Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW

Started Apr 13, 2012 | Discussions
Trevor G
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Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
Apr 13, 2012

There are a lot of voluble folk who claim that:

1) Silkypix is garbage

2) It's hard to use

3) It doesn't really or readily even match the JPEG output

4) and blah blah blah.

I am an unabashed Silkypix user and fan, so I took up dpreview's challenge in their X-Pro 1 preview and tried to match an OOC JPEG by using a Silkypix RAW.

Here I've chosen the ISO500 portrait - it is the easiest to duplicate and demonstrate!

Here is the output (I suggest that you switch between this and the dpreview original available for download on page 5 of the preview):

And here is the method, so that you can easily try it yourself.

Working from top to bottom in the Silkypix interface:

1) Adjust exposure (the top-most slider) to +0.3

2) Adjust White balance (the "sun" icon) by using the Gray balance tool

  • Click the WB icon to open the tool box

  • Click the Gray balance tool (the upper left eyedropper icon in the toolbox)

  • Move the cursor to a point above the rightmost edge of the subject's right eye, and halfway between the top of his head and the top of the frame, then click.

3) Click on the Tone tool icon (the next one down, tooltips always show when you hover) and adjust the following:

  • Set Contrast center to 0.44

  • Set Gamma to 1.10

  • Set Black level to 10

4) Click on the Color icon (the next one down) and in Color mode choose Portrait color 2.

It takes longer to read it than it takes to try it.

Have fun.
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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

Trevor G
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Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW - Disclaimer
In reply to Trevor G, Apr 13, 2012

Please note that I have used the latest full version of Silkypix, DSP5.

However, I believe I have only used tools which are available in the bundled version. I cannot easily check because I only have the bundled version for the X10, but it matches those tools.

In any case the bundled versions only miss out on a handful of extras. The basic engine has always been the same, except that I did notice that the default noise reduction on the X10 version was always way too high and introduced some smearing because of that. That does not happen with the full versions.

Have a play with the Demosaic sharp control, too.

It's found in the bottom tool of the main group, under Development.

While you might not want this portrait any sharper than it is, it's interesting to see what happens (increased clarity and "sharpness") when you lift the control above its default setting of 63 in DSP5

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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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bartolyni
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to Trevor G, Apr 14, 2012

Hi travor,

I agree you got the picture well matched to OOC Jpeg though I find OOC Jpeg slightly more warm (at least that's what I see on my display). All in all Silkypix DSP5 is a very capable converter,It gives far better skin tones than what I can get from Lightroom

Bartolyni.

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Jeff Seltzer
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Does DSP5 support X-Pro1?
In reply to bartolyni, Apr 14, 2012

Does DSP5 support X-Pro1?

bartolyni wrote:

Hi travor,

I agree you got the picture well matched to OOC Jpeg though I find OOC Jpeg slightly more warm (at least that's what I see on my display). All in all Silkypix DSP5 is a very capable converter,It gives far better skin tones than what I can get from Lightroom

Bartolyni.

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Trevor G
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Re: Does DSP5 support X-Pro1?
In reply to Jeff Seltzer, Apr 14, 2012

Jeff Seltzer wrote:

Does DSP5 support X-Pro1?

It sure does, otherwise I would not have been able to convert the image in the first post.

As soon as they have a new camera model ready for use they make it available across the entire range, which is really only version 4, version 4 Pro and version 5, now.

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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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Trevor G
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to bartolyni, Apr 14, 2012

bartolyni wrote:

Hi travor,

I agree you got the picture well matched to OOC Jpeg though I find OOC Jpeg slightly more warm (at least that's what I see on my display).

Thanks.

There could be minor differences; I just left it "close enough".

All in all Silkypix DSP5 is a very capable converter,It gives far better skin tones than what I can get from Lightroom

Silkypix works extremely well.

It's also easy to learn and use. I found it far easier than Lightroom, and still do.

I prefer the Silkypix methodology of working from left to right, and from top to bottom. I have a simple, text tutorial on the link in my signature, for anyone who wants an easy way to get to grips with it.

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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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bartolyni
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Re: Does DSP5 support X-Pro1?
In reply to Jeff Seltzer, Apr 14, 2012

Yes it does support X-Pro 1

Jeff Seltzer wrote:
Does DSP5 support X-Pro1?

bartolyni wrote:

Hi travor,

I agree you got the picture well matched to OOC Jpeg though I find OOC Jpeg slightly more warm (at least that's what I see on my display). All in all Silkypix DSP5 is a very capable converter,It gives far better skin tones than what I can get from Lightroom

Bartolyni.

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Trevor G
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Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW - more fine detail revealed
In reply to Trevor G, Apr 16, 2012

Trevor G wrote:

While you might not want this portrait any sharper than it is, it's interesting to see what happens (increased clarity and "sharpness") when you lift the control above its default setting of 63 in DSP5

Reducing the higher-than-necessary default noise reduction settings helps also.

Here is the evidence:

First a crop (they are all 100%) from the dpreview in-camera RAW to JPEG conversion which they are so proud of compared to Silkypix output:

Next a Silkypix output from the matching RAW supplied by dpreview:

This time I adjusted the Demosaic sharp control for some more fine detail:

And finally, reducing default noise reduction settings also helps, with no noise penalty that I can see:

It looks reasonably convincing to me...

Silkypix isn't that hard, nor is it garbage, afterall.

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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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Powerdoc
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to Trevor G, Apr 16, 2012

Perhaps it's silkipix V3 bundle wich is garbage.
Your results are nice indeed.
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Fujifilm FinePix X100 Canon EOS 5D Mark II Olympus PEN E-P1 Canon EOS 7D Fujifilm X-Pro1 +27 more
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Trevor G
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to Powerdoc, Apr 17, 2012

Powerdoc wrote:

Perhaps it's silkipix V3 bundle wich is garbage.
Your results are nice indeed.

Thanks.

If there is a problem with the bundled version 3, it is most probably related to the chroma noise reduction control, or rather its default setting which could be too high.

I would suggest reducing the False color control to 10 or less.

My experience with the X10 says that there is little difference between the bundled and the full versions, except that the bundled 3 version had a problem with smeary noise with the control set too high.

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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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Powerdoc
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to Trevor G, Apr 17, 2012

Thanks for the info.
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It's all about photography

 Powerdoc's gear list:Powerdoc's gear list
Fujifilm FinePix X100 Canon EOS 5D Mark II Olympus PEN E-P1 Canon EOS 7D Fujifilm X-Pro1 +27 more
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MPA1
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Re: Does DSP5 support X-Pro1?
In reply to bartolyni, Apr 17, 2012

I am not sure if it is available for Mac yet though?

bartolyni wrote:
Yes it does support X-Pro 1

Jeff Seltzer wrote:
Does DSP5 support X-Pro1?

bartolyni wrote:

Hi travor,

I agree you got the picture well matched to OOC Jpeg though I find OOC Jpeg slightly more warm (at least that's what I see on my display). All in all Silkypix DSP5 is a very capable converter,It gives far better skin tones than what I can get from Lightroom

Bartolyni.

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MPA1
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to Trevor G, Apr 17, 2012

Whilst I do not like SP - the bundled version has a UI that looks right at home in about 1992 - I am sure it works.

I think that there really needs to be some agreement industry-wide about not producing cameras that create files in formats that the majority of users are not able to use unless they learn yet another software program.

At the very least, there should be a TIFF option on the XP1.

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Trevor G
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to MPA1, Apr 17, 2012

MPA1 wrote:

Whilst I do not like SP - the bundled version has a UI that looks right at home in about 1992 - I am sure it works.

This doesn't look much like 1992 to me. All the extra tool items are fully floating and/or dockable. The histogram can be any size you like, and unlike many adobe items, you simply work from top to bottom in the left side toolbox.

I would have said a simple GUI, thoughtfully laid out. And it does work, and well.

At the very least, there should be a TIFF option on the XP1.

There's a TIFF option in Silkypix...

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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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bartolyni
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to Trevor G, Apr 17, 2012

How often do you use skintone tool? happy with the results?

Trevor G wrote:

MPA1 wrote:

Whilst I do not like SP - the bundled version has a UI that looks right at home in about 1992 - I am sure it works.

This doesn't look much like 1992 to me. All the extra tool items are fully floating and/or dockable. The histogram can be any size you like, and unlike many adobe items, you simply work from top to bottom in the left side toolbox.

I would have said a simple GUI, thoughtfully laid out. And it does work, and well.

At the very least, there should be a TIFF option on the XP1.

There's a TIFF option in Silkypix...

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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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MPA1
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to Trevor G, Apr 17, 2012

That's not what I meant.

The camera ought to be able to save the images as TIFF files - these can be imported into pretty much any processing program - LR, Aperture etc - of the user's choice and contain more or less the same info as a RAW file (especially in 16 bit) in a somewhat larger file container.

Whilst it would mean less files per memory card, it would at least allow much more processing latitude in the user's choice of software instead of forcing them to instal bloatware on their computer that they neither need nor want.

Trevor G wrote:

MPA1 wrote:

Whilst I do not like SP - the bundled version has a UI that looks right at home in about 1992 - I am sure it works.

This doesn't look much like 1992 to me. All the extra tool items are fully floating and/or dockable. The histogram can be any size you like, and unlike many adobe items, you simply work from top to bottom in the left side toolbox.

I would have said a simple GUI, thoughtfully laid out. And it does work, and well.

At the very least, there should be a TIFF option on the XP1.

There's a TIFF option in Silkypix...

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Cheers

Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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Trevor G
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to MPA1, Apr 17, 2012

MPA1 wrote:

Whilst it would mean less files per memory card, it would at least allow much more processing latitude in the user's choice of software instead of forcing them to instal bloatware on their computer that they neither need nor want.

By definition in the normal sense Silkypix would never be described as "bloatware" since it is not accompanied by any other software (unlike Google Chrome and Toolbars thrown in with Adobe products) which are neither necessary nor really useful, nor does Silkypix install itself to run in the background and slow your system.

It's a really great tool - you should take the small amount of time to learn to use it.

Plus it won't slow your system down when you aren't using it.

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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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MPA1
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to Trevor G, Apr 17, 2012

It's bloatware in the sense that users are effectively forced to instal and use it in order to get the best from a $3500+ camera system, interrupting already established workflows. Most users will already have a library system with an integrated RAW conversion such as Apple Aperture or Adobe Lightroom. Bloating their systems with a legacy version of a fringe application is not a sensible approach to the problem by Fuji in my view.

For a supposedly professional tool, this is a ridiculous approach and a DNG or TIFF file option in the camera is really essential and the forced reliance on this less than popular software is the one thing that comes close to being unforgivable in a supposedly professional camera.

I do not deny SP works - I merely say that no professional wishes to spend time learning yet another system just for one camera in a collection of cameras. If it is your only camera and this is a hobby and you want to spend your time playing with software then I am sure it is just fine.

Trevor G wrote:

MPA1 wrote:

Whilst it would mean less files per memory card, it would at least allow much more processing latitude in the user's choice of software instead of forcing them to instal bloatware on their computer that they neither need nor want.

By definition in the normal sense Silkypix would never be described as "bloatware" since it is not accompanied by any other software (unlike Google Chrome and Toolbars thrown in with Adobe products) which are neither necessary nor really useful, nor does Silkypix install itself to run in the background and slow your system.

It's a really great tool - you should take the small amount of time to learn to use it.

Plus it won't slow your system down when you aren't using it.

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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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Trevor G
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to bartolyni, Apr 17, 2012

bartolyni wrote:

How often do you use skintone tool? happy with the results?

It can be a great tool, and I do use it from time to time.

However, I often find the Greyscale tool, which I used in the sample image posted in this thread, to be very useful too. In this case, once I got the greyscale right (the backdrop colour) the skin tones looked right, too.

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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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Trevor G
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Re: Dpreview's Challenge - Silkypix With X-Pro 1 RAW
In reply to MPA1, Apr 17, 2012

MPA1 wrote:

It's bloatware in the sense that users are effectively forced to instal and use it in order to get the best from a $3500+ camera system, interrupting already established workflows.

You poor thing!

Do you even own an X-Pro 1?

That still isn't what bloatware is - you are, like your buddies, just trying to be offensive because you won't take the time (around 20 minutes for a simpleton like me) to come to grips with something new.

It isn't hard at all - I've even written a simplified approach to getting started with Silkypix. It will take you a lot more time getting used to the camera than it will to learn to use Silkypix effectively!

Most users will already have a library system with an integrated RAW conversion such as Apple Aperture or Adobe Lightroom. Bloating their systems with a legacy version of a fringe application is not a sensible approach to the problem by Fuji in my view.

It's not a legacy version. It's not a fringe application.

You are one big sort of cry baby if ever I met one!

Whatever you do, don't try to use Silkypix, it might surprise you.

If it is your only camera and this is a hobby and you want to spend your time playing with software then I am sure it is just fine.

That's the thing: once you put in that initial 20 minute investment (the time it's taken you to make these vacuous posts) you should have grasped it.

Future work then is like child's play. You can even batch process if you are inclined. (I'm not, so I don't.)

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Trevor G

Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

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