Foveon today announced that Sigma Photo Pro 2.0 (for the SD10, also works
with the SD9) has a new and important feature called 'X3 Fill Light'.
This feature works by lightening dark areas of the image much in the same
way a flash fill light would (auto dodge and burn or 'locally varying
tone correction'). As the new X3 Fill Light operates using the RAW data
stored in the X3F file it appears to produce far better results than we
have seen from any similar Photoshop plug-in type enhancement. The new
X3 Fill Light feature is implemented as an adjustment slider in Photo
Pro and its setting can be stored in the X3F file along with all other
rendering adjustments (another new feature of Photo Pro 2.0).
Phil: Personally I was amazed at the difference
this adjustment can make, it's far more sophisticated and capable than
anything I've seen to date and because it's operating on the X3F RAW data
the results are bound to be better than attempting the same kind of 'fix'
on a JPEG.
FOVEON ENHANCES DIGITAL IMAGES WITH X3 FILL LIGHT
New technology easily corrects lighting problems in digital photos
Santa Clara, CA (October 27, 2003) Foveon,
Inc., a technology leader in high-quality digital image capture, today
announced the release of X3 Fill Light, a powerful new technology that
dramatically improves the quality of digital images affected by difficult
lighting conditions. The technology is incorporated as a new software
feature in the Sigma Photo Pro 2.0 application for the Sigma SD10 digital
Single-Lens Reflex (SLR) camera.
The X3 Fill Light feature simulates the photographic method of dodging
and burning adding extra light to shadow regions, while preserving
highlight detail. It is a powerful method for simultaneously adjusting
overexposed and underexposed areas of a digital image with a single simple
control. The feature is bundled exclusively with the new Sigma SD10 digital
SLR (Single-Lens Reflex) camera, which uses a Foveon X3 direct image sensor.
X3 Fill Light is designed for images taken under lighting conditions
such as indoor-outdoor scenes, backlit portraits, or scenes with mixed
lighting. Use of the X3 Fill Light feature creates natural-looking images
that can be faithfully reproduced in a print.
Challenging lighting conditions, such as backlighting from a window
or subjects in front of snow, can result in disappointing images. The
X3 Fill Light technology allows photographers to make excellent prints
from poorly exposed images which otherwise would have been discarded due
to poor lighting and exposure. said Eric Zarakov, Foveons
vice president of marketing.
X3 Fill Light is implemented as a simple slider interface that allows
the user to control the amount of correction. By increasing the amount
of X3 Fill Light, the brightness and contrast of the shadow regions are
increased to add visibility into areas that have been underexposed. Simultaneously,
the contrast in highlight regions is automatically increased and the brightness
is adjusted to avoid saturation.
The Sigma Photo Pro 2.0 software, incorporating Foveons X3 Fill
Light, is shipping with the Sigma SD10 digital Single-Lens Reflex (SLR)
camera from Sigma
X3 Fill Light samples
The samples below were shot with a pre-production Sigma SD10, output
from Photo Pro 2.0 at the half-size 1134 x 756 (to save bandwidth). Adjustments
noted below the images were made in Photo Pro before saving.
||+2.0 EV Exposure Compensation
||+0.4 EV Exposure Compensation
+0.5 X3 Fill Light
||+1.2 X3 Fill Light