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07-14-2019, 04:53 AM - 1 Like   #1
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Raw Therapee Pixel shift work flow

Over the last couple of years I have never successfully got a result from pixel shift in Raw Therapee and had got pretty disillusioned with the concept .
That is until today - I finally found the setting that set it off!
Naa not the demosaicing setting -- but the processing profiles in the top right corner.
Until they are are initially set to "bundled profiles/ pixelshift / Iso something you get nothing - zilch.
Yet all my online searching never come up with this adjustment.
Yes I know someone will have said it somewhere here but I thought I would start a thread to simply identify the steps involved in Raw Therapee to get a great result with PS.

EDIT thanks to input from "house":
The first step is to choose your processing profile (bundled / pixel shift/---) . Doing it later may override some of your enhancing adjustments.

Do all your usual image enhancement thingies in the first 5 icons in the right hand tools area

and then head into the "Raw" Icon (demosaicing) and choose "Pixelshift" EDIT: Setting the Processing profile at the beginning does this step for you.( I think this might be where my confusion comes from. The video tutorials show going to the demosaicing module dropbox and selecting pixelshift.)


There seems to be a relationship between the "PS no motion" setting and the motion "custom" setting lower down in the demosaicing section. Can anyone explain

Obviously I am an absolute greenhorn here with PS.

I would love some input from experienced users about what adjustments elsewhere in the menu are worth making.

And make this thread a good starting point for pointers to running Pixel Shift in Raw Therapee.

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Last edited by GUB; 07-14-2019 at 03:09 PM.
07-14-2019, 05:19 AM   #2
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For quick pixelshift results picking a Pixelshift "Processing Profile" is the way to go. I'd suggest doing it straight from the File Browser unless using a dynamic profile. Ctrl click select all pixelshift files > right click > select appropriate profile from the Processing profile operations > apply > Pixelshift submenu.

Then go on to make adjustments as required. The "PS ISO Low.pp3" profile adjusts sharpness, demosaic and CA correction. So if you apply that profile after you have made your own adjustments to those modules your settings will be overwritten. Since it's quite minimal you can apply it last to optimize speed whilst for instance adjusting exposure. Generally speaking though I'd recommend applying profiles before making any custom adjustments as you might override your work with the profile. If you're in complete control of the profiles you can apply them at any time you see fit of course.

QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
There seems to be a relationship between the "PS no motion" setting and the motion "custom" setting lower down in the demosaicing section. Can anyone explain
The processing profiles such as "PS no motion" are just a bundle of saved settings from your modules. The PS no motion profile turns motion correction off in the pixelshift raw settings so all custom tweaks are disabled. Generally speaking I'd leave the raw settings as set by the pixelshift processing profile. To learn more about the motion correction you can switch on the mask by clicking "Show motion mask" The green areas will *not* be pixelshifted. By tweaking the custom settings you can tweak what parts of the image are pixelshifted.

Last edited by house; 07-14-2019 at 05:27 AM.
07-14-2019, 01:39 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by house Quote
For quick pixelshift results picking a Pixelshift "Processing Profile" is the way to go. I'd suggest doing it straight from the File Browser unless using a dynamic profile. Ctrl click select all pixelshift files > right click > select appropriate profile from the Processing profile operations > apply > Pixelshift submenu.

Then go on to make adjustments as required. The "PS ISO Low.pp3" profile adjusts sharpness, demosaic and CA correction. So if you apply that profile after you have made your own adjustments to those modules your settings will be overwritten. Since it's quite minimal you can apply it last to optimize speed whilst for instance adjusting exposure. Generally speaking though I'd recommend applying profiles before making any custom adjustments as you might override your work with the profile. If you're in complete control of the profiles you can apply them at any time you see fit of course.



The processing profiles such as "PS no motion" are just a bundle of saved settings from your modules. The PS no motion profile turns motion correction off in the pixelshift raw settings so all custom tweaks are disabled. Generally speaking I'd leave the raw settings as set by the pixelshift processing profile. To learn more about the motion correction you can switch on the mask by clicking "Show motion mask" The green areas will *not* be pixelshifted. By tweaking the custom settings you can tweak what parts of the image are pixelshifted.
Thanks for that info.
I had always thought of those profiles as presets in that they applied a saved profile and were not the actual control. But in this situation they appear to be the only on-switch for PS.
And I have always opened direct into the laboratory from Digikam so missed that profiling opportunity in the file browser.
07-14-2019, 01:47 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by house Quote
The processing profiles such as "PS no motion" are just a bundle of saved settings from your modules.
Just to clarify this - if these are "saved settings from your modules" where is the "PS" setting in the modules ?.
In this situation it seems like the saved profile is the switch.

07-14-2019, 04:14 PM - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
Just to clarify this - if these are "saved settings from your modules" where is the "PS" setting in the modules ?.
In this situation it seems like the saved profile is the switch.
The PS settings are the ones in your screenshot. Under the raw tab (chequerboard icon). What really makes the pixelshift visible is the sharpening applied with the PS low iso preset. Pixelshift files can take alot more sharpening than normal files before they fall apart. To see significant increase in detail you have to push the sharpening. Look at the settings of the "Sharpening" and "microcontrast" modules in the detail tab after applying the preset.
07-14-2019, 05:30 PM   #6
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OK got that - so setting "pixelshift" in the demosaicing has always turned it on - it is just that it is almost invisible. Here is an example showing how turning off PS but still retaining the sharpening etc shows little/no change. Or am I still not getting something?
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07-14-2019, 06:21 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
OK got that - so setting "pixelshift" in the demosaicing has always turned it on - it is just that it is almost invisible. Here is an example showing how turning off PS but still retaining the sharpening etc shows little/no change. Or am I still not getting something?
That's right. I will say that I find that the default "pixel shift low iso" setting in Raw Therapee applies too much sharpening and introduces artifacts. It should be dialed back a bit, at least to my eye.
07-14-2019, 07:37 PM   #8
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I guess I am back to being a bit underwhelmed with ps. But what I have got to learn is how to do some of that more sophisticated sharpening that is creating most of the difference here.

07-15-2019, 02:41 AM - 1 Like   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
I guess I am back to being a bit underwhelmed with ps. But what I have got to learn is how to do some of that more sophisticated sharpening that is creating most of the difference here.
I use pixel shift a lot. I just usually generate a TIFF image and then do final processing in Lightroom. It is easier for me to do more focused adjustments there. You probably can in Raw Therapee too.

Pixel Shift is going to give you cleaner base images with less noise, allowing you to push your shadows more and sharpen more before you get artifacts. This is particularly noticeable as you go up in iso. Colors are better too and moire is absent. The thing is that at iso 100, cameras already give very nice images so it is hard to say if it is worth it or not there. I still use it and can see improvements.
07-15-2019, 04:22 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
The thing is that at iso 100, cameras already give very nice images so it is hard to say if it is worth it or not there. I still use it and can see improvements.
Yes and the catch 22 is you need a tripod and stationary subjects for classic ps and you don't need high Iso if you are on a tripod with stationary subjects.
I always finish my edits with Gimp but usually use Darktable - that is why I am a bit of a newby to Raw Therapee. But I have to say I am taken with the PS sharpening process in the processing files in RT and find I can apply them to non ps DNGs with great results. I don't think there is anything to match it in Dtable but will have to have a better look.
07-15-2019, 09:06 AM   #11
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Pixelshift does make a difference for certain scenes. It has to contain enough detail at the size resolved by pixelshift. In my experience that's a bigger issue than motion but I do photograph mainly buildings so slightly less detail in leaves don't make much difference.
07-15-2019, 02:17 PM   #12
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That is why I chose the old Commer truck - movement wasn't an issue and there was an unlimited amount of detail. But most of my subject matter is out in the wilds in this windy corner of New Zealand. Movement is an ongoing issue.
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