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Crisp look? Sharpening in LAB?

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  #11  
Old 04-04-2012, 01:39 PM
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andrewrodney andrewrodney is offline
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Re: Crisp look? Sharpening in LAB?

There is no such thing as an “Impossible Color”. The term originator is making up terms! Colors can be out of gamut (one color space versus another). Lab represents visible color based on it’s original color model (CIE XYZ). If you can’t see a wavelength of energy (it isn’t in the visible spectrum), it isn’t a color.

Sharpening in Lab to remove the effects of colors isn’t at all necessary. You can fade using Luminosity and have more control over the results and not have to convert into and out of Lab which can be a very destructive and time consuming command.

No parametric edits in ACR are destructive, they are only instruction based and provide a set of recipes for rendering the raw data into something Photoshop can even handle (it can’t directly do anything to raw data, hence ACR). And no, sharpening isn’t supposed to be the last step if you use a sharpening workflow. One step (Capture Sharpening) happens very early in the process, ideally at raw conversion. Output Sharpening happens at the end of the process, just prior to printing at a known size and resolution. See: http://www.creativepro.com/story/feature/20357.html
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  #12  
Old 04-04-2012, 02:48 PM
kav kav is offline
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Re: Crisp look? Sharpening in LAB?

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Originally Posted by andrewrodney View Post

Sharpening in Lab to remove the effects of colors isn’t at all necessary. You can fade using Luminosity and have more control over the results and not have to convert into and out of Lab which can be a very destructive and time consuming command.

No parametric edits in ACR are destructive, they are only instruction based and provide a set of recipes for rendering the raw data into something Photoshop can even handle (it can’t directly do anything to raw data, hence ACR). And no, sharpening isn’t supposed to be the last step if you use a sharpening workflow. One step (Capture Sharpening) happens very early in the process, ideally at raw conversion. Output Sharpening happens at the end of the process, just prior to printing at a known size and resolution. See: http://www.creativepro.com/story/feature/20357.html
I agree with you on LAB. It's silly making extra conversions and potentially introducing rounding errors for little to no real benefit other than theoretically on paper (I've tested this with test patterns and real photos). I do remember reading sharpen only in LAB from stock photo agencies relative to drum scans on their submission guidelines. This was quite a long time ago, and even then I have to wonder how many people paid attention to that. Algorithms in photoshop used for sharpening seem to have improved since then, but I haven't done side by side comparisons.

I want to point out that you shouldn't be too aggressive with ACR settings unless you can pretty much get what you want right from the raw. If this is going to be adjusted heavily in post, you can make doing so much more difficult with ACR settings which are predominantly global settings anyway (masking tools suck there) and they do have their limits. I've tried it both ways. On sharpening you're better off being too low on capture sharpening than too high. In most cases with modern digital cameras assuming little camera shake and an appropriate point of focus, you're actually fine even if you leave it off completely. You hit more problems adding too much than too little, and it by far the most common photoshop mistake on here. I don't know how much painting or composite work you do. I'm assuming you're quite fluent with it. Sometimes you have to match the sharpness of different edges or elements and falloff in lighting. This is much easier if it's minimally adjusted. In ACR and Capture One, assuming a good starting capture from a professional grade camera, I find the default sharpening settings to be too high for my taste.
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  #13  
Old 04-04-2012, 03:32 PM
girlsfather girlsfather is offline
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Re: Crisp look? Sharpening in LAB?

Most often I deliver the full resolution to the client, so the picture is going to be interpolated before print. Sharpening at the end would be no good idea in this cases.

Most of the time I use Capture One.
The default sharpening settings of C1 work perfect for me most of the time.
They are different depending on the source.
(I prefer to use the RAW Converter that corresponds to the file - will say, the one the Photographer used when he looked at it during the shoot.
This way I am at the same starting point, regarding colour and contrast, which have a great influence on the visual sharpness.

I think I can see the aereas that have to be worked on better.
But as said before: Be shure to not oversharpen at that stage.
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  #14  
Old 04-04-2012, 04:53 PM
kav kav is offline
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Re: Crisp look? Sharpening in LAB?

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Originally Posted by girlsfather View Post

I think I can see the aereas that have to be worked on better.
But as said before: Be shure to not oversharpen at that stage.
Many people think this way. It's lying to you to a degree. I usually go in favor of leaving more detail that's a bit softer. With things that really do need to be removed, there are many ways to test that. If we're talking about a pimple, dust, scratches on a surface, etc. okay I'll give you that. Much of the time sharpening causes you to want to remove things that could have just stayed as slightly softer detail. I don't think it always looks better taking them out.
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  #15  
Old 04-05-2012, 02:33 AM
capice capice is offline
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Re: Crisp look? Sharpening in LAB?

thanks for sharing this dicussion, pretty interesting for us less experienced users
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  #16  
Old 04-05-2012, 04:44 AM
jhr jhr is offline
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Re: Crisp look? Sharpening in LAB?

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Originally Posted by andrewrodney View Post
No parametric edits in ACR are destructive, they are only instruction based and provide a set of recipes for rendering the raw data into something Photoshop can even handle (it can’t directly do anything to raw data, hence ACR). And no, sharpening isn’t supposed to be the last step if you use a sharpening workflow. One step (Capture Sharpening) happens very early in the process, ideally at raw conversion. Output Sharpening happens at the end of the process, just prior to printing at a known size and resolution. See: http://www.creativepro.com/story/feature/20357.html
Just to clarify, I didn't mean destructive to the RAW file. Obviously you have the xmp-data and if you don't like something you've done in ACR you can just remove it. What I meant by destructive is just like applying sharpness to a 'Background Copy' layer is a non-destructive move and applying it to your 'Background' layer is a destructive one. If you apply sharpness in ACR, develop the image, and after some, say, cloning realize in Photoshop that the sharpening done in ACR might have been over the top, there is no easy way to back it. That's when the Capture Sharpness in ACR becomes a destructive move (to me anyway). You have to develop the image again with less sharpness and then do the cloning over again.
I'm not saying don't use Capture Sharpening in ACR. To be honest, the settings you should be using for Capture Sharpening should be pretty low already. It should just give your image a little more sharpness before rendering the data so it won't be a major move. It's just that in my workflow I like to have the ability to back off all the adjustments I've done to the image. Therefore I sharpen at the very end, on a new layer called 'Sharpness', and if I then realize it might have been to much I can just throw the layer away and do it over again without affecting other layers.

Last edited by jhr; 10-08-2012 at 01:40 AM.
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  #17  
Old 04-05-2012, 08:35 AM
creativeretouch creativeretouch is offline
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Re: Crisp look? Sharpening in LAB?

Personally, I don't sharpen images in any RAW converter. I keep last file with all layers and finally, after resizing it for web or print I would apply final sharpening. Only once. I keep my master file with layers unsharpened.

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  #18  
Old 04-05-2012, 09:20 AM
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andrewrodney andrewrodney is offline
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Re: Crisp look? Sharpening in LAB?

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Originally Posted by girlsfather View Post
Most often I deliver the full resolution to the client, so the picture is going to be interpolated before print. Sharpening at the end would be no good idea in this cases.
Actually just the opposite and sharpening is both resolution dependant and output device dependant. Maybe you can’t do this, but the client should.
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  #19  
Old 04-05-2012, 09:23 AM
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andrewrodney andrewrodney is offline
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Re: Crisp look? Sharpening in LAB?

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Originally Posted by capice View Post
thanks for sharing this dicussion, pretty interesting for us less experienced users
This might also be helpful:

http://www.creativepro.com/story/feature/20357.html
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  #20  
Old 04-05-2012, 09:25 AM
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andrewrodney andrewrodney is offline
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Re: Crisp look? Sharpening in LAB?

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Originally Posted by JonathanHoglund View Post
What I meant by destructive is just like applying sharpness to a 'Background Copy' layer is a non-destructive move and applying it to your 'Background' layer is a destructive one.
Both are destructive, one gets burned onto the pixels as soon as you do it, the other when you print or flatten the image (which has to happen at some point). All adjustment layers do is let you change your mind and not use them. But at some point, the data has to be applied to the underlying pixels and then there is data loss.
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