Nik Software’s Fabulous New Tools

Posted Jan. 2nd, 2011 by Daniel J. Cox

Nik Software first came to my attention several years ago with the arrival of Nikon Capture. Nikon included Nik’s special U-Point Technology in Capture NX2 and it was a truly revolutionary new way to make corrections to photographs. After several years of Nikon exclusivity U-Point Technology has finally come to the masses by way of plugins for Adobe’s Lightroom and Apple’s Aperture. It’s hard to believe how good U-Point Technology works. I use it mainly for toning down highlights, opening shadows and fine tuning an image based on dynamic range limitations of today’s digital sensors. The U-Point Technology tool won’t add things that weren’t originally there but rather will help me achieve an image much closer to reality and what the human eye sees. Take a look for yourself by watching this mini video.

U-Point Technology helps me accomplish a similar effect that HDR achieves but with much less computer time. Additionally, I don’t feel like I’m combining images which some people feel is pushing the limits of what an authentic photograph is. I’m not quite sure how I feel about that issue since really all you are doing is working with the limitations of today’s current technology. Jury is still out on that for me.

We’ve been using Nik’s sharpening software for three to four years in the studio for preparing images for publishers as well as our own fine art prints. Based on how happy we’ve been with Nik Sharpener and the amazing results we get from using U-Point Technology with Capture NX I decided to give the complete Nik software a try. It’s a massive collection of new tools for working with your photographs. I’ll be playing around with a number of  these new options and will report back over time.

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There are 3 comments on this post…
  1. Doug BrayOn Mar. 8th, 2011

    Dan, I have started using the Nik software, particularly Viveza and Color Efex on my Kenya images after I have made my Lightroom adjustments. I am really quite pleased with the results and how easy the Nik software is to use. Thanks for the recommendation.

  2. Doug BrayOn Feb. 27th, 2011

    Hi Dan,

    I just received and installed Nik Complete Collection. Regarding workflow, do you recommend doing the Lightroom adjustments first and then refining with Nik, or visa versa.


    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      danieljcoxOn Mar. 3rd, 2011

      Doug, I;ve been doing Lightroom adjustments first then taking it over to Nik. Not sure it matters but that’s the workdlow I’ve been using.

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