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DPChallenge Forums >> Photography Discussion >> Thinking of purchasing Topaz but.....
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03/16/2011 05:28:57 PM · #1
I feel like I would be "selling" out as a photographer.
What is your take on that? Do you feel using someones pre-made photoshop add on to majorly alter a photo make the photo less yours?

Would love to hear your opinions,

-Dustin.
03/16/2011 05:33:10 PM · #2
It depends on how you use it. I only use it to enhance the characteristics that are already there.
03/16/2011 05:36:25 PM · #3
It's just a tool, like photoshop itself, and any other of the multitude of available plugins.
03/16/2011 05:43:01 PM · #4
Originally posted by Yo_Spiff:

It's just a tool, like photoshop itself, and any other of the multitude of available plugins.


True, I personally haven't seen the layout in photoshop so don't really know how it's used, if it's a 1 click operation or if there is some creativity and work involved in using it.

I've just seen the examples on their site so don't have much to base off of.
03/16/2011 05:49:02 PM · #5
I use adjust when possible and I think it can really bring out a photo and make it pop. You can use a variety of pre-sets which I started off doing but as you experiment you can tweak all the settings to get a results which aren't possible through the pre-sets.

I just think its another side of Photoshop that you can edit with and I really don't think it takes away from the photo being yours.
03/16/2011 05:55:28 PM · #6
Originally posted by Adz:

I use adjust when possible and I think it can really bring out a photo and make it pop. You can use a variety of pre-sets which I started off doing but as you experiment you can tweak all the settings to get a results which aren't possible through the pre-sets.

I just think its another side of Photoshop that you can edit with and I really don't think it takes away from the photo being yours.


Do you have any photos of yours you have used Topaz on that I could take a look at?
03/16/2011 06:03:23 PM · #7
Originally posted by Ubersteiny:

I feel like I would be "selling" out as a photographer.
What is your take on that? Do you feel using someones pre-made photoshop add on to majorly alter a photo make the photo less yours?

Would love to hear your opinions,

-Dustin.


It's no different than what film photographers did in the darkroom before and after digital. Photographers have always manipulated their photos to bring out detail and contrast by using chemicals and dodge and burn tools etc.

03/16/2011 06:04:28 PM · #8
Originally posted by Ubersteiny:

Originally posted by Yo_Spiff:

It's just a tool, like photoshop itself, and any other of the multitude of available plugins.


True, I personally haven't seen the layout in photoshop so don't really know how it's used, if it's a 1 click operation or if there is some creativity and work involved in using it.

I've just seen the examples on their site so don't have much to base off of.


If that's all you know, then it's too soon for you to be working with plug-ins like Topaz, IMO. It's true that there are presets which will, with a single click, radically alter your image. But each of these presets is composed of specific adjustments on something like 20 different parameters, all of which are visible in a panel on the right. The presets are *starting points* for most of us, then we custom-tailor in the right-hand panel. A lot of the time we don't start with a preset at all, but just adjust specific parameters, based on our own experience. Also, we can SAVE any group of settings as a custom pre-set, so we can later apply them to other images in the same set, or an entirely different set for that matter.

So, in a nutshell, it's a very highly customizable tool. Which is exactly what photoshop is, comes to that. And if you don't even *know* whether photoshop is more than a 1-click adjustment tool, then your first job is to learn basic post processing. Save the bells and whistles for when you have the background to work creatively with them.

That's just my opinion, of course :-)

R.
03/16/2011 06:07:50 PM · #9
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Thats the original without topaz.
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Thats with topaz. I can't remember what I did too it but you can clearly see the difference. Maybe a little overdone for a portrait but it's all I could find atm.

03/16/2011 06:10:24 PM · #10
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by Ubersteiny:

Originally posted by Yo_Spiff:

It's just a tool, like photoshop itself, and any other of the multitude of available plugins.


True, I personally haven't seen the layout in photoshop so don't really know how it's used, if it's a 1 click operation or if there is some creativity and work involved in using it.

I've just seen the examples on their site so don't have much to base off of.


If that's all you know, then it's too soon for you to be working with plug-ins like Topaz, IMO. It's true that there are presets which will, with a single click, radically alter your image. But each of these presets is composed of specific adjustments on something like 20 different parameters, all of which are visible in a panel on the right. The presets are *starting points* for most of us, then we custom-tailor in the right-hand panel. A lot of the time we don't start with a preset at all, but just adjust specific parameters, based on our own experience. Also, we can SAVE any group of settings as a custom pre-set, so we can later apply them to other images in the same set, or an entirely different set for that matter.

So, in a nutshell, it's a very highly customizable tool. Which is exactly what photoshop is, comes to that. And if you don't even *know* whether photoshop is more than a 1-click adjustment tool, then your first job is to learn basic post processing. Save the bells and whistles for when you have the background to work creatively with them.

That's just my opinion, of course :-)

R.


Sorry I may have not been clear before, I meant I wasn't sure if Topaz was a 1 click operation or not. I've been working with photoshop itself for many years now.

Thank you for the opinion though I think I'll bite the bullet and purchase it.
03/16/2011 06:12:22 PM · #11
I got two Topaz last week. I am pretty sure I will be using them often. Not here only but overall. I love all the settings, so I am not stuck with presets only, I can change the level of almost everything to make it just right for whatever I need to do.

So, I don't think it's a waste of money, unless if you know your way in and out of Photo Shop. After all, it uses PhotoShop components to do all those adjustments (as far as i know)
03/16/2011 06:20:06 PM · #12
Topaz is just an extension of the movement from elements to photoshop , more choices, finer controls. It is easy to see examples of abuse and using it as a tool to move an image into digital art, but it is more often used with subtlety so you never know it was used at all.

Your concern that is one button addon is the opposite of the truth. It takes the bones of what photoshop does on a single slider and adds many options to control a single phase of adjustment.

you shouldnt buy it, or decide not to buy it based on anything anyone else has to say, look at the old topaz threads, and download the trial version and see if it works for you. I would not be without it.
03/16/2011 06:22:07 PM · #13
Originally posted by BrennanOB:

Topaz is just an extension of the movement from elements to photoshop , more choices, finer controls. It is easy to see examples of abuse and using it as a tool to move an image into digital art, but it is more often used with subtlety so you never know it was used at all.

Your concern that is one button addon is the opposite of the truth. It takes the bones of what photoshop does on a single slider and adds many options to control a single phase of adjustment.

you shouldnt buy it, or decide not to buy it based on anything anyone else has to say, look at the old topaz threads, and download the trial version and see if it works for you. I would not be without it.


Ya once I get home I'm going to dl the 30 Day trial (school's wireless is too slow).
03/16/2011 06:27:30 PM · #14
Originally posted by Ubersteiny:

Sorry I may have not been clear before, I meant I wasn't sure if Topaz was a 1 click operation or not. I've been working with photoshop itself for many years now.

Thank you for the opinion though I think I'll bite the bullet and purchase it.


Whew, that's a relief LOL. Now that I look more closely, I can see the ambiguity in your phrasing that led me down that path. Disregard well-meant but superfluous advice and download the trial, yup :-) I'd go for Topaz Detail if I could only have one.

R.
03/16/2011 06:29:56 PM · #15
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by Ubersteiny:

Sorry I may have not been clear before, I meant I wasn't sure if Topaz was a 1 click operation or not. I've been working with photoshop itself for many years now.

Thank you for the opinion though I think I'll bite the bullet and purchase it.


Whew, that's a relief LOL. Now that I look more closely, I can see the ambiguity in your phrasing that led me down that path. Disregard well-meant but superfluous advice and download the trial, yup :-) I'd go for Topaz Detail if I could only have one.

R.


If I understood it correctly on their site Topaz Detail is mainly a sharpening tool and Topaz Adjust is kind of the more well rounded one that adjusts colours and levels and such.
03/16/2011 06:34:05 PM · #16
Topaz Adjust
The easiest way to make photos pop with exposure, detail, and color.

Topaz DeNoise
Completely eliminate noise with
the best noise reduction tool available.

Topaz InFocus
The simple sharpening solution that recovers detail and enhances clarity.

Topaz ReMask
The fastest way to mask or extract
a subject from its background.

Topaz Detail
Manipulate detail and sharpen with absolutely no halos or artifacts.

Topaz Simplify
Create a variety of stunning painterly
and artistic effects from photos.

Topaz Clean
Take control of extensive smoothing
and stylized edge capabilities.

Topaz DeJPEG
Fix JPEG artifacts and drastically improve the quality of web images.
03/16/2011 06:36:00 PM · #17
Originally posted by Ubersteiny:

Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by Ubersteiny:

Sorry I may have not been clear before, I meant I wasn't sure if Topaz was a 1 click operation or not. I've been working with photoshop itself for many years now.

Thank you for the opinion though I think I'll bite the bullet and purchase it.


Whew, that's a relief LOL. Now that I look more closely, I can see the ambiguity in your phrasing that led me down that path. Disregard well-meant but superfluous advice and download the trial, yup :-) I'd go for Topaz Detail if I could only have one.

R.


If I understood it correctly on their site Topaz Detail is mainly a sharpening tool and Topaz Adjust is kind of the more well rounded one that adjusts colours and levels and such.


No. Detail's much more than that. And it gives you much more precise control over the level of local-area contrast in the different tonal ranges. If Adjust is a sword, Detail is a scalpel. I rarely use Adjust anymore.

What Detail has, that's absolutely priceless, is the tone sliders; Adjust lacks those. They give SO much control over the relative luminance of different color ranges that it's mind boggling.

Message edited by author 2011-03-16 18:37:21.
03/16/2011 06:42:59 PM · #18
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by Ubersteiny:

Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by Ubersteiny:

Sorry I may have not been clear before, I meant I wasn't sure if Topaz was a 1 click operation or not. I've been working with photoshop itself for many years now.

Thank you for the opinion though I think I'll bite the bullet and purchase it.


Whew, that's a relief LOL. Now that I look more closely, I can see the ambiguity in your phrasing that led me down that path. Disregard well-meant but superfluous advice and download the trial, yup :-) I'd go for Topaz Detail if I could only have one.

R.


If I understood it correctly on their site Topaz Detail is mainly a sharpening tool and Topaz Adjust is kind of the more well rounded one that adjusts colours and levels and such.


No. Detail's much more than that. And it gives you much more precise control over the level of local-area contrast in the different tonal ranges. If Adjust is a sword, Detail is a scalpel. I rarely use Adjust anymore.

What Detail has, that's absolutely priceless, is the tone sliders; Adjust lacks those. They give SO much control over the relative luminance of different color ranges that it's mind boggling.


Thanks for the info, I'll do the trial for them all and see what I use the most.

Does anyone have experience with DeJPEG? I do club photography so all photos are web based and wondering if it's worth it to run them all through DeJPEG.
03/16/2011 07:16:45 PM · #19
Originally posted by Ubersteiny:


Thanks for the info, I'll do the trial for them all and see what I use the most.


I would mess about with one for a week or so, then try the next that interests you. Downloading the whole bunch will be like trying to drink from a firehose, just too much to try out in 30 days unless you plan to really devote a lot of time to just working with the various programs for hours on end. I would start with adjust, work with it a week, then try the next, and so on so you don't have your 30 day trail end before you have even given the lesser programs like inFocus (which I like to use with longer zooms with less than optimal quality like my Sigma 50-500) a chance to see if you like them.

Message edited by author 2011-03-16 19:22:02.
03/16/2011 07:24:25 PM · #20
For whatever it's worth, I use Adjust and Denoise the most, with some usage of Detail when needed, primarily for it's ability to tweak colors.
03/16/2011 08:34:21 PM · #21
Originally posted by Ubersteiny:

Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by Ubersteiny:

Sorry I may have not been clear before, I meant I wasn't sure if Topaz was a 1 click operation or not. I've been working with photoshop itself for many years now.

Thank you for the opinion though I think I'll bite the bullet and purchase it.


Whew, that's a relief LOL. Now that I look more closely, I can see the ambiguity in your phrasing that led me down that path. Disregard well-meant but superfluous advice and download the trial, yup :-) I'd go for Topaz Detail if I could only have one.

R.


If I understood it correctly on their site Topaz Detail is mainly a sharpening tool and Topaz Adjust is kind of the more well rounded one that adjusts colours and levels and such.


Originally posted by Bear_Music:

No. Detail's much more than that. And it gives you much more precise control over the level of local-area contrast in the different tonal ranges. If Adjust is a sword, Detail is a scalpel. I rarely use Adjust anymore.

What Detail has, that's absolutely priceless, is the tone sliders; Adjust lacks those. They give SO much control over the relative luminance of different color ranges that it's mind boggling.

It also depends on your needs and personal style. For the gritty, faded, and coarse subject material I love to work with, I adore Adjust. Bear's work is much more refined and detailed, hence his predilection for detail.

Try a couple on the work you most do, and then make your purchase decision.

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03/16/2011 09:29:19 PM · #22
topaz is best when it isn't overused. it doesn't take much to ruin an image.
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