at home, keeping active and engaged.
Linux CandyLinux Candy reveals the lighter side of Linux. Have some fun and escape from the daily drudgery.
DockerGetting Started with Docker helps you master Docker, a set of platform as a service products that delivers software in packages called containers.
Android AppsBest Free Android Apps. We showcase free Android apps that are definitely worth downloading. There's a strict eligibility criteria for inclusion in this series.
Programming BooksThese best free books accelerate your learning of every programming language. Learn a new language today!
Programming TutorialsThese free tutorials offer the perfect tonic to our free programming books series.
Linux Around The WorldLinux Around The World showcases usergroups that are relevant to Linux enthusiasts. Great ways to meet up with fellow enthusiasts.
Stars and StripesStars and Stripes is an occasional series looking at the impact of Linux in the USA.
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments