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RAW sharpening

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Anonymous
December 23, 2004 4:30:23 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Hi, I use Capture One to process my RAW files (adjust white balance, tweak
EV, some curves adjustments and sharpness) then edit the TIFF in Photoshop
7. It's just occurred to me that I am sharpening my images twice - once in
C1 (although nothing too severe) then again in PS after all my editing is
completed. Should I just leave the sharpening until the end of the process
(ie. disable all sharpening in C1 and use Unsharp Mask in PS as my very last
editing task)?

More about : raw sharpening

Anonymous
December 23, 2004 4:30:24 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

embee wrote:

> Hi, I use Capture One to process my RAW files (adjust white balance, tweak
> EV, some curves adjustments and sharpness) then edit the TIFF in Photoshop
> 7. It's just occurred to me that I am sharpening my images twice - once in
> C1 (although nothing too severe) then again in PS after all my editing is
> completed. Should I just leave the sharpening until the end of the process
> (ie. disable all sharpening in C1 and use Unsharp Mask in PS as my very last
> editing task)?

Not only that, but say you end up saving three versions at different sizes.
Each one should USM'd at its final size before saving. And the parameters in
USM will likely be different for each.

Cheers,
Alan


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Anonymous
December 23, 2004 4:30:24 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

It seems to be a truism in general that adjustments should be made in small
increments rather than all at once.
Related resources
Anonymous
December 23, 2004 5:04:03 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

>From: "embee" noot1967@yahoo.co.uk

>Hi, I use Capture One to process my RAW files (adjust white balance, tweak
>EV, some curves adjustments and sharpness) then edit the TIFF in Photoshop
>7. It's just occurred to me that I am sharpening my images twice - once in
>C1 (although nothing too severe) then again in PS after all my editing is
>completed. Should I just leave the sharpening until the end of the process
>(ie. disable all sharpening in C1 and use Unsharp Mask in PS as my very last
>editing task)?

Lot of well-informed people are now sharpening RAW files twice, once with a
small amount during or shortly after conversion, a second more agressive time
when the file is edited, resized and ready to print. The first small hit
restores the sharpness lost to the AA filter ... Canon recommends USM 300% amt,
..3 radius, 0 threshold for the first hit, for example ... the C1 default
settings are very mild (lower than the Canon recommendation) so you can either
use the C1 default or turn it off in the Preferences box and run an action in
PS to do the Canon-recommended default.

There's a bug in C1 with several cameras, if you disable sharpening in
conversion you get a narrow black line about 2 pixels wide on one side of the
image, so they recommend leaving it on. This bug was introduced in v 3.5 and
is in the current version as well (wasn't in the earlier ones) ... I see it
with the 1D Mark II and the 1Ds, for example.

The above USM guidelines are for Canon dSLRs, other camera makers may recommend
something different and some don't even have an AA filter, which may mean you
should skip the first step.

Bill
Anonymous
December 23, 2004 7:31:42 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

"Bill Hilton" <bhilton665@aol.comedy> wrote in message
news:20041223090403.06298.00002038@mb-m18.aol.com...
> >From: "embee" noot1967@yahoo.co.uk
>
> >Hi, I use Capture One to process my RAW files (adjust white balance,
tweak
> >EV, some curves adjustments and sharpness) then edit the TIFF in
Photoshop
> >7. It's just occurred to me that I am sharpening my images twice - once
in
> >C1 (although nothing too severe) then again in PS after all my editing is
> >completed. Should I just leave the sharpening until the end of the
process
> >(ie. disable all sharpening in C1 and use Unsharp Mask in PS as my very
last
> >editing task)?
>
> Lot of well-informed people are now sharpening RAW files twice, once with
a
> small amount during or shortly after conversion, a second more agressive
time
> when the file is edited, resized and ready to print. The first small hit
> restores the sharpness lost to the AA filter ... Canon recommends USM 300%
amt,
> .3 radius, 0 threshold for the first hit, for example ... the C1 default
> settings are very mild (lower than the Canon recommendation) so you can
either
> use the C1 default or turn it off in the Preferences box and run an action
in
> PS to do the Canon-recommended default.
>
> There's a bug in C1 with several cameras, if you disable sharpening in
> conversion you get a narrow black line about 2 pixels wide on one side of
the
> image, so they recommend leaving it on. This bug was introduced in v 3.5
and
> is in the current version as well (wasn't in the earlier ones) ... I see
it
> with the 1D Mark II and the 1Ds, for example.
>
> The above USM guidelines are for Canon dSLRs, other camera makers may
recommend
> something different and some don't even have an AA filter, which may mean
you
> should skip the first step.
>
> Bill

I see. I was concerned that I was running a higher risk of introducing
sharpening artifacts by using two different programmes (they must use
different sharpening algorithms??) However, from your very helpful post I
think I shall just carry on doing things in my normal way, although I shall
probably reduce the amount of sharpening I do in C1, relying more on the
final USM in OS just before I print. Thanks.
Anonymous
December 23, 2004 7:34:10 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

One of the most surprising aspects of the D70 to me was how little
sharpening is applied at the default settings, let alone RAW/NEF. It is
disconcerting because it is actually difficult to evaluate focus on some
images when first viewed in Photoshop.

I believe it is best to avoid sharpening until you are ready to print. If
their are no adjustment sublayers containing image data the most convenient
thing is to create a duplicate layer and try different sharpening
techniques.
Anonymous
December 23, 2004 11:00:02 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

>> Lot of well-informed people are now sharpening RAW files twice

>From: "embee" noot1967@yahoo.co.uk
>
>I was concerned that I was running a higher risk of introducing
>sharpening artifacts by using two different programmes (they must use
>different sharpening algorithms??)

The key is to just barely touch it up with the first pass so you don't add
artifacts, then really sharpen it to the nth degree on the final image.

>from your very helpful post I
>think I shall just carry on doing things in my normal way, although I shall
>probably reduce the amount of sharpening I do in C1, relying more on the
>final USM in OS just before I print.

Yeah, the default value in C1 is very low and pretty safe, it barely sharpens
at all ... if you're interested in the theory behind this here are two links,
first from one of the really smart Photoshop guys, author of several "Real
World Photoshop" books Bruce Fraser (called "A two pass approach to sharpening
in Photoshop") ...
http://www.creativepro.com/story/feature/12189.html?ori...

.... and the Canon article I mentioned that recommends running an initial USM of
300/0.3/0 is here in pdf format, by Sr. Tech guru Chuck Westfall ... it's over
1 MB so takes a while to download but it's worth it ... the pdf is mainly about
how to get the most from the Canon 1D series professional cameras but there's a
lot of good general data ... http://www.photoworkshop.com/canon/EOS_Digital.pdf
.... the remarks on why you need a small touch of USM on the converted file is
on pg 4.

What I do is just try it and see if I have problems with artifacts after the
second, final at-print-size USM ... when I convert with C1 I use their default
(mainly so I won't get the black line :)  but when I convert with Adobe CS RAW I
run a quickie action to do the 300%/0.3/0 USM per Westfall's suggestion and
I've yet to see any problems further down the line even after resampling the
files 250% for large prints, which is where it's most likely to show.

If you do see problems late in the flow just back off on the original USM but
at least with the Canon's I've used I didn't see a problem.

Bill
Anonymous
December 24, 2004 12:21:03 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

>From: "bmoag" aetoo@hotmail.com
>
>One of the most surprising aspects of the D70 to me was how little
>sharpening is applied at the default settings, let alone RAW/NEF. It is
>disconcerting because it is actually difficult to evaluate focus on some
>images when first viewed in Photoshop.

Similar with the Canon dSLRs ... does Nikon recommend a light USM like Canon's
suggested 300/.3/0? You might give it a try ...
December 24, 2004 6:43:27 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

I use Focus Magic for sharpening. I do my sharpening right after I
adjust the exposure and color. I used to sharpen at the end, like
everyone says, but got tired of re-fixing things after sharpening. So,
now I do all my fixing of spots and stuff after I sharpen.

Usually sharpening tends to bring those out and make them a little
easier to see. Then it's easier to fix them and see them. Since I'm
already zoomed in, I can also see if there are any sharpening artifacts.
i.e. Did I over sharpen? If so, I can back up a bit.

If the picture is normally in focus to begin with, I run Focus Magic at
2 pixels and then again at 1 pixel. This crisps things up nicely without
adding any artifacts. I find the 2 step sharpening to work best with
this tool.

If the picture was out of focus to begin with, I have to crank it up a
bit. Of course I have to do it on a picture by picture basis. I find
that Focus Magic works pretty well up to about 7 pixel adjustment. After
that, not so hot. Nothing wrong with the software, but you can only
sharpen detail that is there. If it's out of focus so bad that I need
more than 7 pixel adjustment, there usually isn't enough detail to work on.

I know a lot of people say to sharpen just before each different type of
output. The theory is that screen, press, or different size of printing
needs different amounts of sharpening. Frankly, I don't buy it. My
properly sharpened pictures are as sharp as I can make them without
artifacts. In my experience, that's the best I can do. In my experience,
that works just fine for any final output.

The only reason I can think to have different amounts of sharpening for
different outputs would be to adjust for artifacts that won't show up at
different viewing sizes. If you sharpen to not have artifacts at all,
what difference does it make?

Besides, as a wedding photographer who gives all his full size digital
pictures to the bride on CDs, I don't know what size the bride will
choose to view or print these pictures at in the future. So, I have to
sharpen the best I can to work at all sizes.

Clyde
!