Mike Chaney's Tech Corner

Mike's Software => Qimage Ultimate => Topic started by: Fred A on September 27, 2020, 12:07:10 PM



Title: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: Fred A on September 27, 2020, 12:07:10 PM
You know the rules: Never discuss Politics or Religion .
But since it is a time of restricted activities, maybe we can discuss Qimage Ultimate.
As time goes on and Qimage grows, I am hard pressed to find something I need from Photo Shop.

Way back when, I owned PS for which I paid handsomely,  plus extra for tickets to attend seminars to learn how to use it.
I learned layers, and all the stuff I could do per layer.
But I already had something called Qimage I was using and learning.
Everytime I added a layer, the image bloated. When I adjusted something in Qimage, same size, no change; and the prints were better. The only tool in PSCS that was really great was the clone tool. I could get rid of whole buildings and you wouldn't notice unless I showed you.
As time went on and I got into RAW instead of JPG shooting, (and with Mike's tutoring) I learned why raw beats jpg. Qimage was growing in features that really made a difference.
Just to name a few:
1) Raw  refine
2) Deep Focus sharpening (beats the heck out of USM sharpening.)
3) Interpolation: the creation of files with the absolute highest quality while retaining detail for conversion and printing. Auto noise reduction.

4) Get your print size accurate and easily.  Change print size with one mouse click. Place the prints where you want on a page.
5) Borders within the print size or added to it; use of mats for uneven borders.
6) Crop images or prints.
7) Search engines to recover previous jobs, prints, and layouts (templates) that you made in seconds and saved.
8) Create and save all your printer/paper/size/paper type/profile/quality/driver settings and more. One click and you are set to print  on a certain paper; ready to go.

All this and much more while retaining the highest quality regardless of what your job requires.
So I must ask, other than you paid big bucks, and you got used to it, what does PS do that you otherwise cannot do?


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: Jeff on September 28, 2020, 07:02:15 AM

All this and much more while retaining the highest quality regardless of what your job requires.
So I must ask, other than you paid big bucks, and you got used to it, what does PS do that you otherwise cannot do?


You are sticking your neck out as we say.

I have never had PS so could not possibly comment.

Jeff


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: Fred A on September 28, 2020, 09:35:33 AM
Quote
I have never had PS so could not possibly comment.
Jeff,
PS was meant sort of generically to include your Elements, Capture 1, Lightroom, etc.
Fred


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: Jeff on September 29, 2020, 07:14:44 AM
True, I do have Elements 7 but cannot remember the last time I used it.

Jeff


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: Fred A on September 29, 2020, 10:11:07 AM
Quote
True, I do have Elements 7 but cannot remember the last time I used it.

Jeff
That's good, and infers that Qimage is handling all your photo processing needs quite well.
That is the type of discussion, or conversely, I need my Capture one because......

stay well,
Fred


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: CHoffman on September 29, 2020, 03:02:23 PM
I hesitate to enter this discussion because I'd much rather talk about all the things Qimage can do, and do better than anything else out there. That said, I still use Paint Shop Pro for anything to do with cloning, which is how I fix all manner of things. I also use it for what they call Local Tone Mapping, which I think is just a USM with huge areas. They make it very easy and it helps a lot of images.

My feelings on raw images are conflicted. Qimage gets me where I want to go very quickly, but only for low ISO pictorial images. At least for Nikon, nobody can do noise reduction and corrections like the people that built the camera. Even in-camera jpeg images are hard (read impossible) to compete with if the settings are right, and the Nikon Capture NXD program is far better than anything else I've used for post processing the raws, because it uses the Nikon "special sauce". Now, I often find when I think Qimage falls short, it's because I've missed some critical detail about how to use it. Maybe that's the case for noise reduction, but AFAICT, the choices are limited and not really adjustable. I'd love to hear otherwise.

Where Paint Shop Pro falls flat on its face is color management. It's only useful for sRGB images. Qimage has that mastered, so my "highest quality" workflow is to do the raws in Nikon Capture NXD, exporting to a larger color space, followed by everything else in Qimage. FWIW, though DFS is extremely good, I do very little sharpening, in-camera or with NXD. It doesn't seem to be needed when the camera (Z6) is inherently very good and is doing vibration reduction. My most common settings might be 1-80 or nothing.


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: admin on September 29, 2020, 03:25:29 PM
Well said.  I've learned my lesson over the years: Qimage should focus on printing.  The Qimage editing tools get me through probably 90% of what I need to do.  They were designed to get you through small touchups and not need to open a full featured editor for that kind of stuff.  The vanish tool can handle removing something as big as a bucket by a pool, a mailbox, trashcan in the background, and certainly skin blemishes.  But sometimes I need to remove an entire car or a whole basketball pole with backboard, or something like that.  Qimage's vanish tool can do it but it's tedious.  For those tasks I use Affinity Photo.  It's $50 and does most of what Photoshop does... better and easier.  Just use the selection brush, quickly select an entire (large) area, and click Edit, Inpaint and it's gone.  Unbelievable features for $50!  I only have PS and LR installed on my older secondary PC.  I refuse to install it on my new system because it spams so many useless services that spawn when you open their software and don't shut down when you exit (11 of them).  I simply don't want that mess on my system.

Also, like you, I sometimes use the manufacturer's software for images above ISO 800.  As you said, they have individual noise profiles for cameras and nothing beats them for noise-free images.  That said, although they are noise-free, I can often get a better compromise using clever application of tone targeted sharpening (or softening) in Qimage.  Those noise-free results from the manufacturer's software often come at a price like hair, eyebrows, grass, etc. becoming smudged at the expense of removing noise.  Sometimes I prefer to let them be a little sharper at the expense of a little noise, but it does take a little work to dial it in (5-10 minutes).

Mike


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: Fred A on October 01, 2020, 10:27:55 AM
"Heavens to Betsy",  everyone!!
I never intended my post to make you clam up because you didn't want to commit your workflow to the scrutiny of the forum.
I really hoped for light banter among us as we want to feel comfortable and new comers should feel comfortable asking questions.
I do apologize. Only meant to generate activity.
Fred


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: CHoffman on October 01, 2020, 01:08:28 PM
Well Fred, we technical types don't do light banter well  ;D and have learned that the blunt approach earns us few friends.  :'( I love to discuss this stuff and am relieved that Mike doesn't think I'm completely nuts. I don't know 0.1% of all the things involved in image processing, and I've been doing it for a very long time. Maybe next year I'll hit 0.15%. It took me 13 years to save my pennies and upgrade my D200 to the Z6. It just amazes me what can be achieved with the current generation of lenses, plus image stabilization, in terms of sharpness. Metering is usually a non-issue as well. Most of what's left is lighting, tones and my limited artistic abilities. That's probably why I do less with the raws and am learning to take better advantage of Qimage's color and tonal features. IMO, those are not really intuitive and thank goodness for the excellent videos, or I'd be completely lost.


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: MelW on October 04, 2020, 04:32:49 PM
So my two cents worth on both topics.  I do occasionally use PS elements. (BTW, what does PS do that you canít do with elements?)  Mainly use if I think I need to do something where I really need layers, or when I need to do something Ė not to demean anyone or anything Ė but something I would call gimmicky.  Like I did a cute toddler portrait a few years back and was asked to add heart shapes to the background.

As to raw, a couple of years ago, I was doing almost exclusively raw.  But Mr. Hoffman is right, for a properly exposed photo, I canít match whatever Nikon does to create their Jpegs. But Ė thereís the rub.  When I have a photo thatís overexposed or underexposed Ė and I am really skilled at doing both of these Ė even at the default settings, the QU raw will bring it in for me if itís only one or two stops in either direction. If itís badly out of whack, I can still sometimes recover with the many selective exposure options in the raw editor.  So right now I am using raw for about 25-35% of photos.


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: Fred A on October 04, 2020, 05:51:17 PM
Mel,
Add these to your cutout folder in Qimage.


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: MelW on October 09, 2020, 05:41:02 PM
No sooner had I written the above about how raw saves me from the underexposed or overexposed jpeg, than I created a great example the very next day.

Doing some informal portraits of the grandchildren in my Rube Goldberg (now outdoors) studio. For most of the pictures, the out of the camera pegs are great, but one or two, as I mentioned were not.  See the first snap below.  On the left is the out of camera jpg, on the right, the raw with the default QU processing settings.  The second snap shows the jpeg i cropped and created from the raw


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: Fred A on October 09, 2020, 05:57:47 PM
From what I can see from the snaps, excellent improvement in the raw.. Just curious if you tried any twiddly improvement to the QU default raw refine?  Like ODR
Fred


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: MelW on October 09, 2020, 09:11:38 PM
No - I didn't refine the raw at all. Used the image editor and cranked the contrast up but that is the only thing in the flt.  Nothing else (except of course the crop)


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: Fred A on October 10, 2020, 10:37:22 AM
Quote
No - I didn't refine the raw at all. Used the image editor and cranked the contrast up but that is the only thing in the flt.  Nothing else (except of course the crop)
Just for fun, try using ODR . Turn back the added contrast in flt. Then do ODR
Any chance that Raw could be emailed or sent (Just for fun) to me via G Drive or We transfer or something?

Fred


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: MelW on October 10, 2020, 04:04:59 PM
Sure - send it to you tomorrow when I get back on my QU computer downstairs.  Love to see what you do with it. I have used ODR, but not for something like this so here's a chance for me to learn  a little technique. Also note - that I will definitely twiddle with this some more before I print it.  What I normally do with these is a first quick and dirty edit and crop of the best half dozen or so to decide which ones to print after doing an initial rating via select all/preview add to queue.


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: Fred A on October 11, 2020, 06:08:38 PM
Got the picture. Thanks
Fred


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: Fred A on October 11, 2020, 07:02:07 PM
OK, this is what I came up with.
I downloaded 2 copies of the NEF for comparison.
First, set Fill to zero
Then I did ODR, and I got a cleaner image.
Then, in image editor I added +20 Saturation. His skin color was too pale. I also added a skinch of DFS3/275 at 90% using Target RGB and selected eyelashes.(Black)
I put both NEFS in the comparitor and compared side by side.
I liked the results
I am emailing the .flt and the .qrs
Make sure the filename matches the filter names.
Remember this is to taste.. and my Canon pro 100 loves this one. Photo is a wall hanger.
Fred


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: MelW on October 11, 2020, 09:35:17 PM
Love it.  Thanks Fred


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: CHoffman on October 21, 2020, 07:06:01 PM
As Mike says, printing is what Qimage is really all about. I was wandering some local trails over the weekend and shot some closeups of fall leaves. Medium ISO pictorial stuff. Going right from the Nikon raw, with some enhancements and minor editing, to the PRO-100, the prints rolled out of the printer looking just spectacular. They also matched the screen very closely. Paper profile was with Profile Prism. There's almost a 3D look because I selectively sharpened the leaf and softened everything else with the saturated RGB setting. Can't imagine a better tool for the job. (severely downsized and compressed image here is a far cry from the print!)



Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: MelW on October 21, 2020, 08:36:26 PM
Maybe you could post one or two here? (I realize we wouldn't see that print quality)


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: CHoffman on October 21, 2020, 11:40:41 PM
On the same trail were some bikers. Not everything I shoot is sharp! Not quite sure what to do with this. I like it, but the green is a bit much and the streaked leaves could be more saturated.



Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: oliverhbailey on November 06, 2020, 12:27:17 PM
Sorry to be late to this thread party. But as I read the last few comments, I wanted to chime out on using Qimage and Affinity products.

I encountered a problem when the publisher of several of my books was sold in 2009. I always get and retain the master "PDF" files which are used for the printing plates. Unfortunately, when I went to use several of the masters on several books, I found the PDF files were locked. Without having the original Corel Ventura files, I was left with using CorelDraw since Corel Ventura Publisher was discontinued and rolled into CorelDraw. The problem was there is no documentation on how to use these hidden features in CorelDraw and CorelDraw has become a catch-all for things Corel can't put in other products. Somehow I got a mail on Affinity Publisher. I found it hard to believe that such an inexpensive product could be so professionally done, from the interface to the training videos and documentation. I was elated when after a couple days I loaded the master PDF and sixty seconds later, all 478 pages showed up properly formatted, and I had properly mapped out the replacement fonts not available from Ventura to Affinity.

I do all my own photography for my books, including front and back cover materials. After a couple week of using Affinity Publisher, I purchased the remaining Affinity products. Those three publishing products combined with Qimage Ultimate make for the "Ultimate Desktop Publishing" solution today. I have always used four color photos in my covers, but for the first time I can get top notch clarity and contrast using greyscale when edited with Qimage Ultimate.

And the work flow is seamless.

I do a lot of panoramic photography these days, and QImage Ultimate has made scaling and printing of large panoramas a pleasure. I just recently retired and have never had time to sing the praise of this product but it has been a real pleasure to work with.

Hats off to Mike and the folks at Affinity for developing several products that compliment each other so well for a targeted desktop publishing audience.


Title: Re: Politics, Religion,...
Post by: CHoffman on November 06, 2020, 05:30:31 PM
Wow, I had forgotten about Ventura Publisher. It was one of the original "classic" applications that made PCs useful.