View Full Version : Combustion Training DVDS from Techanim

01 January 2004, 01:47 AM
Hi all,

I am contemplating purchasing Techanim's Combustion 2 Training DVD's, which boast 14 hours of training, along with their Max intergration DVD.

Its a bit pricy, I just wanted to know if anyone has used them, I have heard pretty good things from them so far.

01 January 2004, 02:02 AM
I'd start with Jason's VTM's on first:
They're free, and pretty good also, to get you started.... :)


01 January 2004, 11:29 PM
Thanks man!
I'll give those a look first.
Got a bit of another problem though.
Lost dongle :(

01 January 2004, 06:19 PM
Hi there, I've just had a look at and can't find this Jason's VTM's. Can you please let me know if the name you have given is correct?

I'm really keen to get into Combustion, but I'm having problems getting my head round it. I can't seem to understand how to track a bit of footage I have. Can anyone help please..?


Jack Pfeiffer
01 January 2004, 10:46 AM
Hi " iki " ...

Note that is you load Combustion Version 2,11 - you NO LONGER need to use a dongle.... That should "set you free..."

As for jason's Cv2.1 Tuts: At, look under the VTM (Video Training Modules) FAQs to get all the info and facts on downloading. Register first, and then follow the instructions... Here is the link:

There are also free Divx Cv2.1 Training Videos at here:

As for your Q's on tracking, have you seen my "Tips of Four Corner Pinning / Four Corner Tracking" over at FXGuide? Link:

There are a few other FREE training resources for you to consider .. view them all on this the post here:



01 January 2004, 11:06 AM
Thanks very much Jack,

Your response was very helpful and I'm looking forward to learning more from you in the future.

Is your book available anywhere else on the net or is it just available from your site...? It sounds really great and I want to buy it.

Once again thank you very much for your insightful and very helpful email and I'm looking into all those links right now.


Jack Pfeiffer
01 January 2004, 11:57 AM
Hi " iki ". . .

Glad you found the info helpful...

And thanks for asking about my Combustion book... Indeed, last year I wrote and published the first book on Combustion Version 2 on the whole market, entitled "WebWarriors On-Line Guide To Combustion." However, my book is now totally sold out and I have absolutely NO copies left. There may be copies available from our Swedish supplier, and you can contact them direct at: website:

So, with that said, here is a brief "newest hit list" on some other Combustion Training Tools, including DVDs and Books.

1) The "Advanced Combustion v2" DVD set from "the Street Productions." These DVDs are a great tool, and I myself have reviewed them (the review is post on the internet at the CREATIVE COW webiste at: ) Three power users/trainers, Lee "Rod" Roderick, Gary M. Davis, and Ken LaRue have teamed up to create 6.5 hours on four DVDS with 15 lessons -- these are real - world projects for the advanced user, and well worth the investment.. This is the FIRST in a series, and the second one is coming soon..... Ken has also announced a whole new 14 hour Cv3 Beginners DVD set coming soon too... Check them all out at

2) There is an older Combustion Version 2 DVD Video set also available: although designed for just for Cv2 & rather expensive, it does contain about 14 hours of Cv2 training and tutorials. That set is also taught by Ken LaRue (same guy as above) and is directly available from the supplier Technical Animations (

3) The first Cv3 book has been announced: It is from Gary Davis, a discreet training specialist, and called "The Focal Easy Guide to Discreet Combustion 3". I am very familiar with Gary and he has shared with me some preliminary info about his book - that fact is that I fully expect it to be an excellent one. It is also priced very VERY affordably -- There is already pre-order information posted at

4) A second Combustion V3 book has also been announced: it is called "Combustion Ground Rules" and written by Todd Petersen. Todd has written other books including "3ds max Ground Rules" and others. I don't know Tood at all, so I can't say much about the book expectations His book has also just been posted for pre-order at as well.

I hope this helps you.... Whatever you do . . . . Keep Combustin' !

Jack Pfeiffer

01 January 2004, 12:52 PM
Damn, I was really looking forward to purchasing that book. Surely you must have one on your shelf that you may want to part with for my precious pot of gold....?!!! (I am being serious, so if you want to sell me a copy, then let me know how)

You seem to be a deep well of knowledge when it comes to Combustin' (see what I did there!) so here's a question for ya. The reason I'm learning combustion is that I'm doing a small project of my own. I've got to take some live background footage, track it, pass the tracking information to Maya to use as camera matchmove. Apply 3D elements to the footage, mask out areas infront and add on particle effects.

Now is this possible in Combustion or will I need some extra matchmove software for any part of this...?

Once again thanks for your prompt and useful reply.


01 January 2004, 03:05 PM
I did post a very long reply with another question for you Jack but my reply seems to have gone awol.

I won't bother with the question now, but I was simply replying to thank you for taking the time to write such an elaborate and helpful response to my question.

Thank you very much for all the help, it is greatly appreciated.


ps. one thing I did ask was whether you had a copy of your book that I may purchase off you. I've looked everywhere and I can't seem to find it.

01 January 2004, 05:41 PM
If it was '....Ground Rules' you were after, try here:


01 January 2004, 05:59 PM
Alright mate! Actually I checked your site out a few days ago when I was looking around for some help and you have some pretty good work on there.

I saw that book you mentioned already, but wasn't sure if it was actually any good. The other thing is that it is not yet available, but as soon as it does become available, I'll be purchasing it.

The reasons why I wanted to purchase Jacks book is that he seems to have a grip on Combustion, the other one is cause he bothered to take the time to reply and that goes a long way with me.

Maybe I'll just be 'bling' and buy them both :thumbsup:

Thanks for your help.


Jack Pfeiffer
01 January 2004, 09:23 AM
Hi " iki "...

That's for the compliment.. I am glad that I can some help....

As for your question on your project - If I understand you correctly: You want to take some live background footage, then track it. Next, you want to export the tracking information to Maya to use for camera matching to add 3D elements. Then, go back to Combustion and apply masks and add some particle effects..... Right?

Yes, this should be possible in Combustion. I haven't done it myself, but after reviewing the V2,1 user Guide, I think I can point you in the right direction... The workflow would be something like this:

Import the clip and do your track in Combustion. After that, you will export the analyzed tracker data - simply click "Export Data." This data specifies the X and Y position of the tracker box in relation to the origin point of the image. Note that the origin point has coordinates of 0,0, starting at the lower left corner of the image. So, simply put, this export will be keyframe data, that is saved as a text file.

As for interfacing the tracker data import to Maya: You'll have to experiment a bit on this, but it should work. If you see any problems, you may need to adjust and/or apply an offset: Off-setting is quite easy, by simply performing transformation to the x-y-or-z the layer.

That should get you started....

Some other TIPS / TRICKS: If you have included ALPHA channel info in ANY of your imagery, remember to export and save as a 32bit TGA file sequence, as the TGA 32 bit format will respect alpha info, retain image quality, as well as provide for easy input-output between your programs.

As for my book: I am truely sold out of the WebWarrior book..
If you really want a copy, eMail the Swedish store: website
In any case, I might suggest placing an order for the new previously mentioned "Gary Davis Combustion Focal Press" book...

Best Wishes,


01 January 2004, 10:40 AM
It's the tracking where I'm having the difficulty right now. I'm a Maya user and getting my head round thinking in 2D is turning out to be quite difficult. I can't seem to understand how Combustion can throw out 3D tracking data. I would need it in 3D to be able to match the elements in Maya.
I can get one Tracker up simply, but how do you put in multiple trackers over the same footage...? I'm assuming that's what I would need to track the footage correctly.

I've orderded the book that you and Atwooki recommended (Combustion Ground Rules by Todd Peterson), now I just have to wait for it to be delivered.

I know what I'm asking is probably very basic to you guys, but I do appreciate your patience.


Jack Pfeiffer
01 January 2004, 11:00 AM
Hi " iki "....

The only "stupid question" is the one that doesn't get asked!

However, here are some important thing to clear up....

1) Hey! Combustion can only perform 2D Tracking.. NOT 3D.
I am aware of two other "third-party" tracking software on the market, but I don't think they track 3D either.. not sure.. Check them out yourself here:
a) the Boujou tracker from 2d3 (see: -- there is a free demo version. Bojou supports export for Combustion CWS files and Maya .ma files.
b) Mokey (see: which does not only tracking, but also wire and rig removal, keying, image stabilization, with grain tools and lens distortion tools. There's also a demo version.

2) You mention the book "Combustion Ground Rules" by Todd Peterson -- Just to get it clear: I don't know Anything about that book, nor can I say that I "recommend" it..... On the other hand, I can offer a "strong recommendation" for Gary Davis's new book entitled " Focal Easy Guide to Discreet Combustion 3 " > Here is the Amazon UK link:

bye for now..


01 January 2004, 11:15 AM
Hi Jack -
I Don't think the title you recommend:

'Easy Guide to Discreet Combustion 3'

is available in the UK, sadly; have to borrow from somebody's shelf :shrug:


07 July 2005, 10:28 PM
Hi all,

I am contemplating purchasing Techanim's Combustion 2 Training DVD's, which boast 14 hours of training, along with their Max intergration DVD.

Its a bit pricy, I just wanted to know if anyone has used them, I have heard pretty good things from them so far.

Hi Nerra

Did you get round to getting the trainning set for Combustion? if so were they good ? and if they were any chance of buying a copy from you. I am doing a Media course and need to really learn quick and at my slow pace.


07 July 2005, 02:46 PM
Fi, check out the following links

This one looks like a good value introduction: (

Personally, I will be getting Ken La Rue's training DVD's for c4 when he releases them later this month/August (The Street Productions ones). They are more expensive, but I have seen his traning for c2 and was well impressed.

I also just purchased the 3 DVD's from Runaway training (Lee Roderick) and again, I am very impressed. Note that these are more "topic specific" and assume you know the basics. Cheers also to the help from the guys at Runaway Training - definitely some of the best customer service I have ever received.

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