A case study of IQ differences between Luminar 4 vs DxO PL4

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AlmostDoctor Contributing Member • Posts: 680
A case study of IQ differences between Luminar 4 vs DxO PL4

I have been going through some of my old raw files, re-processing them in DxO Photo Lab 4 to try to learn the program and see how it works.

I compared one of those photos to the jpeg I made from Luminar 4 and I was blown away by the differences.

However, keep in mind that I did not process these files with identical results in mind or that I used optimal workflow in Luminar 4.  In fact, I'm sure my poor luminar skill is more to blame rather than the inherent IQ differences between the programs.

This comparison is just one anecdotal evidence based on my poor editing skills and should be interpreted with a massive grain of salt.

With that said, I should note that I spent less time processing this file in DxO than in Luminar.

First, here's the SOOC Jpeg for reference. (Do view the photos in full screen if you can.)

The sky wasn't blue enough and the grasses weren't green enough for my liking.

SOOC Jpeg for reference. I wanted to bump up the saturation, increase the contrast etc.

Luminar 4. I settled for this edit, but I remember not being quite pleased with the way it came out. It just looked over processed but it was difficult to bump up the saturation while trying to keep the image looking photo-realistic.

DxO PhotoLab 4. I may have overdone it with saturation, but the image looks much more photo-realistic compared to the output from Luminar IMHO.

In Luminar's defense, I do love their AI face detection portrait fix settings. It makes it so much easier to work with environmental portraits. But in terms of  pure IQ, I got the impression that Luminar 4 didn't necessarily get the best out of the raw files compared to my past experiences with DarkTable. DxO handsomely beats both in my limited experience so far.

 AlmostDoctor's gear list:AlmostDoctor's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1 Olympus E-M5 III Panasonic Leica Summilux DG 25mm F1.4 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 45-150mm F4-5.6 ASPH Mega OIS Panasonic 20mm F1.7 II +5 more
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