Ghosting and smearing

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abrehm

Ghosting and smearing

Unread postby abrehm » 27.08.2008 03:09

I just downloaded and tried out my first stack on Helicon Focus. So far I am very pleased in the increased image quality of my landscapes I have taken around the house but I have two main concerns. I have noticed ghosting of some objects and a smearing of the image around the edge of the frame. I am attaching two photos that illustrate what I am talking about.

In the future, how can I avoid this and is there any way I can make these look better?

Thanks,
andy
Attachments
1.jpg
smearing around edges of the frame
(227.53 KiB) Downloaded 3193 times
2.jpg
ghosting
2.jpg (180.89 KiB) Viewed 11098 times
3.jpg
full image
3.jpg (156.73 KiB) Viewed 11098 times

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Dan Kozub
Posts: 1157
Joined: 24.03.2004 18:14

Unread postby Dan Kozub » 27.08.2008 07:59

Andy,

After agignment second image is smaller than the first one. Smearing at the edge of the frame can be avoided if you invert order of the images.

As to ghosting, I would recommend you to use Retouching brush available in Pro version (Windows only so far).

abrehm

Unread postby abrehm » 27.08.2008 20:16

Dan,

Thanks for the info. So is there a particular way that I am supposed to load the images (near to far; far to near)? I will try this image again once I get home.

As for the ghosting, do you know why this happens and ways to avoid it? I only have the Lite version but I can pull it into Photoshop to resolve the ghosting, I just would prefer it not happen in the first place.

Andy

abrehm

Unread postby abrehm » 28.08.2008 04:25

So I have reversed the order in which the program process the files and that gets rid of the smearing which is great! I tried out another photo tonight to practice before I use the program "for real" and found something interesting.

When I combined the images I noticed that the background on the new image was very sharp and in focus, but the foreground was very blurry and out of focus. So I combined the images again reversing the stacking order and this made the foreground very sharp and in focus but then the background was not as sharp and in focus.

I am curious why the processing order has such a drastic effect on the combined output, and more importantly how can I get consistent results when combining photos. While I am getting better depth of field using this program than what I did before I am noticing that in many cases the original photograph is sharper than the combined. How do I solve this?

Thanks,
andy

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Dan Kozub
Posts: 1157
Joined: 24.03.2004 18:14

Unread postby Dan Kozub » 29.08.2008 13:08

Andy,

Please upload your stack to our ftp server (http://heliconsoft.com/ftp.html)

I will play with it.

Normally the order should only have influence on the edge of the images. If second image is smaller after alignment you may see smeared frame not covered by second and following images.

Guest

Unread postby Guest » 01.09.2008 05:51

Sorry for the late reply. I am away from my computer at the moment but I will work on uploading the images soon.

thanks
andy

Guest

Unread postby Guest » 01.09.2008 18:08

I am currently uploading 6 images to the FTP server. Please let me know what you find after you have a chance play around with the images.

Thanks,
Andy

Guest

Unread postby Guest » 05.09.2008 01:33

so whats the status with my stack? any info on what my problem could be and how i can resolve it?

andy

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Dan Kozub
Posts: 1157
Joined: 24.03.2004 18:14

Unread postby Dan Kozub » 05.09.2008 08:42

Andy,

I've tested your stack (_DS3632*.jpg) on 4.50 version of Helicon Focus. Sorry, but I was not able to find any dependency on the order. Maybe you have other sample where this effect is more evident or can send me a printscreen so I know where to look at?

Guest

Unread postby Guest » 05.09.2008 18:22

Dan, attached is a screen shot at 100% of the stack i sent you. Obviously saving this image as a jpeg and posting it to the web has detrimental effects on image quality, but I think you can still get the picture. I have highlighted a few areas in just this portion of the image where the original image (left) is much sharper and "cleaner" looking than the combined image (right).

I know some may think these are small differences, but these are the type of image degradations I was trying to get around by using this software. Honestly I think I could get an image of similar quality with a single photo using hyperfocal techniques.

Do you know what I can do to improve image quality and get a combined image that uses the best and sharpest portions of the single images?

Thanks,
andy
Attachments
sample.jpg
sample
(203.76 KiB) Downloaded 3047 times

Guest

Unread postby Guest » 05.09.2008 18:36

after looking at that last attachment, jpeg compression makes it tough to see the differences. I am attaching 4 seperate images to show the detail better.

andy
Attachments
1.jpg
(62.6 KiB) Downloaded 3046 times
2.jpg
(56.61 KiB) Downloaded 3046 times
3.jpg
(123.26 KiB) Downloaded 3046 times

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Dan Kozub
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Joined: 24.03.2004 18:14

Unread postby Dan Kozub » 05.09.2008 19:54

Andy,

You may try to decrease Smoothing factor to minimum.

I think the order can make the difference because images are scaled for proper alignment. This process can influence the sharpness for some degree. You may try to upscale the images to 200% with good algorithm (Mitchell, Sinc, Lanczos) and then process them with Helicon Focus.

Guest

Unread postby Guest » 06.09.2008 02:44

Dan,

Thanks for taking a look at the stack. I have been continuing to take photos under various lighting conditions to see how the results change. It still bothers me that in every photo stack I can find at least one focus plane that seems to be softer/ out of focus. I generally shoot at f/16 and take a series of 6 photos which should give sufficient overlap for Helicon Focus to work. Why am I having such a hard time with this?

I have used several tutorials I found online and none of them help, why is the software not working correctly?

Thanks,
andy

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Dan Kozub
Posts: 1157
Joined: 24.03.2004 18:14

Unread postby Dan Kozub » 06.09.2008 21:03

Andy,

I hope you will find the example where this effect is very noticable. Looking at your stack I was not able to find a bug like ignoring one of the source planes.

Try to make smaller steps. Maybe focused zones do not overlap?

Guest

Unread postby Guest » 07.09.2008 07:14

Dan,

Attached is a screen shot from Helicon Focus shows how the combined image is far worse than the original. The original image is on the left and the combined image is on the right.

Look at the bricks on the house in the image on the left then compare them to the image on the right. I think it is pretty clear that the original image is in much better focus and much sharper.

Additionally you can see that most detail is lost in the plant and many of the edges duplicated. From my perspective, an output image of this quality is not acceptable for the type of photography that I do. I have been trying different settings in both the software and on camera (primarily f stop settings) to get a better result but so far I get the same type of image quality every time.

So what would you suggest that I do to improve my result and get an acceptable combined image? Would it be better to shoot at f/8 instead of f/16? Use less or more images per stack (using 6-8 now)? As you can see I shoot macro landscapes, what type of technique should I be using to get good results?

Thanks,
Andy
Attachments
sample.jpg
(245.15 KiB) Downloaded 3009 times


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