Roto in Silhouette vs. Mocha


I’m new to Silhouette. Up 'til now I did my roto work in Mocha. I was curious about Silhouette and already bought it to see if I can actually have some pleasure doing rotoscoping. I now have an idea how to roto in Silhouette but at my low level of expertise I don’t really understand what I can do in Silhouette that couldn’t be done in Mocha.

Can anybody tell me what the advantages of Silhouette are as it concerns rotoscoping? As I understand it there must be some because all I heard is that it is the ultimate tool for doing roto. I just don’t see it yet.

Any thoughts would be appreciated.


Hi Gérard,

I’m sure someone from the Mocha or Silhouette teams will jump in to explain the details of what roto specific features are included in Silhouette but not in Mocha and in the meantime, this chart might help : Boris FX | Silhouette 2022


Hey Gerard,
Now that both tools are under the Boris FX umbrella and the Mocha tracking option is included in Silhouette, it is a good question.

If you use Mocha for roto, there are certainly similarities and you will find Silhouette has been optimized for in-depth roto projects. Beyond roto, Silhouette also has amazing paint tools (check out the detail separation) and a node based composting interface. So while Mocha might be used for tracking or roto “to complement a host” application, Silhouette has many more tools to finish shots.

For roto a few highlights from me… but I’d love to hear from more Silhouette users here:

Larger projects - Silhouette is optimized to handle hundreds of layers and will not bog down. Grouping layers and all that goes with layer management is something that is more efficient in Silhouette.

Tools not found in Mocha: Inverse Kinematics, Reshape + Magnet mode, B-Splines, ability to do more with open-splines, new RotoOverlay tools with moblur and onion skin, channel viewers, and more.

Also a big workflow feature for roto, Silhouette has multiple matte and keying tools, so a user can combine spline-based roto with various keyers to reduce the manual work.

This is my shortlist, but there is a lot more. Internally we feel that for large scale roto projects where you are working on the same project for many days or collaborating with a roto team, Silhouette is the tool of choice, however, if you are a compositor or editor and want to jump in and do some roto/masking than get back to your host application, Mocha Pro will prob work better for you.

I hope this helps. You can also find a comparison chart here: Boris FX | Silhouette 2022

For pure roto, I’d say the biggest advantage of Silhouette is it was designed for extremely articulate roto which can involve hundreds or thousands of shapes. Take a look in the User Guide in the sections on editing shapes and you’ll find information on the very powerful manipulation tools and options.

In addition to what has already been said, Silhouette is pretty much the VFX industry standard for roto & frame by frame paint (& increasingly getting better in other areas too) so if you do work or want to work on feature films and TV especially, as a compositor and/or a digital roto/paint artist being able to use Silhouette is a core and invaluable skill.
Only until you start using it to the level it is used in an industry environment, ie every day with thousands of shapes and paint strokes do you really start to understand why it is the go to software.

I haven’t bought it yet (currently have the demo but will pull the trigger next pay cheque, probably) but the big draw for me (pun unintended) is the ways that fine details such as hair/fur can be approached.

Plus the new subscription model, which means, as an enthusiast rather than professional, I can actually now afford to access this stuff.