Topaz DeNoise is a plugin developed by Topaz Labs which supplements photo-editing software such as Adobe Photoshop or Lightroom by adding an alternative way of noise reduction. DeNoise offers more control over the noise reduction than the features built into Photoshop and similar photo editing software. Based in Dallas, Texas, Topaz specializes in image editing and provides their solutions in the form of plug-ins for Photoshop and other image editors. Topaz DeNoise is one of their many plug-ins. We reviewed version 5.
You may also be interested in reading our Topaz Adjust 5 review for more background information on Topaz products.
Topaz DeNoise impressed us as it provides much control over noise reduction while doing an excellent job of not sacrificing too much resolution. Even if you use a powerful program like Adobe Photoshop CS5 we have found this plug-in to be a worth while addition, in particular if you shoot JPG images. RAW shooters may want to experiment with the noise reduction in Adobe Camera RAW before deciding if Topaz DeNoise is the better option. A free trial is available so you can evaluate and compare before deciding to purchase.
Topaz DeNoise cannot be used as a standalone application but must must be launched from inside another photo editing program. It works with Photoshop, Lightroom (see our review), Aperture, iPhoto, Paint Shop Pro, Photo Impact, Irfanview, and other applications that support Photoshop plug-ins. Other Topaz plug-ins are available for other image adjustments, B&W effects, removal of JPG artifacts, etc., and Topaz DeNoise can be purchased as a part of a bundle which could save you some money if you need several plug-ins.
Noise reduction is a complicated process where you will have to find the right balance between reducing noise and maintaining resolution. To make the most out of Topaz DeNoise we recommend that you set some time aside and experiment with the many sliders rather than just go with one of the presets. When you find a set of settings you like you can save them as your personal preset and use that as a starting point going forward. In this way Topaz DeNoise can become a real time-saver in your post processing work flow.
Review originally published on February 20th, 2012