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Noel Carboni 23,524 posts
Dec 23, 2006
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Camera Raw 7.1 Columnar Color Artifacts

May 30, 2012 8:00 AM

Adobe:  For some reason you wouldn't listen when these problems were reported during beta and you went ahead and released the new version, so I'm not sure I should even bother, but here goes:

 

Camera Raw 7.1 introduces columnar artifacts in the red color channel (that I've seen), apparently as a result of the operation of the new half-baked defringing features.  I've seen this in a number of images.

 

Here's a raw Canon EOS-40D file and associated XMP with which you can reproduce the problem. Look at the red channel in the blue water of the pool.

 

http://Noel.ProDigitalSoftware.com/ForumPosts/IMG_5037.zip

 

Artifacts.jpg

 

Now convert the same file with version 7.0 (or 7.1 with the Defringe sliders set to 0) and compare the result.

NoArtifacts.jpg

 

Trouble is, without being able to use the Defringe (Purple/Green) features at all, and considering the Defringe:  All Edges feature has been removed, edge artifacts from the debayering process get to be unacceptable.

 

Let me spell out for you what you need to do, in case it isn't obvious:

 

1.  You need to bring back the Defringe:  Off / Highlight Edges / All Edges feature that you had in 7.0 and earlier.

 

2.  You need to fix this new slider-based defringe facility so that it doesn't do such nasty things to the image. I'd advise you to listen to Vit Novak's input on what else to do to it.

 

With BOTH of these things done, between the two one could actually hope to get an improved result over the conversions from 7.0.  Fixing the second alone won't cut it.

 

-Noel

 
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 30, 2012 8:20 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    Yes, these look terrible. But I cannot reproduce it with your xmp.

     

    Are you sure the chroma NR is the same on both image. I've seen such vertical banding before, but it was due tu chroma NR and was present since LR3.0.

     
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    May 30, 2012 8:27 AM   in reply to Dorin Nicolaescu-Musteață

    I can't see it either. Try it with a different camera profile.

     
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    May 30, 2012 9:43 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    The values were Purple 1, 20/70 Green 1, 40/90. I don't have your Tone and Camera Presets.

     

    I tried the above settings, Camera Standard, AdobeRGB and sRGB, and I couldn't get any banding.

     
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    May 30, 2012 10:41 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    ACR output parameters of ProPhotoRGB / 16-bit / Sharpen For Screen or Matte is where I see the vertical banding in the highlighted area across the pool.

     

    I would argue that is a very contrived example because the detail sliders on both sharpening and luminance noise are set to maximum and the sharpening radius is set to a minimum so the finest sensor artifacts are accentuated and no color noise reduction has been applied at all, so there are all sorts of pinkish artificial details in the blue water that wouldn’t be there for the defringing to bite and reveal the vertical banding.

     

    The lesson is that one shouldn’t do color-range defrining without first doing some color noise-reduction so defringe is working on the real color detail, not just the noise and sensor artifacts.

     
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    May 30, 2012 9:51 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    Either adjust the Purple Hue slider to avoid the blue of the water (use Alt/Option-drag on the left knob till the "black" visualization on the pool goes away), or use the local Defringe (with a minus value like -100) to protect the pool.  Yes, the Defringe tools can be used with inappropriate parameters and result in bad-looking images.  But used appropriately (in combination with other tools, like color NR, which would help this image), they should make the image look better.

     
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    May 30, 2012 10:52 AM   in reply to MadManChan2000

    MadManChan2000 wrote:

     

    Yes, the Defringe tools can be used with inappropriate parameters and result in bad-looking images.  But used appropriately (in combination with other tools, like color NR, which would help this image), they should make the image look better.

     

    Actually, inappropriate parameters for just about ANY of the adjustments can result in bad-looking images...

     

    I actually think it's the blue saturation pump in HSL and Shadows set to 93 that has to do with the pattern noise that's happening and less to do with the CA/Fringe removal.

     
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    May 30, 2012 10:59 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    Noel, do you mean that the settings applied to this example image are mostly your default settings for ACR processing, no color-noise-reduction, maxed-out sharpening detail, minimized sharpening radius, maxed-out luminance-noise-reduction-detail, no sharpen masking, and a wide-range of colors for defringing?

     
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    May 30, 2012 11:28 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    This is expected behavior, given your Defringe settings.  You can adjust your Defringe settings to make the artifacts go away.  This is not a bug in the multi-threading logic.

     
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    May 30, 2012 11:53 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    How color fringes are removed has changed.  It is not a bug nor a lowering of standards.  Your default settings are extreme (sliders are at their extreme 0 or 100 ends) and ACR’s processing is not optimized for such settings.  Hopefully defringing will continue to better.

     
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    May 30, 2012 12:03 PM   in reply to ssprengel

    Correct, with the Defringe tool being considerably more flexible than before, it is certainly possible to use the sliders to get to bad results.  (In contrast, the previous Defringe popup would never produce these types of artifacts, but it was also unable to deal with longitudinal CA, flare, etc.) 

     

    Our standards have not gone down.  Instead, they've gone up.  It is now possible to take care of (often severe) cases of chromatic aberrations that earlier versions of ACR were unable to treat.  However, to achieve those results, you need to use the tools correctly.  Incorrect use of the tools can result in artifacts and bad-looking results.  This isn't new.  Most of our controls actually have this property (e.g., dragging Exposure to -5 makes this image look bad).

     

    I'll look into your claim about the artifacts being intermittent.  This is indeed a possible error, though I've not reproduced it yet.  Perhaps you were adjusting the Defringe parameters, and in some cases you saw the artifacts, and in some cases you didn't (which would be expected behavior).

     
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    May 30, 2012 12:07 PM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    Adding a Defringe Mask slider, that works the same as the Sharpen Mask slider, as a way to restrict the new Defringing to sets of edges might mitigate most of the issues in Noel’s use case, and make it more like the edge-centric defringing from before. The issue may be that it is picking up the micro-contrast of the extreme detail enhancement which is more finely grained than the actual edges in the image.

     
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    May 30, 2012 12:19 PM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    You’re right.  I did my fiddling over my lunch hour at work.  Perhaps when I am free in the evening I can determine exactly which parameters affect things the most.

     
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    May 30, 2012 12:22 PM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    So the problem is intermittent, and the extreme settings were just a distraction.  Does it happen in Lightroom, if you have that?

     
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    May 30, 2012 1:28 PM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    What happens if you crop the TOP few pixels off the top of the image instead of the bottom few?  Do the details of the vertical pattern shift or not? 

     

    In your current example the fine details don’t change, only the extent of where they appear.  To me that suggests the pattern is coming from your sensor but the areas where the pattern is revealed is based on some internal Lightroom tiled processing that is different for each processing thread.   The fact they shift when the bottom edge of the visible image is changed suggests that the camera data is stored bottom-first, because the image is actually upside-down on the sensor.

     
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    May 30, 2012 5:38 PM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    I wanted to post what my PS-CS6 ACR 7.1 shows for the red-channel in your CR2/XMP so you won't think we aren't bothering to notice something.  If I look really, really hard, I can see some vertical bands in one area of the image, but not nearly to the extent your shows.  It might be nice to see another XMP that actually has the settings you're displaying in it, because what your had and what you screen-captured above are different at least on the Defringe color-range parts.  The screen-shot I'm including, here, is after extracting the CR2 and XMP from the ZIP and opening directly into PS-CS6, going through ACR 7.1 w/o changing any development settings, and using ProPhotoRGB / 8-bit / Sharpen For Screen-High, native resolution as the ACR output parameters:

    2012-05-30_192825.jpg

    BTW, I can't get LR4.1 to show me this sort of problem, even if I use Edit In Photoshop and it goes silently through ACR 7.1 on the way in, although there may not be any ACR-output sharpening going into PS-CS6 that way.

     

    A question I would have about your screen shots and ours, is how yours have so much more contrast to them.  Are you doing something in Levels to bring out the banding, more?

     
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    May 31, 2012 7:34 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    Others need to be able to see what you’re seeing for it not to be just a hardware problem with your particular computer—memory speed issues or something.  Selectively removing half your RAM might narrow down if that is the situation.  Maybe LR does have a bug with an 8-core processor that is less obvious with a hyperthreaded 4-core Xeon like I have. 

     

    Can you give the steps I can do to your image after applying the XMP adjustments and opening in Photoshop so it has the same high-contrast look and the streaking is obvious the way it is in the screenshots?

     
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    May 31, 2012 9:30 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    Well, I don't believe that "rotating image" is actualy rotating it. I suppose that only display of it is rotated

    At least I would program it that way

     
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    May 31, 2012 9:50 AM   in reply to Vit Novak

    The rotation is to prove the that it is not a sensor defect being amplified.  If an image rotated at 45-degrees still shows the lines as vertical with respect to the exported image, which is what Noel is seeing, then the artifacts are from the processing not the sensor,

     
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    May 31, 2012 9:56 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    Noel Carboni wrote:

     

    I've been around long enough and have proven enough expertise here that folks should take what I report seriously, rather than arguing with me.

     

    If what you had done was simply describe the problem and provide the source raw and how to duplicate it (yes I cen see "something" with the Defringe hues you used) without the *******' attitude (which while is not entirely new for you, recently you have been WAY over the top).

     

    Saying:

     

    Let me spell out for you what you need to do, in case it isn't obvious:

     

    1.  You need to bring back the Defringe:  Off / Highlight Edges / All Edges feature that you had in 7.0 and earlier.

     

    2.  You need to fix this new slider-based defringe facility so that it doesn't do such nasty things to the image. I'd advise you to listen to Vit Novak's input on what else to do to it.

     

    Makes it almost impossible to reason with you...leave the theatrics to the trolls...if you want to have a professional relationship with the engineers on ACR/LR, you need to show more respect and tone down the rhetoric...

     

    Eric is a bright guy. If you show him the problem and provide the proof, you don't have to ram this stuff down his throat, ok?

     

    Lighten up and back off...

     
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    May 31, 2012 11:47 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    Noel Carboni wrote:

     

    Hey, I could have just quietly dropped back to 7.0 and just have my own images be superior to those made by those using 7.1, but no - I chose to try to help Adobe by pointing out a problem to them here.

     

    When I reported this problem during the beta, I was clearly ignored.  When I reported it again after the release, I was argued-with.

     

    If you had simply reported the problem and supplied the raw file then I doubt all this drama would have occured...you were the one to rachet up the rhetoric.

     

    Just to be clear, your problem with the Fringing controls are different than Vit's issue regarding the removal of the CA portion of the Lens Profile. Not the same problem at all. The argument others have made for removing the manual CA controls largely was based on their attempts are removing both flavors of CA even though it really only worked on lateral CA removal.

     

    Your demands that the old defringe options are unlikely to gain any traction (pretty sure that's what Eric already said) so, the best option for you is to provide the examples and let Eric decide what to do...and tone down the rhetoric...it's not doing you any good at all.

     
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    May 31, 2012 1:57 PM   in reply to Jeff Schewe

    Jeff, I suppose Noel had in mind example I posted a few days ago with some remarks about defringe function and not example I posted several weeks ago. It was really complicated situation (not only fringing, but also different color temperature) so I didn't expect ACR to perform flawlessly, but defringe was misbihaving a bit too much (my personal opinion only)

     

    Noel, don't worry. In my last dreams, there was better defringe function in ACR, with additional slider about luminance treshold. Only that - when I clicked Camera raw preferences button, the window was displaying version 8.1. Then I woke up 

     
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    May 31, 2012 3:25 PM   in reply to Vit Novak

    Vit Novak wrote:

     

    Jeff, I suppose Noel had in mind example I posted a few days ago with some remarks about defringe function and not example I posted several weeks ago.

     

    But in that thread you indicated that the middle image adjustments was actually pretty good, right? And yes, you showed an example where pushing too far creates a band of a desaturated border which sucked. But as long as you don't push things, it worked ok, right? Did you compare that to the old manual slider CA and the all edges defringe in ACR 6.6?

     
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    May 31, 2012 10:28 PM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    I have not been a forum regular like many who contribute to this forum and others. There are some folks that have a great online attitude, then there are others that seem to be the Voice of Adobe, when clearly they are not. I have had responses "that will never happen", well from someone on Adobe's payroll, like a Product Manager,  I would be upset, but that is the official position, and I have a choice to either accept or find an alternative product. But when someone outside of Adobe makes a sweeping statement like that it does not sit well.

     

    Adobe has some magic products our there, Lightroom is a killer, LR4 was a premature baby and many folks got burned, CS6 well that was a great release, perfect no, but more than usuable but with some quirks. But Adobe has a long way to go to improve communication with their customers, when you get asked to send a problem file, you comply, then it goes dark. Was the file received? Who know, could have gone to the big bit bucket in the sky, but not acknowledging is breaking a trust, which in the world of customer support is a big no no! It also caused frustration to rise, and I can sympathize with Noel, this forum site is bad, the prima donnas are bad, some of the Adobe Engineers manners are bad, many folks automatically assume that English is the native language of everyone, and some poor soul trying their best to communicate, gets terse responses like I don't have a clue what you are saying - that's terrible, if that is all someone has to say, it should not be said - it's insulting.

     

    So everyone take a deep breath, respond to folks how you would like to be responded to, and Adobe, please acknowledge the people on this forum are really doing your job

     

    End of rant, and I am off to bed

     

    MK

     
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    Jun 1, 2012 12:36 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    Personally I find this whole thread shocking and deeply disturbing and it brings back unpleasant memories.

     

    What shocks me is the all-out confrontational righteous attitude that really dead-ended the whole thread in the very first post. I'm the only one who understands this and you are all way beneath me. Not in so many words, but the implication is clear enough. That attitude is never a pretty sight.

     

    No one's that omniscient. No one.

    I had thought I might have earned enough respect around here

    Well, yes, but mine was deeply shaken by this.

     

    Otherwise I'm not taking part in this. I haven't seen these defects, if they are there, and I have no intention to go look for them.

     
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