by Ian Burley
New DxO Optics Pro 6 sets new bar for high ISO RAW conversion and further extends optical fault correction
New features include an improved user interface to increase accessibility and productivity.
33% introductory discount through December 31st
November 3, 2009 – DxO Labs is pleased to announce that the latest version of its award-winning software solution for demanding photographers, DxO Optics Pro version 6, will be released in early November. This new version provides the best-ever images from extreme ISO shots and further extends optical fault correction, while increasing both accessibility and productivity.
DxO Optics Pro 6 will be offered with an exceptional 33% introductory discount through December 31, 2009.
A New Bar for High ISO RAW Conversion
While camera manufacturers keep competing for high ISO performance, DxO Labs now offers the image processing technologies which are critical to delivering top-notch image quality from such extreme ISO shots.
In low-light conditions, photographers must choose between using low ISO and risking unnatural flash lighting or camera shake, or using high ISO settings with its typical image noise and loss of colors and details. But now, thanks to a new technological approach, DxO Optics Pro 6 sets a new bar for RAW conversion: photographers can push their cameras to the ISO limits and even beyond — as much as one to two stops above their usual ISO settings! — and still get great photos without any noticeable loss in image quality.
“Advances in DxO Optics Pro 6 are able to significantly reduce the noisy color cast and the low spatial frequency color blotches that typically ruin very high ISO shots and more generally any photo with deep shadows,” explains Frédéric Guichard, DxO Labs’ Chief Imaging Scientist. “Removing strong low frequency noise involves processing pixels over a very large neighborhood while preserving fine details. To achieve natural-looking and sharp images, we leave some purely colorless noise in the image, producing a grain that looks strikingly similar to the finest grain from silver halide times.”
DxO Labs’ new de-noising technology significantly extends the effective dynamic range and best leverages the higher bit-depth that modern sensors provide. Cleaning noise out of dark regions of the images allows photographers to digitally relight them (e.g. using DxO Lighting tool). Overall, with DxO Optics Pro 6 photographers end up with many benefits:
- Great photos when shooting at their camera’s highest ISO and beyond;
- Extended dynamic range thanks to the ability to slightly under-expose their shots (with negative EV bias), thus avoiding clipping highlights and still minimizing noise in the lowlights;
- Digital relighting of shadows or dark areas of their images without adding noise.
Extended Optical Fault Correction
DxO Optics Pro has long been recognized for its unrivalled automatic optical fault correction based on DxO Optics Modules — laboratory-grade mathematical models characterizing the optical faults of each particular camera & lens combination which are computed for each focal length, each aperture, each focusing distance, etc. More than 1600 DxO Optics Modules are available today and can now be automatically detected and downloaded to the application — and this number is growing at an accelerated pace.
Also, for photographers who desire to adjust optical correction for a creative purpose, or to handle lenses that are not calibrated yet, DxO Optics Pro 6 now provides controls to manually adjust distortion, vignetting, chromatic aberrations, and sharpness (USM) for any lens.
As DxO Optics Pro expert users always look for more precise controls, DxO Optics Pro 6 features an additional fine detail adjustment which specifically deals with the preservation of high spatial frequency texture and details of the images — another demonstration of DxO Labs’ consistent effort to bring the best to the optical faults correction so photographers can obtain the most perfect images.
Improved User Interface
DxO Optics Pro 6’s user interface has been revamped to ease the first hands-on experience for beginners, providing them with the easiest RAW Conversion tool delivering best quality without the pain. For experts and professional photographers, productivity and control levels have also been improved.
New features include, among others:
- Workspace customization for easier access to the photographer’s preferred tools;
- Detachable and multi-line “Project” window for multi-monitor display and full-screen image preview;
- Correction comparison between several candidates (for selecting preferred photo rendering);
- Streamlined access to DxO Presets for increased productivity;
- Automatic detection and download of missing DxO Optics Modules;
- More ergonomic user interface for better accessibility.
Additional Camera Support
Both the Standard and Elite editions of DxO Optics Pro 6 add support to the Olympus D-SLR family, along with latest Sony and Nikon cameras:
- Olympus E3, E30, E410, E420, E450, E510, E520, E620;
- Sony A230, A330, A380;
- Nikon D300s.
Availability and exceptional introductory price
DxO Optics Pro 6 for Windows Standard and Elite editions are scheduled for release in early November 2009 from both DxO Labs’ e-store and selected resellers, and will be available at an exceptional 33 % discount until December 31, 2009:
- Standard edition: £ 69 instead of £ 99 (or a savings of £ 30)
- Elite edition: £ 139 instead of £ 199 (or a savings of £ 60)
All customers who purchased DxO Optics Pro 5 after June 1st, 2009 are entitled to a free upgrade to version 6. All other users benefit from the following 40% discounts until December 31, 2009:
- DxO Optics Pro Standard (any version) to DxO Optics Pro 6 Standard: £ 29 instead of £ 49.
- DxO Optics Pro Elite (any version) to DxO Optics Pro 6 Elite: £ 39 instead of £ 69. Prices include sales taxes and VAT.
DxO Optics Pro 6 for Macintosh is scheduled for release in early 2010. A Macintosh intermediate release, DxO Optics Pro 5.3.6, fully compatible with Snow Leopard, is scheduled for end of November. It will also include support for additional camera bodies.
• 2 GB RAM minimum
• 400 MB available disk space
• To process RAW images larger than 20 MPixels, a 64-bit operating system with 4 GB RAM is strongly recommended
• Intel Pentium 4 processor or AMD equivalent (Pentium Dual Core or higher or equivalent recommended)
• Microsoft Windows XP, Windows Vista 32 or 64 bits, Windows 7
• Universal Binary (G4, G5 or Intel-Mac)
• Mac OS X.4 or X.5 or X.6
For more information, visit DxO Labs’ website at www.dxo.com.