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DxO Optics software version 5

Mark Peters
PMA 2010 Report
Friday 1st, February 2008
Posted by: Mark Peters

DxO Labs showcases DxO Optics Pro version 5, the latest version of its software application for automatic image quality enhancement for Digital SLR camera users. DxO Optics Pro v5 sets a new standard for image quality with its new RAW conversion engine. All purchasers of DxO Optics Pro v4.5 on or after August 1, 2007 are eligible for a free upgrade to DxO Optics Pro v5. DxO Optics Pro v5’s RAW conversion engine includes a completely new demosaicing algorithm which produces images with much more detail and fewer artifacts, setting a new standard in image quality. Demosaicing is the crucial step of RAW conversion during which the camera’s image sensor pattern is reconstructed as a visible image for the human eye.

DxO Software

DxO image quality enhancement software
Inherently, demosaicing involves trade-offs between image sharpness, details, noise, processing time and conversion artifacts. The quality of demosaicing determines the amount of detail and artifacts in the final image. These artifacts, particularly visible and unsightly, are compounded at high ISO settings and are in large part responsible for what is deemed the unnatural look of digital images.

DxO Optics RAW engine
“DxO Labs’ approach to demosaicing turned a number of classical solutions on their head: instead of only considering pixels with respect to their direct neighbors, DxO’s new RAW Engine uses a ‘non local’ approach looking much further than is usual from each pixel in the image in order to reconstruct detail. This significantly reduces demosaicing artifacts,” said Frédéric Guichard, Chief Scientist at DxO Labs.

DxO Software

DxO Noise reduction
The other key characteristic of DxO Optics Pro’s new RAW Engine is that instead of applying noise reduction techniques after demosaicing, a newly-developed noise reduction is performed upfront, before noise has a chance to be amplified by the RAW conversion process and absorb important fine details. Combined with other proprietary techniques, DxO Optics Pro v5’s new RAW Engine produces both the most detailed and most natural looking images yet - its very fine and homogenous grain translating into subtle shades and textures. DxO Optics Pro v5’s new RAW conversion engine has been fine-tuned and optimized with the rest of the software’s automated image enhancement features (optical corrections, color rendering, exposure optimization, highlight recovery, etc.) to produce best-in class results.

DxO Software

DxO Dust removal
DxO Optics Pro v5 now incorporates a new tool to remove dust and blemishes from any digital image. Once dust and blemishes have been marked by the user, DxO Optics Pro v5 can automatically process any number of images with this particular dust/blemish template. Based on extensive research and communications with photographers, DxO Optics Pro’s user interface has been reorganized to improve workflow and ease of use. In particular, tools are now organized into four main sections that match the photographer’s approach: Light, Color, Geometry, Details. Users of DxO Optics Pro v5 can also customize their workspace to their particular way of working or choose to keep the tool organization of the previous version. DxO Optics Pro’s powerful project and preset functions have also been overhauled for increased ease of use and functionality.

DxO Software

DxO Optics photo enhancement software
DxO Optics Pro v5 benefits from an entire rewrite using Microsoft’s .NET and Apple’s ObjC-Cocoa technologies, and takes even greater advantage of GPU processing - where the power of dedicated video card chips is used to accelerate an application. DxO Optics Pro v5 now supports the Canon 40D and Nikon D300. In early February, DxO Optics Pro v5 will add support for the Canon 1Ds MKIII, and Nikon D3.

DxO Optics software price & Availability
DxO Optics Pro v5 for Windows is available now. DxO Optics Pro v5 for Macintosh is planned to be available in early Spring 2008. DxO Optics Pro v5 Standard: $169. DxO Optics Pro v5 Elite: $299.

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The PMA show, or Photo Marketing Association, continues its yearly tradition of maintaining a network of photo imaging as well as the experience and know-how of the industry. The PMA represents 20,000 members from over 100 countries, who are all active within the imaging industry. As a reflection of the changes in the market, the PMA organization has also changed and has become more diverse. Nowadays, the member group consists of representatives coming from photo retail, manufacturers, commercial photo labs, professional sports and news photography, in addition to small album print suppliers and photo processing centers. The PMA 2012 Trade show focuses on an industry which is heavily affected by the unstable situation of the global financial economy. However, whether the latter will also stand in the way of the innovation and product introductions, remains to be revealed by the PMA International Convention & Trade Show in Anaheim Convention Center (California, US).