Free software and a cut-price lens
You have until November 3rd to grab a free download of a truly excellent utility for Mac OSX, created by DxO Optics Pro software team – DxO Perspective. It normally costs $19.95 (or local equivalent) as an Apple App store download, but they have made it free for a few days. It’s a fully working, standard version with no time limit.
Here’s what they say:
“DxO Perspective corrects all kinds of perspective problems, even the most complex. Using its Rectangle tool, when a photo contains two perspective flaws, DxO Perspective’s Rectangle tool immediately reestablishes a full-frontal view of the object — essential when shooting a photo of a poster or painting! In 8-point correction mode, DxO Perspective handles even more complex perspectives: the independent placing of horizontal and vertical guidelines provides highly precise corrections on multiple planes.”
We can vouch for that. Here’s the software window with a straight shot, uncorrected, Sigma 12-24mm zoom on Alpha 99 at 12mm.
Now on this example, you have a choice of adding points to correct both vertical and horizontal perspective (four indexes clicked/moved) which I have done if you examine the faint blue lines, and this will produce an extreme result:
However, for this example, you would normally onle correct the verticals and omit the four-square connections. This produces a natural result relative to any other correction method:
This is a 100% correction. DxO Perspective lets you reduce the degree of correction. Here is what they describe as a ‘natural’ look, 75% strength:
I preferred the result between 90 and 95% correction.
You may ask how this differs from Adobe Camera Raw lens correction perspective control, or similar functions within Photoshop (without using special plug-ins). First, DxO Perspective is a stand alone program and does not need Photoshop, it only requires a JPEG to select and work on. Secondly, here’s the result from ACR/LR type correction, kept slightly on the ‘natural’ side of :
The greatest difference is that DxO Perspective makes automatic corrections to the vertical aspect and retains the sense of height, at the same time ensuring that the sky is not compressed.
So, enjoy this free download until November 3rd 2013.
At the same time, from 12.00 midnight Eastern Standard Time on October 31st, B&H in New York announced a drop in the price of the Bower (aka Samyang) 8mm f/3.5 fisheye lens for NEX, MicroFourThirds, Samsung NX, Nikon, Canon EOS, Pentax and Alpha mounts – down to as little as $209 for Alpha or NEX:
Buy through this link and you support Photoclubalpha in a small way without paying anything extra yourself (indeed, buy any other B&H item after following this link and it will help us).
Here is some advice. The NEX model is basically an Alpha mount optical assembly with a permanently built in extension tube. We advise you to buy the Alpha version, as this is a manual focus manual aperture unchipped lens – use a NEX to Alpha adaptor, doesn’t have to be the expensive official LA-EA1 as this lens uses none of the connections. Then you have a lens which can be used on two systems.
DxO Perspective does not offer a de-fishing function but we’d make a guess that this would be a likely upgrade to the program in the near future and that’s why they are giving it away. DxO Optics Pro software itself is, after all, famous for the inclusion of lens profiles before any of the other programs (or cameras) got this facility.
– David Kilpatrick