September 16, 2014, 01:34:28 PM

Author Topic: Best HDR Software?  (Read 29260 times)

acoll123

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #30 on: August 26, 2013, 04:57:56 PM »
I have both Photomatix and the NIK suite. I think NIK is slightly better for HDR.

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #30 on: August 26, 2013, 04:57:56 PM »

gferdinandsen

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #31 on: August 26, 2013, 05:28:35 PM »
I have both Photomatix and the NIK suite. I think NIK is slightly better for HDR.

+1 I use both and prefer NIK, and now that you can buy the entire suite for $150 (I think it's $150), it's the clear price winner.
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dlleno

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #32 on: August 26, 2013, 06:29:53 PM »
photomatix is mostly crap IMO or possibly too often abused causing heavily over cooked images

LR enfuse is an awesome awesome plugin for inside lightroom
there are some standalone enfuse programs

enfuse is and open source program and is more like an advanced exposure blending algorythm rather than the pure "HDR" that creates a radiance file and then applies false tone mapping to the image

No god awefull halos and cartoon like colour shifts, and it produces much more natural images.

although having said that photomatix can work quite well with night scenes if done right

I've been meaning to try a hybrid combination between an LR enfuse with a photomatix processed image blended into certain areas I think this could work out quite nicely

i've attached an enfuse sample

Thanks for the tip. Enfuse works great when I just want to quickly combine exposures to bring out the shadows and bring down the highlights

There are a lots of programs out there now made for doing HDR.  None of them are CRAP in my opinion... what matters most is what you are trying to accomplish with that program for YOUR photographs and getting the output you so desire... Some are better for different reasons and will process data differently. One of the things that it comes down to is garbage in garbage out...

+1 on this post.  what you need to do is try them out and see what you are symatico with.  you won't know that until you use it. I happen to like the Nik way (I start with "deep 2" a lot and tweek from there). Great results can come from PHotomatix too; I just found the Nik package fit my workflow and goals better.  Aside from Alignment and Ghost reduction, you really need to stress the package with some test shots and look for CA, noise, etc. 

I think there is one area in which photomatix is superior, and that is ghost reduction. Nik does a good job too, and its "good enough" for my needs, but I suspect Photomatix has the edge here, for example, if moving people are involved.   THat said,  Nik has vastly improved in this area, and also in the area of alignment.  So much so that one can get by (gasp) in a pinch with a handheld IS lens (and those shutter speeds can get pretty low at +4 EV...) 

jwilbern

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #33 on: August 26, 2013, 08:24:55 PM »
I really like Photomatix 4. It gives you a lot of choices from subtle to psychedelic. You can look at thumbnail previews of all the presets, and get started on the path of your choice.

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LetTheRightLensIn

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #34 on: August 30, 2013, 05:53:59 AM »
Using Viveza 2 can help keeps things a lot more natural too that plus the CS6 ACR tools and later combined for single shot HDR or the 32bit thing from Adorama if you can't get away with single shot (often with Exmor-like sensors, not as often with Canon) and the scene is amenable to multiple shots. it often helps to start with a rather raised dull looking image in ACR (with some exposure raising, lots of highlight protection, a good chunk of shadow raising on the curves plot lowering the first slider, raising the second a lot, raising the next one often a bit although sometimes not and same for the last one) and then you can go in use viveza to selectively darken up parts and to add more contrast and local tone contrast to them (with the brightness, shadows, contrast and structure tools) and also to add a bit more punch to some bright parts while keeping the ones already near max from getting blown out any more. It's important to leave light source areas and sky looking at least a bit relatively bright compared to other things otherwise you start getting that fake look that you see most of the time.

xvilamanya

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #35 on: October 23, 2013, 05:21:37 AM »
Wait for a new Photomatix Pro 5. Better performance and two new presets for real HDR: Balanced & Real State
I've tried at: http://serfotografo.es/fotoshdr/photomatix-pro-5/
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Harry Muff

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #36 on: November 09, 2013, 08:34:31 PM »
Wait for a new Photomatix Pro 5. Better performance and two new presets for real HDR: Balanced & Real State
I've tried at: http://serfotografo.es/fotoshdr/photomatix-pro-5/


Does the result match the preview now?  I just couldn't get past that. What's the point of adjusting all those sliders when it's going to export another result to what you saw in the program?


Photoshop gives you what you saw and so does HDR Efex Pro 2.
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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #36 on: November 09, 2013, 08:34:31 PM »

privatebydesign

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #37 on: November 09, 2013, 10:16:02 PM »
What do you mean Harry? I have never had an issue with Photomatix, or any other HDR software with regards the preview not matching the output.
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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #38 on: November 13, 2013, 04:50:03 PM »
After tweaking an image, I click export and the result looks fuzzy.




I've googled it and lots of people have had this problem.
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Snodge

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #39 on: December 20, 2013, 04:55:25 PM »
Obviously "best" is somewhat subjective, and when I looked into it a few years back, Photomatix was the weapon of choice for the majority of folk processing HDR - and me being contrary, I decided to support the underdog that is SNS-HDR.

Here's a -2,0,+2 bracket from my 60D with a Tamron 17-55mm (or is ot 50, I forget, I lent the lens out so I can't check!) with something that doesn't look too over-cooked, yet isn't exactly natural either:



On the odd occasion, I also use Luminance HDR, it has a very nice natural algorithm in there somewhere, and can save as a 32 bit image. The interface is hideously awkward though, so it's often my last resort - here's Cheddar Gorge in the evening light from my 5dmk3 with Tamron 24-70mm, 5 image bracket -4 to +4:



The third option I use is the Enfuse droplet scripts which come with Hugin. Both Hugin and Luminance HDR are free, so their quirky nature I can put up with. Hugin is actually somewhat easier, as I'm not adjusting any parameters; I create 16bit TIF files, and drag them onto a shortcut for the batchfiles which are on my desktop. I use 2, one if it needs alignment from handheld brackets, and the other if I've used a tripod and doesn't need aligning. I get a 16 bit natural looking image that I can then adjust the vibrance and/or saturation.

Here is a 5 image bracket, -4 to +4 of a field of clover near Badminton, taken with my 5dmk3 and the Tamron 24-70, enfused using the Hugin droplet, and then tweaked in Lightroom:



Mostly the reason for using HDR, for me, is to get good detail in an image, such that there is relevant detail in the shadows, and that the highlights aren't clipped out, unless they need to be. What happens after that is less about HDR and more about plain old saturation!

At the end of the day, they're all tools in my processing toolbox, and I just have to decide which tool is the best for the job, as one tool does not always suffice for all situations!

dude

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #40 on: January 04, 2014, 09:16:14 PM »
I know I am late to the game here but I use NIK's plugin for Aperture. Easy, to the point, well done software.
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dlleno

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #41 on: January 04, 2014, 11:06:22 PM »
Nik has improved their alignment and ghosting code  quite impressively and I happen to like their UI.   I'm seeing surprisingly good performance with 5 frame handheld shots  believe it or not.   IS is the lifesaver 

xvilamanya

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #42 on: February 03, 2014, 07:48:48 AM »
Wait for a new Photomatix Pro 5. Better performance and two new presets for real HDR: Balanced & Real State
I've tried at: http://serfotografo.es/fotoshdr/photomatix-pro-5/


Does the result match the preview now?  I just couldn't get past that. What's the point of adjusting all those sliders when it's going to export another result to what you saw in the program?


Photoshop gives you what you saw and so does HDR Efex Pro 2.

In my computer, Photomatix Pro (versions 4 and 5) matches the preview and the result. The result, in version 4, was more sharpen but looks equal.
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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #42 on: February 03, 2014, 07:48:48 AM »

bluenoser1993

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #43 on: February 03, 2014, 09:29:29 AM »
I'm looking to buy PtGui for the pano aspect, but is it also a capable HDR program?  It is advertised as HDR stitching software, but video tutorials I've watched seem to use a work flow that is about blend plains in PtGui, then processing in other software.  Am I missing something before I make the purchase, or is it just a matter of preference and the one program can do the whole thing?

BeenThere

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #44 on: February 03, 2014, 10:27:12 AM »
I'm looking to buy PtGui for the pano aspect, but is it also a capable HDR program?  It is advertised as HDR stitching software, but video tutorials I've watched seem to use a work flow that is about blend plains in PtGui, then processing in other software.  Am I missing something before I make the purchase, or is it just a matter of preference and the one program can do the whole thing?
You can take your HDR brackets for each pano shot into PtGui and have it stitch together a 32 bit HDR pano.  Save this Pano and then take the saved high bit pano into Photoshop and use the NiK HDR plug-in on the high bit image to tone map it into a standard tif format image.  I've used this process many times and it works well for me.  You can see some of my sunset panos done this way in the sunrise-sunset gallery at www.ronbrunsvold.com

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Re: Best HDR Software?
« Reply #44 on: February 03, 2014, 10:27:12 AM »