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Author Topic: shapening in Raw?  (Read 6756 times)
spphoto
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« on: November 13, 2005, 05:48:24 PM »
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hi, does sharpening in raw offer any benefit to sharpening in photoshop?

are their any benefits to sharpening in raw at all?

thanx!
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Lisa Nikodym
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« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2005, 07:04:41 PM »
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I presume you mean sharpening during the RAW conversion process, in the RAW converter program?

If so:  The sharpening features in most RAW conversion programs are simpler and worse-performing than the more full-featured sharpening you'll find in PS and in various PS plug-in programs, so you're better off with the latter.  Also, optimal sharpening depends on the final resolution of your image and what you're doing with it (printing or web display), so it should be done *after* any resizing you're going to do for any particular use.  That argues against doing it early (in the RAW conversion), but it instead should be done as pretty much the last step in your processing.

Lisa
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61Dynamic
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« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2005, 09:28:47 PM »
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The only raw converter I've seen that is any good at sharpening is Raw Shooters Essentials. C1 comes in second place but with a bit of a gap between the two.

Even with good sharpening in the converter it should be kept to a minimum. As Lisa pointed out strong sharpening should be applied as a last step before output.

Personally I do all sharpening outside the converter using PK Sharpener.
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lester_wareham
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« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2005, 06:03:16 AM »
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The only raw converter I've seen that is any good at sharpening is Raw Shooters Essentials. C1 comes in second place but with a bit of a gap between the two.

Even with good sharpening in the converter it should be kept to a minimum. As Lisa pointed out strong sharpening should be applied as a last step before output.

Personally I do all sharpening outside the converter using PK Sharpener.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=51225\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

DPP has very good sharpening. However in CS2 I set ACR to preview only and sharpen with layers in PS.
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2005, 09:33:52 PM »
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I think PK Sharpener Pro is hard to beat, and you use at three stages of Photoshop processing AFTER conversion from RAW.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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« Reply #5 on: August 23, 2007, 12:16:50 PM »
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Hi,

Forgive me for opening up an old thread but could not find a relevant hit to my search on sharpening in RAW.  

In the latest issue of PS magazine they talk about doing most of the image sharpening in ACR 4.1 with the expanded tool set.  This sounds great but I always read that the most important Sharpening was done last, AFTER final cropping and image resizing.  The only initial sharpening I do is a very broad and very light USM to correct the chip aliasing effect that occurs during image capture.  The settings for this are usually the same depending on the camera I used, not the image itself.  

What is the thought on this?  Should we re-open a nearly complete image with RAW and do the final sharpening in ACR?

Thanks,

Paul
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madmanchan
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« Reply #6 on: August 23, 2007, 01:27:19 PM »
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Paul, it is often recommended now that sharpening be done in multiple stages, to optimize the image for different reasons. This is sometimes called the multi-pass sharpening workflow. Check out the article here by Fraser, who explains the idea very clearly:

http://www.creativepro.com/story/feature/20357.html

If you'd like more details than this, check out his book "Real-World Image Sharpening" which is a very good read and educational.

The basic concept is that sharpening is applied in 3 stages, one for capture/input (to compensate for edge softening that occurs during image capture), one for creativity (to apply selective sharpening based on image content, e.g., to sharpen eyes in a portrait), and one for output (to compensate for softening that occurs during the printing stage, or during the resampling required when downsizing an image for web display).

As for your specific question about ACR 4.1, the idea is that these tools can now take over stage 1 of 3: capture/input sharpening.
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« Reply #7 on: August 23, 2007, 01:59:04 PM »
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Thanks Madman,

If you are just doing capture sharpening, you do not make any use of all the new features.  The capture USM is normally a low threshold, low level sharpening of the whole image.  The exception would be if there is a section with a bunch of noise.

The point of the article was that ACR 4.1 has a much more powerful sharpening toolset.
Which it does.  The mask and detail sliders would be used in step 2 or 3 not step 1...
But, it seems odd to finish your workflow in ACR, and an added PIA to boot!
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Schewe
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« Reply #8 on: August 23, 2007, 02:28:18 PM »
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The point of the article was that ACR 4.1 has a much more powerful sharpening toolset.
Which it does.  The mask and detail sliders would be used in step 2 or 3 not step 1...
But, it seems odd to finish your workflow in ACR, and an added PIA to boot!
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=135092\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Wrong...it's AT the capture stage where you _DO_ want to mitigate oversharpening by virtue of using the Detail slider _AND_ properly setting the Masking...

The Masking in CR 4.1 is directly dirived from Bruce Fraser's Capture Sharpener input and he also worked with Hamburg on the Detail slider...
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Philmar
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« Reply #9 on: August 23, 2007, 02:33:03 PM »
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I am just in the process of reading Bruce's sharpening book. It would seem to me that ACR would be the perfect place for his first phase of capture sharpening. I believe I even read a photoshopnews.com article by Jeff Schewe (he'll correct me if I am wrong) in which he mentions ACR can now be used for capture phase sharpening.

Maybe if I finish Bruce's book someday I might even know what the perfect settings would be for the ACR sharpening phase. So far he recommends a very light sharpening at capture phase.
Anyone know if the ACR sharpening defaults are properly set for it's use as a capture phase sharpening (in case I don't get the book finished... wink wink)
But clearly if one is doing a single pass sharpening then ACR is NOT the time or place for that.
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« Reply #10 on: August 23, 2007, 03:18:41 PM »
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Wrong...it's AT the capture stage where you _DO_ want to mitigate oversharpening by virtue of using the Detail slider _AND_ properly setting the Masking...

The Masking in CR 4.1 is directly dirived from Bruce Fraser's Capture Sharpener input and he also worked with Hamburg on the Detail slider...
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=135100\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


OK, makes sense.  That is why I always made the capture sharpening low level.  Does the mask make it so the effect just gets applied to the edges?  If so, that would let you apply more sharpening w/o all the dreaded side effects (or mitigate them at least).  So,
since these controls are not in PS, but only in ACR - does it now make sense to finish by saving the file and going back into ACR as the last and final step before printing (since ACR now opens all kinds of formats)Huh??
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madmanchan
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« Reply #11 on: August 24, 2007, 06:46:50 AM »
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Anyone know if the ACR sharpening defaults are properly set for it's use as a capture phase sharpening (in case I don't get the book finished... wink wink)
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Philmar, the ACR sharpening defaults are just that ... defaults. The problem is that capture sharpening is somewhat image-dependent -- in particular, it depends on the size of the edges in the image. A close-up portrait of a person's face has very different kinds of edge structure than a fine-detail landscape image of a tree with lots of little twigs, leaves, branches, etc. ACR / Lightroom currently have no way of determining this information automatically, so you -- as the photographer and artist -- have to provide it, by setting the sliders appropriately, particularly the Radius, Detail, and Masking settings. LR has two generally useful presets, one for Portrait capture sharpening, another for Landscape capture sharpening.

See the Schewe article here on ACR 4.1 for details and examples:

[a href=\"http://www.photoshopnews.com/2007/05/31/about-camera-raw-41/]http://www.photoshopnews.com/2007/05/31/about-camera-raw-41/[/url]

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But clearly if one is doing a single pass sharpening then ACR is NOT the time or place for that.

Maybe, but I'd argue that one should never just be doing a single pass of sharpening!  
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madmanchan
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« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2007, 06:53:33 AM »
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Does the mask make it so the effect just gets applied to the edges?  If so, that would let you apply more sharpening w/o all the dreaded side effects (or mitigate them at least).

Yup, please see the article I linked to above. There are some examples of the mask in use.

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So, since these controls are not in PS, but only in ACR - does it now make sense to finish by saving the file and going back into ACR as the last and final step before printing (since ACR now opens all kinds of formats)Huh??
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=135110\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

No. ACR/LR's sharpening is for capture/input sharpening. Remember, capture sharpening is the first of 3 stages of sharpening (with creative being the optional one in my opinion). Capture sharpening is done at the beginning of the image editing workflow, not at the end. It should be done during the RAW conversion stage, not after other editing has taken place (if required) in PS. Hope that makes sense.
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One Frame at a Time
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« Reply #13 on: August 25, 2007, 11:10:37 PM »
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Yup, please see the article I linked to above. There are some examples of the mask in use.
No. ACR/LR's sharpening is for capture/input sharpening. Remember, capture sharpening is the first of 3 stages of sharpening (with creative being the optional one in my opinion). Capture sharpening is done at the beginning of the image editing workflow, not at the end. It should be done during the RAW conversion stage, not after other editing has taken place (if required) in PS. Hope that makes sense.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=135237\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Thanks MMC.  I hear you, but I'd like to understand why ACR is only for capture.  It just seems logical that you would want all the same controls for output sharpening too....
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Schewe
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« Reply #14 on: August 26, 2007, 12:13:39 AM »
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It just seems logical that you would want all the same controls for output sharpening too....
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No...aside from the fact that running through Camera Raw doesn't give you your final sized and retouched image yet, the Camera Raw controls are designed for doing capture sharpening. You wouldn't even use masking for output sharpening at all. Output sharpening is ONLY influenced by the final PPI and the media-and CR's controls would offer the best solution to that. Overlay high pass is the primary method of output sharpening...

No single sharpening will _EVER_ be optimal...
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Rick Popham
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« Reply #15 on: August 26, 2007, 08:58:09 AM »
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...it's AT the capture stage where you _DO_ want to mitigate oversharpening by virtue of using the Detail slider _AND_ properly setting the Masking...
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=135100\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Jeff,

Are you going to cover this at all in the new Camera Raw book?  How's that coming anyway?  (I see by some of your messages that you're up REALLY late...   )

Rick
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« Reply #16 on: August 26, 2007, 02:26:16 PM »
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No...aside from the fact that running through Camera Raw doesn't give you your final sized and retouched image yet, the Camera Raw controls are designed for doing capture sharpening. You wouldn't even use masking for output sharpening at all. Output sharpening is ONLY influenced by the final PPI and the media-and CR's controls would offer the best solution to that. Overlay high pass is the primary method of output sharpening...

No single sharpening will _EVER_ be optimal...
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=135554\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Thanks Jeff.  Sounds like more reading is in my future.  Next stop: Overlay High Pass sharpening.  Appreciate all the responses.

Best,

Paul
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FDewannieux
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« Reply #17 on: August 27, 2007, 04:13:39 PM »
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the Camera Raw controls are designed for doing capture sharpening.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=135554\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

There are two aspects of the sharpening in Lightroom 1.1 that I don't seem to be able to understand in the context of the global sharpening workflow:

-First, the capture sharpening is only one step of the sharpening workflow and I understand that it does not make sense to evaluate capture sharpening as a standalone procedure independently from the output sharpening (for the screen or another media). This was clearly explained by Andrew, the Digital Dog, in my recent post on this forum. Bruce Fraser also clearly states in his book that the capture sharpening is supposed to be a gentle first pass, which goal is mainly to prepare the file for the subsequent rounds of sharpening. It seems to me that when I am playing with the sharpening in Lightroom and even if I am sharpening for the web, I can't  even evaluate the combination of the capture sharpening and the output sharpening
-Second, even if it made sense to visually tweak the capture sharpening without considering the output sharpening, looking at the file at 100% does not seem to be the best way to evaluate the actual impact of the sharpening, it is rather recommended to use 50% or 25% and we know that the sharpening is only visible in Lightroom at 100%

It seems then that two things would be required for this to make sense: Lightroom should be able to apply a correct output sharpening (based on the preview size) to allow for a proper evaluation and/or it should be possible to inspect the sharpening impact at other magnifications than 100%.

Franck
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Philmar
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« Reply #18 on: September 04, 2007, 09:50:18 AM »
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No...aside from the fact that running through Camera Raw doesn't give you your final sized and retouched image yet, the Camera Raw controls are designed for doing capture sharpening. You wouldn't even use masking for output sharpening at all. Output sharpening is ONLY influenced by the final PPI and the media-and CR's controls would offer the best solution to that. Overlay high pass is the primary method of output sharpening...

No single sharpening will _EVER_ be optimal...
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=135554\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I've read Bruce's sharpening book and sadly I still am somewhat confused. It doesn't speak to my situatio for I now use ACR for initial capture sharpening and I don't print my photos, prefering to view them online at 1100 pixels (at it greatest length) on my NEC 20WMGX2 monitor (in case this is relevant).

My current workflow is a multiphase sharpening.
I use ACR to capture sharpen, using the methods described by you in your Photoshopnews article.
Then, I MAY do a content sharpening/creative sharpening depending on the image.

My question is HOW to best sharpen the image after I have downsized it to a 1100 pixel length JPEG? Simple USM? Highpass sharpening?

In case it is relevant I shoot Canon 30D RAW files.

Thanks for your help.
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