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Thread: HDR software options

  1. #1

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    HDR software options

    Hello all,

    Rather new to HDR and what types of software will be needed... In photoshop CS4 is there a way to make HDR images and tone map etc? Or do I need to get Photomatix Pro? I've heard lots of people suggesting it, but if I can do it inside CS4 anyway I don't see why I should buy another program.

  2. #2

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    Re: Software question

    Hi Sean,

    CS4 does indeed have the capability to produce HDR. Just go to File->Automate->Merge to HDR and off you go. Personally I use Photomatix, but mainly because I had it before CS4.

    Peter
    Last edited by McQ; 31st July 2009 at 07:11 PM.

  3. #3
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    Re: Software question

    Hi,

    There was a group test in Digital Photo magazine a few months ago on HDR software. Photomatrix Pro v3.0 came out first. A free HDR software called Picturenaut was also reviewed. It didn't do very well in the group test but hey, it's free.

    I published a post on my blog about HDR a short time ago. If you're interested, you can check it out here.

  4. #4
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    Re: Software question

    Hi Sean - Photomatix Pro (now version 3.2) is probably the default HDR processsing software other than Photoshop's built in tool. However, the latest version of Picturenaut (beta 2.8) is also very good now. There are also packages appearing such as Artizen and HDRPhotostudio (Google for addresses) that allow you to work on the 32-bit HDR file itself (sharpen, WB, etc). You can "see" the whole of the HDR image by altering the exposure level. Once satisfied you can then tone-map. Having tried these programs, they are good, but not yet as good as they think they are nor as good as they will become. So, hold on for a few months before investing in those.

    Overall, Photomatix Pro is my first choice at the moment.

    Cheers

    David

  5. #5

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    Re: Software question

    Hello,

    Thanks to all three of you for the responses, from the sounds of it saving up the extra $100.00 for Photomatix wouldn't be a bad idea.
    Thanks again.

  6. #6

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    Re: Software question

    Quote Originally Posted by Sean View Post
    Hello,

    Thanks to all three of you for the responses, from the sounds of it saving up the extra $100.00 for Photomatix wouldn't be a bad idea.
    Thanks again.
    I'm not sure if it's Photomatix or just the way people are using it, but all of the shots I've seen from it all appear to be "highly processed" ("over-processed" and "over-saturated" also come to mind). It's not necessarily a result that looks bad (kind of a cross between reality and fantasy), but the results I've seen would be unsuitable if your trying for a photorealistic result (which is the norm for me).

    Personally, I just use CS3 - however - the thing that I don't think many realize is that the "regular" dynamic range output from any package STILL needs conventional processing (levels, dodging, burning, satuation adjustments etc).

  7. #7

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    Re: HDR software options

    I would have to agree with you Colin. While some of the more "fantasy" like photos are nice, they're not my style. I was more looking for HDR images in this sense...

    http://cpn.canon-europe.com/content/...y.do#container

    Such as the examples on page 1 and 3.

  8. #8
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    Roy A Morales jr

    Re: HDR software options

    1st , go for the free ones . Just work off copies of pictures . If you like what you get then think about spending more money on programs .
    You would be better off buying a good CPL if you want to spend the bucks .
    I have CS 3 and a couple others that - as some one else said - a lot of processing and still not what I want .

  9. #9
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    Re: HDR software options

    Sean, after trying Photomatix, Artizen, CS3 and Dynamic Photo - I recommend Mediachance Dynamic Photo, the work flow is easier and the results are excellent. It also does very good "pseudo' HDRs from single Raw or JPG images -----and it`s cheaper.
    Simmo

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