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In the panorama field, hardware is also part of the success. You can discuss here about it: camera, computer, pano head, anything
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beeloba
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by beeloba » Mon Jan 07, 2008 12:10 am

Sorry, you guys, I haven't read all the thread actually, but it seems that your all photomatix work, is quite easy with a couple, even three pictures…
But it becomes very difficult on a whole set of more pictures.
What do you recommend for a 36 pictures fisheye workflow? using APP on a three layer render base, or do you recommend using photomatix before all… Loosing, BTW all exif info ?

Thanks for help :)
PS. I'm sometime a bit messed up in the whole process direction.

Of course we except APP to be able to do the work/result we need……
Lets once more wait for the next step of Alex and Lionel Deep work, patience and feedback :)

BTW, even if things are a bit slow, Results are always there :cool:

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klausesser
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by klausesser » Mon Jan 07, 2008 12:40 am

beeloba wrote:Sorry, you guys, I haven't read all the thread actually, but it seems that your all photomatix work, is quite easy with a couple, even three pictures…
But it becomes very difficult on a whole set of more pictures.
What do you recommend for a 36 pictures fisheye workflow? using APP on a three layer render base, or do you recommend using photomatix before all… Loosing, BTW all exif info ?

Thanks for help :)
PS. I'm sometime a bit messed up in the whole process direction.

Of course we except APP to be able to do the work/result we need……
Lets once more wait for the next step of Alex and Lionel Deep work, patience and feedback :)

BTW, even if things are a bit slow, Results are always there :cool:

Hi!

I always use Photomatix with bracketed photography. I usually shoot 60 - 150 views. That means 120 - 300 bracketed exposures. Sometimes i shoot RAW, sometimes JPG. Sometimes i make 9 exposure-steps on each shot.
I put one set of three (or more) into Photomatix and make a test and save the setting which i store in the folder of the pictures. Then i let Phtmx do a batch-processing of all. Thatz works great. Doesn´t take longer than stitch and render different sets and combine them later.
I found it more convenient to go this way and let APP do it´s work as an exellent stitcher and renderer. In my understanding APP can do a better job with detecting already mapped images than it can with extreme exposure-differences of the same image. Maybe i´m wrong - but that´s the workflow i found optimal for me.
I don´t expect ANY program to do ALL i need . . I do like highly specialized programs better than "allrounders" - it´s just as it is as a professional photograper: there are fashion-photographers, stillifers, sports-guys, war-photographers, architecture-photographers ans so on.
You wouldn´t really expect somebody to be highly specialized in ALL kinds . .
You also wouldn´t expect a professional football-player to be a tennis-pro also - just because he´s a prof. sportsman.

I think: let specialists do the specialist´s jobs.

best, Klaus
Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance. Coco Chanel

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by beeloba » Mon Jan 07, 2008 1:32 am

Hi Klaus,

Thanks again for the workflow tip, I really appreciate…

EDIt: but we still miss a specialist who can confirm - I was expecting Alex to answer… but he he does not want to answer yet /;, it's maybe too early, I guess he will…
Last edited by beeloba on Mon Jan 07, 2008 1:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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by hankkarl » Mon Jan 07, 2008 4:17 am

Hi Klaus,

Do you think its better to feed Photomatix the three bracketed conversions of a RAW file, or a single RAW file?

Do you see bracketing and photomatix as a better solution than a number of studio strobes with all the accessories (softboxes, etc)?

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by hankkarl » Mon Jan 07, 2008 4:21 am

klausesser wrote:I always use Photomatix with bracketed photography. I usually shoot 60 - 150 views. That means 120 - 300 bracketed exposures. Sometimes i shoot RAW, sometimes JPG. Sometimes i make 9 exposure-steps on each shot.
I put one set of three (or more) into Photomatix and make a test and save the setting which i store in the folder of the pictures. Then i let Phtmx do a batch-processing of all. Thatz works great. Doesn´t take longer than stitch and render different sets and combine them later.

I used to make three panos, then combine them, but I'm liking Klaus'es method better, if only because there are fewer links in APP. A lot fewer.

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by klausesser » Mon Jan 07, 2008 7:42 am

hankkarl wrote:Hi Klaus,

Do you think its better to feed Photomatix the three bracketed conversions of a RAW file, or a single RAW file?

Do you see bracketing and photomatix as a better solution than a number of studio strobes with all the accessories (softboxes, etc)?

Good morning, Hank! (at least it´s early in the morning over here :cool:)

Three bracketed RAW-shots combined to make HDR from and tonemap that is absolutely better than havin one RAW-shot split up into three exposures! Because when shooting bracketed with 3 different exposure-steps naturally records a far wider dynamic range than 1 shot.
Usually RAW is 12bit, the actual generation from Canon and Nikon top-cameras provides 14bit (don´t know exactly which models) in one exposure.
That´s not bad - having it tripled is a lot more . . . . :cool:

Let me say that by far not all motives (?) require HDR or even look better with HDR! It´s the complicated, difficult light-situations which profits from the technique. I guess 75% of all photography doesn´t need it.
But IF a situation deserves it . . do it! Btw.: i tested some 9-step bracketing - a program called "Breese" provides it for PCs only (arrgr) with Canon´s D-range (besides full remote control of nearly each camera-function).
In some situations - like sundowns, dark churches with bright windows or some interior-photography and of course night-shots - it´s fascinating how smooth the exposures become. Very naturally! With tonemapping´s settings it´s at your hand to make it look artificially (wich can look very interesting) or absolutely natural looking.

There are some specially designed cameras for HDR-shooting which are working with up to 21-step bracketing - like the Spheron camera, which is used for car-photography to shoot the backgrounds for environt-mapping in 3D scenes.
Cars are no longer shot outside the studio. A team of photographer and artdirector travels to interesting places, shoot sperical panoramas wit the spheron in HDR, shoot a large-format (digital or analogue) of the car´s background and some 3D artists generate a photorealistic 3D car in which the sperical pano is mapped as environment reflection and the highres background picture delivers the background for the car.

And finished is superperfect car photography - shot on places it would be very expensive to transport a car to. If there IS a car already produced at the time of shooting . . . which usually is not . .:cool:

best, Klaus
Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance. Coco Chanel

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by John_Sauter » Mon Jan 07, 2008 12:35 pm

hankkarl wrote:If you want to try loading the first three images and controlling transparancy, go ahead.

Thank you, I will see what I can do.
Last edited by John_Sauter on Mon Jan 07, 2008 12:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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by klausesser » Mon Jan 07, 2008 1:14 pm

Hello Hank!

I just have your set tonemapped in Phtmx with slightly differencing settings.
The stonework is a bit lighter.
If you like: you can download the settings from my server - http://www.klausesser.de/Hank1_2_3.xmp.zip

best, Klaus


Last edited by klausesser on Mon Jan 07, 2008 1:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance. Coco Chanel

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by hankkarl » Mon Jan 07, 2008 5:45 pm

Hi Klaus,

This is why I call it photographic art. There are two different moods in the two versions, I like a darker mood because the statue is of a woman weeping.

The statue is dedicated to the mothers of all the American soldiers who died in our revolutionary war. Its located in an Episcopal Church in Valley Forge, where General George Washington had a winter camp.

But this was just an example of when HDR helps an image, and I don't think you could get either version from layering and masking. Besides, it was just a snapshot that was handheld (luckily, I did take three bracketed exposures.)

BTW, did you do any sharpening? Your version seems sharper than mine.

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by John_Sauter » Tue Jan 08, 2008 3:54 am

hankkarl wrote:Attached are three images bracketed by 2 EV, and a tone-mapped result. Notice that it looks "fake" in that a photographer's mind knows that some areas should be darker and some areas should be blown out.

Here is my contribution. I constructed this image from the three provided by loading them as layers, setting the layer mask to fully opaque for the middle image and fully transparent for the bright and dark images, then painting opaqueness into the the bright and dark images. The blended image does not match the tone-mapped result, but it improves upon the middle image by using the bright image to bring up the shadows, and the dark to tone down the highlights.

I have also put the picture in Gimp and Postscript format on my web site: http://www.systemeyescomputerstore.com/Pictures/tone_mapping/. This version shows the layering and the layer masks. It also includes the tone-mapped version as an invisible layer. Toggle it to compare.



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by hankkarl » Tue Jan 08, 2008 3:19 pm

Again, this is photographic art, and there is no right answer. And you have to look at all three verisions to see the differences. I find its easier to show each picture in its own tab, and alternate between them. But I will show all three images in this post.

Note the luminance of the trees.

The top left stonework is different, Klaus and John are lighter than Hank, but Klaus seems more saturated. (I'll refer to the pictures by the author's name)

The views out the windows: Hank and Klaus had better dynamic range than John

Foreground flagstone - Klaus had most saturation, Hank had the least

Statue - Klaus had most saturation and dynamic range, Hank had the least

Plinth (base of statue) John was darkest, Klaus and Hank were lighter.

I didn't sharpen my image, and may have forgotten to tell PM to align the result, and my image looks less sharp than the others. The other picture is of my image, sharpened. Colors and contrast didn't appreciably change




Last edited by hankkarl on Tue Jan 08, 2008 3:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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by klausesser » Tue Jan 08, 2008 7:39 pm

hello hank!

thanks for that interesting comparison. I´ll look for a more extreme picture to go to the extremes.

best, Klaus
Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance. Coco Chanel

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by John_Sauter » Tue Jan 08, 2008 11:08 pm

Thank you, Hank, from me also. Looking at my rendition, I now feel that I should have made the plinth lighter.

I was attracted to Autopano Pro because I spent a week constructing a panorama of Yankee Stadium by hand, and I was convinced that there should be a better way. I think the same may be true of tone mapping: while it is possible to do it by hand, having a program to do it is much more convenient.

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by hankkarl » Tue Jan 08, 2008 11:26 pm

IMO, an image is correct if it shows what you, the author, want it to show.

And this forum is (at its best) a learning experience.

But I do think that one's "free time" is very valuable. What would you give for an extra week of vacation if you could have it all to yourself? (ie you don't have to work around the house, take the kids to a birthday party, etc.)

By using "power tools" like APP and an HDR program, you make the best use of your free time. In a sense, if APP saves you an hour stitching, you get that hour to do something else. Photomatix, EasyHDR, and similar programs help in a similar way. Yes, APP will have HDR sometime, but how much free time will the $100 price of Photomatix buy you until APP comes out with HDR?
Last edited by hankkarl on Tue Jan 08, 2008 11:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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