Hmmm....I haven't used Sharpen Ai much, maybe 5 photos. But I didn't notice any slow down after going to v2.0.5. But I have not used the masking options yet, but processed whole images.....I hate it when updates break software. I just updated Sharpen AI to version 2.0.5 and it is WAY slower that the older version 1.4.6 that I've been running. Both the preview and generating/saving the output file are much slower. I thought that perhaps masking only a portion of the image would result in a faster output but in fact it seems to be the opposite. When using the mask feature the output is downright glacial. With the older version saving the file on my system typically takes on the order of 30 seconds. The newer version is taking 5x as much time. The only saving grace is that the update process gave me the option to leave the old version intact. Which I did thank goodness.
Regrettably, it's a fact of life with Topaz. Each new release has the potential to introduce new bugs or variants of the old ones. Beyond that, the primary issue I have with both Sharpen and Denoise is the artifacts, especially since some of the most egregious ones don't show up in the previews. Yes, I know there are work-arounds but if I'm processing a lot of files then I simply don't have time to examine each frame with a jeweler's loupe. If I'm working on a "masterpiece" (I use the word loosely) then it's a different story. Unfortunately I do a lot more batching and quick edits than I do anything I'd call art. These two entries from Topaz are just not for me.I hate it when updates break software.
I've had good success with it. My process: I try each of the 3 methods on Auto. Then I select the one that works the best. Then I turn off Auto Update off.....and select Manual and adjust the settings. Then manually have it update.I found a 15% off coupon so I think I’ll give it a try for $60
It does look impressive