Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

Started Sep 22, 2018 | Discussions
Everaert Regular Member • Posts: 122
Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?
2

The lack of X-T3 RAW support in Lightroom at the moment led me to try Iridient X-Transformer based on the rave reviews in this forum. Paul Elliott's youtube video provided a simple comparison of Iridient vs Lightroom RAW conversion and how to install the plugin in lightroom. Spoiler alert for new users:  using Iridient in LR is simple and seamless.

I have two questions for existing x-transformer plugin users.

1. after converting a RAW file to DNG using Iridient, will Lightroom still create the same artefacts from the DNG as when using the RAF file, or does the DNG offer full remediation of the issue?

2. as x-transformer Lightroom plugin users can you share workflow your best practices & suggestions. E.g do you bulk convert all RAF to DNG before import or do it in LR? Do you keep or delete RAF files after conversion? For Mac users, have you automated your workflow using Automator or Services?

BTW the panicky threads here in recent days about DR, noise, etc were i.m.o. premature. The RAF / Iridient DNG files coming out of the X-T3 for my needs are awesome.

Thank you in advance for your responses.

Michel

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JayPhizzt Senior Member • Posts: 1,264
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

Everaert wrote:

The lack of X-T3 RAW support in Lightroom at the moment led me to try Iridient X-Transformer based on the rave reviews in this forum. Paul Elliott's youtube video provided a simple comparison of Iridient vs Lightroom RAW conversion and how to install the plugin in lightroom. Spoiler alert for new users: using Iridient in LR is simple and seamless.

I have two questions for existing x-transformer plugin users.

1. after converting a RAW file to DNG using Iridient, will Lightroom still create the same artefacts from the DNG as when using the RAF file, or does the DNG offer full remediation of the issue?

2. as x-transformer Lightroom plugin users can you share workflow your best practices & suggestions. E.g do you bulk convert all RAF to DNG before import or do it in LR? Do you keep or delete RAF files after conversion? For Mac users, have you automated your workflow using Automator or Services?

BTW the panicky threads here in recent days about DR, noise, etc were i.m.o. premature. The RAF / Iridient DNG files coming out of the X-T3 for my needs are awesome.

Thank you in advance for your responses.

Michel

1. The whole point of using X-transformer is to get rid of the artifacts and to retain more details in your photos. The watercolor effect is almost non-existent with X-transformer. X-transformer does the demosaicing. You can probably still get worms if you apply too much sharpening, though.

2. When I used X-transformer + LR I converted all the RAF's and then imported the DNG's in to LR. However now I use Capture One instead so no more need to convert the files since it does about as good a job as Iridient

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Poefolk Forum Member • Posts: 79
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?
1

Everaert wrote:

1. after converting a RAW file to DNG using Iridient, will Lightroom still create the same artefacts from the DNG as when using the RAF file, or does the DNG offer full remediation of the issue?

From my experience using Iridient X-Transformer, when converting a RAF file to a DNG, I no longer had issues in LR with artefacts or worms.  The water color effect was no longer there as well.

I love X-Transformer for Fuji RAF files.  There are many ways to use X-Transformer.  One of the easiest ways is to turn off sharpening in X-Transformer and Lightroom.  That way, when you start working on your converted DNG file in LR, you have total control over the way you sharpen the image.

I usually let X-Transformer add medium sharpening and low noise reduction and I turn off sharpening and noise reduction in LR.

It kind of all depends on the type of stuff you're shooting.  My settings would be different depending on if I was shooting a portrait or a still life or landscape scene.

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fpessolano
fpessolano Veteran Member • Posts: 3,483
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?
2

Icould you share some example of settings for who is new to it?

thanks.

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Vic Chapman Forum Pro • Posts: 10,694
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

Turn off LR sharpening in IXT. Sharpen in anything other than LR. Including Nik output sharpener, unsharp mask, smart sharpen etc. Anything but LR.

Personally I use the high pass filter in PS ( also Elements) on output after sizing only.

Vic

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GetaGrip
GetaGrip Regular Member • Posts: 283
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?
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ikaika777
ikaika777 Senior Member • Posts: 2,234
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?
1

Everaert wrote:

The lack of X-T3 RAW support in Lightroom at the moment led me to try Iridient X-Transformer based on the rave reviews in this forum. Paul Elliott's youtube video provided a simple comparison of Iridient vs Lightroom RAW conversion and how to install the plugin in lightroom. Spoiler alert for new users: using Iridient in LR is simple and seamless.

I have two questions for existing x-transformer plugin users.

1. after converting a RAW file to DNG using Iridient, will Lightroom still create the same artefacts from the DNG as when using the RAF file, or does the DNG offer full remediation of the issue?

2. as x-transformer Lightroom plugin users can you share workflow your best practices & suggestions. E.g do you bulk convert all RAF to DNG before import or do it in LR? Do you keep or delete RAF files after conversion? For Mac users, have you automated your workflow using Automator or Services?

BTW the panicky threads here in recent days about DR, noise, etc were i.m.o. premature. The RAF / Iridient DNG files coming out of the X-T3 for my needs are awesome.

Thank you in advance for your responses.

Michel

Use these settings that someone here posted before. Works great.

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logan ross Regular Member • Posts: 406
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

Hi,

There are 2 things that have made working with photos and absolute joy. Iridient XTrans. and Lumariver (creating my own Adobe DNG camera profile). There is rarely anything I have to adjust in Photoshop. The combo is that good. I had an X-T2, now I have an X-T3.

To your question about set-it-and-forget-it Iridient settings:

More Detailed Raw Process

No sharpening

Default color Noise (turn off Adobe)

Default luminance noise (turn off Adobe)

Let Iridient handle lens correction

Note that I have the Fitzgerald X-Trans ebook. I think the right settings are subjective at times, and I find my settings best for me.

Reminder, investing a small amount (for color Target and SW) to make your own Adobe color camera profile brings you over the goal line....BIG TIME.

JS Burnie
JS Burnie Veteran Member • Posts: 4,044
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

Thanks for the mention of Lumariver.  Looks interesting.

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dark13star
dark13star Senior Member • Posts: 1,871
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

I believe the recommendation to turn off sharpening in X-Transformer is based on the workflow best practice of sharpening at the end. However, I do very little to most of my images and Lightrooom and find it is ok to add low sharpening in X-Transformer as long as I just assign a color profile, crop, and adjust shadow and highlights in LR. I wouldn't do this for shots that really need selective sharpening like portraits, but I will when batch processing lots of vacation photos of landscape.

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logan ross Regular Member • Posts: 406
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

JS Burnie wrote:

Thanks for the mention of Lumariver. Looks interesting.

No problem.  There was a bit of a learning curve when I first bought Lumariver and made profiles for my X-T2 and Sony A6300.

I just made profiles for my X-T3.  I took me 5 minutes to set up, 1 minute to shoot 2 photos ( I make dual illuminate profiles for use in ACR), 3 minutes to clean up, 1 minute to convert the two photos to DNG in iridient, and 10 minutes to use Lumariver to create 4 separate profiles (each having a different look).

Then I am done! My profiles show up with the stock profiles in ACR. Nothing more to do unless a buy a different camera.

One note, light quality is important.  I use high CRI bulbs in my house (5900k and 3000k), so I didn't need to buy special bulbs.  I also use Black Velvet ($10 at Joannes Fabrics) to create a partial box around the target so that light bouncing off the floor, walls, and furniture doesn't distort the color of the charts.  Finally, I use the Color Checker 24 target.

Vic Chapman Forum Pro • Posts: 10,694
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

dark13star wrote:

I believe the recommendation to turn off sharpening in X-Transformer is based on the workflow best practice of sharpening at the end. However, I do very little to most of my images and Lightrooom and find it is ok to add low sharpening in X-Transformer as long as I just assign a color profile, crop, and adjust shadow and highlights in LR. I wouldn't do this for shots that really need selective sharpening like portraits, but I will when batch processing lots of vacation photos of landscape.

I think it is good practice to sharpen as the final step. (1) sharpening is applying edge contrast so you should make your other adjustments first. (2) Sharpening can introduce artifacts which may be further exaggerated by other adjustments. (3) Noise reduction is also best done before sharpening so that noise itself is not being sharpened and exaggerated.

I find that full size images often don't require sharpening once everything else is adjusted. However, when I resize for output or the web I use the high pass filter in PS (and Elements?) at lowest (0.3 radius) setting and vary the blend modes as necessary.

I believe the settings shown earlier in this thread are those I posted in several threads as a starting point. They still seem to be working well for me but it would be interesting to know what setting others are using in IXT.

XT3 files may require new settings.

Vic

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dark13star
dark13star Senior Member • Posts: 1,871
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

Vic Chapman wrote:

I think it is good practice to sharpen as the final step. (1) sharpening is applying edge contrast so you should make your other adjustments first. (2) Sharpening can introduce artifacts which may be further exaggerated by other adjustments. (3) Noise reduction is also best done before sharpening so that noise itself is not being sharpened and exaggerated.

I absolutely agree it is a best practice to sharpen last. I'm just pointing out that I haven't found any ill effects of using low sharpening in Transformer for things like vacation pics where all I'm going to do in Lightroom apply a color profile, and possibly crop and/or highlight and shadow adjustments. I might process a couple hundred photos this way for family sharing, photo books, etc., but if I do any fine art printing, I'll go back to the RAF file and use a proper workflow from the beginning and the setting I would choose mirror yours.

Cheers,
Rich

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logan ross Regular Member • Posts: 406
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

dark13star wrote:

Vic Chapman wrote:

I think it is good practice to sharpen as the final step. (1) sharpening is applying edge contrast so you should make your other adjustments first. (2) Sharpening can introduce artifacts which may be further exaggerated by other adjustments. (3) Noise reduction is also best done before sharpening so that noise itself is not being sharpened and exaggerated.

I absolutely agree it is a best practice to sharpen last. I'm just pointing out that I haven't found any ill effects of using low sharpening in Transformer for things like vacation pics where all I'm going to do in Lightroom apply a color profile, and possibly crop and/or highlight and shadow adjustments. I might process a couple hundred photos this way for family sharing, photo books, etc., but if I do any fine art printing, I'll go back to the RAF file and use a proper workflow from the beginning and the setting I would choose mirror yours.

Cheers,
Rich

Obviously, this is all subjective, but there are different types of sharpening.  Some sharpening is generally done early on (even Nik has a RAW pre-sharpener).  With Iridient, once I select more detailed for mosaicing, I have not found a need for additional sharpening with Iridient, so I set it to zero.  However, I do use an appropriate amount of sharpening in either ACR or Nik RAW pre-sharpener (but there is no formula - its all bases on the image).

My images are amazingly sharp, and I see no worms unless I zoom to 200% or more.

PF511 Regular Member • Posts: 173
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

FWIW, I've tried Irident multiple times, and found it basically no less wormy than Lightroom.  If you want less worms, sharpen less.  (I've also tested the Unsharp mask in Photoshop, and it's again no better than Lightroom.)

Color-wise, Irident does seem to do a very slightly better job of separating colors in small areas than Lightroom, in specific circumstances, while zoomed in 200%.  Not worth doubling the size of every file, in my opinion (and I want to keep RAFs, not DNGs).

Sal Baker Forum Pro • Posts: 11,490
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

I avoid using any contrast halo (USM) sharpening at RAW conversion.  But I do use a small amount of RL deconvolution pre-sharpening in Iridient Developer when converting the files.  for printing, I then use PS smart sharpen for creative sharpening as a last step on a alternate layer.  I've had no artifact issues with my RAF files.

Sal

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markam04 Contributing Member • Posts: 695
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

I hear mainly that the 'worms' are a foliage issue in Lightroom. Perhaps its the colour green that LR is having trouble demosaicing? Also, was this problem more noticeable in the X-T1 generation (16mp) of cameras?

I'm finding no problems with LR 6.14, but I do make use of the mask tool, (press Alt while moving the slider, so you only sharpen detail).

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owenb Senior Member • Posts: 1,096
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

Another vote for 'I really didn't see the difference at the size anyone is ever going to see my photos at' with Iridient X-Transformer. Also, couldn't see how to get the dngs any less than triple the size of the raf (which I would be keeping for at least a couple of years after conversion to final JPG), so overall I stuck with LR and better settings.

In LR I've been trying the 'high detail, low amount' for sharpening X-trans, but I'm, really not sure, especially once you get into higher ISOs. You have to turn masking up to at least 80 or 90 with that setting as high detail really brings out the noise.

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markam04 Contributing Member • Posts: 695
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?

owenb wrote:

Another vote for 'I really didn't see the difference at the size anyone is ever going to see my photos at' with Iridient X-Transformer. Also, couldn't see how to get the dngs any less than triple the size of the raf (which I would be keeping for at least a couple of years after conversion to final JPG), so overall I stuck with LR and better settings.

In LR I've been trying the 'high detail, low amount' for sharpening X-trans, but I'm, really not sure, especially once you get into higher ISOs. You have to turn masking up to at least 80 or 90 with that setting as high detail really brings out the noise.

Well, It seems that for some people, Iridient is the best thing since sliced bread, but maybe I’ve just got better at using the sharpening and noise reduction in LR, and that I mostly shoot at Low ISO values, I’m not seeing a noticeable benefit from Iridient. Before I used a X-E2 with Lightroom 5, and I think I remember there was a noticeable improvement with X-transformer, but I’m not seeing it now, and I am using a Benq 32” QHD monitor.

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Vic Chapman Forum Pro • Posts: 10,694
Re: Iridient X-Transformer DNG worms and workflow?
2

markam04 wrote:

I hear mainly that the 'worms' are a foliage issue in Lightroom. Perhaps its the colour green that LR is having trouble demosaicing? Also, was this problem more noticeable in the X-T1 generation (16mp) of cameras?

I'm finding no problems with LR 6.14, but I do make use of the mask tool, (press Alt while moving the slider, so you only sharpen detail).

The worms and the mushy foliage are two different problems. The mush is usually in foliage but also rocks and most often in the background or beyond the focal point . IXT seems to take care of that. The worms, once the file is demosaiced are a failure of LR sharpening. If sharpening is needed, I prefer to either use the high pass filter in PS or Elements. Smart sharpen or Nik Output Sharpener are also good chances. Just avoid LR sharpening.

Vic

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