It was suggested to me a while back to maybe take a look at new techniques or programs etc to add to my photo collection. I am asking all of you but especially the pro shooters, What is or would be your most valuble piece of software for editing, or for a specialized technique, like focus stacking?, which is your favorite software/plugin toy to use? Which gives you the most increase in image enhancement? Basically I am looking for the best of the best for image production/technique. Price is of no concern so everything is on the table. If you own it great! If you wish you owned it Great! Lets not include light room/photo shop, any that is pretty much standard. Cheers and I hope this list grows well. Please also state why it is that you love this software.
Depending on whether you are on Mac or PC , there are some exciting new Mac softwares being offered Macphun have brought some new softwares which are cheap and easy to use.
No doubt others will have plenty to say about softwares
Nik Software comes with a package of tools form hdr to black and white editing and more
presets : google free presets or a source i have used in the past preset heaven
I have used the trial version of photomatix for HDR but since NIk software I haven't used it but I did like it.
Snapseed for mac or ios. Sometimes I play with an image on the iphone and then go back and try to match it on the mac in lightroom or snapseed but prefferably Lightroom.
For stacking I Have yet to purchase but Helicon Focus is highly praised.
edit: NIK's silver efex pro is pretty good.
I use LR 5.7 and have CS5 for stuff that need layers. They do everything I need at the moment
I suspect I will upgrade to the CC monthly plan, in the next few months
I shoot JPEG to one card and RAW to another. If any of my favs were shot at high ISO, I go back to the RAW file, process it with Capture NX-D, clean up noise with NIK Dfine then import that into my library. It allows me to shoot higher ISO's.
I know this'll get derision, but I found that Picasa is really good for quick-n-dirty JPEG adjustment. I've also played with its more aggressive manipulations; here's an example:
Amped up the saturation, and did one other thing I can't remember...
I have found for my needs, it has everything. I had used some pre-sets in the past, but I did not really do anything where I needed Polaroid or Lomo effects.
Honestly, I rarely do much PP to mine. Depending on what I want, I may give a certain color a little boost, or do a B&W conversion, maybe clean up some noise or do a crop or level. I really have not played with as many features that is has. I have not used the red-eye tool, the brushes, gradient tools, etc.
I'm a pretty simple guy. I'm sure if I became more familiar with the options available in the newer releases, I could add another layer of pop to my [hotos, but I have been pretty happy since.
I know it doesn't fit. I probably need to spend some more time on my pics. If I can convince the wife for a 5K iMac, maybe I'll have more incentive than working on my 13" MacBook.
I shoot RAW 99% of the time.
Lightroom for the first PP (from version 1.0 till now),
Photoshop CC to make the photo as I want.
NIK silver efex pro, the top for BW, but that is Photoshop too.
NIK color efex pro, I found out, mostly for the - detail extractor - on selections at the moment.
Installed the TOPAZ collection a month ago, this has a lot of options available to customize, use it for noise reduction on different parts of the photo.
LR is missing skin-oriented adjustment options, e.g. with white balance or color adjustments. And the healing tool algorithm is a joke compared to Aperture, and even to CO8.
CO8 has the nicer import-from-Aperture tool, as some settings are converted. And better sharpening algorithms. You might want to check it out.
I have high hopes for Photos App, but let's see. Until it is out I'll keep trying around, and use Aperture...
What would any of you recommend, or have experience with. I read some of you use DXO, would you recommend it?
The WF is bad,
I suppose it is what you get used to; how you configure it, set the defaults and presets
It is not an intuitive program. It can take a long time personalise and get used to
I have used it for over 6 years and am a self confessed LR fanboy