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Ausimax Sep 20, 2010 9:44 PM

Free Noise Reduction Plug-in
I stumbled across a Noise reduction plug-in suitable for Photoshop (CS and above), Gimp, Irfan View and some others, I you are like me financialy challenged and can't afford the paid for versions this may be for you.
For me it works better than any other "free" version I have used, doesn't restrict your output file type or file size and being able to use it directly in your editor is so convenient.

There are also a couple of other free plugins on the site, haven't really tried them out yet.

vvcarpio Sep 22, 2010 10:43 AM

Thanks, Ausimax. I'm always interested in free plug-ins.

I was curious to see how Colormancer compared to Topaz Denoise so I used one of Topaz Adjust’s noisier presets, “psychedelic”, to generate a picture with lot of noise and see how each one fared in reducing noise with hopefully not losing much detail.

#1) Original

#2) One of Topaz Adjust’s noisier presets, “Psychedelic”, applied.

#3) Colormancer’s denoise applied. Manual adjustments were "Overall Noise Level" at max = 300 and "Mix in Original B&W Detail" decreased from default 0.3 to 0.1 to further reduce noise. Even at max (300) “Overall Noise Level”, grain can still be seen.

#4) Topaz Denoise applied. I took its suggested “Moderate” setting of “overall strength” = 0.53. Grain is gone.

For the two images below, I did further processing on the two outputs above using PSE7 to my liking so you may ignore them if you want. (I like contrasty images.) I just included them to show “Final Masterpiece” renditions of each. :)

#5) Colormancer’s output further processed in PSE7 to my liking.

#6) Topaz Denoise’s output further processed in PSE7 to my liking.

Colormancer lost detail in the trees and pavement while still retaining noise in the sky.

Topaz Denoise didn't lose detail in the trees and pavement (in fact, there's too much detail due perhaps to the "psychedelic" preset) and made the sky smooth.

So I think Topaz Denoise is better.

Keep in mind that for this experiment, I used a very noisy “psychedelic” preset to produce a lot of noise. Normal photographs would not have as much noise. Also, I used the freeware version of Colormancer (which I think is the same as the commercial but without watermarks) and did not try tweaking many of its sliders.

Ausimax Sep 23, 2010 6:12 AM

It probably is better, and $79.00 more expensive, I was only comparing with other "free" versions that did not provide full functionality.

Greg Chappell Sep 26, 2010 12:57 AM

In this particular case, it truly looks like you get what you pay for.

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