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Author Topic: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows  (Read 2125 times)

David Sutton

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Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« on: January 07, 2017, 03:04:34 AM »

For X-Trans raw files I've taken to either turning sharpening off in Lightroom or using something like Amount = 20, radius = .8, detail = 10, masking = 10. Then sharpening in Photoshop using Topaz Detail II.
I used to turn the detail up to about 80 for the X-T1, but a heavy use of that slider on the X-T2 files looks really nasty.
Yesterday I played with the demo version of long awaited Iridient X-Transformer. According to the website it "converts Fujifilm RAF images to DNG format using Iridient Digital's high quality RAW processing algorithms".
Initially the program wouldn't show the settings options in the main window. The culprit turned out to be the fact that I'd set the display in Windows 7 to show text and other items at 125%. Re-setting it to the default of 100% solved the issue. Now I have to lean closer to the screen to see what I'm doing.
This is not a review, but some observations after working on this photo (taken hand held and not intended as a test image):



Here is a crop comparing the dng from Iridient (sharpening set to low) on the left and Lightroom on the right with the above develop settings:



I'm interested in detail more than sharpness, and to be fair need to follow my usual workflow for X-trans files an run the Lightroom image through Topaz Detail. Here is a comparison with the same image from Iridient on the left and the Lightroom version on the right after being run through Topaz:



Now the version on the right now looks a little sharper, but on close examination I don't think it holds more detail. Furthermore, some edges have visible staircase artefacts that are not so apparent on the file from Iridient. Either Topaz or Lightroom seem to be more aggressive on edges.

Finally here on the left is the version from Iridient with sharpening set to medium and the same file above from Topaz:



I don't know what shows up on your screen, but on mine the grass in particular from the Iridient file looks more natural and the raw conversion seems to be better at avoiding "staircase" artefacts. The tree roots on the right are not sharper, but have more contrast. That is easy to adjust in Photoshop.
I tried putting the Iridient conversion with low sharpening through Topaz Detail, but really all the detail had already been drawn out, and there wasn't enough improvement to my eyes. The best version of all came from brushing in a little Photokit sharpener.
I don't think one raw processor can do everything, and I usually have two or three to use depending on the subject matter.
And this is still very much beta software. Assessing it in its current state, my conclusion is to reach for my credit card and purchase a licence. Bother, it's good.
David
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Paul2660

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2017, 02:46:44 PM »

There is no doubt that Iridient's Fuji conversion is superior to Adobe's especially for the finer details as you pointed out. 

I have asked the author of Iridient for year to allow a dng output on the mac software so that you can get the democasic done in Iridient then work on the file in LR since LR has a vastly superior imaging toolset. 

It looks like from your post this is now possible on the windows side, the tool on windows, exports to a dng, which you can then import to LR?

I will be pulling it down soon.

Paul Caldwell

 
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Chris Kern

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2017, 02:58:10 PM »

I have asked the author of Iridient for year to allow a dng output on the mac software so that you can get the democasic done in Iridient then work on the file in LR since LR has a vastly superior imaging toolset. 

I don't understand why this would be superior to using Lightroom's tools against an Iridient-emitted TIFF.  The file format is a linear DNG, so the colors have already been baked-in by the demosaicing process.  My understanding is that after the raw RGB sensor data have been demosaiced, the images contained in linear DNG and TIFF containers are, for further post-processing purposes, essentially identical.

David Sutton

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2017, 03:36:11 PM »

I don't understand why this would be superior to using Lightroom's tools against an Iridient-emitted TIFF.  The file format is a linear DNG, so the colors have already been baked-in by the demosaicing process.  My understanding is that after the raw RGB sensor data have been demosaiced, the images contained in linear DNG and TIFF containers are, for further post-processing purposes, essentially identical.
Hi Chris.
I'm not sure I understand your point. The Iridient dng conversion does demosaicing, sharpening, noise reduction and automatic lens corrections. I then applied my own profile in LR in the camera calibration panel. Something I can't do on a tiff.
David
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Chris Kern

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #4 on: January 07, 2017, 04:41:58 PM »

The Iridient dng conversion does demosaicing, sharpening, noise reduction and automatic lens corrections. I then applied my own profile in LR in the camera calibration panel. Something I can't do on a tiff.

I don't have any personal knowledge of Lightroom's internals, but I thought the Camera Calibration panel was designed to work on raw sensor data that the purpose of applying a camera profile was to provide Lightroom with guidance on how it should adjust the colors when demosaicing the RGB data so as to approximate the JPEG rendering options in the camera's firmware, render to "Adobe Standard," render to a custom camera or camera+lighting profile, etc.  I don't understand what the semantics are when you apply a profile to a linear DNG.  When you do that, do the colors look the same as if you had applied the profile to the raw file?

David Sutton

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2017, 06:37:13 PM »

I don't have any personal knowledge of Lightroom's internals, but I thought the Camera Calibration panel was designed to work on raw sensor data that the purpose of applying a camera profile was to provide Lightroom with guidance on how it should adjust the colors when demosaicing the RGB data so as to approximate the JPEG rendering options in the camera's firmware, render to "Adobe Standard," render to a custom camera or camera+lighting profile, etc.  I don't understand what the semantics are when you apply a profile to a linear DNG.  When you do that, do the colors look the same as if you had applied the profile to the raw file?
I'm out of my depth on the fine points of dng.
I have all the Fuji profiles available for the Iridient processed dng plus my own in the camera calibration tab. They match the raf imported into LR. I see I can also turn off or on lens corrections, though I see the two versions don't entirely match up.
We are still at the early stages. I think the developer plans to have a version for most cameras.
David
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Chris Kern

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2017, 07:33:06 PM »

I see I can also turn off or on lens corrections, though I see the two versions don't entirely match up.

I suspect that a particular profile applied to a TIFF and the same profile applied to a linear DNG would provide a perfect color match while the same profile applied to a raw file would make the image appear at least slightly different (at least on a properly-calibrated monitor).  I don't believe you have the same latitude to modify the colors after the capture file has been demosaiced.

Paul2660

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #7 on: January 07, 2017, 08:39:44 PM »

The colors look identical.

You can open a Fuji raf in LR and the same file as a dng from Iridient side by side and they look the same.

But the file from Iridient has the demosaicing applied and in view has superior fine details and none of the plastic look LR manages to create at times.

Paul Caldwell

« Last Edit: January 08, 2017, 12:23:02 PM by Paul2660 »
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Alan Smallbone

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2017, 11:55:53 AM »

The linear dng is in Adobe Raw format as far as I know. So when the color profile is applied it is the same point in Adobe's pipeline as when it is applied during a raw conversion. In other words my understanding is that Adobe demosaics the raw file, then applies the color profile. So when the DNG from Iridient is opened and a color profile is applied it is at the same internal point in the pipeline that a original raw would receive the color profile. Correct me if I am wrong.

Alan
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Alan Smallbone
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Chris Kern

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2017, 12:42:00 PM »

The Iridient dng conversion does demosaicing, sharpening, noise reduction and automatic lens corrections. I then applied my own profile in LR in the camera calibration panel. Something I can't do on a tiff.

I did a little poking around today, and found an explanation by Adobe Camera Raw developer Eric Chan that makes it clear how this works:

Quote
A usual TIFF file that comes out the back end of a raw converter has already been rendered, i.e., it has been mapped to a standard color space, it has been tone mapped, white balancing has been done, etc. More technically, the image is output-referred.

In contrast, the linear DNG is still scene-referred and can still benefit from many of the operations typically performed by a raw converter, such as white balance, the application of a camera color profile, HDR compositing, etc.

So apparently the important distinction is not whether the image data emitted by Iridient are raw or demosaiced obviously, they're the latter but whether the demosaiced data are still "scene-referred."  If the rectilinear data have not been "mapped to a standard color-space," etc., other Adobe Camera Raw conversions, such as those available in Lightroom's Camera Calibration panel, can still be usefully applied.

It seems odd that the new Iridient application for MS-Windows would provide this functionality while the version for MacOS does not.  I've licensed and occasionally use the MacOS version, but very sparingly precisely because after demosaicing a raw file with it, I no longer have access to Lightroom's ACR functionality.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2017, 01:07:35 PM by Chris Kern »
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Paul2660

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2017, 02:04:10 PM »

Hi Chris

I put your question to the author several times and was told it was not possible even though from ny understanding of a dng it should be. Per the definition supplied.

Yet now it can be done and works well.  Not sure why the MAC version does not have the same function but glad that I can now get it under windows.

Paul Caldwell
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Paul Caldwell
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Chris Kern

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2017, 04:15:11 PM »

I put your question to the author several times and was told it was not possible even though from ny understanding of a dng it should be. Per the definition supplied.

I just checked Brian Griffith's website and it sounds as though you may be about to get what you've been asking for:

Quote
Iridient Digital currently develops and publishes the following software products. There are plans in early 2017 for additional DNG converter utilities to be released in addition to the current "Iridient X-Transformer" product which is specifically for Fujifilm RAF and only on Windows currently. High priority manufacturers for future DNG converter products include Canon, Nikon, Sony and Olympus with other brands to follow depending on user interest. All of the DNG converter products are planned for release on macOS in the near future and support for Linux is still a strong possibility for this product line in the more distant future. . . . X-Transformer is the first product in a new line of minimal RAW conversion utilities from Iridient that will provide many of the high quality RAW processing algorithms from Iridient Developer in simple, easy to use utilities that can be combined with existing photo management programs like Lightroom to quickly achieve improved RAW image quality without having to spend the time learning or working with a more full featured RAW processor like Iridient Developer.  [Emphasis supplied.]

Perhaps because of the way he originally designed Iridient Developer, it wasn't possible to isolate the demosaicing, sharpening and geometric corrections from the other processing functions.  Based on what I've read in this thread and on the Iridient website, it appears that the new MS-Windows application splits out those functions and outputs a linear DNG that can still be edited by ACR (and the ACR functionality in Lightroom).  If so, that would seem to provide the best of both worlds for Fuji shooters: access to Iridient's ability to render fine detail within the Lightroom environment.

Paul2660

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Re: Iridient X-Transformer for Windows
« Reply #12 on: January 08, 2017, 08:16:02 PM »

It is an excellent solution for sure. 

I also appreciate David's point on the screen density for text also at 125%, as I had my 15" laptop setup so that I could not see the setting bar at the bottom of the screen. 

Paul Caldwell
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Paul Caldwell
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