Introduction

For years now, DxO Labs’ Optics Professional and PhotoLab merchandise have impressed photographers with their automated lens corrections. And extra lately their CPU-intensive PRIME / DeepPRIME noise discount expertise has additionally garnered loads of reward, as we noticed in our latest DxO PhotoLab Four evaluation.

But whereas DxO has earned various plaudits and constructed a loyal following for its software program, it has by no means gained fairly the mass-market attraction of rival Adobe. With PureRaw, it goals to handle this with a brand new strategy.

DxO tells us that of the roughly 10 million photographers presently taking pictures in a Uncooked format, 90% use Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom or some mixture of the 2 of their workflow. And of those that do not, many extra will have already got moved to non-DxO third-party rivals like Seize One, Publicity and extra.

DxO PureRaw brings the corporate’s famed denoising and lens corrections to photographers that do not need to change their present software program

As an alternative of attempting to steer them to study one other new and complicated interface and enterprise into the unknown by switching to the fully-featured PhotoLab enhancing platform, PureRaw offers them the chance to carry DxO’s hottest capabilities proper into their current workflow with virtually no fuss.

Now, you possibly can take pleasure in DxO PhotoLab’s denoising, demosaicing and lens correction instruments, however hold all of the acquainted apps, instruments, shortcuts and extra that you just love in your present digital darkroom utility. One caveat is that customers are topic to the identical library of suitable cameras and lenses that PhotoLab helps, and sadly, which means no present assist for Fujifilm’s cameras with X-Trans sensors.

Key Takeaways:

  • Get DxO’s much-praised noise discount and lens corrections with out ditching Photoshop, Lightroom or their rivals
  • No new interface to study; hold all of the instruments you like
  • Very simple, simple design
  • Select from HQ, PRIME or DeepPRIME denoising
  • Output as Linear DNG with noise/lens corrections
  • A slightly steep value could hold many would-be customers away

Accessible instantly for each Home windows and macOS, DxO PureRaw is ordinarily priced at $129 (€129 / £115). A launch low cost accessible by Might 31, 2021 will scale back this to $89.99 (€89.99 / £79.99).

The way it works

DxO PureRaw is extremely easy. Information could be dragged and dropped between DxO PureRaw and your imaging app, or for that matter your working system’s file explorer. Alternatively, you possibly can click on a button inside PureRaw’s interface to straight browse your listing construction for information to course of.

PureRaw’s changes are restricted solely to picking which denoising algorithms to make use of, and whether or not to allow lens corrections or not.

Processing your chosen information could not get a lot simpler. First, you select your required denoising engine for your entire batch of pictures: The quicker HQ engine, the way more processor-intensive – however greater high quality – PRIME engine or the AI-powered DeepPRIME engine. (For many pictures you may need both DeepPRIME or HQ, relying upon whether or not you like picture high quality or efficiency, respectively).

Subsequent you select your output file sort and storage location. By default, PureRaw will save your processed pictures as partially-processed Linear DNG Uncooked information in a DxO subfolder of their unique location.

The streamlined course of does imply you possibly can’t tweak the extent of noise discount nor preview its outcomes previous to processing

For those who favor, you possibly can convert straight to JPEG slightly than Uncooked earlier than handing off to your third-party app, or set a customized location for the processed information to be saved. Lens and digicam physique profiles are downloaded routinely as wanted, and particular person profiles could be deactivated as most well-liked on a per-batch foundation.

PureRaw can be utilized in a drag-and-drop trend or export on to third-party apps. Adobe’s are routinely detected, and the person can add different packages with the customized choice.

When you click on Course of Images, PureRaw will do its factor after which provide to point out you side-by-side, before-and-after comparisons of your just-processed pictures. You possibly can then drag them again to your chosen app, click on the Export button to have them transferred for you – optionally together with a replica of the unprocessed, unique Raws as nicely – or click on one other button to see the processed pictures in Explorer.

Clearly, this simplified and streamlined course of means you could’t tweak the extent of noise discount utilized as you might within the full PhotoLab app. Nor are you able to preview its outcomes previous to processing.

As soon as your pictures have been processed, PureRaw lets you evaluation the outcomes compared to the uncorrected Uncooked.

However PureRaw additionally provides little or no additional fuss to your workflow, although there are the minor inconveniences of better space for storing necessities and the time spent processing, which we’ll come again to in a second.

And given you could output in Linear DNG Uncooked format, it additionally signifies that you keep all the primary benefits of your unique Uncooked file in your third-party app, corresponding to higher white-balance correction and the potential of recovering misplaced spotlight or shadow element. You simply get the additional benefit of DxO’s lens and noise corrections with as little additional effort as potential.

Picture high quality

For those who already personal and use PhotoLab, by the way, you possibly can already do one thing very comparable by exporting pictures to disk in DNG format utilizing PhotoLab’s Denoise & Optical Correction choice. However apparently, I’ve discovered that PureRaw would not at all times apply precisely the identical changes as does DxO PhotoLab at its default settings, which suggests DxO could have tuned its algorithms a bit in a different way to account for the shortage of handbook overrides in PureRaw.

For probably the most half, the variations between PureRaw and PhotoLab’s renderings are slim to nonexistent. However simply often, the 2 apps can yield noticeably differing outcomes.
Picture by Mike Tomkins

I’ve run dozens of pictures by PureRaw and PhotoLab at defaults, and located that whereas maybe 1 / 4 of my pictures appeared completely an identical no matter which program I used, round half these processed by way of PureRaw confirmed barely stronger sharpening than in PhotoLab’s defaults.

I additionally noticed just a few pictures the place PureRaw used barely stronger noise discount or vignetting correction than PhotoLab, in addition to a handful the place PureRaw cropped in slightly tighter.

There is a clear distinction between an untweaked Uncooked opened and saved in ACR, and a Linear DNG from PureRaw that was opened and saved in ACR. Click on or faucet for full-size ACR default and ACR+PureRaw pictures.
Picture by Mike Tomkins

However actually, the variations from PureRaw’s outcomes have been very slight in all instances, and similar to what you will get from PhotoLab with none person intervention. And its outcomes when it comes to noise discount have been clearly leagues forward of what I might’ve managed with Photoshop or Lightroom’s personal instruments and an analogous stage of effort.

Efficiency

Given its ease of use, I feel the most important concern for many customers would be the added time taken to course of pictures in PureRaw earlier than beginning work in your third-party app.

Outcomes will clearly range together with your {hardware}, and all my occasions beneath have been recorded utilizing my 2018 Dell XPS 15 9570 laptop computer working Home windows 10 model 20H2, PureRaw 1.0.10 and PhotoLab 4.2.1.

When contemplating the occasions beneath, it is also essential to recollect the time you’d have expended if attempting to make the identical corrections in your current app with out PureRaw, after all.

Even after enabling profiled lens corrections and manually hand-tweaking the noise sliders, ACR continues to be far behind the consequence from PureRaw. And that is regardless of spending greater than twice as lengthy to edit the ACR-prepared picture as PureRaw took to course of its model with DeepPRIME. Click on for full-size ACR default and ACR+PureRaw pictures.
Picture by Mike Tomkins

In HQ mode, PureRaw took round 13 seconds to course of every picture, versus about 11 seconds for PhotoLab 4. Switching to PRIME, I measured a time of 32 seconds per picture in PureRaw, and 26 seconds for PhotoLab. Lastly, DeepPRIME was a bit quicker in each apps, at 27 seconds per picture for PureRaw, and 24 seconds per picture for PhotoLab.

I have to admit, I used to be shocked to seek out PureRaw 1.Zero slightly slower than PhotoLab with an identical pictures. Given the very streamlined interface and lack of person adjustability, I might anticipated that it will maybe edge PhotoLab’s occasions just a bit. The distinction is comparatively small, although.

Conclusion

What we like What we do not
  • Easy, streamlined interface with virtually no studying curve
  • Spectacular picture high quality advantages with a minimal of fuss
  • Strong integration with Adobe merchandise and different digital darkroom software program
  • Is likely to be too expensive for some customers
  • Simplified interface would not give customers any management to tweak the output
  • No assist for Fujifilm X-Trans sensors

DxO PureRaw presents an fascinating proposition for diehard customers of Photoshop, Lightroom and their many non-DxO rivals. In a single easy, light-weight app, PureRaw now offers you entry to arguably the perfect characteristic of PhotoLab: The PRIME / DeepPRIME denoising engine.

And it would not require that you just swap your digital darkroom software program or make any massive adjustments to your workflow in any respect. Nor do you even must manually intervene, past selecting which denoising engine to make use of.

We do, nonetheless, have one reservation – the value. At $129 checklist, DxO PureRaw prices simply as a lot as DxO PhotoLab Four Important version.

DxO PureRaw’s pricetag is steep, nevertheless it presents massive IQ enhancements with no work in any respect

Positive, PhotoLab 4 Important lacks the PRIME / DeepPRIME denoising algorithms, nevertheless it’s in any other case a fairly complete digital darkroom app. In truth, PureRaw’s checklist value is just a 3rd lower than that of the total DxO PhotoLab Four Elite.

That looks like an enormous ask for what’s clearly a a lot much less succesful and highly effective software. However on the identical time, PureRaw presents the possibility to get actually, actually highly effective denoising and first rate lens corrections with barely a second’s aware effort.

And it does so with out forcing you to study a brand new app in case you’re already glad together with your current one in most different respects. There may be, basically, no studying curve in any respect.

For frequent high-ISO shooters who can justify its excessive checklist value – or those that rating the limited-time launch pricing accessible by Might 2021 – DxO PureRaw will certainly give you a really noticeable enchancment in a few of your pictures with virtually zero work.

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