13 Replies Latest reply on Nov 1, 2007 1:12 AM by (Ivo_Filka)

    Jaggies from sharpening

    Dennis 1111 Level 2
      I have been participating in a thread over at Fre Miranda where we have been comparing raw converters. One thing that has come out of the dialogue and shared samples is that ACR 4.2 produces some pretty severe jaggies on diagonal lines when sharpening is used. These jaggies appear even when used at mild, "capture-type" levels of sharpening.

      If the Alt-key previews are any indication, the jagginess seems to originate from the Detail slider.

      I know that one can get a little paranoid pixel peeping at 100%, but I did a test swatch at 300 ppi and they were still slightly visible. I can see how someone making even larger prints could find them pretty objectionable.

      Anybody know if there are plans to address this? maybe in 4.3?
        • 1. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
          ArrrBee Level 1
          I would suggest you contact Adobe and talk to them and send them any samples
          you have and a link to the discussion you were talking about. Since the
          sharpening in ACR 4.2 is ground breaking for Adobe I would guess that if
          there is a problem, they can confirm it and it can be addressed they would.
          Remember this form of sharpening is basically 1.0 even then ACR is 4.2.

          • 2. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
            Level 1
            Unless you quote the exact parameters and the source raw files, there's really not much to discuss. Anything can be over-sharpened. If you run the sharpening so it looks bad at 100% zoom then you are over-sharpening.
            • 3. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
              Dennis 1111 Level 2
              Hi Jeff. Eagerly awaiting the book.

              I don't know if this is kosher since I just signed up for this Adobe forum but here is a link to the thread at FM:


              You can see the jaggies pretty clearly in the side-by-side Jpegs (between the shipping containers). Tariq doesn't mention his settings but I downloaded his CR2 and they show up very easily. I used the "capture sharpening" settings that you mentioned in a LL post and they show up pretty bad even at those settings. As I said in the initial post, the Alt previews would seem to indicate that Detail may be the culprit. I have also noticed that geometric patterns start showing up in non-edge areas pretty easy, too.

              I would certainly appreciate hearing your take on it. I have seen your posts where you state that some of these things visible at 100% are not relevant for normal prints/images but these jaggies do look pretty nasty to me.
              • 4. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
                Level 1
                I looked at the thread in question..it's pretty clear that the DPP version is considerably softer than the Camera Raw version. Lack of sharpening in the diagonals in the DPP version would account for that.

                Look, any time you interpolate from a Bayer array CFA and run a demosiacing on the raw capture, you are going to get stepping at certain angles because the array is set up on a grid of horizontal and vertical photo sites. So, diagonals will always be less than smooth. The quest then becomes is it relevant? In the image posted, it isn't because even at a zoom of 100% the image is between 3-4 TIMES the size of the image in the final print. And if you upsampled to make a larger print the interpolation will soften the diagonals.

                The only way to completely eliminate what you are seeing at 100% zoom is not to sharpen at all, which isn't a viable option. If you want a sharp image, diagonals will have visible stepping at 100-200% zoom. The same stepping will be invisible in a print.
                • 5. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
                  Dennis 1111 Level 2
                  Thanks for taking the time to look and comment, Jeff. I appreciate it.

                  I understand your comment about the bayer array and I have thought before that it makes sense. The camera manufacturers put the anti-aliasing filter in front of the sensor precisely to hide those jaggies and when you apply sharpening it is not surprising that they start to appear again.

                  Your response about the unreliability of viewing at 100% doesn't surprise me a great deal because I have seen your views on pixel peeping in other threads and forums. I certainly understand your point but I am going to have continue to make some prints and do some comparisons to be convinced.

                  Anyway, thanks again for taking time to respond. I know this must be a busy time for you.
                  • 6. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
                    Level 1
                    Jeff> this is the case I also think it might be the effect of oversharpening. BUT please STOP telling people again and again that it is not relevant what they see at 100% (as in another forums about new dissapointing watercolour-ish look of 4.1+ images and many others).

                    Are you really not able to cope with the fact that professionals show and USE 100% crops on screen and often print at VERY low dpis? That Printing 10x15" is not by far the only way of using images? And consider, we might even need to crop and, alas, enlarge!
                    I understood that you might be in some way affiliated with or employed by Adobe (if not, sorry for that, I just gained this feeling). In that case these statements are even more shameful. On my CS box there is nowhere written anything like "Software for photographers, results are to be printed without any magnification at 300 dpi and higher, another usage not recommended".

                    Stop repeating that offending nonsense, please.
                    • 7. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
                      Level 1
                      >Stop repeating that offending nonsense, please.

                      Well, there's nothing I can do to keep you and some others from engaging in poor proffessional practices...so you can do whatever the heck you want to do bud, but it's foolish (and rather unproffessional) to take an 8, 12, 16MP image and crop it down so much that you end up using only a small percentage of the original frame. I personally call that bad photographic practice and I'm certainly not going to encourage anybody to do that sort of work (and neither should you).
                      • 8. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
                        Level 1
                        :) entertaining indeed. I'm no bud by the way.

                        It can be clearly seen that you are probably a photographer and not the user of the images. From this point of view i understand your comments but it is really pathetic if you think that everybody has the same needs as you have. The fact you don't (for example) care for details that are not visible in YOUR practice does mean that nobody needs them? Why all those megapixels and expensive sharp lenses then? Incredibly egocentric.

                        Requiring the best quality possible to suit different needs is poor professional practise? Reusing images for different purposes to meet the deadlines and save the money is a poor practise? I thought that this is the selling point of Adobe apps.
                        Did you ever design the art for screen, motion picture, large billboards, magazines?

                        You really think saying others "do not care for details, they won't show up if you print and display at 300dpi but no less" is professional practise in advertising? Pathetic.

                        Once again: PRINTING pictures is not the same as actually USING them. Do not talk about something that you do not do for living (using images). You can't be (and you are not) master of all trades.
                        • 9. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
                          Omke Oudeman Level 5

                          you are free to disagree but why not stay with the facts and please stop jelling.
                          Jeff (who clearly can speak for him self btw) is not employed at Adobe, he contributed a lot to the digital workflow and you only need to view his website reachable at his forum profile(which by the way is not able with you...) or look at Photoshopnews.com
                          • 10. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
                            Level 1
                            >Reusing images for different purposes to meet the deadlines and save the money is a poor practise?

                            If you are taking images shot with one use in mind and then using them for entirely different purposes (for which they were not shot) then yes, I would call that a poor professional practice.

                            >Did you ever design the art for screen, motion picture, large billboards, magazines?

                            Uh, yep...in fact my larges reproduced image was for a 46 foot by 140 foot (yes, 46'x140', really) banner ad for Motorola that was hung in the Olympic stadium in Atlanta...and while I worked on the image as a very high resolution scan, when I FINALLY got confirmation of the required final resolution of the image, they wanted the image at 46" x 140" @ 24pixels.CM (about a 68MB file).

                            I've done a variety of images for billboards (mostly Budweiser) and yes, I've done a lot of magazine ads...it's what I did for a living and I gotta tell you there ARE a lot of art directors and designers that may mis-use photography and don't have a clue about resolution and output but that never stopped me from making sure they didn't screw up my work.

                            I'm also pretty good at the art of uprezzing...in fact I wrote an article about it for Digital Photo Pro magazine: http://www.digitalphotopro.com/tech/the-art-of-the-up-res.html

                            And I'm telling you if you are cropping the crap out of a low resolution image and blowing it up way beyond the intended or designed resolution of the camera, then yes, you are not engaging in optimal use of photography.
                            • 11. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
                              Level 1
                              Jeff, you misuderstood me. I was asking about actually USING it, making the art. Not shooting for it. It is very different.

                              Omke, you are right. I'm really not the one who acts in flamewars, I actually happen to hate it. BUT many people are absolutely unhappy with radically new ACR 4.1+ processing and Jeff keeps telling them that (in other words) it is still perfect because if they will print it small enough it will not be visible (which is, of course, true). And they are still unhappy, cause they use smaller dpi. But we were perfectly content with 4.0.
                              I do not mind anyone saying anything but in this case I'm "yelling" just because it seems to me that Jeff has direct bearing (to lesser or greater extent) on the way ACR is going. But Adobe needs feedback from everyone not just from one person however good at photography. Adobe CS family is for photography, design, image manipulation, different people, different needs... Jeff doesn't accept it.
                              And then all Jeff needs for concluding someone is not a true professional is knowing that they need better detail than he does :) It's strange, mad and sad. I need it ten times a day and 4.0 gives me much better results.
                              Omke, I have no need to talk about myself, only my needs, as the needs of all the customers, is what is important. If anybody needs to find my neglected and outdated page, google should make it possible just by typing my name. But it is absolutely irrelevant how good or bad a customer is.
                              Don't want to be hijacking but have a close look at 4.1 results and some topics on image quality here. If I needed watercolor smearing effects I'd buy a digicam. Have a nice day, everyone.
                              • 12. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
                                Level 1
                                From the photography on your web site it would seem to me that the extremely limited depth of field you shoot with may indeed have problems with the noise reduction interfereing with the bokeh. If that is the case, I suspect you'll appreciate what Thomas has done with the next Camera Raw update...but I'll still say if you are cropping way into an image well beyond the usable resolution then you are doing an injustice to the photography.
                                • 13. Re: Jaggies from sharpening
                                  Level 1
                                  Jeff, that is a very good news, thank you. Although soft bokeh gradations are only one part of my problem. The other being strange "mazes" and watercolourness mainly in natural textures (along with a bit strange effects of the radius slider). Maybe its because they are noise-based in their essence (sand, stone texture, distant foliage, pavement texture). It was all discussed. Maybe the new changes will solve it in one go.

                                  I still have to insist that 1:1 onscreen, 100 dpi for posters etc should be usable resolution (sometimes/often it is needed whether I like it or not, really) if the lens used is good enough. The raw convertor should not be the bottleneck.

                                  Looking forward to the next update. I suppose you can't give us more clues about those new changes(?) :)