Animal photography is a passion of mine, but it often requires some post-processing to optimise the images. This may involve reducing excessive noise or sharpening images that appear soft. Alongside my love for photography, I enjoy sharing tips and tricks around software with others that can help solve these issues.
Before delving into the example, let's provide some background on Luminar Neo. It is an advanced image editor that offers various capabilities, such as Layers. However, one of its standout features is the ability to enhance functionality through extensions. These extensions provide additional features like HDR, Image Upscaling, Focus Stacking, Panorama, Noise Reduction, and Sharpening.
It's important to note that using these extensions requires a valid license for Luminar Neo; they cannot be used independently, but what do they do:
- The Noiseless AI extension effectively reduces noise in images using AI and machine learning, preserving sharpness.
- On the other hand, the SuperSharp AI extension intelligently refines blur, enhancing photo quality through AI and machine learning.
Now, let's examine the example image below. It captures a Galah (Eolophus roseicapilla) and was taken handheld with a long focal length of 1200mm using a Sony FE 200-600mm lens with a 2X teleconverter. To achieve a faster shutter speed, I had to increase the ISO, resulting in noise.
All images were initially imported into Lightroom without any significant adjustments. They were then exported to Luminar Neo for editing before being brought back into Lightroom for final export as JPEG files. Additionally, I utilised JPEGMini to reduce the file sizes.
Because the image is not perfect it isn't as sharp as it could be, so I also wanted to show an example of using just DeNoise (Comparison 2, Left) compared to DeNoise and Sharpening Extensions (Comparison 2, Right).
As you can see in these examples, it has improved the photos significantly, the first removing a lot of noise whilst balancing the sharpness and trying not to reduce the overall sharpness (even though the image was already a little soft), and the second being the addition of extra sharpness through the extension SuperSharp AI.
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