Noise Reduction software

Discussion in 'Graphics Programs and Photo Gallery' started by scottdg, Sep 10, 2007.

  1. scottdg

    scottdg TPF Noob!

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    I was wondering what everyone thinks is the best Nose reduction software. A while I downloaded Neat Image and thought it worked pretty well. I tried it last night on an image and was not all that impressed. It was probably something I did. I have also heard a lot about Noise Ninja. I am just wondering what others opinions are about these, or others if there is something else you use and like.

    Also, do either of these programs allow for batch processing?
     
  2. skieur

    skieur TPF Noob!

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    Most noise reduction software works by softening and/or blurring the image which is usually not what you want.

    Avoid noise when shooting. If you can, shoot at a low ISO. I have shot at 50 and 100 ISO for landscapes. Edit in RAW or tiff and avoid extreme changes which lead to noise as a byproduct. Selectively eliminate noise by using a one colour fill if it is colour noise in one area, or perhaps a softening brush if it is only in small areas.

    Sharpening increases noise, so sharpen carefully and selectively only in the areas of the image that need it and are crucial to its effectiveness.

    skieur
     
  3. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    If you only shoot landscapes, noise probably isn't a problem for you. Not all of us do however. I regularly shoot at 800, 1600, and 3200 on occasion.

    I think if you give neat image a chance, and learn to use it, you'll find it works very well. I think using it conservatively is wise, and always on a duplicate layer/image, so you can fade the effect.
     
  4. scottdg

    scottdg TPF Noob!

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    Obviously I would like to avoid noise when shooting. I think that goes without saying. Unfortunately I have not figured out how to go back in time.

    The shots I am looking at right now are around sunset on a beach and a lot of them have kids running around flying kites. I had to shoot at ISO 500.

    I am still getting used to Lightroom which is where I made my enhancements.
    What changes am I making that will contribute to noise? Cropping? Increasing Saturation?
     
  5. skieur

    skieur TPF Noob!

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    Basically all changes contribute to noise and a book called Adobe Camera Raw details the complication of processing an image while at the same time controlling noise.

    The executive summary is that basically you need to develop a keen eye to recognize how much noise you can get away with. Not all noise will show up in a print. It depends on the size of the print and how obvious the noise is, on screen. In some cases, the answer may be selectively softening the noise area of an image and sharpening the edges. A carefully applied softening brush can get rid of the most noticeable noise if it is not throughout the image.

    In some cases, jpegs cannot handle the sophisticated blend of sky colours for example and the result is noise. The answer may be editing in RAW or 16 bit before descending to the jpeg format.

    skieur
     
  6. scottdg

    scottdg TPF Noob!

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    Matt, I was using Neat Image again and liked the results. Obviously it will take me a little more time to truly understand what I am doing and perfect it. My question to you or anyone else who may be able to answer. I want to reinstall it as a Photoshop Plugin (an option if I remember correctly from when I downloaded it moths ago) and was wondering if I can then use it as part of an action so that I can run it on several pictures? I am still relatively new at photoshop and have not yet used actions.

    Thanks.
     
  7. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    Scott, I don't have it as an action. I only use it as a stand alone, in the demo form. I really doubt that photoshop will record the settings used in the plugin in an action. Most likely in the action it will load the plugin and hang there until you dial it in. This is purely speculation however, as I do not use the plugin version. I suppose it's worth a try ;)
     
  8. scottdg

    scottdg TPF Noob!

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    Okay so I am going to beat this topic to death. I bought Neat Image and I have to admit I am not one to read directions. I would rather just dive in so forgive me if this is real easy.

    I wanted to export my pictures from Lightroom as DNG files because after removing the noise I wanted to pull it into Photoshop to sharpen. From what I can tell I can open the dng images in Photoshop and then pull it into the Neat Image plugin. But it does not appear as if I can pull batches of DNG files into need image through the queue feature.

    I have a large number of images i want to process after my initial adjustments to the NEF file in Lightroom and I am trying to find some sort of work flow. The best way I seem to be able to do it now is to export the files as TIFF. Open the TIFF file in NI which then saves the altered file as a JPEG that I would have to then pull into Photoshop. Not exactly what I was hoping for.
     

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