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Author Topic: sharpening using a layer  (Read 69485 times)

sgwrx

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sharpening using a layer
« on: May 02, 2006, 08:00:29 PM »

if one is too stubborn to buy a sharpening tool, one can duplicate a layer then sharpen that layer and, using the luminosity blend mode, non-destructively sharpen one's image!  or am i missing something?
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Stephen Best

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2006, 08:12:56 PM »

Quote
if one is too stubborn to buy a sharpening tool, one can duplicate a layer then sharpen that layer and, using the luminosity blend mode, non-destructively sharpen one's image!  or am i missing something?
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Check out the free sharpening tools here:

[a href=\"http://www.thelightsrightstudio.com/]http://www.thelightsrightstudio.com/[/url]

You can also look at the scripts themselves to see what they do, modify them to your own requirements etc. You'll learn a lot more than by just using the canned solutions of commercial products.
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sgwrx

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2006, 10:44:00 PM »

wow, that's easy.  thanks for the tip.

Quote
Check out the free sharpening tools here:

http://www.thelightsrightstudio.com/

You can also look at the scripts themselves to see what they do, modify them to your own requirements etc. You'll learn a lot more than by just using the canned solutions of commercial products.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64317\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
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digitaldog

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2006, 02:48:24 AM »

Quote
if one is too stubborn to buy a sharpening tool, one can duplicate a layer then sharpen that layer and, using the luminosity blend mode, non-destructively sharpen one's image!  or am i missing something?
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Sharpen how much and for what device? That's the key! That takes a LOT of testing to a lot of output devices. The mechanics after that isn't rocket science.

You should probably read this too:

[a href=\"http://www.creativepro.com/story/feature/20357.html]http://www.creativepro.com/story/feature/20357.html[/url]
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Andrew Rodney
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zpike

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2006, 07:10:18 AM »

Quote
Sharpen how much and for what device? That's the key! That takes a LOT of testing to a lot of output devices. The mechanics after that isn't rocket science.

You should probably read this too:

http://www.creativepro.com/story/feature/20357.html
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64345\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

 I've read it, but...

Even within the bounds of contone printers, sharpening can appear differently. For example, if I send a file to both a ZBE Chromira and a Durst Lambda the apparent sharpness is different ( Lambda sharper) due to the way the file is printed, i.e laser v LED. Does any software allow for such differences? I'm not sure, but knowing how the monitor displays sharpness - varies depending on monitor- and how the specific printer reproduces it surely has as much to do with the final result as software. IOW, there are a lot of variables involved....

Best,

Mark
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Tim Gray

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2006, 10:00:58 AM »

If I was going to sharpen without 3rd party plug ins, I'd use the PS workflow described here:

http://www.shutterfreaks.com/Tips/joukosharpening.html

I has one refinement that I'd never seen described in a sharpening tutorial before,  using the "blend if" split sliders in the blending mode dialog box.
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marc.s

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2006, 12:13:03 PM »

Quote
If I was going to sharpen without 3rd party plug ins, I'd use the PS workflow described here:

http://www.shutterfreaks.com/Tips/joukosharpening.html

I has one refinement that I'd never seen described in a sharpening tutorial before,  using the "blend if" split sliders in the blending mode dialog box.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64367\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

That's an excellent technique, I think I'll use that from now on, at least with pictures I can't sharpen easily. For some reason the action gave a horrible result, but doing it manually (I used smart sharpen instead of usm) created excellent results.

Thanks for the link!
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digitaldog

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2006, 12:14:52 PM »

Quote
I has one refinement that I'd never seen described in a sharpening tutorial before,  using the "blend if" split sliders in the blending mode dialog box.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64367\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Something Fraser came up with a long time ago....
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Andrew Rodney
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sgwrx

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2006, 10:13:55 PM »

thanks, all great stuff.  that technique just mentioned with the 'blend-if' method is great! i'll be studying that method with the scripts and actions.

regarding one of the scripts mentioned earlier in the post, i used the TLR output sharpening script and it seemed to not sharpen as much as i thought. settings were standard, for use with 240ppi output, inkjet.

should i be using the fact that it didn't seem to be a huge difference to my eyes (100% view) as an alert that i've been over-sharpening?  up until now, i've been doing two forms of USM: 1st - 100-200% radius 1 (sometimes .6) threshold 0 and 2nd - 10-20% radius 30-70 threshold 0. this on raw 10D photos.


thanks

steve
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Stephen Best

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2006, 10:54:43 PM »

Quote
regarding one of the scripts mentioned earlier in the post, i used the TLR output sharpening script and it seemed to not sharpen as much as i thought. settings were standard, for use with 240ppi output, inkjet.

should i be using the fact that it didn't seem to be a huge difference to my eyes (100% view) as an alert that i've been over-sharpening?[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64421\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Maybe! At 240ppi you don't want to be too aggressive. I do everything at 360dpi and it definitely looks sharp on the screen. I find that if the image has been over-sharpened at the capture stage, the output will be too sharp. I use Smart Sharpen (a bit of a dog) for this as I need to see what I'm going to get. Sharpening is a subjective thing which is why I don't go for canned solutions other than for output. The chances of me remembering six months later what I used as output parameters is zero!

BTW, you can improve on the scripts just by isolating the parameters you need and rewriting it as an action. For example, you really only have to do the high-pass once then duplicate it. Left as an exercise for the reader ...
« Last Edit: May 03, 2006, 10:57:26 PM by Stephen Best »
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sgwrx

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2006, 11:04:09 PM »

playing around a bit more tonight, i might be over thinking sharpening in terms of trying to nail down a certain process.  i think i need to back off a bit   you brought up a good point, trying to remember what was done. though there's ways around that too.  sharpen to taste w/o getting artifacts or accentuating noise is probably the best way to think of it.  i'm glad for all the samples/examples posted. i suspect i'll settle into a nice little store of techniques to draw on.

Quote
Maybe! At 240ppi you don't want to be too aggressive. I do everything at 360dpi and it definitely looks sharp on the screen. I find that if the image has been over-sharpened at the capture stage, the output will be too sharp. I use Smart Sharpen (a bit of a dog) for this as I need to see what I'm going to get. Sharpening is a subjective thing which is why I don't go for canned solutions other than for output. The chances of me remembering six months later what I used as output parameters is zero!

BTW, you can improve on the scripts just by isolating the parameters you need and rewriting it as an action. For example, you really only have to do the high-pass once then duplicate it. Left as an exercise for the reader ...
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64424\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
« Last Edit: May 03, 2006, 11:06:02 PM by sgwrx »
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Schewe

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2006, 11:27:01 PM »

Quote
Sharpening is a subjective thing which is why I don't go for canned solutions other than for output. The chances of me remembering six months later what I used as output parameters is zero!
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64424\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Actually, no. . .given a level of input in terms of camera, file size, ISO and edge width and a known output resolution, there are indeed knowable parameters for sharpening based upon the resolving capability of the human eye-which is known...

Creative Sharpening, or the local sharpening or smoothing may be an aesthetic decision rather than based upon image parameters. That must be done carefully and in a manner that will not break the image down the road.

While The Lights Right Studio actions and scripts can be useful, they do NOT offer any definitive sharpening parameters. That is their weakness.

The other problem is that using a low resolution device-a computer display-simply is not useful for determining either how or how much to sharpen an image. You can not accurately judge image sharpening on computer displays unless the final output IS the display. The -ONLY- way to determine the exact sharpening required for an image that will be printed is to make prints and adjust the parameters until optimal. Trial and error...

If that don't float your boat, and I'll be the first to admit that is a lot of work to do accurately (that's why free actions and scripts are free), I would suggest that professional level sharpening tools that have been created by experts and backed by extensive testing will save you a lot of time-time that you can spend doing other things...
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Stephen Best

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2006, 12:29:55 AM »

Quote
Actually, no. . .given a level of input in terms of camera, file size, ISO and edge width and a known output resolution, there are indeed knowable parameters for sharpening based upon the resolving capability of the human eye-which is known...
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64428\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

If it's all science, why capture sharpen on a layer and allow you to adjust the opacity/layer mask to taste?
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61Dynamic

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #13 on: May 04, 2006, 01:20:39 AM »

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If it's all science, why capture sharpen on a layer and allow you to adjust the opacity/layer mask to taste?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64431\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
One reason would be to compensate for the variation of AA filter strength between different cameras of the same resolution.
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Stephen Best

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #14 on: May 04, 2006, 01:26:58 AM »

Quote
If that don't float your boat, and I'll be the first to admit that is a lot of work to do accurately (that's why free actions and scripts are free), I would suggest that professional level sharpening tools that have been created by experts and backed by extensive testing will save you a lot of time-time that you can spend doing other things...
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64428\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I just took another look at PK, comparing the output sharpening of Inkjet 360 Matte with that of the corresponding settings in TLR ... by eye on screen and with Calculations and there's not a lot in it.

These are the things that I'd like to see in the next version of PK ... and may help me part with my dollars:

1. Previews, rather than what is clearly a bunch of actions dressed up as a filter.

2. Some refinement to the input types. For example "4x5 Positive Film". What does this mean? From my Flextight or a cheapo flatbed? Fujichrome or more grainy Ektachrome? Scanned at 1000ppi, 2000ppi, 3000ppi? You get the idea.

3. Internal use of Smart Sharpen. Adobe have put a lot of work into this and I'd like to see it used.

I hope you'll take this as constructive input.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2006, 02:17:29 AM by Stephen Best »
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jlmwyo

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #15 on: May 04, 2006, 02:05:38 AM »

So far I've been pretty happy with Photokit, and that's after trying several other things like Nik Pro (allthou I do like Nik's RAW Presharpener), various Fred Miranda things, and PS itself.

I was initially very interested in Nik's 'distance based' output sharpening, but to my taste it oversharpens the prints.
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Schewe

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #16 on: May 04, 2006, 03:51:30 AM »

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1. Previews, rather than what is clearly a bunch of actions dressed up as a filter.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64438\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Well. . .I guess you didn't get the part about viewing an image on screen -NOT- being a good indicator of how and how much to sharpen? While we do have previews now in PhotoKit Color 2, the next version of PhotoKit Sharpener still won't have previews.

One might be able to get a better guage of how much to sharpen if you view your images at a 25% screen zoom in Photoshop, but it's not precise. Photoshop's screen views simply are not useful for real eval of sharpening. There are arguably 72 pixels/inch on a computer display. The Epson are arguably 360ppi (the real resolution is another debate). So, how ya gonna see 360ppi on a 72ppi display?

When you zoom into 100% the image is no longer anywhere near accurate to size. Look at an image at 200%? Pure science fiction. No printer could resolve what the screen is showing you.

The actual resolving power of the human eye with 20/20 vision is typically considered to be about one arc minute or 60 arc seconds. A rough approximation, at a distance of one foot, could be considered to be about 360 ppi for high contrast line pairs. The resolution requirements go down as the contrast reduces.

But a computer display, at the same distance is still 72ppi.

See the disconnect? See why you can't use a computer display to accurately evaluate sharpening?

So, what's a preview gonna do for you? Not a lot. . .

As far as Mitch matching PhotoKit Sharpener. . .well, he's tried to copy it right down to the terminology. But he still doesn't know the magic numbers. He hasn't done the extensive testing. On the other hand, Bruce Fraser, a noted and respected author and imaging expert HAS done the testing. . .perhaps that's worth something? His actions are error prone and his scripts are un-batchable from Bridge. So, workflow wise, you're still back to trying to delude yourself that you can "see" what you should do to an image on a display.

Quote
If it's all science, why capture sharpen on a layer and allow you to adjust the opacity/layer mask to taste?
Flexibility. . .
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Stephen Best

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #17 on: May 04, 2006, 04:35:57 AM »

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One might be able to get a better guage of how much to sharpen if you view your images at a 25% screen zoom in Photoshop, but it's not precise. Photoshop's screen views simply are not useful for real eval of sharpening. There are arguably 72 pixels/inch on a computer display. The Epson are arguably 360ppi (the real resolution is another debate). So, how ya gonna see 360ppi on a 72ppi display?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64447\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I couldn't care less what the output sharpening looks like on the screen ... but I do for capture and creative (specifically haze reduction/local contrast). I've learnt to judge image sharpness with my old CRT second monitor at 50% ... something Bruce used to recommend ... but will probably have to modify things when it gets replaced by an LCD screen soon.

Personally, I'd rather see a positive response to my input (remember it's a $100 product you're selling) rather than bluster. But it's your business ...
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Schewe

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #18 on: May 04, 2006, 04:48:41 AM »

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I've learnt to judge image sharpness with my old CRT second monitor at 50% ... something Bruce used to recommend ... but will probably have to modify things when it gets replaced by an LCD screen soon.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64453\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Actually, that's 50% screen zoom for halftone reproduction, not ink jet printing. 50% is a similar pixel dither-4 image pixels to one display pixel as sending 2X the ppi to line screen ruling which works out 4 image pixels to one halftone screen dot

Bruce suggests 25% for higher resolution inkjet when printing at 1440 or 2880.

But again, looking at an image at 25% will not be a real accurate representation of the final output resolution. You need to judge the final print.
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Stephen Best

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sharpening using a layer
« Reply #19 on: May 04, 2006, 05:16:07 AM »

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Actually, that's 50% screen zoom for halftone reproduction, not ink jet printing
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=64454\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I'm evaluating overall image sharpness. I haven't yet decided what the output medium or size will be.
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