CS2 Plug-ins For Christmas Gift?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Mardon, Nov 4, 2005.

  1. Mardon

    Mardon Guest

    I use PS CS2 as a hobby but I do not have any commercial plug-ins. My wife
    would like to buy me a couple of these as Christmas gifts but she needs me
    to tell her what I would like. I'm thinking about the "Noise Ninja Pro
    Bundle" and "Genuine Fractals, full version 4.1". I would also like
    something to help make delicate masks easier (for hair and smoke for
    example) and I'm wondering about "Mask Pro 3" from OnOne Software.

    What do others recommend as 'essential' CS2 plug-ins? I do some up-sampling
    and high ISO work, so that's why I'm considering Noise Ninja and Genuine
    Fractals. Are these reasonable first choices or are there other plug-ins
    that are better to consider? The 'gift' budget is about $500.
     
    Mardon, Nov 4, 2005
    #1
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  2. Mardon

    Annika1980 Guest

    What do others recommend as 'essential' CS2 plug-ins? I do some up-sampling
    The alternative to Noise Ninja would be NeatImage. Both work fine.

    Genuine Fractals isn't needed. You'll do just as well upsampling in
    Photoshop.
    That's one of the big improvements in the more recent versions of
    Photoshop, thanks largely to Chris Cox, who sometimes posts in these
    forums.

    The best addition you can make to CS2 is Photokit Sharpener.
    You can even try it free for 7 days first.
    http://www.pixelgenius.com/sharpener/index.html
     
    Annika1980, Nov 5, 2005
    #2
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  3. Mardon

    Markeau Guest

    Markeau, Nov 5, 2005
    #3
  4. Mardon

    bmoag Guest

    The Nik Color Efex package has several interesting and actually useful
    filters along with the usual collection of oddities.
    I have found regular use for the warming/brilliance and sunshine filters and
    experiment frequently with several others. They have very usable filters for
    toning and imparting old or nostalgic looks to images. The Nik control
    applet however is clumsy and I just ignore it preferring to test the effect
    of different filters on deletable layers.
    To be honest there are some free-ware plug-ins that duplicate some of what
    is in the Nik Color Efex package but they are not always as easy to use.
    The sunshine filter alone almost justifies, for me, the cost of the Nik
    package. It can create amazing transformations of dull or overcast lighting
    and also yields some pleasing effects even with well lit scenes. I really
    like this filter.
    Personally, I have not found noise reduction plug-ins to be any better than
    what is available in CS2 if used properly. I also am not convinced that for
    most users the cost of sharpening plug-ins is superior to what you can
    easily achieve with a little learning using the smart sharpen tool in CS2.
     
    bmoag, Nov 5, 2005
    #4
  5. Mardon

    Stacey Guest

    I like neat image's plugin and Fred Miranda has a cool B&W converter plugin
    you might check out.
     
    Stacey, Nov 5, 2005
    #5
  6. SNIP
    Reconsider. I use NeatImage (pioneers in noise reduction), but it
    beats Photoshop CS2 (which I also use). Noise Ninja is said to do okay
    as well, but I can't confirm from personal experience.
    I tend to agree on this one, although there are (MUCH slower, but
    slightly) better methods available.

    Bart
     
    Bart van der Wolf, Nov 7, 2005
    #6
  7. SNIP
    Or rather, since most resampling is used to magnify the image data for
    printing, I'd suggest Qimage (http://www.ddisoftware.com/qimage/). It
    won't deplete the indicated "budget", but it's one of those
    "must-have" utilities for the more actively used tool-box if one
    prints images.

    Bart
     
    Bart van der Wolf, Nov 7, 2005
    #7
  8. Mardon

    Stacey Guest

    I disagree. The CS2 filter doesn't do selective sharpening. The sharpening
    tool I use makes a mask from the image to apply sharpening with (avoids
    sky/water etc that would just amplify noise) and you can easily edit the
    mask with a brush or eraser to add or remove shapening from specific areas
    manually.
     
    Stacey, Nov 7, 2005
    #8
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