DxO Labs has announced DxO Optics Pro v5, the latest version of its flagship software
application for automatic image quality enhancement for Digital SLR camera users.
Due to be released later in the fall, DxO Optics Pro v5 is said to set a new standard
for image quality with its new RAW conversion engine. All purchasers of DxO Optics
Pro v4.5 on or after August 1st, 2007 are eligible for a free upgrade to DxO Optics
DxO Optics Pro v5's RAW conversion engine includes a completely new demosaicing
algorithm which produces images with much more detail and fewer artifacts. Demosaicing
is the crucial step of RAW conversion during which the camera's image sensor
pattern is reconstructed as a visible image for the human eye. Inherently, demosaicing
involves trade-offs between image sharpness, details, noise, processing time and
conversion artifacts. The quality of demosaicing determines the amount of detail
and artifacts in the final image. These artifacts, particularly visible and unsightly,
are compounded at high ISO settings and are in large part responsible for what
is deemed the unnatural look of digital images.
The other key characteristic of DxO Optics Pro's new RAW Engine is that
instead of applying noise reduction techniques after demosaicing, a newly-developed
noise reduction is performed upfront, before noise has a chance to be amplified
by the RAW conversion process and absorb important fine details.
Combined with other proprietary techniques, DxO Optics Pro v5's new RAW
Engine is said by the maker to produce both the most detailed and most natural
looking images yet -- its very fine and homogenous grain translating into
subtle shades and textures. DxO Optics Pro v5's new RAW conversion engine
has been fine-tuned and optimized with the rest of the software's automated
image enhancement features (optical corrections, color rendering, exposure optimization,
highlight recovery, etc.) to produce best-in class results.