AE 2017.2 Release. I'll try to be as clear as possible:

  1. I create a comp with two text layers: enter image description here

  2. I precompose those two text layers and set Nested Comp's Opacity to 30%: enter image description here

  3. In Nested Comp I apply Bevel and Emboss to the upper text (setting Shadow's and Highlight's Opacity to 0%, so B&E is effectively nonexistent): enter image description here

  4. In Containing Comp I switch Collapse Transformation On and upper text's opacity goes to 100%: enter image description here The end.

Add 1. It's not like upper text's Opacity is not affected by Nested Comp Opacity parameter. More like it becomes binary. If I set it to any value >0%, upper text will be 100%. If I set it to be 0%, upper text becomes 0%. enter image description here

Add 2. In Layer Styles it's not about B&E but rather Blending Options. I may delete B&E and everything remains the same: enter image description here

Add 3. Upper text's Opacity on the Containing Comp is not just 100%. It actually equals to the Fill Opacity parameter of Blending Options of Layer Styles of upper text in the Nested Comp: enter image description here

Add 4. The whole issue disappears if a dummy Transform Effect is applied to the Nested Comp. Moreover, not only the Transform Effect may be dummy, you can actually SWITCH OFF all the effects for the Nested Comp but the very existence of that not-applied effect fixes the problem:

enter image description here

Due to the Add 4 I assume, it's a bug. Looking forward for your comments and explanations on how does it happen and further insights on how Collapse Transformation works and Layer Styles place in rendering hierarchy. Thanks.

  • CS6 is the most recent version I have, but I'll try this in it later and see if I get similar behavior. My best guess might be that it has something to do with how nested opacity is being calculated, there are some settings for this but I don't recall exactly where they are. I've had a similar issue in the past when using comps imported from Photoshop or Illustrator and having odd behavior from nested opacity. I remember I was able to work them out, but can't remember exactly how.
    – AJ Henderson
    Dec 6, 2017 at 15:08

1 Answer 1


it's not a bug, it's the nature of collapse transformation switch, and when you've added this dummy effect you simply have disabled the collapse transformation.

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