In The Desert
Content including photographs are Copyright © 2011 - Don & Linda Gilmore
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Topaz Adjust 4
Topaz Labs, Imaging plug-in
Plug-in review by in the desert
What is a plug-in? It's a program that doesn't stand-alone or work by itself. You need an imaging program that it will work with. Topaz's programs work with Photo Shop, Photo Shop Elements, PaintShop Photo Pro X3 (and older versions) and Ulead's Photo Impact. We chose to try this plug-in with PSP X3. Our initial view of this software was and still is -- it's a software you should not be without.
We've all seen photos that others have displayed on the Internet that POP and make you wonder how did they get a photo like that? Outstanding details, enhanced contrast, and different effects that just make a photo outstanding. There are a lot of imaging programs out there that work really great, but none that will do what Topaz Adjust will do. And the price is more than reasonable.
Looking at a screen shot of the program you'll notice that you have a before (upper left) and a zoom window on the upper right. The main window will show the before photo till you click on one of the presets or manually adjust the options. As you mouse over these options on the left you see the changes in the upper left window. If you don't like outcome you chose there is an undo arrow top right so you can try a multitude of different settings and see the outcome in the center window at 100% if you desire. The manual settings can be adjusted after clicking on a preset to fine tune the presets or you can do all the adjustments manually.
The photo below is a 100% crop of a much larger image, shown here for detail. Pay particular attention to the trees and the details on the house. Now look at the second image below, of the same photo after using the "enhance contrast" preset in the program. Notice how much more detail is now showing?
The above image is just one example of how much more detail and contrast is available than what a camera or normal imaging program can resolve. In the images below we used a preset called "Specify" in the left hand panel of the program. The resulting image speaks for itself.
Where else could you use this plug-in to enhance an image? Buildings, old vehicles, aircraft and old equipment certainly takes advantage of this program, but there are other photos that justify it's use. How about this photo of a seed ball on the Western Salsify? Look at the difference in the seed head on this plant. It's hard to believe that all that detail was lost by the camera. Using the "Specify" preset really brought out the detail in this photo.
We've tried hundreds of programs and plug-ins and they all work to some degree, but this (plug-in) program is the only one that will remain in use. All the others were shelved shortly after trying them, and in fact removed from our computers. This really is one of those programs you can't live without if you want to get the most out of your camera and imaging program.
Besides just enhancing detail and contrast in an image you have a lot of other options available. Black and white, charcoal, bright colors, or maybe just changing the mood of a photo? Now this photo is nothing special the way it came out of the camera, but with a couple of clicks.
Mouse over this image then click on it for a couple of possibilities.
There are so many options available that we didn't cover here, not to mention all that is available if you use the manual settings. But for more on this visit Topaz's web site and download the trail version and try it yourself, you'll be amazed!
Visit Topaz's web site for more info, tutorials, screenshots, and to download the trial version for a free 30 day trial or to purchase the program.