Autodesk Inc. business unit Discreet on Tuesday announced
combustion 4, a new version of their visual effects software for Mac and Windows. Combustion 4 includes vector paint, particles, effects, animation and 3D compositing tools. The new version adds new creative tools, interface improvements, new paint tools and enhanced support for 3D animation products, encoding software and more.
New to this release is Discreet’s Diamond Keyer, a new set of keying algorithms derived from Discreet’s flame visual effects system. Time-Warp is a key-frameable, time-remapping operator used to generate slow motion and speed up effects. B-spline vector shapes and new point-grouping has been added to help improve rotoscoping. A new optimized “Fast Gaussian Blur” has been added.
You can also now create and save encapsulated single or grouped operator modes. A Gbuffer builder lets you create custom Rich Pixel Format (RPF) data structures from bitmap files. A newly optimized Merge Operator speeds up merging two layers of the same size using transfer nodes. Operator, navigation, filtering and compare tools have been reworked with improved user interfaces. New file format import and export options support ASCII Scene Export (ASE) camera targets from 3ds max, and Windows Media can be imported. Output can also be made Open EXR-compatible. Combustion 4’s paint features have been enhanced with new tools, grids and rulers, B-spline in paint new customized brushes. And if you’re using other Discreet online systems like inferno, fire, smoke, flame, flint and backdraft as part of your workflow, combustion 4 now has the ability to read media directly from Discreet stone file systems.
Combustion 4 will first be released on Windows in March 2005 with a Macintosh release expected in May 2005. The new release costs US$995, with upgrades priced at $249. Free upgrades are available for new customers who buy combustion 3 between now and then.