Nik Dfine banding removal

Amin Sabet

Administrator
Joined
Apr 10, 2009
Messages
10,890
Location
Boston, MA (USA)
The only major issue I have with the image quality of my Pana GH1 is banding. With high ISO images, or any ISO images which have been underexposed and pushed, banding can be a real problem.

The best solution I have found to date is Nik Dfine. The photo below is a recent ISO 1600 (more like ISO 2154 according to DxOmark data) photo I made through thick and dirty glass at a local zoo. Please ignore the reflections, which were unavoidable and do not have anything to do with the GH1 image quality.

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


Even in this web-sized version, significant banding (both horizontal and vertical) is evident. I then used Dfine to remove the banding and added a bit of contrast in Photoshop. Below is the original, web-sized image again. If you mouseover, you will see the version after processing in Dfine:

<img src="https://farm5.static.flickr.com/4033/4466287279_6ec793d6e3_o.jpg" rsrc="https://farm5.static.flickr.com/4014/4467060964_02ced925d9_o.jpg" border="0">

This debanding process does not seem to affect detail. Below is a 100% crop of the above image. Mouseover to see the same crop after debanding and a bit of contrast enhancement.

<img src="https://farm3.static.flickr.com/2499/4466416355_18e8d32511_o.jpg" rsrc="https://farm5.static.flickr.com/4016/4467191012_38da6f6790_o.jpg" border="0">

Nik has a 15-day Dfine trial here. Highly recommended if you have an issue with banding. Unfortunately the Dfine plugin is not compatible with 64-bit Photoshop but works in 32-bit PS, Lightroom 2, or Aperture.
 

Amin Sabet

Administrator
Joined
Apr 10, 2009
Messages
10,890
Location
Boston, MA (USA)
Here's another pre/post example. This time at nominal ISO 3200 (ISO 4176 per DxOmark). Banding is very obvious. Mouseover for the post-Dfine version. In this example, there was no contrast enhancement in PS, so all the difference is attributable to Dfine.

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 

Amin Sabet

Administrator
Joined
Apr 10, 2009
Messages
10,890
Location
Boston, MA (USA)
Thanks BB. What you're noticing there probably isn't the banding removal by Dfine but rather the contrast enhancement I did in Photoshop. The banding removal is more subtle and best seen in the other examples. It's probably easiest to see on the out-of-focus wood cabinets in the last example.
 

Brian Mosley

Administrator Emeritus
Joined
Dec 15, 2009
Messages
2,998
Yes, the last example is very clear... good plugin, I wish that Lightzone would support the Photoshop plugin interface.

Cheers

Brian
 

Amin Sabet

Administrator
Joined
Apr 10, 2009
Messages
10,890
Location
Boston, MA (USA)
Thanks Brian. Here's the 100% crop from the left side of that last example (mouseover for Dfine version):

https://farm3.static.flickr.com/2681/4467271297_c7cdf49a73_o.jpg" rsrc="https://farm5.static.flickr.com/4054/4468045684_aaf923899f_o.jpg" border="0"><code style="white-space: nowrap;"><code>[COLOR=#000000][COLOR=#007700]

[/COLOR][/COLOR]</code></code>This tool can result in some odd effects. For example, if you look closely around the edge of the lamp, there is a halo effect inside and outside of the edge. However, it's pretty easy to strike a balance, and any untoward effects are usually much easier to clean up than the banding itself.
 

goldenlight

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Jan 30, 2010
Messages
1,923
Location
Essex
Real Name
John
I'm also a big fan of Dfine. This example wasn't taken on a :43: camera but was taken on an Olympus E3, which has a closely related sensor, at ISO 3200.

Before Dfine

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)



After Dfine

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


Here are a couple of crops to show the effect more clearly.

Before

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)



After

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)



Exactly the same sharpening applied to all examples. Bear in mind that the E3 sensor is now quite old and several generations below the latest :43: offerings.


The great thing about Dfine is that you can apply the NR selectively, using it more strongly in the under exposed shadow areas where detail is not so important, but less so in the correctly exposed areas of the main subject where it is not needed so much and detail retention is important.
 

Narnian

Nobody in particular ...
Joined
Aug 6, 2010
Messages
1,465
Location
Richmond, VA
Real Name
Richard Elliott
Whatever it is worth department, I just picked up last week the Nik Complete Collection package for Lightroom/Aperture on Amazon at 25% off ($223.77) which includes Dfine as well as several other add-ins (e.g. Silver Efex Pro). You also get a free download of HD Efex Pro.

So far I am liking what I have seen but have not used Dfine yet. High ISO issues on the GF1 have kept me from going above ISO 400 and I will see if Dfine helps. Thanks!

Amazon.com: Nik Software Complete Collection for Lightroom and Aperture: Software
 
Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Mu-43 is a fan site and not associated with Olympus, Panasonic, or other manufacturers mentioned on this site.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Copyright © 2009-2019 Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom