Photolemur 3 vs Luminar 3/Essentials/AI Image Enchanter ?



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    As I did not receive any answers so far I went ahead and downloaded the photolemur 3 trial. Threw at it a sample image. An 12 MP DNG format raw out of Pentax K-x. After taking a fast glance on the first image popping out of Photolemur 3 I reached an conclusion that its not useful if the user cares about image quality at all. There are following issues immediately visible:

    • Limited resolution output image. From a 12 MP RAW you get approx 1200 x 800 pixel output. That is spectacularly poor resolution.
    • Some kind of artifact folding line right in the middle of the subject eye.
    • Heavy loss of detail (presumably, partly due to very low resolution)
    • Even out of camera JPG is a lot better quality.

    I'm a bit buzzled by several apparently at least somewhat positive reviews of Photolemur 3 which a quick google search yielded which sort of noted somewhat heavy noise reduction, but failed to mention artifacts and THAT heavy loss of detail? Were they even reviewing the same version I downloaded today?


    Here are the sample images, Top figure left - photolemur 3 output, zoomed in on 2560x1440 screen, right Luminar 3/Essentials/AI Image enchanter output. Both at 90% quality JPG export. Luminar 3 export at the same resolution as original. Bottom figure left - photolemur 3 output, zoomed in on 2560x1440 screen, right out of the camera JPG. Both figures have been screenshotted on the computer screen and exported from GIMP as jpg with 98% quality to get a file smaller than 2MB.

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    Anton B

    Hi Kert,

    I think this explains a lot:

    >What is the difference between Photolemur free and the full version?

    >Photolemur free version can be used for an unlimited period of time with the following limitations:

    >... 1200px maximum long-edge size for exported photos

    (From the Photolemur FAQ)

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    Then the free version is pretty much useless for determining if that software is worth shelling 99$ dollars out for, is it not? That said, this does not address the issue of a small folding artifact in the middle of the subject eye. Even if the heavy loss of detail and sharpness can be partly blamed on the artificially limited resolution.


    The 1200 pixel long edge output (in free version, on top of the added watermark) is not even good enough for web nowadays in my opinion, considering that 4k displays have gone pretty much into mainstream.


    If someone happens to have a better article at hand comparing the image quality of a full version of Photolemur 3 against what is coming out of Luminar 3 then I'm still interested in reading that that.


    On unrelated note -  2 MB limitation for image size on a forums dedicated to photo editing software, really?

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    Denis Kotsee

    >issue of a small folding artifact in the middle of the subject eye

    True, this seems to be due to an error in processing. Photolemur's algorithms are based on machine learning. Usually they work great but they're not perfect. Have you tried Photolemur with other photos? Are there artifacts like this on them?

    >2 MB limitation for image size

    For larger images I'd recommend using

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    To be honest, I did not try any other images after the first one which I posted. Being limited to 1200px resolution on the long edge on top of adding a watermark to the images was just too much in my mind.

    I have already uninstalled Photoloemur 3 as a result of relatively negative first impression of the program. And it really does not help that I installed Luminar 3 trial few days ago and managed to bump head first into all the issues it currently has which, supposedly, might be fixed sometime late Jan or early Feb. Trying two programs from a same company, both seemingly not working in acceptable manner (or in case of Luminar 3, at all, as soon as Library module is opened) is not making an overly positive impression.

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    Denis Kotsee

    I understand. Sorry to hear that you encountered issues with Luminar. We'll fix all performance and stability issues we've discovered so far in version 3.1.0.

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