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02-03-2009, 11:30 AM   #1
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Automatic lens distortion correction example

I have been using PTLens for some time as a tool for distortion correction. (I also use it to convert some fish-eye images) It has the capability to detect many Pentax lenses and make the corrections automatically. One limitation zooms have relative to primes is barrel distortion. It is small, but still noticeable in some shots with strong horizontal references. Posted below is a shot taken with the Pentax 18-250. If you look closely, you can see the barrel distortion from the brick mortar line. Immediately below, is the automatic correction from PTLens. It really is a very cost-effective tool for those situations where distortion is noticeable.




02-03-2009, 12:43 PM   #2
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Seems to work very well. Thanks for posting.
02-03-2009, 12:52 PM   #3
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I've had PTLens for a while, and it's the only reason I sometimes still use the kit 18-55mm lens. Without PTLens I couldn't take photographs of buildings at 18mm.

Back when I bought it I paid $15, which is essentially free for such a useful piece of software. (Now it's $25, which is still great.)

And it not only automatically corrects for lens distortions, but you can also tilt and rotate images; again, this is very useful for architecture shots.

Here's the site: PTLens.
02-03-2009, 02:17 PM   #4
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Hi PentaxPoke

Common optical lens distortions such as barrel and pincushion pose particular problems, especially where super-zooms are concerned. Fortunately as you have discovered there are numerous software products out there on the market nowadays to address these issues. Incidentally, some while ago I had a fascinating conversation with a member of staff at the French company DxO, who explained that in the near future some digital cameras might be manufactured with an integral DxO processing chip inside, which would automatically correct for such distortions, negating the requirement for post-processing software solutions.
However, as the oft quoted adage says: "Patience is a virtue"........though I'm obviously still waiting to hear back on this one !!

02-03-2009, 03:01 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Confused Quote
Incidentally, some while ago I had a fascinating conversation with a member of staff at the French company DxO, who explained that in the near future some digital cameras might be manufactured with an integral DxO processing chip inside, which would automatically correct for such distortions, negating the requirement for post-processing software solutions.
The Panasonic LX3 already does exactly that (although I don't think they use a special "DxO" chip).

http://theonlinephotographer.typepad.com/the_online_photographer/2008/12/panasonic-lx3-b.html
02-03-2009, 03:18 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Confused Quote
Hi PentaxPoke
Incidentally, some while ago I had a fascinating conversation with a member of staff at the French company DxO, who explained that in the near future some digital cameras might be manufactured with an integral DxO processing chip inside, which would automatically correct for such distortions, negating the requirement for post-processing software solutions.
However, as the oft quoted adage says: "Patience is a virtue"........though I'm obviously still waiting to hear back on this one !!
Interesting! Pretty soon, the only thing that will matter in lens quality is sharpness. Everything else can be fixed by processing. Heck, right now vignetting, distortion, color, contrast, and PF can all be fixed by software. All that matters is resolution (both absolute, and across the entire FOV). That is something no software can ever fix.
02-03-2009, 05:39 PM   #7
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I'm pretty sure the new micro-4/3 uses on-board software to deal with vignetting. Upscale Nikon cameras have software that deals with CA and PF.

There is certainly a niche for a company like DxO if they manage to convince one of the big brands to include a dedicated chip in their cameras. It would be a bit like Nvidia convincing PC manufacturers to use their graphic cards instead of the house brand. In fact, cameras could be sold with removable graphics engines that one could replace as better, faster alternatives became available. But now we're getting into modular camera territory, which camera brands don't want us to enjoy yet.
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