Exposure X3 & X4 by Alien Skin Discussion/Help Thread

Zee

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Thanks Zee....
I think I have a fair handle on it. Plus, I used some extra time these last two days to dig a little deeper, and I do believe it is a very good substitute for LR6. I also own Affinity Photo, and have done enough work with it to know it can take the place of Photoshop. So I should be set, right?

But no....I can't stop trying to use On1 Photo Raw.
LOL...Every time I say I am done with it, it sucks me back in with some new feature, like the AI Masking thing, and everything is great....Until boom, something goes wrong.

I just need to pick a lane.
Stop using LR just because it is familiar.
Stop using On1 because I can't trust it.
Commit to X4 and Affinity...
Done!
Hahahha - the fun of the consumer game! My problem the subscriptions is, really, that most consumers don't need it. I didn't need to update to X4, and would have happily kept using it for years to come (as I did with Lightroom 5 - which I think was the last version I used).

I do think the subscription model makes sense in a commercial environment, though. Whether it be Adobe CC, Microsoft and their Office 365 package - in a business environment, where these things are tax deductible, and the payments are spread out to help with cashflow...

What it shows me, though, is that the regular consumer doesn't really matter to those corporations, each Joe average user is simply a bonus tot he bottom line.

As far Affinity, I've been enjoying the iOS version enough that I may buy it for OSX, too.

I've decided to not try On1 and the others, I don't need to confuse myself!!!

As the saying goes - a builder with two levels is never sure.

Z...
 

Bob T

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So three weeks ago I said I needed to give this software a real chance, and I have.

Used it for most of the photos I processed since then, which was only a few dozen, but it was enough to see a usable workflow.
I found it quite capable, and after rearranging the right hand pane, it is a simple top down flow.
Dual monitor capability is a big plus for me.
I found the shadow recovery is very weak, compared to LR or ON1, but have found a couple workarounds.
Still using LR6 to catalog, but once X4.5 comes out, with the import preview, I can let that go.
Combined with Affinity Photo, I think this will work.

To be fair, the most difficult part was not reaching for On1 for some photos. I love their Dynamic Contrast.
 

Usemygoodeye

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I'm pleased to find a thread on Exposure X4. I've been using ON1 Photo Raw off and on for a few years - and again I find myself not happy with it for reasons that don't matter here.

I downloaded a trial of X4 last week and have been using it for several days. I do really like the work flow. Much smoother than what I was used to. The results from X4 are very nice as well - much more of a natural look than I had been getting elsewhere. Adjustment brushes and healing / cloning are a bit clunky but I can work with it.
After only a few days, I decided to purchase a license.
 
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I'm pleased to find a thread on Exposure X4. I've been using ON1 Photo Raw off and on for a few years - and again I find myself not happy with it for reasons that don't matter here.

I downloaded a trial of X4 last week and have been using it for several days. I do really like the work flow. Much smoother than what I was used to. The results from X4 are very nice as well - much more of a natural look than I had been getting elsewhere. Adjustment brushes and healing / cloning are a bit clunky but I can work with it.
After only a few days, I decided to purchase a license.
Welcome aboard EX4... the workflow is actually what first attracted me to Exposure. It is smooth isn’t it.

Since I started using EX3 and now EX4 I have been finding more things that it does really well, and really appreciate the way they listen to users, respond to us, and incorporate some of our needs and wants into updates whenever they can.

Looking forward to you sharing any tips and discoveries you can now that you’re an EX4 user!
 

Usemygoodeye

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So far after only a few days.... about the only thing I miss from ON1 is a 'sunshine' filter. They do have some nice glow effects.
This was originally processed in ON1PR2019:

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And this was reprocessed with Exposure X4
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I'll have to continue using X4 to see if this is possible. Not a deal breaker though. I have other tools for creative effects.
 

Usemygoodeye

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Ah ha !

Went back into EX4 and found the "Glamour Shot" Preset under the Focus panel.
That gives just enough 'glow' to make it interesting.

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Zee

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So far after only a few days.... about the only thing I miss from ON1 is a 'sunshine' filter. They do have some nice glow effects.
This was originally processed in ON1PR2019:

View attachment 730964

And this was reprocessed with Exposure X4
View attachment 730965

I'll have to continue using X4 to see if this is possible. Not a deal breaker though. I have other tools for creative effects.
That seems pretty simple to replicate - use the brush to make a radial shape, adjust to size, work out the feather and outer circle size, place in correct position, invert, and then adjust exposure. Unless I am missing something? I do that for my coffee photos that we post on Spacebook for my cafe all the time.

On a side note, I'll give that "glamour" preset a try...
Z...
 

Usemygoodeye

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I see that Alien Skin has posted two updates for the new X4.5 program. I got the first update and had some issues when closing the app - that was apparently why they posted an update. So, X4.5.3 is the current version.

I tried the import from card function - very well done and QUICK. I had been copying photos from the card to a folder and moving them about manually before. After that process, the culling gets done in X4.5. I was using another app to view and cull larger imports, but it seems that X4.5 is well suited to replace that app as well.

And apparently LUTs are a thing now.... not presets, but they can be tweaked to suit the look one might be going for. I don't generally use them.

These two photos were shot yesterday at a local preserve. The entire work flow was done in X4.5.

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@Usemygoodeye good to hear about your feelings about the import upgrade.

I’ve been asking about selective import since I moved over to Exposure 3. Now in 4.5 I believe it’s one of the most important features they could have added... and did. I haven’t had a chance to try it out with any large shoots... but yesterday I attended an sporting event where I was in burst mode most of the time and truly look forward to running selective import through its paces.

Will let you know on that one.

:confused-53: I hadn’t really used LUT’s before but did download a number as part of other packages when I was using LR... from the sounds of it you can use a LUT regardless of which app you originally bought it for? Dunno... more testing at this end. I’m also not sure, from how they describe their use, how they differ in principle from Presets? Both sound like a set of ‘canned’ changes to help quicken a workflow and both will, or should, allow you to make those changes in the various layers/tools.
 

Usemygoodeye

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Correct about the LUTs. I imported a large collection of them from ON1's package. From what I could gather, LUTs only seem to have different color ranges. Other changes like WB, or clarity, etc., are not changed. Those attributes can be changed after the LUT has been applied. Anthony Morganti has a series of good videos on YouTube that go into more detail .
 
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Correct about the LUTs. I imported a large collection of them from ON1's package. From what I could gather, LUTs only seem to have different color ranges. Other changes like WB, or clarity, etc., are not changed. Those attributes can be changed after the LUT has been applied. Anthony Morganti has a series of good videos on YouTube that go into more detail .
Thanks for the quick reply. That makes sense.
Basically, in my EX4 workflow I retain a base layer (the original) and never touch it with any adjustments. After viewing an uncountable number of videos on photo editing I moved to working in layers and have been the better off for it (imo anyway).

So when I apply a preset it is done on a layer somewhere above the base level? Would Morganti recommend this same or is this how LUT’s work? Thanks for the recommend on him btw... will have to dive into his videos a little later when I’ve got some more time.
 

Mack

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Speaking of LUTs, I wonder if or when On1 Exposure will support the x-rite ColorChecker Passport, either the older version 1 or newer version 2 cards (Fwiw, they also updated the ColorChecker Passport software to version 2 this past week.)?

I learned DxO PhotoLab 2 recently introduced it into their program's workflow, although support for the E-M1X will not be out until June, or so they say. Lightroom, Capture One, and Blackmagic's Davinci Resolve video editing software already do. Makes it easy to correct color and exposure by hitting one button to fix the RAW file.

Time to write On1.
 

Usemygoodeye

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I've been all in with Exposure X4.5 for the last month. This program makes editing a bit less of a chore :)
I don't often edit photos as monochrome, but this program does have an abundance of film emulations. So, yesterday I went to my local Heritage Village and snapped away in the summer heat....
Here are a few examples:

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betamax

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I'm having some issues with the exif not showing on resized cropped images on this board with x4 (though the exif shows up with the mozilla exif viewer plugin)... I wonder if this one will work...
P9080061.jpg
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Nope... this was shot with the E-M1.2 and 40-150R.
 
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Alien Skin recently changed their name to Exposure. Guess it makes sense but I kinda liked the name Alien Skin.

regardless, it’s still a great product, and they have now upgraded to Exposure X5. I just upgraded yesterday and it went smoothly, as I suspected.

They are starting to add to their video tutorial library with tuts on some of the new features. I’m just starting to go through some of them now.

For others who use this great app, what are some of the new features you like? I’m just diving into the colour masking now and it looks very useful indeed,
 

Aushiker

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I changed my email address with Adobe from my work email to my personal one and that seems to have cancelled my subscription so a good time as any to have look at the alternatives again. I have played a bit with Capture One but couldn't get excited about it. Exposure X5 looks promising in terms of the DAM and I have downloaded the trial copy to have a play.

I do have a couple of quick questions:

[1] I assume there is no way within the program to add GPS coordinates to images, i.e., Lightroom's mapping feature. So does anyone do this and if yes please do share your workflow.
[2] For those that upload to Flickr, again I assume there is no built feature like the Lightroom's plug-in so again I am interested in one's work flow.

Currently importing my Lightroom catalog so will have a play once that is finished.

Thanks
 
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I changed my email address with Adobe from my work email to my personal one and that seems to have cancelled my subscription so a good time as any to have look at the alternatives again. I have played a bit with Capture One but couldn't get excited about it. Exposure X5 looks promising in terms of the DAM and I have downloaded the trial copy to have a play.

I do have a couple of quick questions:

[1] I assume there is no way within the program to add GPS coordinates to images, i.e., Lightroom's mapping feature. So does anyone do this and if yes please do share your workflow.
[2] For those that upload to Flickr, again I assume there is no built feature like the Lightroom's plug-in so again I am interested in one's work flow.

Currently importing my Lightroom catalog so will have a play once that is finished.

Thanks
Hi Andrew
Using the Quick Export feature you should be able to export to Flickr both individually and by batches.
Not sure about GPS... will take a look and see what I can find. There is a MetaData section but I’m not sure if it includes the option to import GPS Data.
 

Aushiker

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Hi Andrew
Using the Quick Export feature you should be able to export to Flickr both individually and by batches.
Not sure about GPS... will take a look and see what I can find. There is a MetaData section but I’m not sure if it includes the option to import GPS Data.
Thanks for the replies. Sorted the exporting aspect. A bit more effort than Lightroom (built into LIghtroom] but not a deal breaker by any means. With respect to the location coordinates I have installed GeoSetter to add the coordinates to the image metadata. I haven't checked yet but assume the images will export from Exposure X5 with the location data intact.

One thing I haven't been able to find any information on is the optimate performance settings in Edit -> Preferences -> Performance. Interested in what others have their settings as.

Also downloaded the trials of Snap Art 4 and Blow Up 3 to give them a go.
 
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