Yet another Topaz Sharpen AI example

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All PP software has its strengths and weaknesses. Sharpen AI is no different. But when it matches up well with a given image the results can be amazing. I ran this one through Sharpen AI in stabilize mode.

1) As shot. Viewed at full rez nothing in the image is tack sharp. Blurring seems to be a combination of camera shake and motion blur.
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2) "Stabilized". The lighting is also adjusted a bit in this version. Sorry I was too lazy to retrieve the version without the lighting tweaks for a true apples to apples comparison.
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3) Tighter crop of the original
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4) And the "stabilized" version. If you look carefully you can see some artifacts in the form of banding/patterns in the fur on the dog's forehead and in the irises of the eyes. This was processed with the software in "auto". Sometimes a few iterations are needed to strike a balance between minimizing artifacts and correcting the desired soft area of the image.
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Incredible results Dan. I've tried this s/w once and it was extremely slow on my PC so I sort of gave up. Maybe I should take another serious look at it. Since then I've updated to a new PC system so maybe that would help as well.
Good looking final image and an even better looking pet.
 
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Incredible results Dan. I've tried this s/w once and it was extremely slow on my PC so I sort of gave up. Maybe I should take another serious look at it. Since then I've updated to a new PC system so maybe that would help as well.
Good looking final image and an even better looking pet.
Louis - I'd give it another try. Topaz continually updates their software and I believe that has led to quicker response times. I just ran a NEF of a sparrow shot and it took 10 seconds to apply the Sharpen AI edits. I'm running their software on a computer with 32 gigs of memory and a relatively new Intel processor and Nvidia video card.
 
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Incredible results Dan. I've tried this s/w once and it was extremely slow on my PC so I sort of gave up. Maybe I should take another serious look at it. Since then I've updated to a new PC system so maybe that would help as well.
Good looking final image and an even better looking pet.
I'll pass the compliment on to Grace. Though she's already spoiled enough and needs no further ego boost :rolleyes:

If you have a good graphics card in your new computer it may be worth another try. In the preferences toggle the option to run on the GPU. The software must be optimized to run that way because it makes a huge difference. That said, I'm still running version 1.xx because it runs a lot faster on my machine than the newest version that I have the license for. I have not tried the latest update which is beyond my license rights. Sounds like the most recent release has some interesting features such as comparing the different modes without having to run each and save a copy.
Truer words have seldom been written!

Yup, good work.
Thanks for commenting, Nick.
 
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Huge improvement, Dan! I'm sure Grace is grateful. After all, anyone with so much grace would always be grateful.

In the preferences toggle the option to run on the GPU. The software must be optimized to run that way because it makes a huge difference.
That apparently depends on the computer. Mine was slow as molasses configured that way. When I changed it to use Open Vino, it ran about five to six times faster.
 
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Louis - I'd give it another try. Topaz continually updates their software and I believe that has led to quicker response times. I just ran a NEF of a sparrow shot and it took 10 seconds to apply the Sharpen AI edits. I'm running their software on a computer with 32 gigs of memory and a relatively new Intel processor and Nvidia video card.
I'll pass the compliment on to Grace. Though she's already spoiled enough and needs no further ego boost :rolleyes:

If you have a good graphics card in your new computer it may be worth another try. In the preferences toggle the option to run on the GPU. The software must be optimized to run that way because it makes a huge difference. That said, I'm still running version 1.xx because it runs a lot faster on my machine than the newest version that I have the license for. I have not tried the latest update which is beyond my license rights. Sounds like the most recent release has some interesting features such as comparing the different modes without having to run each and save a copy.

Thanks for commenting, Nick.
Thanks guys, I think I will give it another go. My new system has 32g of RAM, i7 processor and a super good graphic's card which should certainly help.
 
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Incredible results Dan. I've tried this s/w once and it was extremely slow on my PC so I sort of gave up. Maybe I should take another serious look at it. Since then I've updated to a new PC system so maybe that would help as well.
Good looking final image and an even better looking pet.
in my opinion the best thing to do for this kind of software is to downsize the image to your target. So if you’re going to display it on the web, downsize it to web size and then do the sharpening through sharpen AI (or any sharpening software for that matter). This will help to increase performance.
 

Growltiger

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I'll pass the compliment on to Grace. Though she's already spoiled enough and needs no further ego boost :rolleyes:

If you have a good graphics card in your new computer it may be worth another try. In the preferences toggle the option to run on the GPU. The software must be optimized to run that way because it makes a huge difference. That said, I'm still running version 1.xx because it runs a lot faster on my machine than the newest version that I have the license for. I have not tried the latest update which is beyond my license rights. Sounds like the most recent release has some interesting features such as comparing the different modes without having to run each and save a copy.

Thanks for commenting, Nick.
Now that it supports Open VINO, it works well on fast processors without needing a GPU.

Let's try a couple of things, if you like.

1. Take the result you already produced and run it through Sharpen AI again.

2. Would you mind if I grabbed your original and tried what I can do with it?
 
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I've found that Sharpen Ai has trouble making fur look natural using stabilize. It tends to give it a scale effect if taken too far. What I do if I use stabilize is to apply the mask just to the eyes. Then I go back in and use just the Sharpen tab.
 
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Huge improvement, Dan! I'm sure Grace is grateful. After all, anyone with so much grace would always be grateful.

That apparently depends on the computer. Mine was slow as molasses configured that way. When I changed it to use Open Vino, it ran about five to six times faster.
Thanks, Mike. I find that after I open vino I don't really care how long the processing takes :D I'm still running a version prior to the OpenVINO option. I did notice that toggle in the version of Gigapixel that I have now but haven't tried it out yet. I don't use gigapixel much.
in my opinion the best thing to do for this kind of software is to downsize the image to your target. So if you’re going to display it on the web, downsize it to web size and then do the sharpening through sharpen AI (or any sharpening software for that matter). This will help to increase performance.
That's what the pure math argues. And no arguing it will reduce processing time. But it may not yield the best results from the software. I have no idea what the "AI" is analyzing but in my experience with this particular software there doesn't seem to be a single workflow that works best all the time. Sometimes it produces better results when it has more pixels to analyze and sometimes downsizing first is better. Which is somewhat frustrating and requires more time fiddling with the software than I prefer. That said it is still way simpler to use than some of the older sharpening solutions.
Now that it supports Open VINO, it works well on fast processors without needing a GPU.

Let's try a couple of things, if you like.

1. Take the result you already produced and run it through Sharpen AI again.

2. Would you mind if I grabbed your original and tried what I can do with it?
There's no doubt the results could be improved upon. I just threw this out there as a simple example of how far an image can be pulled back nowadays. As Bill points out below some judicious masking and using different modes for different parts of an image is the way to really optimize results.
I've found that Sharpen Ai has trouble making fur look natural using stabilize. It tends to give it a scale effect if taken too far. What I do if I use stabilize is to apply the mask just to the eyes. Then I go back in and use just the Sharpen tab.
My experience has been the same, Bill. Fur and feathers tend to produce a lot of artifacts. Ripples on water can be bad too. Sometimes blues and reds can really come out too. If I were prepping this image to print I'd likely run it through stabilize mode for the eyes, nose/snout, and maybe the ball. Beyond that I'd likely just finish it up with dynamic contrast, USM, etc.
 

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