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Panasonic software Exchange tips and problem solve software specifically for the Panasonic DMC-L1

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  #1  
Unread 16th May 2011
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Some observations for Silkypix users

Seems there's not many of us for a start!

Anyway here are some things I've come to accept as my standard processing routine for GH1 rawfiles.

1. Colour profile. Normally I select FIlm mode V1, as this generally ups the contrast a fair bit in itself, coupled with contrast mode 'a little strong' yu getquite a punchy image. However when in a situation of low crontrast, Bright mid day sun or really flat rain cloud skies, I find V1 mode tends to screw foliage right up (tending towards yellow). In such situations I prefer to use Memory colour 2, which has a very Canonesque colour scheme with really bright punchy greens, which under normal conditions are too neon green.

2. Sharpening vs Noise reduction. At ISO 100, forget about the noise reduction, leave it where it is. hit sharpening up to around 20-25 dependant on how much is needed, and you're done. This is generally enough,although sometimes a little more is necessary locally.
ISO 200 and above limit the sharpening to 20 or below, otherwise it exaggerates noise as white specks, regardless of noise reduction settings.

For noise control at higher ISOs, False colour control set to 100 is normally enough, however the GH1 has a major problem with blue channel noise in low light, so sunsets at high ISOs are impossible to clean up and retain detail. If I can help it then I apply no noise reduction at all, but sometims from around ISO 640 up then the noise level needs to be nudged up to around 10 and the noise cancel up to around 80. This normally does the trick, although at 100% you will see the edges of things going a little fuzzy.

3. White balance, I have never got on with setting the white balance from white objects, no matter what white object you pick it decides that the colour should be waaaay too cool, a look I've never liked. If there's sky, a dark patch of cloud usually gives much better results.

Similar story for the skin colour tool, it's useless, select a flesh tone and it messes with WB and exposure, usually upping the exposure so much that there's no longer any highlight whatsoever left.

4. Monochrome. Monochrome 2 mode is roughly equivalent to an orange filter, quite useful for conversions. However, it works a lot better when combined wit ha real red filter.

5. Highlight recovery. Don't do it! on a GH1 rawfile you get very little back after clipping, if you pass 1EV on the slider, then you're into territory where the software starts manipulating non blown areas of the image and generally turns them grey. Hard edges to a blown are become a lot more defined if you go past this point. What it can pull back, it will have no colour or contrast. My advice, turn on the highlight warning on the camera, and pay close attention to it. You'll be able to do far more with an underexposed image than an overexposed one.

6. Pulling up shadows with curves. This works really well, I've yet to lose an image to shadows. So far I've been able to deal with ISO800 shots with mahor shadow brightening (around 3-4EVs worth) and have been able to control the noise. For some reason shadow noise tends to be uniformly green, and for that reason when it's pulled up tends to affect the white balance.

7. Apparant sharpening - take no notice of the in hopuse display, it always appears sharper in Silkypix than it does when output.

I think that'll do. I actually rather like SIlkypix, although it's a bit of a quirky program wih a strange interface, it does give some nice results. Would Photoshop or lightroom be better? Well I don't know as I have no desire to try them, anything I can't do in Silkypix is done in PSP X2, and that's not an awful lot most of the time.
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Unread 16th May 2011
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Re: Some observations for Silkypix users

Hi -

Thanks for that! My daughter brought me back a GF2 with the 14 pancake from a recent trip to Japan. I've installed the program but haven't had much time to work with it, but hey, free licensed software is Always A Good Thing. :-)

Sounds like the way to go is to underexpose and pull up the shadows. Avoid burning any highlights when at all possible...sensible to begin with.

JohnF
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Unread 17th May 2011
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Re: Some observations for Silkypix users

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Hi -

Thanks for that! My daughter brought me back a GF2 with the 14 pancake from a recent trip to Japan. I've installed the program but haven't had much time to work with it, but hey, free licensed software is Always A Good Thing. :-)

Sounds like the way to go is to underexpose and pull up the shadows. Avoid burning any highlights when at all possible...sensible to begin with.

JohnF
Not necessarily. There is a school of thought that with digital you should aim to 'expose to the right' of the histogram as long as you don't burn out the highligts (although sometimes in extreme highlights you can sacrifice them as there is no useful detail in them anyway). Then in post processing you have more shadow detail without havig to boost them and so introduce noise. In my experience and with a decent application, like Lightroom, highlights are more recoverable than you might imagine - more so than with transparency film.

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Unread 17th May 2011
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Re: Some observations for Silkypix users

Has anyone ever done a comparison between lightroom/PS to see whether anything more can be recovered with them? I remmeber DPReview touched on the subject in their initial GH1 review but it wasn't a very thoroug htest on the subject.
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Unread 17th May 2011
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Re: Some observations for Silkypix users

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Originally Posted by Alan Clogwyn View Post
Has anyone ever done a comparison between lightroom/PS to see whether anything more can be recovered with them? I remmeber DPReview touched on the subject in their initial GH1 review but it wasn't a very thoroug htest on the subject.
Not specific to the GH1 but I examined the idea of exposing to the right on my DPNow blog a couple of years back, see:

http://dpnow.com/forum2/blog.php?b=60

The thing I like about Lightroom in particular is the control over the highlight recovery, fill levels and black levels. I personally find this much more useful than, say, curves, and I find I can recover a lot of detail from what initially looks like a burned out area.

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Re: Some observations for Silkypix users

Interesting article RE exposing to the right there, what camera was that with? The Gh1 sensor I've always found has responded better to boosting shadows than trying to recover highlights.

For example, these are 100& crops from one of my Talyllyn images.

No.1 - original unprocessed raw, looks like there's no smokebox detail at all.


no.2 Boosted, notice how theres actually a lot of detail but it's shifted into shades of green.


No.3 levelled out the colours and applied sharpen of 22, False colour control of 100, noise level 8 and noise cancel of 80.


I think you'll agree that the noise generated is not at all bad.
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Unread 17th May 2011
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Re: Some observations for Silkypix users

The article used shots taken with an Olympus E-30. I have some GH1 images - I will have a look to see if I can play with any

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Re: Some observations for Silkypix users

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The thing I like about Lightroom in particular is the control over the highlight recovery, fill levels and black levels.

Ian
If you're not aware of this "trick" in Adobe products, try holding down the Option [Alt] key as you move the Exposure and Recovery sliders. The screen will turn mostly black. Adjust the sliders until the very first few dots of color start appearing. That should give you optimum exposure and recovery. The reverse is true for the Black slider. There the screen should be all white, with just the first pixels of color appearing.

This generally gives excellent results, but of course you might want to adjust different to get your vision of the shot. I generally do the above in my workflow and adjust from that point.
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Unread 18th May 2011
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Re: Some observations for Silkypix users

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Originally Posted by Alan Clogwyn View Post
Has anyone ever done a comparison between lightroom/PS to see whether anything more can be recovered with them? I remmeber DPReview touched on the subject in their initial GH1 review but it wasn't a very thoroug htest on the subject.
I have compared four different raw processers (including LR) for highlight recovery and have come to the opinion that even though they all have different ways of doing it neither one has any advantage over the other.

I'd also say that highlight recovery is a bit of a myth if the info is not there it cannot be recovered and whatever the application and method used after a small amount of recovery it results in the overall exposure being reduced to recover them.

I can post examples if wanted.
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Unread 18th May 2011
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Re: Some observations for Silkypix users

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I have compared four different raw processers (including LR) for highlight recovery and have come to the opinion that even though they all have different ways of doing it neither one has any advantage over the other.

I'd also say that highlight recovery is a bit of a myth if the info is not there it cannot be recovered and whatever the application and method used after a small amount of recovery it results in the overall exposure being reduced to recover them.

I can post examples if wanted.
Absolutely - if there is nothing to recover, I completely agree. But most default views don't place the highlight limit at the extreme right of the histogram, so there may well be detail in highlights that just need to be revealed.

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