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Battle Of The Sharpening Tools!  
User currently offlineRonS From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 762 posts, RR: 22
Posted (5 years 2 months 4 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 4661 times:

Ok, I would like to know which Sharpening Tool you use, why, and on average how much you apply?

I'm specifically curious to those of us that have the option to use either USM Versus Smart Sharpening. Why do you prefer one over the other, etc? I believe Smart Sharpening came out with PS CS2 and newer, and I really want to know if you have the option of choosing one over the other, why? But for those of us that have older than CS2 or other photo editing software, please feel free to chime in with what you use, how much, why, etc.

I'll start. I use Smart Sharpen on CS3. Mostly because it seems milder or less dramatic and provides me with a bigger preview window to check my results. Also, because when I first started out, I kept getting rejections, untill the first accpeted shot where I happened to be using Smart Sharpen so I stuck with it.  Smile

Technically I don't have a clue why I use it, hence this silly post. On average...yeah I know every shot is different, etc...I use between 75%-95% with .3 Radius and select Lens Blur. For me when I select shots to submit here, the keepers all have generally the same amount of sharpness to begin with, so 75%-95% usually is a good range for me. Those shots that aren't up to those standards, but I like the actual shot, I sometimes add more. If I get a rejection for soft, I open the PSD file and I add another layer of 25% or so. On the first layer of Smart Sharpening, I use the Eraser at 60-65% over all edges, wheels, flaps, gear, wings, logos, etc etc etc to eliminate jaggies. Since I'm on a 15inch laptop, I do a little overkill on the eraser because I can't really see the jaggies to begin with so much. haha.

Thanks!


All opinions expressed by me are my own opinions & do not represent the opinions in any way of my employers.
9 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineAussie18 From Australia, joined Jun 2005, 1753 posts, RR: 9
Reply 1, posted (5 years 2 months 4 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 4648 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
PHOTO SCREENER

My sharpening techinique is I use USM,I resize to 1600pixel apply 100% @ 0.2 than resize to final size of 1024x and apply maybe roughly 200-400% @ 0.2,Than I look for areas which maybe soft ie,flaps,rego,doors,titles etc and either just sharpen or you wand tool and draw a area over aircraft and sharpen it.
Than get eraser tool set at 50% opacity and erase jagged edges which have started to appear.

Cheers Mark.


User currently offlineRonS From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 762 posts, RR: 22
Reply 2, posted (5 years 2 months 4 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 4625 times:



Quoting Aussie18 (Reply 1):
My sharpening techinique is I use USM

Thanks mark. Do you use USM over Smart Sharpen? If so why?

Cheers



All opinions expressed by me are my own opinions & do not represent the opinions in any way of my employers.
User currently offlineLuftfahrer From Germany, joined Mar 2009, 1032 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (5 years 2 months 4 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 4623 times:

I use highpass + soft light at first, and if that's not enough I'll add some USM sharpening.


'He resembled a pilot, which to a seaman is trustworthiness personified.' Joseph Conrad
User currently offlineCpd From Australia, joined Jun 2008, 4879 posts, RR: 37
Reply 4, posted (5 years 2 months 4 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 4622 times:

My method is less elaborate.

I select the plane, make new layer from it, resize the image down to 1024px or 1280px wide, then high pass filter 0.5px that new layer, set it to soft light and then duplicate the layer as and where needed until the sharpness is as required.

Each photo might only take about 1 minute to process.

I generally get shots that are mostly quite sharp in the first place, unless I'm trying something tricky like panning at slow shutter speeds. Some of those types of photos I get are probably sharp enough with some editing, but I don't trust my judgement enough to upload them, so I probably get a lot of nice photos that go straight to the "personal collection" (also known as the trash bin).

Out of the default sharpening methods, I think smart sharpen is the better one, but there isn't much between the two. It appears to have nicer results for me. I just use 40% 0.3 settings for it and the results are okay.

[Edited 2009-07-25 18:17:27]

User currently offlineRonS From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 762 posts, RR: 22
Reply 5, posted (5 years 2 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 4618 times:



Quoting Cpd (Reply 4):
Out of the default sharpening methods, smart sharpen is the better one.

Why do you think? I happen to agree with you, but not sure exactly why. Thanks.



All opinions expressed by me are my own opinions & do not represent the opinions in any way of my employers.
User currently offlineDvincent From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 1745 posts, RR: 11
Reply 6, posted (5 years 2 months 4 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 4596 times:
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Smart Sharpen doesn't sharpen areas that would usually contain noise, like shadows and highlights. You can either let it automatically determine that boundary or adjust it yourself. It can also try to correct different kinds of blur (lens softness, gaussian blur introduced by antialias filters or downsampling, or motion blur). It also looks to enhance local/microcontrast in addition to USM's normal goal of enhancing edge sharpness (or acutance).

Here's a good explanation on how Smart Sharpen works and how it can benefit you.

http://www.earthboundlight.com/photo...ps/smart-sharpen-cs2-and-more.html

Even with smart sharpen I mask off areas I don't want sharpened, this should be SOP for all sharpeners, even photokit. Note that Lightroom's sharpening does the edge masking automatically mentioned using its Masking slider. Hopefully that slider will be integrated into other tools some day...

USM is a comfortable, familiar tool, but Smart Sharpen can give you better image quality with less effort.



From the Mind of Minolta
User currently offlineChukcha From Australia, joined Mar 2006, 1980 posts, RR: 7
Reply 7, posted (5 years 2 months 4 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 4567 times:
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Thanks, Dan, finally I read a coherent explanation what Smart Sharpen actually does.

Cheers,
Andrei


User currently offlineRonS From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 762 posts, RR: 22
Reply 8, posted (5 years 2 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 4497 times:



Quoting Chukcha (Reply 7):
Thanks, Dan, finally I read a coherent explanation what Smart Sharpen actually does

Ditto, thanks...that's what I was looking for.

Dan, regarding not sharpening noisy areas, do you adjust the Shadow highlight for that?

For example beneath flaps or gear in the shadow, I frequently get some noise in these shadow areas. What do you adjust and how much so Smart Sharpen does not sharpen these areas, thereby creating more noise.

Thanks.



All opinions expressed by me are my own opinions & do not represent the opinions in any way of my employers.
User currently offlineDvincent From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 1745 posts, RR: 11
Reply 9, posted (5 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 4445 times:
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Quoting RonS (Reply 8):
Dan, regarding not sharpening noisy areas, do you adjust the Shadow highlight for that?

Ron,

yes, the shadow/highlight threshold accounts for that. The defaults should normally exclude proper shadows but if you want to expand the range of exclusion you can use the thresholding to change it. Now, this will just keep the sharpening tools from sharpening noise that is already there - if you pushed the shadows too much the noise will still be there... just less obvious.



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