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Thread: HDR enquiries

  1. #1

    Default HDR enquiries

    1. Is it better to (a) shoot 3 exposures to combine, (b) or to shoot 1 exposure and then use photoshop to create 3 exposures to combine? My concern is quality vs effort.

    2. How many exposure shots to use to give optimal & minial quality?

    3. What should be the bracketing interval? +3 0 -3? The further the better?

    4. Which good software should I use for HDR?

    Hope can get these answered so as to find the sweet spot of getting quality pictures without too much inconvenience.
    D7100,SB910,17-50/2.8OS,105/2.8VR,85/1.8D,2xE-M1,O60/2.8,12-40/2.8,35-100/2.8,14-42,LX100

  2. #2

    Default Re: HDR enquiries

    Quote Originally Posted by sin77 View Post
    1. Is it better to (a) shoot 3 exposures to combine, (b) or to shoot 1 exposure and then use photoshop to create 3 exposures to combine? My concern is quality vs effort.

    2. How many exposure shots to use to give optimal & minial quality?

    3. What should be the bracketing interval? +3 0 -3? The further the better?

    4. Which good software should I use for HDR?

    Hope can get these answered so as to find the sweet spot of getting quality pictures without too much inconvenience.
    1. Shoot 3 exposures with ur cameras to get all the details, pseudo-HDR doesnt give u the quality of real HDR
    2. minimum 3, the higher the better, 5 or 7 is very good
    3. Usually 1 stop difference shud b sufficient
    4. Photomatix Pro is the one of the best HDR softwares currently, so easy to use and it has lightroom export+auto-import plug-in

  3. #3

    Default Re: HDR enquiries

    Quote Originally Posted by sin77 View Post
    1. Is it better to (a) shoot 3 exposures to combine, (b) or to shoot 1 exposure and then use photoshop to create 3 exposures to combine? My concern is quality vs effort.

    2. How many exposure shots to use to give optimal & minial quality?

    3. What should be the bracketing interval? +3 0 -3? The further the better?

    4. Which good software should I use for HDR?

    Hope can get these answered so as to find the sweet spot of getting quality pictures without too much inconvenience.
    To expand on the information..

    1. multiple exposures is definitely better than a single raw exposure.. You get less noise, more quality, ability to process further without worsening the quality. However it is just more tedious in terms of tripod usage but you can always do it handheld if there is sufficient light as you can just use photoshop auto align feature to match the photos.

    2. there isn't a fix number.. what you should know is to use the highlight blownout feature if your camera has one. You may just start the first exposure with the fastest shutter speed to get a totally no blown highlight exposure and just plus a single stop each time until you get 80% blown out picture.

    3. +3,0,-3 are the minimum but the further the better. refer to 2.

    4. Photomatix is good but on it's own, it's rather bad. You need to refine the hdrs in photoshop before it's aesthetically pleasing.

    Hope this helps you out!

  4. #4

    Default Re: HDR enquiries

    Quote Originally Posted by Draken413o View Post
    To expand on the information..

    1. multiple exposures is definitely better than a single raw exposure.. You get less noise, more quality, ability to process further without worsening the quality. However it is just more tedious in terms of tripod usage but you can always do it handheld if there is sufficient light as you can just use photoshop auto align feature to match the photos.

    2. there isn't a fix number.. what you should know is to use the highlight blownout feature if your camera has one. You may just start the first exposure with the fastest shutter speed to get a totally no blown highlight exposure and just plus a single stop each time until you get 80% blown out picture.

    3. +3,0,-3 are the minimum but the further the better. refer to 2.

    4. Photomatix is good but on it's own, it's rather bad. You need to refine the hdrs in photoshop before it's aesthetically pleasing.

    Hope this helps you out!
    for point 4, what do you mean by refine the hdrs in photoshop? You mean do hdr processing follow by normal post processing workflow?
    D7100,SB910,17-50/2.8OS,105/2.8VR,85/1.8D,2xE-M1,O60/2.8,12-40/2.8,35-100/2.8,14-42,LX100

  5. #5

    Default Re: HDR enquiries

    I typically take 5 exposures. If you want your picture not to be blatantly identified as an HDR picture, instead of having 1 stop difference go with 5 or 7 exposures of 1/3 stops difference. The tonal curve will be smooth and with careful play on Photomatix you can make beautiful HDR pictures.

  6. #6

    Default Re: HDR enquiries

    Quote Originally Posted by sin77 View Post
    for point 4, what do you mean by refine the hdrs in photoshop? You mean do hdr processing follow by normal post processing workflow?
    Normally when I do processing of hdr from photomatix I make them abit less contrasty so that I have more control of how I want the picture to look like in the final stage where I apply curves and layer masking in photoshop.

  7. #7

    Default Re: HDR enquiries

    1. 3 exposures to combine

    2. 3

    3. depends. +1 -1 would be normal situation. +3 -3 is too extreme

    4. photomatix pro
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  8. #8
    Senior Member giantcanopy's Avatar
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    Default Re: HDR enquiries

    Unless u keep shooting scenes that has a high disparity in dynamic range, most of the time i find a single shot will do

    Quote Originally Posted by sin77 View Post

    3. What should be the bracketing interval? +3 0 -3? The further the better?
    the bracketing depends on how much latitude u need for getting your realistic shot. sometimes 2 brackets 2 stops apart is all i need.

    ryan

  9. #9

    Default Re: HDR enquiries

    Quote Originally Posted by sin77 View Post
    1. Is it better to (a) shoot 3 exposures to combine, (b) or to shoot 1 exposure and then use photoshop to create 3 exposures to combine? My concern is quality vs effort.
    3 into 1
    Quote Originally Posted by sin77 View Post
    2. How many exposure shots to use to give optimal & minial quality?
    that would depend on how wide is the tonal range to be covered... 3 shots, +2, 0 -2, is a good start... from there, read the histogram and/or look at the over/underexposure readouts from your camera to see if you have effectively captured everything you want to capture plus abit of legroom...
    Quote Originally Posted by sin77 View Post
    3. What should be the bracketing interval? +3 0 -3? The further the better?
    interval should be +/-2... unfortunately, auto-bracketing function in many cameras restricted to +/-1 intervals at most, and if want to cover +/-2 have to use more exposures or bracket manually... +/-1 or less is a bit waste of time in that most modern cameras cover quite a few stops of dynamic range and just adding one or less is not really stretching the legs much, while +/-2 should still give plenty of tonal overlap between shots...
    Quote Originally Posted by sin77 View Post
    4. Which good software should I use for HDR?
    I only use Photoshop... used to it I guess, already own it, and it works for me...

  10. #10

    Default Re: HDR enquiries

    Quote Originally Posted by sin77 View Post
    1. Is it better to (a) shoot 3 exposures to combine, (b) or to shoot 1 exposure and then use photoshop to create 3 exposures to combine? My concern is quality vs effort.

    2. How many exposure shots to use to give optimal & minial quality?

    3. What should be the bracketing interval? +3 0 -3? The further the better?

    4. Which good software should I use for HDR?

    Hope can get these answered so as to find the sweet spot of getting quality pictures without too much inconvenience.
    1) (a) is the better choice. hdr from one raw, is going to give you a lot more noise. it is not that hard to shoot 3 exposures. the EXCEPTION is when you risk ghosting, i.e. a scene with say, an animal as your primary subject. then hdr from raw is going to be the choice, since your animal isn't going to keep perfectly still during the time.

    2. depends, but i notice, the less exposures needed, the better. so since i am a poor photographer without 1 million dollar worth of gear and a whole set of singh ray gnd.. only using china made tianya , which is roughly 2 stop.. to shoot scenes with the sun present and naked in the picture (i.e. not blocked by clouds).. i just use the gnd anyways.

    3. try to keep it 1/2 stop or 1 stop in between shots.

    4. photomatix is the best i have used so far. but requires further tweaking in photoshop to make it look "natural"

  11. #11

    Default Re: HDR enquiries

    i guess to some extend its own personal work flow too. i used at least 5. any lesser i end up with haloing something which i do not like after using photomatrix.

    and so my stops are -2,-1,-0,+1,+2. ...sometimes when i got nothing better to do...i will do until -4 to +4. but like what nightmare said, chances of ghosting would be higher.... things to avoid hdr are any moving objects - leaves, trees.... water can be made an exception
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