We have always been big fans of SketchUp here at digital urban, it is without question one of the quickest and easiest 3D modelers out there for visualization. That said, animation has always been slightly lacking which is why we are intrigued by Sketchers Studio for the Mac which takes .skp files into a 3D film studio setting.
Take a look at the movie below for a glimpse of the possibilities:
Objects can imported from the 3D Warehouse as scene settings or props to be animated, of note is the ability to move objects in realtime while recording an animation path - as part one of their tutorial below illustrates in terms of setting up a car animation:
Setting up the cameras and the final scene can be completed in under 10 minutes - something that is definitely of interest for those doing pre viz work or story board settings for advertising/films etc:
See http://sketchersstudio.com for full details and a trial download, the full version is currently available for $59.
Thanks go to maoltuile for mentioning Sketchers Studio in the comments to our post on hyperShot, Realtime Rendering for Windows and Mac.