Tuesday, November 4, 2014
Complete suites plus specialized apps for your digital darkroom
The Google Nik Collection contains all of Nik's popular, powerful plug-ins bundled together at an impressively low price. Compatible with Photoshop, Lightroom and Aperture, the collection includes Analog Efex Pro, Color Efex Pro, Silver Efex Pro, Viveza, HDR Efex Pro, Sharpener Pro and Dfine. Nik's unique U Point technology makes it easy to confine enhancements without masking by dropping Control Points on an image. Learn all about Control Points and how to use them effectively on our website: www.dpmag.com/nik-control-points. List Price: $149.
Quickly apply creative focus and blur effects with Focus 2 Pro for Mac, which can be used as a stand-alone app or as a plug-in for Photoshop, Lightroom and Aperture. Simple sliders allow you to adjust levels for realistic lens blur and tilt-shift effects. Available on its own or as part of the Creative Kit Plus, which also includes Intensify Pro for enhancing image details, Snapheal to remove unwanted elements in an image and Tonality, a powerful black-and-white conversion app. List Price: $39 (Focus 2 Pro); $149 (Creative Kit Plus).
onOne Perfect Photo Suite 9
A collection of seven of onOne's powerful apps, Perfect Photo Suite 9 can integrate with Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, Photoshop Elements and Apple Aperture, or run as a stand-alone app. New in version 9 is a Smart Photo feature, which lets you re-edit photos and make changes to previous edits even after closing the file. Noise reduction is now part of the suite, and a new Quick Mask brush simplifies making selections. Two versions are available: Premium, which works as a plug-in or stand-alone app, and Basic which is standalone only. List Price: $129 (Premium); $79 (Basic).
For Mac users, Pixelmator is a full-featured image processor very similar to Photoshop—so similar that veteran Photoshop users instantly will feel at home in the interface. The latest version adds an all-new Repair Tool to remove imperfections and unwanted image elements. You can also create masks easily by simply painting them on. Support for multiple layers, tons of special effects and 16-bit color support make this app a terrific value. List Price: $29.
Portrait Professional 12
Portrait retouching can be very time-consuming when done manually, which is where a comprehensive suite of tools with intelligent auto correction can save time and deliver superior results. The newest version of Portrait Professional includes the ability to "relight" portraits for more flattering highlights and shadows, and improved skin enhancing for more natural results. Learn more in our review online: www.dpmag.com/portrait-pro-12. List Price: From $49.
Tiffen Dfx 3.0
A bundle of more than 2,000 effects, Tiffen's Dfx 3.0 guarantees you'll find the right look to match your vision. Among these effects are simulations of classic Tiffen optical filters, specialized lenses, lab processes, film grain and more. Layers are supported to blend multiple effects. There are also tools for quick, common fixes for reducing noise. Dfx 3.0 is available as a plug-in for Photoshop, Elements, Lightroom and Aperture, or as a stand-alone app. List Price: $149.
Totally Rad! Replichrome
Totally Rad! offers several plug-ins, presets and effects for stylizing your photos. Among them is Replichrome I: Icon, a group of Lightroom and Photoshop presets for digital shooters who relish the look of traditional film. Using Noritsu and Frontier scanners, the team created 134 presets from 13 popular film stocks. Each preset gives you additional control over tone, color, grain and density. List Price: $99.
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