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09-21-2015, 09:41 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by macman24054 Quote
Here is link that does a great job of explaining dynamic range in photography. I use Photoshop to process the raw image and then use Photomatrix to combine the 3 processed raw files into an HDR image. No matter if is a light or dark scene the key is you must have one of the image file properly exposed. If this is the case this is a sound and effective way of doing HDR.

Understanding Dynamic Range in Digital Photography

---------- Post added 09-21-15 at 11:49 AM ----------




Here is a link that does a great job of explaining dynamic range in photography.

Understanding Dynamic Range in Digital Photography
I'm afraid I understand dynamic range, and I'm not so sure you do. Or you only shoot scenes that don't actually need HDR. A proper HDR photograph can't be displayed by current displays* (and that is already true for raw files, but just a bit). What then follows is tone mapping, which is the attempt to squeeze the HDR photo into a file the screen can display).

What you are doing is tone mapping to a photo that barely needs it. Your process would be sound IF you would use several differently exposed photos as basis. You aren't doing that though, so it isn't really HDR. Using multiple exposures is the base requirement for HDR. And not every scene needs it. You don't have much dynamic range. And no, you don't need to have one properly exposed image, in the case of my photos that often is NOT possible at all. The camera can't handle it. No camera can handle it, I could be shooting with a 645Z and I'd still need multiple exposures. That is why people shoot multiple exposures.

Also, IMHO you are doing lots of work for nothing. All the possible dynamic range in the photo is already there in Lightroom... just pull down the highlights, push up the shadows and add some clarity to get the impression of contrast/emulate the way the eye sees everything. Result should be similar to what you do.

*The latest TVs can display images with higher dynamic range, however I don't know what file formats are supported, and these TVs aren't common yet.


Last edited by kadajawi; 09-21-2015 at 09:48 AM.
09-21-2015, 02:09 PM   #17
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Reading in order

I think some study time is needed. Tonal mapping is one of two methods to produce HDR images. That is how we all do HDR no matter weather your software calls it that or not. The only other method to produce HDR images is by the use of a special imaging sensor (which none of us on the Forums are using). So weather or not you use bracketing on the camera or bracket a single image through raw development we are all still using tonal mapping.

I will eat crow if I am wrong. I am not eating this time. Do your research.
09-21-2015, 03:16 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by macman24054 Quote
I think some study time is needed. Tonal mapping is one of two methods to produce HDR images. That is how we all do HDR no matter weather your software calls it that or not. The only other method to produce HDR images is by the use of a special imaging sensor (which none of us on the Forums are using). So weather or not you use bracketing on the camera or bracket a single image through raw development we are all still using tonal mapping.

I will eat crow if I am wrong. I am not eating this time. Do your research.
HDR is > 8 bit images. High dynamic range. It can't be displayed by normal displays. Tone mapping is done to squeeze it into an image that can be displayed on a regular monitor, but it's not HDR.

You can get a slightly higher dynamic range through raw development, calling it HDR is a stretch IMHO. What's wrong with taking proper HDRs? Also I don't quite understand why you need to develop a photo 3 times and stitch them together... there's not any more information in it than what Lightroom has in the first place.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-dynamic-range_imaging
"Due to the limitations of printing and display contrast, acquiring an HDR image is only half the story; one must also develop methods of displaying the results. The method of rendering an HDR image to a standard monitor or printing device is called tone mapping."
09-21-2015, 05:10 PM   #19
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I think you need to read the entire Wikipedia article as I did and you will see it is conformation about what I said earlier about the 2 methods of HDR photography is correct. I hate to bust your bubble, but you are producing tonal mapping images in Lightroom

09-21-2015, 07:16 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by macman24054 Quote
I think you need to read the entire Wikipedia article as I did and you will see it is conformation about what I said earlier about the 2 methods of HDR photography is correct. I hate to bust your bubble, but you are producing tonal mapping images in Lightroom
I know that I am producing tonal mapping images in Lightroom. You are doing that in Photomatrix... I did too in the beginning, but the problem is that it doesn't give me much control over the image... I prefer to do the tone mapping in Lightroom as I can use a brush for example to modify the exposure. And that's my point... unless you insist on using Photomatrix you could save yourself all the trouble by just using Lightroom on that raw file. You can get out all the dynamic range there is in the file without ever leaving LR.

Anyway, I do first produce actual HDR images (32 bit TIFF files for use with Lightroom, and in the steps before that EXR. Usually I shoot panorama HDRs, so the multiple exposures are first joined to EXR files, and then the EXR files are merged in PTGui... the result of that goes into Lightroom, gets adjusted and tone mapped, then Photoshop to clean it up, extend the image where necessary, and after that the last final few touches in Lightroom). You don't really produce HDR files to work with, because you work with the pretty limited dynamic range of the camera only. Great if your scenes have such a low dynamic range that your camera can capture it with a single image, but in that case why go through all that trouble when you could do the tone mapping without having to go through the fake bracketing? And in proper HDR situations there's no way your method could work.


This shot wouldn't have fitted into one exposure. As described above, panorama with multiple exposures (5, 2 EV apart each).


This one was even worse. The right half would be nearly black.
09-22-2015, 12:32 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by kadajawi Quote
I know that I am producing tonal mapping images in Lightroom. You are doing that in Photomatrix... I did too in the beginning, but the problem is that it doesn't give me much control over the image... I prefer to do the tone mapping in Lightroom as I can use a brush for example to modify the exposure. And that's my point... unless you insist on using Photomatrix you could save yourself all the trouble by just using Lightroom on that raw file. You can get out all the dynamic range there is in the file without ever leaving LR.

Anyway, I do first produce actual HDR images (32 bit TIFF files for use with Lightroom, and in the steps before that EXR. Usually I shoot panorama HDRs, so the multiple exposures are first joined to EXR files, and then the EXR files are merged in PTGui... the result of that goes into Lightroom, gets adjusted and tone mapped, then Photoshop to clean it up, extend the image where necessary, and after that the last final few touches in Lightroom). You don't really produce HDR files to work with, because you work with the pretty limited dynamic range of the camera only. Great if your scenes have such a low dynamic range that your camera can capture it with a single image, but in that case why go through all that trouble when you could do the tone mapping without having to go through the fake bracketing? And in proper HDR situations there's no way your method could work.


This shot wouldn't have fitted into one exposure. As described above, panorama with multiple exposures (5, 2 EV apart each).


This one was even worse. The right half would be nearly black.

Glad to see someone doing this well. We moved back in May and I was astounded and more than a little nauseated by all the completely incompetent, utterly un-viewable photos of properties we were interested in... and more, just surprised at the giant shift in the industry, with more than half the ads and sites we saw displaying bad HDR of that kind.
Looking at your quick examples here I see the value in it - very obvious actually - and not entirely noticeable... as it ought to be. Cheers.
09-22-2015, 05:28 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by chickentender Quote
Glad to see someone doing this well. We moved back in May and I was astounded and more than a little nauseated by all the completely incompetent, utterly un-viewable photos of properties we were interested in... and more, just surprised at the giant shift in the industry, with more than half the ads and sites we saw displaying bad HDR of that kind.
Looking at your quick examples here I see the value in it - very obvious actually - and not entirely noticeable... as it ought to be. Cheers.
Agree, that's the whole point of HDR that at times gets lost. The output should resemble how our eyes and brain perceive the image which is often not how a camera sensor might record it. The result shouldn't be something that we never "saw" in the first place unless the objective is to clearly create something surreal.
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