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Old May 18, 2013, 4:55 PM   #1
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Default Adobe Camera RAW and DxO Optics 8

Still figuring out DxO, but there's one thing I will say after developing numerous images side-by-side. Under normal, less then drastic lighting the two are very similar. In tough, wide-ranging light DxO can't touch the dynamic range possible with an E-M5 raw file in ACR.

Here's a typical result comparing something shot in less than dynamic light..

With the E-M5 and 60mm f2.8 Macro M. Zuiko.


Same file processed in DxO. No attempt was made to try and mimic coloration, brightness or anything else. Just processed the files based on what I saw and liked...

Probably could have turned down the brightness in ACR, but over all I like the DxO processed file better.

Now on to one of those scenes similar to what some camera reviewers call the dynamic range corrider of Hell.

First image processed in Adobe Camera raw, which has a little bit of an HDR look to it, but this did come from one raw file, captured with the 17mm f1.8 M. Zuiko. The dynamic range was quite wide, but you can see the program does a great job with both the highs and lows. Note the detail retained in the sky..

Next image, same file processed in DxO and no matter what I did I could not bring out one ounce of detail in the brightly-lit sky. I tried turning down exposure compensation, turning off DxO's Smart Lighting tool, turned the Highlights slider way, way down....nothing, even a combination of all of those got me any closer than what you see here..

Useable dynamic range....one big check for Adobe Camera raw.

Last edited by Greg Chappell; May 18, 2013 at 11:25 PM.
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Old May 19, 2013, 9:43 AM   #2
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Definitely noticeable.
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Old May 20, 2013, 7:44 AM   #3
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the second set of JPEGs really shows a difference. Not only is there no detail in the sky on the second one but much of the detail in the leaves of the tree and the foreground hedge is gone from the second one. I'm not saying the second one is a terrible image, if you didn't compare them side by side you'd never know what you're missing.

The first pairing is odd as I'm not sure which one I'd pick. I like the color rendering and contrast levels on the second one best but I think a few clicks on the first one could match it.
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Old May 20, 2013, 9:54 AM   #4
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Thanks guys.

Yes ramcewan, in the first set the ACR image definitely could have been processed to similar results turning a couple of settings down and increasing the vibrancy.

The second set definitely was a vote for ACR's ability to pull details from highlights without affecting other parts of the image. The DxO controls were not nearly as flexible. Both programs have highlight sliders but the extent to which it works in DxO is quite stark compared to ACR, and the blacks/shadows sliders in DxO are much more sensitive than the ones in ACR, which give an even, steady toning down or up of low levels as you drag them in either direction. The DxO sliders jump from one extreme to the other rather quickly.

Add the other abilities of ACR, such as the gradient filters, targeted adjustment tool, and the ability to mask sharpening from areas of the image to just name three, ACR can pretty much be a complete post processing tool, where DxO can only go so far before you have to spit out a jpeg and do other stuff in a different program.

There's definitely a good reason why the Adobe product is so widely used, even if the parent company is the son of the devil...

Last edited by Greg Chappell; May 20, 2013 at 2:11 PM.
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Old May 31, 2013, 10:00 PM   #5
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Greg, back in March you had some blobbiness using DxO on some red azaleas -- did you ever sort that out?
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Old Jun 1, 2013, 9:12 AM   #6
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As a matter of fact no. I need to go back and revisit those files since I have learned more about the program and try them again. Right now there are no similar images of intense red like that for me to capture.
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