HDR vs. Topaz Adjust 3

Discussion in 'HDR Discussions' started by KenL, Jan 1, 2010.

  1. KenL

    KenL TPF Noob!

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    I really like HDR, and I use Photomatix Pro. I don't process it to extremes; I prefer to use it just to extend dynamic range. Here are some of my HDR shots.

    All of my final images get processed in Photoshop CS3, but I use plugins NiK Color Efex Pro, NiK Sharpener Pro, OnOne Genuine Fractals (for sizing), NiK Viveza and Noise Ninja, for most images. So, whether I use HDR, or now Topaz, these are just starting points in my workflow.

    I saw a post somewhere else that was showing what Topaz Adjust 3 could do. So I downloaded a demo version to give it a try.

    I shot this view some time ago. It was not shot for HDR, but I did have two shots with different exposures to use. I've also included the original JPEG image (I processed the RAW image), I take both at the same time.

    I did not look at the older HDR version before processing with Topaz. I wanted to just start with a single image in Topaz without trying to adjust it to the old version. In fairness to HDR I must say that because this was not shot for HDR I didn't take 3 shots, what I consider the minimum. I usually shoot 5 HDR shots.

    After I finished, this post was my first look at the two for comparison. The difference of the frames may be distracting, but I'm admittedly lazy so I didn't go back and either remove the frames or make them the same..... I am pleased that they both came out very similar overall.

    I like the Topaz version more for this. I don't know if Topaz will please me more in every instance, but this exercise made me a Topaz "believer", so I'll be using it too. I spent a lot more time on the HDR version in Photoshop brushing here and there..... The Topaz version was much quicker.

    You might notice that in the new version I removed both the traffic sign and the drain tube.

    Topaz Version (Started with Topaz, then processed as usual)

    [​IMG]

    HDR (Started with a 2-shot HDR, then processed as usual)

    [​IMG]

    Here is the original:
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Dominantly

    Dominantly TPF Noob!

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    I've been using Topaz for quite some time now and really enjoy it. I have their bundle but really only use Adjust 3, Denoise, Detail, and Remask 2...... Another favorite of mine is Nik's Viveza 2 (which you also seem to be using).
     
  3. KenL

    KenL TPF Noob!

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    Thanks Dominantly!
     
  4. Dominantly

    Dominantly TPF Noob!

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    I just went through your link (missed it the first time), and I must say you have some awesome captures/images.

    Really makes me want to go and grab my camera to give HDR a shot.
     
  5. Provo

    Provo TPF Noob!

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    #1 does look better
     
  6. KenL

    KenL TPF Noob!

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    Thank you Dominantly! I'd like to go back and shoot all I've done with HDR in mind. On the flip side, I have done a couple with HDR that looked better without it in the end.


    Thank you Provo! I'm going to print #1, 13"x19", to hang here.
     
  7. tjones8611

    tjones8611 TPF Noob!

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    If you could only have one, which would it be? NiK Viveza or Topaz Adjust?
     
  8. Dominantly

    Dominantly TPF Noob!

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    Uh, tough choice. Both have their benefits and do completely different things. The control point technology with Viveza is awesome, you can manipulate light and color in photos without having to use layers, with amazing accuracy.

    I would say that if you plan on processing mostly portraits, wildlife, living creatures... etc, you would benefit from Viveza more so then Adjust 3.
    Now if you do landscapes, structures, and the like; Adjust will probably suit you more.
     
  9. KenL

    KenL TPF Noob!

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    Viveza's U-Point feature reduces the need for masks, I've hardly had to do one since using Viveza (and Nikon Capture NX), and I do landscapes primarily.

    But, as Dominantly points out, using Viveza for animals/people buildings/structures really uses that U-Point/Control Point technology to great advantage.

    So, I agree with Dominantly. Now, if you can only have one of these, and can't choose based on what you think you will shoot, I would take Viveza if you are good with Photoshop already, but if you are not proficient with Photoshop, then go with Topaz...... Tough choice!
     

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