New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5

Started Feb 21, 2013 | Discussions
PrebenR
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New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
Feb 21, 2013

Hi

I have just installed the new SPP 5.5. I tested the new monochrome mode on some old high iso images. I had one ISO 6400 image of my daughter that previously looked like it was painted with a broad brush. Using the new SPP 5.5 monochrome mode and choosing mostly blue in the colour mixer really cleaned up the image a lot.

I'm wondering if the colour mixer is drawing from the three layers in the sensor. If one choose mainly the red the image get really noisy, green less so and blue the least.

I also tested a ISO 3200 image I had taken and there was a huge improvement.

Time for more testing.

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Ringwraith69
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Re: New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
In reply to PrebenR, Feb 22, 2013

Maybe I'm getting too old for this, but I can't seem to find that Monochrome mode when processing some Polaroid x530 pictures. Can anyone tell me where it's hiding?

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Zone8
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Re: New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
In reply to Ringwraith69, Feb 22, 2013

Ringwraith69 wrote:  Maybe I'm getting too old for this, but I can't seem to find that Monochrome mode when processing some Polaroid x530 pictures. Can anyone tell me where it's hiding?

Not sure as have not tried but doesn't that facility only apply to SD1M and DP*M RAW files?

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Roland Karlsson
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Re: New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
In reply to Zone8, Feb 22, 2013

Zone8 wrote:

Ringwraith69 wrote: Maybe I'm getting too old for this, but I can't seem to find that Monochrome mode when processing some Polaroid x530 pictures. Can anyone tell me where it's hiding?

Not sure as have not tried but doesn't that facility only apply to SD1M and DP*M RAW files?

Yes - its a Merrill sensor only feature.

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Kendall Helmstetter Gelner
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Well Played
In reply to Ringwraith69, Feb 22, 2013

Ringwraith69 wrote:

Maybe I'm getting too old for this, but I can't seem to find that Monochrome mode when processing some Polaroid x530 pictures. Can anyone tell me where it's hiding?

Now that was funny.

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Ringwraith69
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Re: Well Played
In reply to Kendall Helmstetter Gelner, Feb 23, 2013

Kendall Helmstetter Gelner wrote:

Ringwraith69 wrote:

Maybe I'm getting too old for this, but I can't seem to find that Monochrome mode when processing some Polaroid x530 pictures. Can anyone tell me where it's hiding?

Now that was funny.

Thanx!

By the way, I really had missed the bit that explains the Monochrome mode only works with the Merrill sensors. Real shame, I have no Merrill-based camera and probably won't be getting one, either. I would have loved to use the Monochrome-option with my good old SD10 and DP1.

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Johan Borg
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Re: Well Played
In reply to Ringwraith69, Feb 23, 2013

Ringwraith69 wrote:

By the way, I really had missed the bit that explains the Monochrome mode only works with the Merrill sensors. Real shame, I have no Merrill-based camera and probably won't be getting one, either. I would have loved to use the Monochrome-option with my good old SD10 and DP1.

Consider yourself lucky: Those cameras are supported by older versions of SPP (3.x) that have very similar grain and rendering to the B&W mode of SPP 5.5

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SandyF
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Re: New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
In reply to Roland Karlsson, Feb 24, 2013

Roland Karlsson wrote:

Zone8 wrote:

Ringwraith69 wrote: Maybe I'm getting too old for this, but I can't seem to find that Monochrome mode when processing some Polaroid x530 pictures. Can anyone tell me where it's hiding?

Not sure as have not tried but doesn't that facility only apply to SD1M and DP*M RAW files?

Yes - its a Merrill sensor only feature.

You can do B&W conversions too by desaturating saturation and choosing monochrome wb (if that works on x530s (?)  I haven't worked a x530 RAW file in ages and don't have one handy to see if recent SPP versions with monochrome wb work with the x530 camera (which I have).

Best regards, Sandy
http://www.pbase.com/sandyfleischman (archival)
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sandyfleischmann (current, some new SPP5.5 mono's)

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Roland Karlsson
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Re: New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
In reply to SandyF, Feb 24, 2013

SandyF wrote:

You can do B&W conversions too by desaturating saturation and choosing monochrome wb (if that works on x530s (?) I haven't worked a x530 RAW file in ages and don't have one handy to see if recent SPP versions with monochrome wb work with the x530 camera (which I have).

Yes, you can always do that, in SPP or after.

The new monochrome feature claims to get superior results by converting directly to B&W without going via color.

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SandyF
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Re: New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
In reply to Roland Karlsson, Feb 24, 2013

Roland Karlsson wrote:

SandyF wrote:

You can do B&W conversions too by desaturating saturation and choosing monochrome wb (if that works on x530s (?) I haven't worked a x530 RAW file in ages and don't have one handy to see if recent SPP versions with monochrome wb work with the x530 camera (which I have).

Yes, you can always do that, in SPP or after.

The new monochrome feature claims to get superior results by converting directly to B&W without going via color.

Right, and SPP5.5 monochrome has more control over appearance, "film grain, size, roughness"
But at first I didn't know how to get into the new monochrome processing mode, and I processed several photos in mono in the older way, through desaturation. They look rather similar to the new processing; I didn't use the film grain features or NR. I have four examples of processing using both methods on the flickr link below.

Best regards, Sandy
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http://www.flickr.com/photos/sandyfleischmann (current)

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Laurence Matson
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Re: New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
In reply to SandyF, Feb 24, 2013

SandyF wrote:

Roland Karlsson wrote:

Zone8 wrote:

Ringwraith69 wrote: Maybe I'm getting too old for this, but I can't seem to find that Monochrome mode when processing some Polaroid x530 pictures. Can anyone tell me where it's hiding?

Not sure as have not tried but doesn't that facility only apply to SD1M and DP*M RAW files?

Yes - its a Merrill sensor only feature.

You can do B&W conversions too by desaturating saturation and choosing monochrome wb

Why would you do both?

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SandyF
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Re: New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
In reply to Laurence Matson, Feb 24, 2013

For the non-Merrill cameras.

As I mentioned above, I hadn't processed a monochrome photo version in years, and at first with SPP5.5 didn't see how the new processing worked so I did the monochrome wb, de-saturation process first, before discovering the monochrome vs color button at the top of the adjustment panel. I kept both versions online, old method, new method, 'though not trying to 'match' the output.

Best regards, Sandy
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Roland Karlsson
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Re: New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
In reply to SandyF, Feb 24, 2013

SandyF wrote:

Right, and SPP5.5 monochrome has more control over appearance, "film grain, size, roughness"
But at first I didn't know how to get into the new monochrome processing mode, and I processed several photos in mono in the older way, through desaturation. They look rather similar to the new processing; I didn't use the film grain features or NR. I have four examples of processing using both methods on the flickr link below.

I shall take a closer look at your comparison when I get time to do it thoroughly.

I am not sure I will find anything though. I assume the difference between the methods is most visible when taking photos in less light.

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Laurence Matson
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Old Monochrome mode in SPP
In reply to SandyF, Feb 25, 2013

SandyF wrote:

For the non-Merrill cameras.

Wrong choice in my opinion.

For all of the non-Merrill imagers, you should use the good old Matson approach:

Open the file in SPP, desaturate to -2.0, mess around with the sliders to get sort of the look you want, use the color wheel to approximate a filter in front of the lens (you have to mix the colors for red, blue or green if you are a purist; otherwise, just keep moving it around until you get the look you want), do final adjustments and save as a same-sized tiff. In your image editing program, select the layer you want to use, if any, and make final adjustments there. Or you can work on the layers individually and leave the image in RGB. There is no need to export the image as grayscale or desaturated in you image editing program if your monitor is calibrated. Of course, you could if you want.

I have been doing this since 2003, and finally my friends at Sigma got around to streamlining the process into one part of SPP. The old way is more cumbersome, but it works exceptionally well.

Of course, you can also use the same process to create a sepia effect by not desaturating completely. Or you can add a layer in your image editing program and adjust it to get the desired subtle effect.

Finally, it is black and white not dark gray and light gray. The above method produces a great full-tonal range, if that is the goal. High-key and other goodies, as well.

Looks like this when done:

More here:

http://www.pbase.com/lmatson/just_monochrome

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Laurence
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SigmaChrome
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Re: Old Monochrome mode in SPP
In reply to Laurence Matson, Feb 25, 2013

I used Laurence's method to produce this image, which Laurnence printed. It was used as a display print at PMA 2009 by Sigma.

Portrait of Bob Messenger - Song Writer

All the 'toning' was done in SPP using the Saturation slider. I still find it to be an effective method - for the right subject. SPP 5.5 is less subtle a can create very dramatic black & white effects.

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PrebenR
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Re: New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
In reply to Laurence Matson, Feb 26, 2013

Laurence Matson wrote:

SandyF wrote:

You can do B&W conversions too by desaturating saturation and choosing monochrome wb

Why would you do both?

Because the Monochrome WB is good when you want to rescue from blown highlights and you can still use the colour wheel as you described in your method.

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Laurence Matson
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Re: New Monochrome mode in SPP 5.5
In reply to PrebenR, Feb 27, 2013

PrebenR wrote:

Laurence Matson wrote:

SandyF wrote:

You can do B&W conversions too by desaturating saturation and choosing monochrome wb

Why would you do both?

Because the Monochrome WB is good when you want to rescue from blown highlights and you can still use the colour wheel as you described in your method.

Thanks for the clarification and apologies to Sandy for not seeing this before.

To an extent, yes. However, I have no difficulty recovering highlights with a desaturated image, at least yet. And the colour wheel has a greater impact when used with desaturation only. I have not taken the time to look at what happens to the channels upon export. Too stuck in my ways, I guess.

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Laurence
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DavidinDenmark
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Re: Well Played
In reply to Johan Borg, Feb 27, 2013

Johan Borg wrote:

Ringwraith69 wrote:

By the way, I really had missed the bit that explains the Monochrome mode only works with the Merrill sensors. Real shame, I have no Merrill-based camera and probably won't be getting one, either. I would have loved to use the Monochrome-option with my good old SD10 and DP1.

Consider yourself lucky: Those cameras are supported by older versions of SPP (3.x) that have very similar grain and rendering to the B&W mode of SPP 5.5

This is something I didn't know.

I have an original DP1, which I still use, processing in LR, which accepts these files. But because I've got a DP2M on order I downloaded and installed SPP 5.5, which insisted that any other version be deleted first. So, not having a use (I thought) for SPP 3.1, I did just that. Now I discover that 3.1 would be ideal for BW conversions from my DP1 files.

Does anyone know, if I re-install 3.1, if there will be problems with running two versions?

David

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