Have you ever noticed that you see much more details when looking at a scene by eye than when seeing a photo of the same scene? If not, it’s just because it’s too common to be noticed. Even having, physically, a lower dynamic range than a camera, human eyes see more.
Almalence Dynamic Range Optimizer optimizes the usage of dynamic range of 8-bit images to make the most of image details visible. DRO uses a technique similar to tone mapping, exploiting the peculiarities of human vision. DRO can be used either for optimal conversion of RAW images into 8-bit RGB/YUV images or for improvement of existing 8-bit images.
Same data acquired by the camera, different usage of dynamic range. Left: standard image produced by the camera. Right: result of Almalence DRO processing, close to what human eye would see. Details in shadows are revealed due to optimization of dynamic range usage. Noise is not amplified.
DRO is easy-to-integrate, extremely fast solution that automatically improves the images in 100% cases and can substitute HDR in most of cases.
Comparing to existing solutions aiming to provide similar improvements of digital imaging, Almalence DRO:
- is faster by the order of magnitude, which allows to use it in mobile devices, for both still images and video
- provides better quality, mainly due to absence of noise amplification in shadows
- improves both shadows and highlights
Left: standard image, right: DRO processed (optimized) image. Details in both shadows and highlights are revealed due to optimization of dynamic range usage.
DRO can be integrated in ISP, camera drivers or applications.
Some comparison examples are available on our site: DRO_examples_Almalence_site.zip (33 MB)
Demo application is available upon request.
Your camera captures the details, HDRAW makes them visible
The maximal dynamic range – the contrast between the brightest point and the darkest one – of a JPEG image is about 4,000 times lower than the range seen by a human eye. A camera captures several times higher dynamic range than one available with JPEG. This means that the range is either cut or squeezed in JPEG photos, therefore in high contrast scenes the details in highlights and shadows are lost, as well as the details of low-contrast objects. RAW images still contain the full dynamic range captured by the camera.
HDRAW utilizes Tone Mapping technique, allowing to preserve the details while fitting high dynamic range image into the limited dynamic range of JPEG or any other 8-bit format. Exploiting the properties of the human vision, HDRAW makes the picture and color details visible in all areas of the photo from the darkest to the brightest one.
HDRAW is a single-image HDR tool that utilizes higher dynamic range available in RAW.
RAW made easy
While usual RAW development process is a sophisticated task that requires adjusting a lot of parameters in a RAW converter, HDRAW is intended to produce rich detail images virtually in one click (ok, three clicks actually). It still allows you to adjust tone mapping parameters, but the standard presets are enough in most cases.
Along with HDRAW application we’ve launched HDRAW.net community for photo sharing, discussions, etc.
HDRAW is available at introductory price of $14.99. Registered users of PhotoAcute can use HDRAW for free – HDRAW accepts PhotoAcute 3 registration codes.
Imagic AG, an industry leader in digital image management systems for professional environments, has obtained a license to use Almalence HDR solution in its products.
HDR functionality is much in demand in professional imaging areas such as microscopy, medicine, science and industry. Being a leading provider of image management systems, Imagic has been looking for a top-quality HDR solution to be incorporated in their software. The key points were a top-level professional quality of HDR fusion and tone mapping and the highest possible processing speed.
Having performed an extensive testing, Imagic has chosen Almalence as a provider of HDR solution. Almalence was able to quickly deliver the SDK that is easy to incorporate into an imaging software and also to make custom changes according to Imagic’s specific requirements.
“Almalence is proud to be a provider of imaging solutions to the industry leaders,” Almalence CEO Eugene Panich says. “This proves our leading position in imaging technologies and outstanding features of our solutions.”
Imagic Bildverarbeitung AG is a Swiss company focused on the development and distribution of Digital Image Management Systems for professional environments. Based on a long-term experience of thousands of successfull installations and a strong focus on the market areas of industry, medicine/science and media management, Imagic is in a position to offer flexible and customer-specific image management solutions for all kinds of requirements.
Almalence Incorporated is focused on developing cutting-edge digital image processing technologies. Its business model includes technology licensing, development of end-user products and providing custom R&D.
Almalence, Inc. is has its headquarters in Austin, Texas, USA and a branch in the Republic of Korea.
This post is a press release and can be distributed and published with no limitations provided it is unmodified.
HDR Camera app for N9/MeeGo is available on our Mobile HDR site
We made it freeware in order to support MeeGo platform and popularize the best mobile HDR technology.
UPD: Published in OVI
A little improvement in PhotoAcute user interface: once you have fused a HDR image, you are automatically directed to Tone Mapping. This makes PhotoAcute HDR workflow a bit smoother. Tone Mapping functionality is still under development, though.
Mobile HDR taken from a moving car. Four exposure bracketed frames, fused and tone mapped on device. Almalence mobile HDR on Nokia N9.