Software Power Tools From PMA 2007; Plug-Ins & Presets, Oh My! Page 2

Nik Software's ( update to its noise reduction tool Dfine is more of a complete reimagining than merely a simple upgrade. Dfine 2.0 now includes Nik's patented U Point technology for selective editing control and a newly redesigned user interface. Dfine 2.0 addresses digital image noise with a revamped image-processing core to provide noise reduction while maintaining detail. Its new auto camera (no more profiles to download and install) profiling system alone is worth the upgrade cost of $99.95. Noise reduction can be applied globally or selectively using various controls, including Control Points that let you selectively adjust the amount of contrast (luminance) and color (chrominance) noise reduction. You can use an eyedropper tool to select colors and reduce noise based on a range of colors, or use brushes to selectively apply noise reduction. That's why Dfine supports pressure-sensitive features optimized for Wacom's Pen Tablets. Registered owners qualify for upgrade pricing, while anyone who purchased Dfine 1.0 after February 1, 2007 will receive a free upgrade.

The announcement of Adobe's ( Photoshop Lightroom coincides with the availability of Camera Raw 3.7 that now supports over 150 cameras, including the Nikon D40 and Pentax K10D. With this update to Camera Raw it's possible to apply default image settings specific to a camera serial number and a camera ISO setting. The default settings, including global auto preference, are now shared with Adobe's DNG Converter software. Adobe's Camera Raw 3.7 is available as a free download from Photoshop CS3 uses the new improved ACR 4.0.

onOne Software, Inc. announced the availability of a new and free product developed in cooperation with Jack Davis, author of the How to Wow with Photoshop book series. PhotoPresets for Adobe Lightroom are a collection of 20 custom presets that allow photographers to apply adjustment settings when importing photos into Lightroom or at any time within the Library or Develop modules. PhotoPresets for Adobe Lightroom are available from onOne Software's website (

onOne Software also announced PhotoFrame Pro 3.1 public beta for registered users of PhotoFrame Pro 3 and prospective beta testers can register at PhotoFrame Pro 3 lets you create gorgeous edge effects, including a selection of border and edge effects such as drop shadows, bevel, glow, border, and texture. The beta release supports 16-bit images and an auto-rotate feature that detects the orientation of digital camera images and automatically rotates frames to fit the images. PhotoFrame Pro 3.1 offers native support for Intel and PowerPC-based computers and is compatible with Windows XP and Vista. It's expected to ship shortly after the commercial release of Adobe's Photoshop CS3. In addition, onOne Software announced a similar program for Mask Pro 4.1 beta.

Imagenomic's ( plug-in product portfolio, which includes Noiseware, Portraiture, and RealGrain plug-ins, has been updated to support the latest software applications, hardware platforms, and OS releases from Adobe, Apple, and Microsoft. The current Mac OS X and Windows versions support native Intel Mac systems as well as the Vista operating system and extend their functionality into Photoshop's CS3.

ArcSoft's ( Cut-It-Out is the company's first plug-in and lets users separate objects from their backgrounds by creating a mask. Similar in functionality to Photoshop's own Extract command, the $99 Cut-It-Out is ever so much easier to use, offering superior performance but more importantly greater accuracy in selecting object details from image backgrounds. Cut-It-Out has an easy to use interface that provides precision and options for fine-tuning object extraction. You may also want to download the free ArcSoft RAW Thumbnail Viewer plug-in that displays virtually all raw photo formats right within the Thumbnail view of Windows Explorer instead of the default icon that Windows displays. RAW Thumbnail Viewer lets you browse and manage images without launching special software.