Perfect Layers – free trial download

onOne Software are announcing that a Public Preview of Perfect Layers is now available to download and try out, free of charge.

Perfect Layers is a standalone application that works on its own allowing you to create and edit layered Photoshop files. If you use Lightroom or Aperture and you’ve ever wanted to or wished you had the ability to create a layered file, then this is definitely for you.

Being able to take two or more files and combining them into a single layered file or taking a single image and duplicating it to create multiple layers and use blending modes to enhance them is very powerful and opens up all kinds of creative things you can do.

onOne have been working closely with Scott Kelby from the National Association of Photoshop Professionals on Perfect Layers to refine the feature set and get great ideas in general on Lightroom users need. Scott has been playing with early development builds of Perfect Layers and he (and the rest of his team including Matt Kloskowski and RC Concepcion) are very excited about the possibilities that Perfect Layers will bring to Lightroom users.

The Perfect Layers Public Preview will expire on June 30th, 2011. The final version, 1.0, will be available for purchase in mid-2011. At that time, Perfect Photo Suite 5.5 owners will receive a free product update that will include Perfect Layers 1.0. Suite owners and anyone interested in Perfect Layers can download the free public preview now.

Canon release new Final Cut Pro converter

Canon today announces the latest update for EOS Movie Plug-in-E1 for Final Cut Pro – the company’s custom-developed software application that provides quicker and easier editing of EOS Movie footage in Apple’s Final Cut Pro software suite.

Launching to coincide with the start of the 2011 National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show in Las Vegas, EOS Movie Plug-in-E1 for Final Cut Pro version 1.2 will make the importing of EOS Movie files even easier, allowing users to transfer files from any folder, without needing to mirror the folder structure on the camera itself.

The update also enables smoother importing from Canon’s EOS 7D, EOS 5D Mark II and EOS-1D Mark IV models, allowing users to import footage without requiring the THM file generated by the camera.

Originally launched in February 2010, EOS Movie Plug-in-E1 for Final Cut Pro is designed to quickly and seamlessly convert EOS Movie footage from Canon’s leading range of EOS DSLR cameras to Apple’s high-quality ProRes 422 codec. The plug-in allows users to convert footage at approximately twice the speed of Apple’s standard conversion, creating a smoother workflow for the rapidly growing number of videographers shooting HD video content on DSLR cameras.

EOS Movie Plug-in-E1 for Final Cut Pro version 1.2 will be available to download for free from 25th April 2011.

Adobe ACR6.2/LR3.2 Lens Profile – Nikkor AF-S 85mm f/1.4G

I have been using the new Nikkor AF-s 85mm f/1.4G lens, arrived yesterday. I have produced both raw and JPEG profiles for the lens on the D3X – these can also be used on the D3, D3S and D700 (profiles tend to be fairly portable between bodies, if done on the highest resolution option).

Download link:

Submitted to Adobe. This profile was made at 4m distance, and maps the lens at f/1.4, f/2.8, f/5.6 and f/11.

Very little correction is applied as the lens is already very good, but there is a small adjustment to distortion and vignetting, and some cleaning up of visible CA. It is still a good idea to enable de-fringe as well.

– DK

Adobe Camera Raw 5.7/LR 2.7 released

Adobe today announced the Lightroom 2.7, Photoshop Camera Raw 5.7 and DNG Converter 5.7 Release Candidates, available for immediate download on Adobe Labs. The updates add raw file support for: Canon EOS 550D (Digital Rebel T2i/ EOS Kiss X4 Digital), Kodak Z981, Leaf Aptus-II 8, Leaf Aptus-II 10R, Mamiya DM40, Olympus E-PL1, Panasonic G2, Panasonic G10, Sony A450.

Adobe encourages photographers to try out the newly added raw file support in this update and provide the product team with feedback on the Adobe User to User forum (

In addition, photographers can also participate in the Lightroom 3 beta program and try out the new features in Lightroom 3 beta 2 for free. To learn more and download Lightroom 3 beta 2 visit:

Lightroom 3 Beta 2 – the high ISO wunderkind

I’m not going to bore you with countless 100% clips. Just open this one file. It is a 100% screen shot of a tiled view of the same raw file from a Canon EOS 550D (aka Rebel T2i), taken at ISO 6400.

On the left, you see what Adobe Camera Raw 5.6 does with this file using no sharpening, 25 Luminance NR, 50 colour NR. On the right, you see what LR 3 Beta 2 does using the same settings (LR noise reduction has some further options – these are not adjusted).

When exporting the LR image to Photoshop, a dialog box appears saying you may need to install Adobe Camera Raw version 5.7! At the time of writing, version 5.7 is not yet available. But LR3 Beta 2 knows it exists… I used LR Rendering for this sample.

Click the image, open the full size screen shot. Or view it at

The 12,800 shot is by no means bad either. You could compare it with ISO 1600 shots from the first 10 megapixel CCDs.

Trust me, the LR 3 Beta2 result is superior both to the Canon in-camera JPEG and the Canon DPP processed result. Had I the time I’d post examples of every ISO from 100 to 12,800 and you would see something very special – the increase in size of ‘grain’ with each speed step, but nothing more. NOTHING more than a proprotional increase in grain size, just like film  used to be.

No oatmeal. No porridge. No hot pixels, no smeary watercolours. No colour blurring and luminance smoothing. Just neat, tight, virginal grain. Hmm. I should not have said that. Even so…

And another things – it works on everything. It works on old files, new files. RAW files from before the Ark got stuck on Ararat. Night shots taken when night shots could only make 7 x 5 inch prints. Nikon, Canon, Sony, old Minolta, Pentax, Olympus – download this beta, and you just discovered great pictures in the stuff you thought was rubbish because you accidentally used ISO 800 when that meant shaking the pepperpot over your soup!

Go download!

Tip: to use Lightroom use a front end, just set Photoshop as your editor, and after adjusting the pic hit Command-E – same as hitting the Open button in Adobe Camera Raw. Go straight to Photoshop, Do Not Pass Go, and do not (yet!) spend £200!

– DK

Lightroom Beta 3 v2 available now

Adobe today released an update to its Photoshop Lightroom 3 beta software, available immediately through Adobe Labs. Building on the success of the first Lightroom 3 beta, which was downloaded by more than 350,000 photographers, Lightroom 3 beta 2 incorporates feedback from the first iteration of the beta while offering users several new features and greatly improved performance throughout the application.

Though new camera support is not listed, we can confirm that Beta v2 will process Canon EOS 550D (Ti2) raw files.

New features in this release include tethered shooting support for select Nikon and Canon cameras, the ability to import and manage video files from DSLR cameras for a streamlined workflow and additional behind-the-scenes architecture enhancements for faster importing and loading of images. The addition of luminance noise reduction to the color noise reduction options already available in the beta helps photographers achieve overall exceptional image quality from high ISO images. The import experience and watermarking functionality have also been modified to reflect feedback received from the Lightroom community during the first beta period.

The input from the photography community has been extremely valuable and Adobe would like to thank everyone who has participated in the beta program. Adobe encourages photographers to test this new selection of features and provide the product team with feedback so they can produce the highest quality final product.

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom
Adobe Lightroom is the essential digital photography workflow solution, helping serious amateur and professional photographers quickly import, manage, perfect and showcase all their images in one intuitive application.

Pricing and Availability
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3 beta 2 is available as a free download to anyone on a Macintosh or Windows platform and is available in 12 languages. Visit to learn more and download the second beta. Feedback can be submitted on the Lightroom forums:

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