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Review of Topaz DeNoise 6

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Review of Topaz DeNoise V6

Updated Topaz DeNoise 6 noise removal software


Keith Cooper has been looking at ‘DeNoise V6’, one of the range of image processing plugins from Topaz Labs, and written up these short notes on its use.

There are quite a few refinements and improvements over V5 of the software. For more discussions of aspects of noise reduction, see the original DeNoise. 5.1 review as well.

2019 Note – DeNoise has been replaced with Topaz DeNoise AI. There are a range of updates available to owners of earlier software. See Keith’s Topaz DeNoise AI review for full details.

Image noise reduction with DeNoise

What do you get with Topaz DeNoise?

The plugin installs as an ‘add-on’ for other software and provides a range of preset adjustment options and ways of fine tuning settings.

It also works as a stand-alone application. host software optionsAlthough I’m using Photoshop for this review, the software works perfectly well in conjunction with other packages, including Paintshop pro and iPhoto.

There is a fully functional 30 day demo version of the software that is available.

We've reviews of all Topaz software. See the Topaz Category in the dropdown menu at the top of the right column.
Topaz Studio is free and Plugins/addons have a free 30 day trial

The plugin

The plugin is applied via Photoshop’s filter menu (see the summary at the end for details of all the other applications you can use it with).

There is a lot of help and support materials available from Topaz, starting with this (optional) getting started information.

Try and resist the urge to just skip it – I test software a lot, and have learned that a few minutes spent at the start can make it far easier to discover the best ways such a plugin can work for you.

What’s changed

The principle changes are listed by Topaz labs as:

  • Standalone Application – DeNoise 6 now works as a standalone product and doesn’t require a host editor to work. Although it can still be used as a plugin through Photoshop, Lightroom, and other supported host programs.
  • Camera Specific Presets – DeNoise 6 introduces dozens of presets based on various camera profiles, with multiple ISO presets for each camera.
  • Batch Processing (in standalone mode only) – DeNoise 6 introduces batch processing, allowing you to process a whole folder of images at once. Note that batch processing is only available in the standalone version, not the plugin version.
  • Support for High DPI (4k) monitors in Windows 7/8/10

Using DeNoise

Even if you’re just updating from V5, take a while to have a look at the info. available when the software starts up. It’s all too easy to carry on as before and miss really useful new stuff. I’m not a natural manual reader, but with new stuff I want to see what’s new.

startup options for denoise

The screen layout is similar to before, but the range of preset camera options and noise adjustment settings have been expanded.

If your camera is supported, try those settings first – then you can tweak settings as best for any individual image.

denoise user interface

Here’s the interface of the standalone application – you can just drop an image on to it to see what it looks like.

basic startup screen for denoise standalone app

I’m trying out a test shot I created when looking at the older version of DeNoise, when I wondered just how bad the images from my then new Canon 100D were at ISO 25600.

Here’s the result viewed in Adobe camera RAW, with all noise reduction and sharpening turned off.

I’d note that if you are processing RAW files that have been converted, then it’s worth checking any software like DeNoise with Noise Reduction (NR) turned off.

Try a range of files when testing, since it’s not always possible to guess which files will work better with different settings.

noisy source image

I’m having a look at an early version of the software, the shipping version will have many more cameras directly supported.

It helps to have a preset to start from, but it’s not essential, and you can save your own favourites.

camera preset collection

The controls are fluid and updates appear quickly, such as in this 100% view of part of the X-Rite ColorChecker Card SG.

noise reduction settings

There are further adjustments covering detail in the image and also how removal of banding is addressed.

settings affecting image detail

I note the ability to -add- some ‘grain’ – I’ve long used fake film grain to make cleaned up high ISO images look a little less flat.

You can look at the image in a number of way, such as this view, only showing image luminance.

luminance only image view

Here’s just the colour information.

colour only image view

For such a high ISO setting, the picture tidies up well, but it would be very rarely I’d think of using ISO25600 on the 100D.

high ISO image processed

A lower ISO shot (6400) taken on a rainy night after we’d had new LED street lighting installed outside our house.

Note the orange glow of sodium street lights elsewhere in the city.

night view at 6400 ISO

The original image shows quite a bit of noise (and the much better colour rendition of the new lighting)

noisy original image

A light clean with DeNoise (images at 100%) – note that I’ve not applied any sharpening, in the RAW conversion, so there is a bit of softness.

reduced noise version of photo

Conclusions

An effective update to the plugin, boosting performance and making the software package easier to use.

I don’t ever shoot JPEG images and don’t use a phone camera, so perhaps my images are not entirely where you would get the greatest use for a standalone noise reduction application, but the features really do give a lot of choices how you want you image to be processed.

Is noise a problem in your photos? This could help

There is a fully functional 30 day demo version of the software that is available.

Summary

Updated Software plugin for a wide variety of image processing functions.

Comprehensive examples, tutorials and support cover usage. Can work with a wide range of ‘hosting’ software.

New: Topaz Studio - complete editing package (info)

Buying Topaz Labs plugins:  Direct from Topaz [check link for deals]

Individual plugins are downloadable (30 day free trial) - we have reviews of all of the Topaz plugins.

If you buy any software via this link (bundle or individual plugin), then we get a small fee (it costs you no more). Neither Keith Cooper nor Northlight Images has any other connection with Topaz labs whatsoever. We believe strongly in making any affiliate links like this clear. 
Use our 15% discount code 'Northlight' for an additional discount on some promotions.

Latest Topaz Texture Effects 2 [Texture Effects 2 review]
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System Requirements (from Topaz Labs)

  • Mac OS X 10.8 or higher
  • Windows* 7/8/10 x64 + Open GL 3.2

*Does not support Windows 32bit

There is more information at Topaz Labs

Keith’s Topaz reviews

We've reviews of all Topaz software. See the Topaz Category in the dropdown menu at the top of the right column.
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