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Old Mar 19, 2009, 11:01 PM   #11
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GW - I started to do that (the 30 day trial should be plenty of time). However, my internet connection isn't the fastest available (but better than dial-up!). When it started downloading it said it would take over 4 hours. At that point I figured the academic price ($74 including tax) was well worth it, and I'd have it available if I ever needed it in the future.

I must say, I'm much more impressed with this version of PSE than I was the one other time I looked at it several years ago. Bridge is much the same as it is in CS4. PSE itself looks enough like the full version of photoshop that I'm pretty comfortable with it (though there are things in different places and different commands for some things), and it seems to do just about all that I usually want to use.

Here's my first attempt at reconverting/processing one picture starting with the raw file:



I purposely toned down the colors some so the yellow wasn't as saturated (edited to add - having gone back and forth between the two, I think I over-did it). Resized using bicubic sharper. I did my usual method of sharpening (one pass with fine sharpening settings in what seems to be equivalent to CS4's smart sharpen and a second pass with contrast/sharpening settings using USM). I'm still not totally happy with it, but think it's partly the fact the yellow was just so bright. It definitely looks sharper - and you can see the two shades of yellow on the petals (at least I can on the iMac's monitor - which isn't calibrated).

I think that I over-did the keeping it darker so I didn't blow out the yellow a bit too much. And while there's more detail, there's not all that much extra. I'll have to play around some more.

Edited to add:

One more attempt. This time I went back to DXO and used their default settings to convert the raw file to tiff (16 bit), only using their crop tool to crop the picture. Then opened the tiff file in PSE, resized it, sharpened it a little, changed to 8 bit color, cloned out the small petal at the left bottom and saved as jpg.



So what version do you prefer?
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Old Mar 20, 2009, 7:39 AM   #12
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Oh wow!
number 2 by a bunch!

I like it I like it.
GW:bye:
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Old Mar 20, 2009, 9:16 AM   #13
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Harriet,
I actually liked the original because of the beautiful color and the very appealing composition! In fact if no one had mentioned the softness of the flower petals, I wouldn't have even noticed it because the rest of the shot is so good. I feel like the bee is in perfect focus and it is the main subject and the soft back ground actually made the bee stand out a bit more.

Glenn
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Old Mar 20, 2009, 4:14 PM   #14
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That dxo program looks better and better, it's that I've got everything in Lightroom now that makes it not a real alternative. Just changed from IMatch and that took already much to long.

Oh yes, and the pictures look great to, Ronny
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Old Mar 20, 2009, 6:08 PM   #15
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DXO has a lightroom plug-in (and a Photoshop plug-in also). It really shines with camera/lens combinations it has calibrated from extensive testing - such as the K10 or K20 and the DA*50-125, 12-24 and 18-250 (I think that's the third one, could be wrong about that). It's amazing how much difference it makes with those lenses, especially correcting a certain amount of geometric distortion with the 12-24. It has really awesome tools that way. I didn't particularly like what it came up with for pictures taken with the K100 and the old kit lens - but I'm not sure how much of that was the software and how much was the photographer. I'll find out tonight when I look at the pictures on my repaired computer (got it back at lunch!!!!). Now I'm sort-of sorry I bought PSE yesterday (though I found it very interesting to see just how powerful the program is - makes me wonder if the full version of photoshop is really worth the huge extra cost).
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Old Mar 21, 2009, 12:53 PM   #16
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on my monitor the first ones colourslook more natural than the second, especialy the background wherethe green seems a bit too green. im splitting hairs really though, they are bothquite good.
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Old Mar 21, 2009, 7:26 PM   #17
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Hariet, try putting the flower in photoshop and then open the channels window after which click on each channel, red, green and blue to see how they look.

When I choose individual channels (they become B&W) the green one looks very sharp to me, so I thing the color yellow is the problem not the focus.

I am stil on the 12" Powerbook so YMMV!

Tom
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Old Mar 21, 2009, 10:27 PM   #18
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Great idea - I never think of using the channel mixer to check sharpness. It's going to have to wait until tomorrow, I'm out of town today. While I have the laptop with me, the pictures are on an external hard drive at home. By the way, so far so good - my computer seems to be working correctly, and it survived the car trip this morning. So I'm hopeful that the logic board was the problem.

I'm hoping the weather isn't going to be as wet as some forecasters are suggesting tomorrow - was thinking about stopping at the Poppy Reserve on our way home.
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Old Mar 22, 2009, 7:49 AM   #19
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Thanks Harriet for reminding about Dxo :-)
Downloaded their fully functional demo lasting for 14 days (and extendable if desired) and have been playing around with it. Very impressed with demosaicing, rendering, CA/PF removal and high-ISO perfomance, also find the jpegs with less artifacts than LR2. A rather worthy contender to SilkyPix3 I guess- it is almost 100% on my shopping list right now.
Best and happy shooting and sharing Your knowledge, JR

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