Enhancement software

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by SS, Sep 21, 2007.

  1. SS

    SS Guest

    Just updating to see if there is any new or improved software for enhancing
    digital photos and scans ie. sharpening, noise reduction, focussing, colour,
    contrast etc. Currently I use PSP11, Focus Magic and Neatimage + Polaroid
    dust and scratch removal.

    My main bugbear is bringing up detail on old negative and slide scans and
    always looking for more 'intelligent' algorithms to improve these. I find
    Focus magic very difficult to use on blurry photos but on its lowest
    settings it does a great job of sharpening detail on 'normal' photos. PSP
    auto fix brings colours and contrast nicely to normal and neatimage is a
    good grain reducer although some sharpness is lost. Polaroid (for a free bit
    of software) is great at cleaning up old photo scans without attending to
    each blemish manually.

    But is there better out there now?

    Thanks
    SS, Sep 21, 2007
    #1
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  2. SS

    Matt Ion Guest

    SS wrote:
    > Just updating to see if there is any new or improved software for enhancing
    > digital photos and scans ie. sharpening, noise reduction, focussing, colour,
    > contrast etc. Currently I use PSP11, Focus Magic and Neatimage + Polaroid
    > dust and scratch removal.
    >
    > My main bugbear is bringing up detail on old negative and slide scans and
    > always looking for more 'intelligent' algorithms to improve these. I find
    > Focus magic very difficult to use on blurry photos but on its lowest
    > settings it does a great job of sharpening detail on 'normal' photos. PSP
    > auto fix brings colours and contrast nicely to normal and neatimage is a
    > good grain reducer although some sharpness is lost. Polaroid (for a free bit
    > of software) is great at cleaning up old photo scans without attending to
    > each blemish manually.
    >
    > But is there better out there now?


    Actually, I find Picasa's auto-functions (contrast, color, sharpening)
    work really well, for a free package. A lot of the time, a simple click
    of "I'm Feeling Lucky" (applies both auto-color and auto-contrast) is
    all a picture needs.

    I wouldn't mind checking out this "Polaroid" software for cleaning up
    some old scans, though... do you have a link to it?
    Matt Ion, Sep 21, 2007
    #2
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  3. SS

    SS Guest

  4. On Fri, 21 Sep 2007 09:29:50 GMT, "SS" <> wrote:

    >Just updating to see if there is any new or improved software for enhancing
    >digital photos and scans ie. sharpening, noise reduction, focussing, colour,
    >contrast etc. Currently I use PSP11, Focus Magic and Neatimage + Polaroid
    >dust and scratch removal.
    >
    >My main bugbear is bringing up detail on old negative and slide scans and
    >always looking for more 'intelligent' algorithms to improve these. I find
    >Focus magic very difficult to use on blurry photos but on its lowest
    >settings it does a great job of sharpening detail on 'normal' photos. PSP
    >auto fix brings colours and contrast nicely to normal and neatimage is a
    >good grain reducer although some sharpness is lost. Polaroid (for a free bit
    >of software) is great at cleaning up old photo scans without attending to
    >each blemish manually.
    >
    >But is there better out there now?
    >
    >Thanks
    >


    For dust and scratch removal the one built into PhotoLine 32 can't be beat. It's
    much better than the one in PSP and the plugin by Polaroid too.

    You will find its cloning tool is much better also. It has the option to show
    you what picture information is being cloned right in the brush. That's half the
    workload gone right there, having to back up every time you clone something and
    then see that it's not exactly wanted. You can see the change you will get
    before, and as, you apply any bit of it. PhotoLine also has a "Repairing Brush",
    it's the same as PhotoShop's "Healing Brush". Used when you want to clone
    texture when you don't want to drastically alter the underlying colors.

    Learn to use Focus Magic in 2 or 3 passes. One time to bring in larger blurry
    areas with a low intensity setting and a 2nd or 3rd pass to fine tune those
    regions with more intensity. Don't rely on that 100% default all the time.
    Sometimes it's better to increase the radius and reduce the intensity,
    conversely it can be better to reduce the radius and increase the intensity. It
    can also effectively remove softness from fog or from a photo shot through hazy
    windows when used this way. You have to visually analyze the blur before using
    it to see which method is best. For example if you know your blur is being
    induced by 2 separate optical components, camera focus and fogged-up filter,
    apply it for both of them individually, filter-fogging first, then again for the
    main optical components. Just like noise reduction cannot be used effectively
    with a one-size-fits-all setting, successfully using Focus Magic is more
    experience and talent than science.
    John Smith Jr., Sep 22, 2007
    #4
  5. SS

    Matt Ion Guest

    Matt Ion, Sep 23, 2007
    #5
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