Unified Color is busy this year getting new (and we have to say improved) products into the market. This is a preview based on a beta version we got (Final Review can be found here).
The ideas behind the latest product HDR Express are:
- Simplify the HDR tone-mapping
- Improve some algorithms
- Perform all halo removal without any user interventions
- Speed up the process
HDR Express shows only a few options:
HDR Express Sliders
The first 3 options control the tone-mapping:
- Brightness: Controls what is otherwise called Exposure (and avoiding color shifts at the same time)
- Highlights: Compresses the highlight range to avoid clipping.
- Shadows: Compresses the shadow range to avoid clipping.
The other 4 options allow to fine tune the tone-mapped result:
- Black Point: Allows to set the proper black definition.
- Contrast: Tunes the local contrast. Higher values can create some nice "grunge" effect.
- Saturation: Like other saturation tools. We would like to see the more flexible option from HDR Expose.
- White Balance: Nice to be able to control the warmth and tint
We tried HDR Express on a few images and were quite pleased. The above image is a harder test case than you may expect. HDR Express performed very well (among the best we have seen) and this with a few slider corrections.
We consider HDR Express a very interesting product. HDR Express provides great tone-mapping quality (based on our style of HDR photography) combined with good usability and speed.
We will follow HDR Express more closely once it is released.