Posts in Category "Develop"

New Color Fringe Correction Controls

One of the new enhancements to Lightroom 4.1 RC2 is the addition of new color fringe correction controls. What exactly is a color fringe correction? This blog post is intended to explain the problem and the solution we’ve provided in Lightroom 4.1.(For ACR customers it will also be included an upcoming version of ACR7 for Photoshop CS6, currently available as a public beta)

The content in this post has been written by Eric Chan, the developer primarily responsible for implementing the solution. (Photos have been attributed where requested.)


Red-green and blue-yellow fringes at the image periphery result from lateral chromatic aberration. This problem is relatively easy to fix, and ACR & LR already have tools to do so. On the other hand, purple and green fringes in out-of-focus areas and along high-contrast boundaries are much more problematic. These fringes result from axial chromatic aberration (wavelength-dependent focus shift), aberrations in sensor microlenses, and flare. In most cases, purple fringes appear in front of the plane of focus, and green fringes appear behind the plane of focus. The aberrations can happen anywhere in the image, not just the image periphery. Sometimes, they are so strong that they’re easily spotted in small previews, such as proxies and thumbnails (thus, not only visible at 100% pixel view!). Axial CA affects nearly all lenses, from inexpensive cell phone lenses to very expensive top-of-the-line lenses. It is particularly pronounced with fast lenses at wide apertures. Hence, an improved defringe control should appeal to photographers shooting portraits, events, weddings, sports, etc. — anytime that high-speed lenses are used.


Example 1: Backyard
The branches and leaves have very strong purple fringing, visible even in the small overview image.Overview, original: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 01 20 PMOverview, with defringe: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 01 29 PMCloseup, original: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 01 40 PMCloseup, with defringe: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 01 50 PM

Color Fringing Defined

Types of Fringing

  • Color fringing (usually visible on high-contrast edges in the image) can result from several physical phenomena:
    1. Lateral (transverse) chromatic aberration (red/green fringes, blue/yellow fringes),
    2. Axial (longitudinal) chromatic aberration (purple and green fringes),
    3. Flare due to lens-lens and sensor-lens reflections (ghost images), and
    4. Charge leakage in CCD sensors (thin purple fringes).
  • Adobe’s existing “Remove Chromatic Aberration” checkbox (introduced in Camera Raw 7.0 and Lightroom 4.0), and its predecessors (Profile-based “Chromatic Aberration” slider, and manual Chromatic Aberration sliders) handles issue #1 (lateral CA) only.
  • The previous Defringe popup menu (Off / Highlight Edges / All Edges) in Camera Raw 7.0 and Lightroom 4.0 handles issue #4 (CCD charge leakage) only.
  • Up till now, Adobe did not have solutions for problems #2 (axial CA) and #3 (flare).

Notes on Axial (Longitudinal) CA

The new Defringe controls are designed to fix axial (longitudinal) CA, color aberrations due to ghosting or flare, and color aberrations (thin fringes) due to charge leakage, which affects some CCD sensors.  Here’s some context on axial/longitudinal CA:

  • It can happen anywhere in the image (not just image borders).
  • It affects nearly all “fast” (wide aperture) lenses, typically most visible at the wider apertures (e.g., f/1.4 thru f/2.8).
  • Fringes become less visible as you stop down the lens (e.g., more visible at f/2, less visible at f/8).
  • Fringes are usually most visible just in front of or just behind the plane of focus.
  • Fringes typically appear purple/magenta when they’re in front of the plane of focus, and appear green when they’re behind the plane
  • of focus.
  • Even at the plane of focus, high-contrast edges (especially backlit) may show purple fringes due to flare.

How to use the new Defringe Controls

Slider Overview

There are 4 sliders:

  • Two amount sliders (Purple Amount, Green Amount). These are normal sliders.
  • Two hue sliders (Purple Hue, Green Hue). These are “split” sliders.

The two “Purple” controls are intended to be used to remove purple fringing (regardless of the cause).

The “Purple Amount” slider determines the strength of the purple fringe removal. The range is 0 to 20, with default 0 (which means disabled). Higher values mean stronger correction, but may also negatively impact colors of real purple objects in your image. Note that fringe removal is limited to the hue range defined by the Purple Hue slider (see below).The “Purple Hue” slider determines the range of hues removed. This control has two knobs, which determine the endpoints of the hue range.

  • Click-and-drag either knob to adjust one endpoint at a time.
  • Click-and-drag the central bar (the part of the slider between the two knobs) to move both endpoints at the same time.
  • Double-click a knob to reset its value to the default.
  • Double-click the central bar to reset both endpoints to the default.
  • The minimum spacing between the endpoints is 10 units. Hence, dragging the left knob too close to the right knob will cause the right knob to move automatically, to preserve the minimum spacing of 10 units.

The Green Amount and Green Hue sliders work similarly for green fringes. However, the default range for the Green Hue slider is 40 to 60 (narrower range) instead of 30 to 70. This is to help protect common green and yellow colors (e.g., foliage) by default.

These controls are best used when viewing an image closely (e.g., 100% or higher).

Option-Key Feedback (Visualization) for Global Controls

Alt/Option-key visualization is available for all 4 controls. I highly recommend using these visualizations to help set the slider values appropriately:

Option-key + click-and-drag on the Purple Amount slider to visualize purple fringe removal. The preview window shows only the affected areas of the image (all other areas will be shown as white). This lets you concentrate on the affected areas and verify that the purple fringe color gets removed.

Option-key + click-and-drag on the Purple Hue slider (either knob, or the central bar) to visualize the range of hues to be defringed. The preview window “blacks out” the affected hue range. Pay attention to the borders of the “blacked out” area and check if there are any residual purple/magenta colors.

Works similarly for the Green Amount and Green Hue sliders.

Description of Eyedropper Tool

The 4 global Defringe controls above are powerful, but new users may find them tricky to learn. For this reason, there is an “eyedropper”tool so that users can click directly on the image to help set the appropriate parameters.

Using the eyedropper for Defringe is similar to using the eyedropper to using the White Balance selection eyedropper: when you’re in the LensCorrections -> Color tab (so that the Defringe controls are visible), select the eyedropper and click on a fringe in the image.  It helps to be zoomed in (e.g., 200% or even 400%) to facilitate accurate color picking.
Clicking on a pixel will cause the Defringe system to perform a local analysis of the pixels in the neighborhood, resulting in one of the following 3 outcomes:

  • It determines that you clicked on a purple fringe, and it  automatically adjusts both the Purple Amount and Purple Hue  sliders.
  • It determines that you clicked on a green fringe, and it  automatically adjusts both the Green Amount and Green Hue sliders.
  • It determines that you clicked on an area that was too neutral or outside the supported color range (e.g., all white or gray area or an orange color) and reports an error message.

While moving the eyedropper tool over the image, you will see the eyedropper icon change to purple or green and the Purple Hue or Green Hue slider highlighting.  This shows approximately what hue you’re currently targeting, and which of the two fringe colors (purple or green) would be adjusted if you were to click.

Press ESC or Return/Enter to dismiss the eyedropper sampling window once you have done with the selecting the purple and green fringe colors.

Description of Local Defringe Control

The global Defringe control is sufficient in many cases, but sometimeslocal refinement is required. One reason is the need to “protect”certain scene colors (prevent them from being defringed). Another reason is to help suppress some minor residual fringing in aparticular area. For these reasons, Defringe is also available as a local adjustment.

  • Available as a brush or gradient (as with all our local adjustment channels).
  • Only available in PV 2012.
  • Standard range is -100 to +100, default 0.
  • Minus direction (towards -100) means “do not apply defringe to the affected area.” This is a way for the user to “protect” certain image areas from being incorrectly defringed. For    example, applying a strong purple fringe removal may indeed effectively remove those fringes, but it may also desaturate or otherwise (undesirably) alter edges of purple objects in your    picture. Painting with Defringe -100 over those areas will completely protect them and keep them at their original color.
  • Positive direction (towards +100) means “apply additional defringing to the affected area.” This is a way for the customer to fine-tune and take care of small problem areas.
  • For images that have only limited color fringe problems in a specific area, it may actually be easier (both faster and safer) to use the local Defringe control.
  • Note that local +Defringe will remove fringes of all colors (not just purple and green) and hence is independent of the global Purple Hue and Green Hue settings.
  • The maximum strength of local +Defringe is limited (not nearly as strong as global defringe), so for extreme cases you will need to use the global Defringe instead. (In general, I       recommend using global Defringe first anyways, then following up local Defringe if needed.)

Suggested Workflow

1. Do overall color and tone corrections first (e.g., Basic panel, Tone Curve panel, etc.).
2. Turn on profile-based lens corrections (for distortion and vignetting), if needed.
3. Turn on lateral CA correction (check the “Remove Chromatic Aberration” box), if needed.
4. Apply global Defringe, if needed.
5. Apply local Defringe, if needed.

Additional Examples

Example 2: Cake 
I focused in the middle of the letters on the cake. The letters in front have purple fringes (“Meghna”), and the letters in back have green fringes (“Happy”), with some alternating green-magenta bands. These are typical symptoms of axial chromatic aberration. With the new defringe filter, the purple and green fringes are largely reduced. Note that this is not a straightforward desaturation (which would turn the letters and cake gray).

Overview of image: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 2 49 03 PM

Closeup, original: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 2 49 16 PM
Closeup, with defringe: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 2 49 25 PM
Example 3: Champagne
Similar situation. The closeup shows mild purple fringing on the closer letters, and much stronger green fringing on the letters around the side of the bottle (just behind the plane of focus). Also, the circular out-of-focus highlights in the background have a green outline. These issues are largely reduced with the new defringe filter.
Overview, original (color fringing on bottle letters slightly visible even at this size): Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 2 57 45 PMCloseup, original: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 2 57 54 PMCloseup, with defringe: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 2 58 08 PMCloseup #2, original: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 2 58 24 PMCloseup #2, with defringe: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 2 58 33 PM

Example 4: Water 
The water spray shows very strong green and purple fringes, even in the small overview image — yikes! The foreground elements (such as the railing) also show purple fringes, since they’re in front of the plane of focus.  Special thanks Stanislas Chevallier for providing our engineering team with this example and providing us with permission to post the image here.  His work can be found on Flickr:

Overview, original: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 03 48 PMOverview, with defringe: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 03 57 PMCloseup #1, original: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 04 06 PMCloseup #1, with defringe:

Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 04 14 PM

Closeup #2, original: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 04 23 PMCloseup #2, with defringe: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 04 30 PMExample 5: Boy
There is visible purple fringing on his hat and shirt. He may have the blues, but he shouldn’t have the purples. ;-) There is also green fringing on the highlights of the car in the background.Overview, original: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 16 35 PM
Closeup, original: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 16 43 PMCloseup, with defringe: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 16 52 PMCloseup #2, original: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 17 02 PMCloseup #2, with defringe: Screen Shot 2012 04 25 at 3 17 12 PM


Updating Develop Presets for Lightroom 4

If you’ve upgraded to Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4 from previous versions of Lightroom, you may have noticed that some of your Develop Presets might create a different look in LR4 than you saw in LR3.  We revamped our image processing algorithm in Lightroom 4.  In particular, presets that include adjustments to any of the following attributes will likely give you different results in LR4:

  • Exposure
  • Brightness
  • Contrast
  • Fill Light
  • Highlight Recovery
  • Black Clipping
  • Clarity
  • Tone Curve

Before you begin, we recommend making a back-up of your existing Develop Presets.  The easiest way to do so is by going to Preferences > Presets > Location and clicking the “Show Lightroom Presets Folder.”  Make a copy of this folder in Windows Explorer (Windows) or Finder (Mac) and save it someplace safe.

For user-created PRE-Lr4 Develop Presets that contain settings for any of the attributes listed above, the easiest way to insure that the look and intent of the Develop Preset is maintained is by saving them with their Process Version included.

  1. Select an image and go to the Develop Module in Lightroom 4.
  2. Set the Process Version to 2010.  This is in the Camera Calibration panel on the lower right hand side.
  3. Select the appropriate Develop Preset created in Lightroom 3 or earlier
  4. Select the “+” button in the Preset Panel.  This allows you to save the current settings as a new Preset.  Make sure that the “Process Version” checkbox is checked.
  5. Hit the Save button.  We recommend creating a specific folder for Lightroom 3 presets that you update in this fashion.
  6. Now your LR3 preset will create the same results in Lightroom 4.

You can also recreate your Develop Presets in order to take full advantage of PV2012, the revamped image processing algorithm in Lightroom 4.  You can do this by:

  1. Select an image and go into the Develop Module in Lightroom 4
  2. Select the appropriate Develop Preset created in Lightroom 3 or earlier.
  3. Set the Process Version to 2012. This is in the Camera Calibration panel on the lower right hand
  4. Review the image and make adjustments until the image meets your visual expectation for the Preset.  Please note that some images might require significant tweaking at this step.
  5. Save the Preset with a new name.

Raw support in Lightroom and Camera Raw

There have been a number of questions around raw support for Lightroom and the Camera Raw plug-in.(ACR) Below is a list of new support by version. (Skip the background if you just need to know if your camera is supported)

It’s a busy time of year for the team as we just released Lightroom 4, the Photoshop CS6 beta was introduced last week and some of the new flagship cameras are beginning to have broader availability.  Our consistent goal is to provide new camera support as quickly as possible.  We also try to keep it simple by aligning Lightroom and ACR updates both in terms of timing and camera support.  However for the few months around the launch of Lightroom 4 and Photoshop CS6, we forfeited alignment in favor of getting support out as quickly as possible.  That’s why the ACR6.7 release candidate supports the 5D Mk III but the Lightroom 4.0 release does not.   You’ll also note that ACR7 available with Photoshop CS6 beta, is lagging the most in updated camera support.  This is based on when we lock down or “bake” the code for each release.   Even though ACR7 was only released last week it was “baked” before Lightroom 4.0 and Camera Raw 6.7.  Similarly, Lightroom 4.0 was finalized before Camera Raw 6.7.  We’ll get Lightroom and Camera Raw in sync soon but in the interim, here’s the latest incremental support list for each product, relative to Camera Raw 6.6 and Lightroom 3.6:

Photoshop CS6 beta with ACR7

  • Canon PowerShot S100V
  • Fuji FinePix X-S1

Lightroom 4.0

  • Canon EOS 1D X
  • Canon PowerShot G1 X
  • Canon PowerShot S100V
  • Fuji FinePix F505EXR
  • Fuji FinePix F605EXR
  • Fuji FinePix HS30EXR
  • Fuji FinePix HS33EXR
  • Fuji FinePix X-S1
  • Nikon D4
  • Nikon D800
  • Nikon D800E

Photoshop CS5 with ACR6.7 (Release Candidate) and Lightroom 4.1 Release Candidate

  • Canon EOS 1D X
  • Canon EOS 5D Mk III
  • Canon PowerShot G1 X
  • Canon PowerShot S100V
  • Fuji FinePix F505EXR
  • Fuji FinePix F605EXR
  • Fuji FinePix HS30EXR
  • Fuji FinePix HS33EXR
  • Fuji FinePix X-S1
  • Nikon D4
  • Nikon D800
  • Nikon D800E

Additional Notes:

  • If you need access to the latest camera support and your current Adobe product does not have support, the DNG Converter 6.7 is a free application that will convert that latest camera support above from a proprietary format to the DNG format that can be read in earlier versions of Adobe’s products. (The DNG Converter is the second option on the download page of the 6.7 release candidate site)
  • For those that have been asking, Canon EOS 5D Mk III support will be added to the next update to Lightroom this week.
  • Lightroom 3.6 is the last update to Lightroom 3.  New camera support will only be added to Lightroom 4 going forward.
  • And yes, we are aware of the existence of the Fuji X-Pro1 camera and like all new camera models we are working to add support as quickly as possible.

Thanks for everyone’s patience and support during a busy and exciting season for new cameras and software.

What happened to Fill Light and Recovery?

Recovery and Fill Light are popular and powerful tools. However, they also have some limitations. For example, Recovery can result in muddy highlights, and Fill Light can lead to visible halos at high-contrast boundaries. Furthermore, it is difficult to transfer the technology behind these controls to local adjustments.

With Process Version 2012 in Lightroom 4, we have introduced a new set of Basic tone controls that overcomes these limitations and results in much higher image quality. For example, the Highlights and Shadows tools are optimized for very high contrast images, produce much smoother highlight and shadow gradations, are available as local adjustments, and minimize halo artifacts.

We recommend starting at the top of the Basic panel and working down through the controls. Start with the Exposure and Contrast controls to set the overall desired image brightness and contrast. Proceed to the Highlight and Shadow controls, using them to establish the relationship of the highlights and shadows in your image to the midtones. If needed, fine-tune your image’s tonal end points using the Blacks and Whites sliders.  Note that Exposure, Contrast, Highlights, and Shadows are also available as local adjustments.

There is a bit of a relearning process, but once you have become used to the new controls we think that you’ll love them.  Of course,  you still have access to Fill Light and Recovery if you so choose by changing the Process Version to PV2010 in the Camera Calibration panel on the bottom right hand side.

Magic or Local Laplacian Filters?

The Lightroom and Camera Raw team has been very pleased with all of the positive feedback on the new image processing(PV2012) available in the Lightroom 4 beta. (It will also be available in the next major version of the Camera Raw plug-in)  The ability to recover shadow and highlight detail with a straightforward set of controls without introducing artifacts or over-the-top faux-HDR effects is a huge leap forward in image processing.  I thought Scott Kelby summed it up quite well when he said, “Your photos look better processed in Lightroom 4. Period.”  Often, when a product from the Photoshop family produces something incredible, it’s referred to as magic.   However, the real magic is how the talented engineers at Adobe convert cutting edge research into elegant, easy to use software solutions.

The cutting edge research in this case is a paper titled, Local Laplacian Filters: Edge-aware Image Processing with a Laplacian Pyramid.   The title is certainly a mouthful and the body of the paper will be difficult to comprehend unless  you’ve spent a fair amount of time with equations that contain more Greek letters than numbers.  But don’t let the complexity prevent you from downloading the paper and perusing some of the sample images that demonstrate the challenges and results using various processing techniques.  The research is so impressive that it was published in SIGGRAPH 2011*, a prestigious journal in the computer graphics industry.

Why am I sharing this very technical piece of information?  The team would like to share the praise that we’re receiving for the new processing controls with the authors of this research paper:

Sylvain Paris
Adobe Systems, Inc
Samuel W Hasinoff
Toyota Technological Institute at Chicago and MIT CSAIL
Jan Kautz
University College London


Note: There is also some contributing knowledge from this paper as well: 

ACM Transactions on Graphics (Proceedings of SIGGRAPH 2011).

DNG History and Summary

Barry Pearson has recently posted a number of blog posts outlining his experience learning and writing about the DNG format since it was introduced. They’re an excellent resources so I’ve added links/summaries to his posts below.

DNG Part 1 – Seven years of writing about Digital Negative Format
This article provides the background on all of the material Barry has written on the DNG format

DNG Part 2 – Timeline for the Digital Negative Format
The timeline of major DNG announcements is covered as well as this interesting tidbit:

“During the first 5 years when about 38 camera models were launched that wrote DNG, Adobe software added support for about 21 Canon models, about 20 Nikon models, and about 22 Olympus models. Camera models that write DNG are almost certainly launched at a much higher rate than camera models that support any other individual raw image format, including NEF, CR2, and ORF.”

DNG Part 3 – The tragedy of OpenRAW
The story of the OpenRAW initiative

DNG Part 4 – DNG is the ONLY archival raw file format
Barry outlines the value of the DNG format

I’d like to thank Barry for putting these articles together, summarizing his tireless efforts over the years to document and chronicle the progress of DNG.

George Jardine on the Lightroom 3 Develop Module

A shameless plug for our good friend, former Adobe employee and Lightroom Evangelist George Jardine. George created an excellent set of tutorials focused on image management and organizational tools and has now created a new set of tutorials to address the wealth of functionality in the Develop module. Check them out here. ($24.95) And if you didn’t heed my earlier recommendation to listen to George’s series of podcasts with photographic influencers, now’s the time to queue them up! (Free of charge)

Camera Raw 6.0 Now Shipping as part of CS5 (With Important Caveat)

Photoshop CS5 with the Camera Raw 6 plug-in is now shipping and available as a trial download. Camera Raw 6.0 is also available as part of Photoshop CS5 and includes numerous enhancements that have been previewed in the Lightroom 3 beta program. The new noise reduction, sharpening, grain and post-crop vignette tools in Camera Raw 6 have been highly anticipated updates for those that prefer to use the Camera Raw plug-in instead of Lightroom. I also previewed a lens correction solution that will be part of a Camera Raw 6.1 update shortly after Photoshop CS5 ships.(It will also be part of Lightroom 3)

There is one important caveat about the Camera Raw 6.0 release: The support for 9 additional cameras provided in the Camera Raw 5.7 and Lightroom 2.7 updates is not available in the Camera Raw 6.0 release. The camera models are listed below:

  • Canon EOS 550D (Digital Rebel T2i/ EOS Kiss X4 Digital)
  • Kodak Z981
  • Leaf Aptus-II 8
  • Leaf Aptus-II 10R
  • Mamiya DM40
  • Olympus E-PL1
  • Panasonic G2
  • Panasonic G10
  • Sony A450

Support for these cameras will be added in the upcoming Camera Raw 6.1 update. In the interim, you can use the free DNG Converter 5.7 (Mac, Win) to convert the files from these new cameras to a format readable by Camera Raw 6.0. The team apologizes for this temporary discrepancy in camera support but in our effort to provide the absolute latest camera support, we occasionally leapfrog the production process required to ship physical media around the world for Photoshop CS5 and the Creative Suite.(In developer terminology, Camera Raw 6.0 needed to be “baked” for Photoshop CS5 and the Creative Suite 5 release long before the Camera Raw 5.7 and Lightroom 2.7 update on April 20th so that testing and certification could be completed for the CS5 launch)

Preview of Lens Correction Solution for Camera Raw 6 and Lightroom 3

Below is a preview of lens correction technology that will be included in Lightroom 3 and the Camera Raw 6 plug-in that’s part of Photoshop CS5. This is an exciting development for our non-destructive editing technology and is designed to address lens correction via two methods: Lens Profiles and Manual Correction. The easiest application of lens correction is to apply the lens profile technology that encompasses geometric distortion(barrel and pincushion distortion), chromatic aberration and lens vignetting characteristics. A handful of lens profiles will be provided by default and a Lens Profile Creator Utility will be posted on Adobe Labs allowing photographers to create their own lens profiles using a simple procedure discussed in the video below. There are also manual distortion corrections that extend beyond traditional geometric distortion and provide horizontal and vertical transform adjustments.(As well as rotation, scale and crop to visible image data tools.) Please take a look at the preview video and provide your feedback!

You can also view this video directly on YouTube:!

[Note: Updated at 10am Pacific Time to redirect to new video link]

New Nikon D3 and D700 “Camera” v2 beta profiles

Adobe’s Camera Raw engineer Eric Chan has been listening closely to feedback on Lightroom and Camera Raw’s initial “camera” profiles for the Nikon D3 and Nikon D700. Eric has posted a revised set of beta profiles for these cameras for your review.

Download the profiles here

Release Notes: [Original Forum Post by Eric]

These updated Camera v2 beta profiles for the Nikon D3 and Nikon D700
are designed to reduce banding and highlight color artifacts. Note
that highlight areas may appear a little brighter compared to the
earlier profiles.



If you are on Mac OS X, drag the “Camera v2 beta” folder to:

/Library/Application Support/Adobe/CameraRaw/CameraProfiles

If you are on Windows XP, drag the “Camera v2 beta” folder to:

C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Adobe\CameraRaw\CameraProfiles

If you are on Windows Vista or Windows 7, drag the “Camera v2 beta”
folder to:


Note that the above path on Windows Vista and Windows 7 may be hidden
by default. Check your folder settings.



The profiles are currently in beta status. Please provide feedback via
the online Adobe user-to-user forums here:

Thank you!