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Complete solution for HDR photography

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  • beep6581
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    Pros: - Generates better HDR images than pfstools. - If you spend a few days trying to figure out the tone mapping algorithms you can actually learn to get very realistic results. - Batch HDR creation and tone mapping - Auto-alignment using align_image_stack - Scriptable (accepts command-line arguments) Cons: - Interface from the 20th century. - Developers seem to ignore even very important bug reports (DATA LOSS!). - Lack of adjustment features (no curves, not even auto-levels!) so you need to save tone-mapped images as 16-bit TIFF files and do all adjustments in other software (which wouldn't be a problem if not for the fact that often the tone-mapped images are too dark to judge whether you tone-mapped them well, and if you try to brighten them in LHDR you will clip highlights because LHDR has no highlight compression or curves). - No preview during HDR generation so you don't know what you're doing till it's done, and if you don't like it you have to start from scratch. - Auto-alignment using align_image_stack (single-threaded, not optimized, slow as hell! but not LHDR's fault). Why do I use it? Because I learned to get realistic results. Here's a time-saver tip for you. When tone-mapping using Durand, use: Base Contrast - 3.20 Spatial Kernel Sigma - 2.00 Range Kernel Sigma - 1.5 and when using Mantiuk '06, use: Contrast Factor: 0.40 Saturation Factor: 0.80 Detail Factor: 5 Click "Save current parameters to a text file" and just open them when needed. They will work very well in most cases, giving natural results without clipping anything, though the results will look washed out (see URL1 at the end). The reason for this is so that you can then use the Levels tool and drag the white and black point sliders to touch both ends of the light and dark data without clipping highlights or shadows (see URL2 at the end). This will greatly improve the look, though the image will still need processing, so now save as 16-bit TIFF and post-process in an external program. URL1: i.imgur dot com/Qmrev6r.jpg URL2: i.imgur dot com/SpGaga5.jpg

    Posted 01/28/2014