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Software Photoshop, Lightroom, Paintshop Pro, Painter, etc., and all their various plugins. Of course, you can also discuss all other programs, as well.

Best Sharpening Plug-ins

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  #41  
Old 06-12-2011, 01:49 PM
Flashtones Flashtones is offline
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Re: Best Sharpening Plug-ins

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Originally Posted by andrewrodney View Post
I thought post 22 and 25 were clear:

LR or ACR has no idea nor could it that someone in the past applied sharpening. Or if the camera applied it (which many do).

It makes no assumptions it can't.
No, not clear at all. The insinuation is that for raw images where capture sharpening was applied in LR/ACR it would know and could make assumptions based on that information and adjust output sharpening accordingly.

Here's an imperfect analogy: Imagine I tell you my TimeGenious group consulted on the new alarm component of a super duper clock. I tell you that the time the alarm goes off is based on the time you go to bed, so you'll get the "correct" amount of sleep! This raises many eyebrows and you ask many logical questions like: How does the clock know what time you went to bed, how does it adjust accordingly, and what does it do if you sleep in a different room? etc. I keep answering that if you don't sleep in that room it can't know, so it's best to stay in "the pipeline" to get the correct result. Additional pointed questions ensue until finally you get it out of me that in reality the alarm goes off at the time you tell it to regardless of when you went to bed, got the "correct" amount of sleep, or slept in another room altogether. It's based on output settings, not the time you go to bed. Okay, maybe it knows if it's a weekday or weekend, or rings louder or softer based on the amount of daylight (or lack thereof) in the room, so there is intelligence going on there, but it is not based on "correct" sleep or bedtime.

I'm sorry Andrew, but as a member of PixelGenius - the group that worked with Adobe on the sharpening implementation - you have to expect that people will be listening very closely to your words on the subject. And as an author, seminar provider and educator (i.e. communicator) I'd expect you to be a lot clearer on the subject than you've been.

Quote:
Originally Posted by andrewrodney View Post
No. Its based both. If you apply output sharpening with or without develop sharpening, you get different results.
See, you're still doing it. The LR workflow includes Capture and Output Sharpening. Together they constitute part of a whole, but they do not interface with each other, they operate independently. One's effect is not based on the settings of the other, but together they are based on the concept of a two or three pass sharpening approach. As a user you should expect best results from using both, but there is no intelligence built into the program to analyze "correctness" and automate the algorithms of one relative to the other.

Similarly, the time you set your alarm to go off is not based on the time you go to bed, it's based on the time you need to wake up. Together they constitute a whole approach to getting the "correct" amount of sleep, but realistically they operate independent of one another. The alarm isn't "based on" the time you went to bed, as it doesn't reference it for effect.

Last edited by Flashtones; 06-12-2011 at 02:08 PM.
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  #42  
Old 06-13-2011, 12:42 AM
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andrewrodney andrewrodney is offline
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Re: Best Sharpening Plug-ins

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Originally Posted by Flashtones View Post
No, not clear at all. The insinuation is that for raw images where capture sharpening was applied in LR/ACR it would know and could make assumptions based on that information and adjust output sharpening accordingly.
Insinuation no, assumption on your part, probably.

Quote:
See, you're still doing it. The LR workflow includes Capture and Output Sharpening. Together they constitute part of a whole, but they do not interface with each other, they operate independently.
No, together they work as a sharpening workflow. They operate dependently.

Quote:
One's effect is not based on the settings of the other, but together they are based on the concept of a two or three pass sharpening approach.
Again no, not in LR. The result of the sharpening upon output is based on the concept of two a step sharpening process where step two is based on step one being applied (correctly).
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  #43  
Old 06-13-2011, 12:28 PM
Flashtones Flashtones is offline
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Re: Best Sharpening Plug-ins

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Originally Posted by andrewrodney View Post
Insinuation no, assumption on your part, probably.

No, together they work as a sharpening workflow. They operate dependently.

Again no, not in LR. The result of the sharpening upon output is based on the concept of two a step sharpening process where step two is based on step one being applied (correctly).
Surely it's my failing, but I just find your explanations muddying.

It's like a coffee maker that has a slow/fast brew option. The strength of one's brew can be effected by factors of both input and output. On the input side: the strength/amount of the beans applied. On the output side: the speed of the brew process, with slow yielding a richer brew.

One can say that the brew speed will be "based" on the correct amount/strength of beans applied. But in truth, it's based on where you set the switch to: fast or slow. The whole concept of a "correct" amount/strength of beans is arbitrary in the first place as it's purely a matter of personal preference.

Conceptually, of course the beans and the brew speed are related in concept and, hopefully practice, but the two operate independent of one another and are solely user controlled. There's nothing unique about that coffee maker in that regard.

I know we both get this, I just find your explanations far more ambiguous.
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  #44  
Old 06-13-2011, 01:28 PM
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AKMac AKMac is offline
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Re: Best Sharpening Plug-ins

I am fairly new to this forum, so I'm not sure about the protocol/etiquette. Do I try to reintroduce the question about which are the best sharpening plugins here, or has this thread taken on a momentum of its own and should I reintroduce the question in another thread?
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  #45  
Old 06-13-2011, 02:39 PM
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andrewrodney andrewrodney is offline
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Re: Best Sharpening Plug-ins

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Originally Posted by Flashtones View Post
Surely it's my failing, but I just find your explanations muddying.
For the sake of the OP, and everyone else who as yet doesn't find the explanations muddyling, time to move on.
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  #46  
Old 06-13-2011, 04:04 PM
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AKMac AKMac is offline
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Re: Best Sharpening Plug-ins

Thanks.
What I've discovered (subjectively!) since first asking the question is the following.
I really like Focalblade - it gives a whole range of options to suit different scenarios, levels of expertise and visual awareness. It is also relatively inexpensive. I gave Nik a swerve for that reason - I didn't see it doing anything to merit the extra expense in the sharpening department the way they have undoubtedly earned their keep with the likes of Silver Efex etc.
I was very impressed with the comprehensiveness of the Photokit software, and its rationale, but I found the interface too basic and non UF.
I tried Topaz, which looks a bit gimmicky on the surface. I tried a number of their plugins and was pleasantly surprised by the sharpening effect I could get through a combination of careful deblurring using InFocus, followed up by sharpening. I think FocalBlade does deblurring as well.
This was an eye-opener. I hadn't used deblurring before. I found it seemed to clean up and "pull in" the blurred areas surrounding objects.
Regarding my workflow (I don't actually have one strictly speaking - I am still jumping back and forth) -
I like the silkiness of the CAPTURE sharpening provided by Adobe Camera Raw.
I am currently exploring a number of (seemingly infinite) approaches for CREATIVE sharpening and associated effects offered by the Topaz plug-ins.
I think I will stick with focal blade as my main sharpener for OUTPUT.

That's as far as I have got. I am not an expert in sharpening but I feel that by simply trying out and comparing these plugins I have significantly developed in my eye.

I would interested to hear what other people have discovered. And I suspect I will probably change my mind anyway as my experience outside the USM box expands.


AK
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  #47  
Old 06-13-2011, 05:08 PM
Flashtones Flashtones is offline
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Re: Best Sharpening Plug-ins

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Originally Posted by andrewrodney View Post
For the sake of the OP, and everyone else who as yet doesn't find the explanations muddyling, time to move on.
Sure thing.
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