DxO Labs has introduced Optics Pro v5, the latest release of its image quality enhancement software with a new demosaicing system to better deal with RAW data. The new algorithm uses information from a much wider area when reconstructing image detail, helping to minimize artefacts which contribute to the 'digital look'. This latest release also applies noise reduction during the demosaicing process thus avoiding unnecessary amplification of noise artefacts. Windows users will be able to get their hands on DxO Optics Pro v5 from the end of October 2007 with a Mac release expected one month later. More info after the click.
New DxO Optics Pro v5 Software Featuring a Breakthrough RAW Engine Leads the Way in Image Quality for Demanding Photographers
DxO Optics Pro v5 RAW conversion engine delivers exceptional quality especially for lowlight images. Fully rewritten, version 5 also adds dust/blemish removal, improved user interface, increased speed and expanded camera support.
Paris, France – October 1, 2007 – DxO Labs today announced DxO Optics Pro v5, the latest version of its award-winning flagship software application for automatic image quality enhancement for Digital SLR camera users. Due to be released later in the fall, 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 1st, 2007 are eligible for a free upgrade to DxO Optics Pro v5.
A breakthrough in demosaicing; the ‘holy grail’ of RAW conversion
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. 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 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.
Performing noise removal directly on the RAW data for best lowlight performance
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.
Dust/Blemish Removal now available in version 5
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.
A revamped User Interface
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.
Increased speed and camera support
Benefiting from an entire rewrite using Microsoft’s .NET and Apple’s ObjC-Cocoa technologies, DxO Optics Pro v5 is up to four times faster than version 4.0. This is due in particular to the use of GPU processing – where the power of dedicated video card chips is used to accelerate an application.
DxO Optics Pro v5 will also support the latest Canon and Nikon Digital SLR camera bodies. Support for the Canon 40D, Canon 1Ds MKIII, Nikon D300 and Nikon D3 will be included in DxO Optics Pro v5 over the next few months following the availability of these cameras.
DxO Optics Pro v5 for Windows is planned to be available at the end of October 2007. DxO Optics Pro v5 for Macintosh is planned to be available approximately one month after the Windows version.
DxO Optics Pro v5 will be available in Standard and Elite versions at pricing unchanged from version 4.5:
• DxO Optics Pro v5 Standard: $169
• DxO Optics Pro v5 Elite: $299
(All prices are excluding sales taxes)
All customers who purchased DxO Optics Pro v4.5 on or after August 1st, 2007 are entitled to a free upgrade to version 5. For customers who purchased DxO Optics Pro before August 1st, 2007, the pricing of upgrades is as follows:
DxO Optics Pro Standard (any version) to DxO Optics Pro v5 Standard: $95
DxO Optics Pro Elite (any version) to DxO Optics Pro v5 Elite: $125
- Intel® Pentium® 4 processor or AMD® equivalent (Pentium® Dual Core or higher or equivalent recommended)
- Microsoft® Windows XP Service Pack 2 or Windows VISTA™
- Universal Binary (G4, G5 or Intel)
- Mac OS X.4 or X.5 when available
120 MB of available disk space
DxO Optics Pro Standard Edition: 1 GB RAM
DxO Optics Pro Elite Edition: 2GB RAM
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