PhotoKit Sharpener. Love it? Problems?

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by neil_swanson, Feb 20, 2006.

  1. I've been digging around for users of PhotoKit Sharpener, the one that
    does it in 3 phases. So far everyone loves it. But there must be
    users here so I'm asking. So how d users like it?

    I do have one question. While I do shoot digital I also still scan
    35mm B&W film. The files at 5400dpi are very large, larger than I
    will be printing them. I mean large as in 13x19"s and 467dpi
    (ppi?)and are 220megs. You get the idea.

    Would I do the initial capture sharpening after I have set the size I
    will print? I think that makes sense.

    Ideas and opinions please, thanks
     
  2. I use it every day, either for scanned film or for DSLR and digital back shooting. Love it.
    Use it as a first step after opening the file in Photoshop, flatten and archive . Then resize a
    version for the specified output form.
     
  3. I'll pretty much echo Ellis' response. I use it regularly for both hi-res scanned film and DSLR output. I find the initial "capture" sharpening step to be pretty much right-on for a gentle archival sharpening step, as are the output final sharpening routines for printing. I generally print to a Lightjet, but occasionally do inkjet prints and find both output sharpening modes to work exceptionally well.

    I rarely use the intermediate "creative" sharpening.

    About my only quibble is that I usually find the output routines for "multi-media" (basically for web display) to be slightly aggressive. I generally back off the defaults a fair bit for web display. The nice part about PhotoKit Sharpener is that such adjustments are easy and intuitive to make, as everything's done using layers. Assuming you've chosen the appropriate sharpening for the image, you merely throttle layer opacity back a bit.

    Before purchasing PK Sharpener, I'd pretty much bought into Fraser's multi-pass approach, and had built my own PS capture and print/web display sharpening actions based largely on some of his tutorials. After demoing PK Sharpener, I found the PK routines to be more fine-tuned than mine and quickly plunked down my plastic: A photo software decision I've never regretted.

    To answer your final question: no. The initial sharpening step is independant of print size and is basically intended to set a mild archival version of sharpening depending on source. You choose different capture sharpen routines depending on source (a host of choices exist for all kinds of digital cameras, backs and scanned film sources). It's important, though, that you do NO sharpening whatever in your scanning (or RAW conversion if DSLR). NONE.

    For output sharpening, however, it's critical that you have an image sized for the final print before making the output sharpen pass. After sizing for print, you take your w x h sized image and select the output routine which best matches the ppi of your image at that size, and the output device you're using (half-tone, continuous tone, inkjet, etc.).

    The manual's pretty clear on all of this, and you can download the manual and a 7-day trial at the PixelGenius website.

    Hope this helps,

    Scott
     
  4. Thanks for the responses. I've been reading the manual I downloaded a week ago and I think I will do the demo. Thanks again
     
  5. I would suggest going here:

    http://www.thelightsright.com/TLRProfessionalSharpeningToolkit.htm

    And trying this too. It is free and works reasonably well although the capture sharpen in USM mode is slow.

    enjoy,

    Sean
     

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