The Helicon Focus Method B result is very poor with the berry and stick merger problems of Method A but also a color pollution problem with some red component of the berry dispersed throughout the green background. This image meets the guidelines that Helicon Focus relies on; camera and subject fixed, and little variation in brightness and color. There was no movement in the flower during the capture of the set of image focus slices. Helicon Focus also aligns images as objects often change their size and position from shot to shot. Helicon Focus Method B is mostly well done with the exception of a green band as marked.
Helicon Focus Method A has good presentation of the image and no halo. As can be seen in the Helicon Focus images, there is texture in those areas available, it is simply not being included in the Photoshop merging algorithm. This is a tool that will allow you to create and edit images. Using the Helicon Focus Retouching tool makes short work of both these imperfections by offering the ability to select the correct layer and substituting those components into the final composite image. This function is especially important for macrophotography.
The Helicon Focus images have some trouble selecting the appropriate components of the foreground, resulting in a strange out-of-focus area in the lower right of the image. Users of Helicon Focus gave it a rating of 4 out of 5 stars. The image is cropped from the original composition, cropping off approximately 50% of the original canvas, to increase visibility of the processing results. There are no halos in any of the three results. I was unable to fix the halo using the retouching tool in Helicon Focus. The program can automatically adjust and resize images to combine the perfectly focused image Overview Helicon Focus is a Shareware software in the category Graphics Applications developed by. However, the background was illuminate by natural light which did vary some during the capture of the focus slices.
Cropped sections are shown to better view the halo and mismatch sections. The mushrooms were in a forested setting, with light filtering through the trees. The Photoshop composite has many locations where the software did not accurately assess and retain the sharp edges. In addition to subjects photographed outdoors, I conducted experiments indoors to eliminate some of the variables normally experienced in the outdoors; moving subjects and changing light. This is just barely enough to capture the spider and some of the web, but a side effect is a slow shutter speed and significant detail in the background. It was checked for updates 63 times by the users of our client application during the last month.
The Photoshop composite image has a number of processing errors resulting in soft rendering of some texture areas in the mushroom caps and poor edge presentation along the tops of some mushroom caps. There is some movement in the flower within the frame as the camera moved slightly for each exposure as the focus point was moved and buttons controlling live view on the camera were pressed. Photoshop does not detect all the sharpest section of the petals when combining the slices, and does not include the one dew drop in the lower left corner of the composition. Both Helicon Focus images have less halo and only along the lower edge of the hole. The Photoshop and both Helicon Focus processing methods differ only subtly in the way the render the surface of the droplets. The background lighting was uncontrolled natural light. Live View was used to determine the placement of the focus point for each exposure.
Helicon Focus Method A has good merger of the berries but has a significant amount of halo along the outside of the bunch of berries. Method B produced fewer errors in processing than the previous image but exhibited some green bands as well as the odd treatment of the out-of-focus background. The download file has a size of 15. For this set of focus slices the camera was set at an angle of approximately 15º to ensure that a single image would not achieve sufficient depth of field to capture all the droplets in-focus. The Photoshop result is very good, both aligning and blending the sharp segments of the three layers into a composite image. This composition of the sunflower offers more contrast among the petals and has several longer petals at different distances along the edge of the flower. This is a case where subject movement proved too much for any of the processes to handle.
I made these captures before I fully understood the process of making eth captures with sufficient overlap. It may be possible to rescue the Method B image with some Retouching tool and additional editing in Photoshop with layer masks. Helicon Focus Method B has a more severe halo on the stick and berry, and the berry in berry effect is more pronounced. Helicon Focus Method A has halos along every sharp edge, and the berry appears mostly translucent with almost complete rendering of the stick behind the berry visible. Helicon Focus provides two methods of focus stacking, and also has controls that can adjust the performance of the stacking algorithms and both Method A and Method B are typically displayed. This composition was set up to examine the relationship between an in-focus foreground subject overlapping an in-focus background object that has some separation between the two subjects. The Photoshop composite has a minimal amount of processing faults including a bad merger near the stem, and two areas where the highlight behind the edge of a berry is out-of-focus.
Helicon Focus Method B did poorly with both alignment of subject parts and background color. It is a challenging subject in that has low contrast throughout most of the composition. All three processes produced the halo surrounding the closest set of mushrooms, as well as a very soft rendering of the top of the mushroom cap. The Helicon Focus Method A image has a slight halo around the berry and along most of the sticks, and the berry itself has the appearance of a berry within a berry. Helicon Focus Method A results in a loss of texture detail on the mushroom caps and background, as well as a significant halo around most of the mushroom caps, with the exception of the topmost mushroom. This image is included in this set as it demonstrates one of the problems focus stacking has in general; it cannot beat the laws of physics. Both Helicon Focus Method A and Method B results were well assembled with the minor artifact marked on the images.
Taking advantage of the auto-align algorithm in Photoshop, the three focus slices were loaded as layers into one image, auto-aligned, then saved as separate images to be processed with the Helicon Focus software. The Photoshop result is the cleanest with a minor halo on the left side of the berry, but the intersection with the stick is more pronounced with sections of stick showing well into the berry. Helicon Focus Lite basic version : - Automatically adjusts and resizes images important for stereomicroscopes and macrophotography - Uses all available processors 1. The Photoshop composite image is very well handled except for the region where the side s of the berry overlap the stick. It is clear that Method A provides the best composite image detail. The latest version of Helicon Focus is 7.
In the cropped images below the lower right section of the composition is magnified showing how each algorithm handled the in-focus petals viewed through a hole in the leaf. The Photoshop image has a significant amount of halo around the edge of the leaf hole. It appears that the Photoshop algorithm has difficulty in selecting a sharp section where it overlaps another more distant object. However, it should be noted that all the image captures in this set have no variation in the illumination of the scene. While all three processes result in usable images, the Helicon Focus Method A produces the best merging of the sharp portions of the image slices.