View Full Version : Photomatix Essentials 4 and DxO Optics Pro 7

10-20-2014, 06:35 AM
I have seen many pictures done with Photomatix but my attempt to install failed just could not get Photomatix Pro to run. However the UK magazine "Digital Photo" has given away copies of Photomatix Essentials oddly after installing my copy of Pro started to work so I do realise they are different.

The Essentials has far more thumb nails than the Pro but less options to manually alter the image. The thumbnails do offer different sliders to adjust and my criticism is colour temperature is only available with some of the thumbnails.

However some thumbnails offer a very natural looking result and it will work with a single RAW image (will also work with Jpeg) so could be used as a simple RAW conversion tool I was very impressed.

Previous the same magazine also gave away DxO Optics Pro 7 again this seems a very good automated system to convert RAW files into Jpegs although personally I want more control and would use either RawTherapee or Photoshop CS5 Camera Raw 6.5 but of late I have heard how owners of new cameras are having problems in opening their RAW files and although both my Pentax and Nikon will allow one to convert in camera again it seems not all cameras allow this.

Programs like CS5 and Gimp do offer some selective tools to manipulate the image and there are some pictures where this is required. But to be able to with minimum effort to simply make selections has some clear advantages. Before trying Photomatix Essentials I would have never considered using it to produce a non HDR and non tone mapped image I would have never considered using it as a simple RAW converter.

DxO Optics Pro 7 yes that is what it's designed for but not Photomatix Essentials however I would class it now as a very good tool and so simple to use. Photomatix Pro is very different there are many adjustments and for the beginner it would be rather daunting but Photomatix Essentials is so easy to use.

05-28-2017, 07:37 AM
According to Captain Kimo's list Photomatix finally took into consideration all its drawbacks and corrected them. In 2017 it got the 3rd place, but Aurora HDR (https://aurorahdr.com) has been a leader for 5 years in a row.

05-29-2017, 06:31 AM
I will admit I often revert to manual manipulation with layers and masks to get what I want, it depends on the picture I am working with, I have lost my copy of Photomatrix pro now, still have essentials, plus picturenaut, RAWtherapee and CS5. I find there is no best, it all depends on the image, some times one works best next time it is another.

The problem with taking pictures in RAW is all pictures need some work even if only to click the auto fix button, there is no such thing as straight out of the camera, even if there was both the D_SLR's I use will allow me to manipulate the picture in the camera to produce a Jpeg from the RAW image, so it has still had some intervention. So all my pictures have had some tweaking, even if very little.

The problem is I use an old PC, it really does not matter to me what reports software gets when used on the latest MAC or PC, what I want is how does it work with a 10 year old machine. Paying 90 odd for software when I don't know how it will work is not what I do. I tried CS5 when it first came out, and had to revert to CS4 because PC not good enough, I do now use CS5 as the RAW converter in CS4 would not work with my Nikon camera, but I also now have a faster PC with more memory.