Topaz Lens Effects offers variety of ways to tweak photos
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Topaz Lens Effects offers variety of ways to tweak photos

By Sean Duggan

Topaz Labs ( recently released Lens Effects (US$79.99), a plug-in that offers the ability to add a wide variety of lens-type effects to your photos. This includes bokeh effects (shallow depth of field, blurry backgrounds); tilt-shift or creative blur (think Lensbaby); toy camera-like color and focus deficiencies; graduated neutral-density filters; or modifications like fixing geometric distortion, adding grain, or simple vignettes.

Lens Effects is available as a plug-in for Photoshop, as well as Lightroom and Aperture. The interface is very Lightroom-esque with effects and presets on the left, a center preview area, and specific controls for each effect on the right. There are several presets for many of the effects, or you can create you own presets.

For the Bokeh – SLR Lens and Bokeh – Selective effects, you can make a depth map to define what areas should be in focus. Overall, it does a good job at defining these areas and creating a mask of gray values from foreground (black) to background (white), though there are occasional inaccurate edges.

The interface and procedure for creating and editing these masks is very promising, but on some images I found myself wishing that I could make fully manual edits to the depth map to address errors in the automated process (the edits you do make are user-directed, but the program computes the change, so the tools aren’t totally manual).

Lens Effects is a useful plug-in for those who want a wide variety of lens effects easily accessible in one place. It provides very good results for many of its offerings (the weakest in my opinion are the pinhole and toy camera effects). The focus and blur effects that don’t require a complex depth map all produce very good results. Creating selective blurring on images with more complex foreground to background relationships that do require precise depth maps is likely to still be a challenge.

Rating: 7 out of 10

(This review is brought to you courtesy of "Layers Magazine": .)

Apple Inc.
Alphabet Inc.
Microsoft Corporation
MacNews Search:
Community Search:
view counter

view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter

The best GIF making apps
Animated GIFs have exploded in popularity recently which is likely thanks to a combination of Tumblr, our shorter attention spans, and the simple fact they’re a lot of fun. [Read more] | Read more »
The best remote desktop apps for iOS
We've been sifting through the App Store to find the best ways to do computer tasks on a tablet. That gave us a thought - what if we could just do computer tasks from our tablets? Here's a list of the best remote desktop apps to help you use your computer on the go. [Read more] | Read more »
Warhammer 40,000: Freeblade guide - How...
Warhammer 40,000: Freebladejust launched in the App Store and it lets you live your childhood dream of blowing up and slashing a bunch of enemies as a massive, hulking Space Marine. It's not easy being a Space Marine though - and particularly if you pride yourself on achievements - so we've spent some time as one to bring you these few tips to... | Read more »
Gopogo guide - How to bounce like the be...
Nitrome just launched a new game and, as to be expected, it's a lot of addictive fun. It's called Gopogo, and it challenges you to hoparound a bunch of platforms, avoiding enemies and picking up shiny stuff. It's not easy though - just like the retro platformers that inspired it. [Read more] | Read more »
Sago Mini Superhero (Education)
Sago Mini Superhero 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Education Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: KAPOW! Jack the rabbit bursts into the sky as the Sago Mini Superhero! Fly with Jack as he lifts impossible weights, powers up on carrots and makes things right in the city. Whether he is helping ducks cross the street... | Read more »
Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes guide - How...
Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes is all about collecting heroes, powering them up, and using them together to defeat your foes. It's pretty straightforward stuff for the most part, but increasing your characters' stats can be a bit confusing because it isn't explained all that well in the tutorial. [Read more] | Read more »
The best cooking apps (just in time for...
It’s that time of year again, where you’ll be gathering around the dinner table with your family and a huge feast in front of you. [Read more] | Read more »
Square Rave guide - How to grab those te...
Square Rave is an awesome little music-oriented puzzle game that smacks of games like Lumines, but with its own unique sense of gameplay. To help wrap your head around the game, keep the following tips and tricks in mind. [Read more] | Read more »
Snowboard Party 2 (Games)
Snowboard Party 2 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Crowned the best snowboarding game available on the market, Snowboard Party is back to fulfill all your adrenaline needs in this long-awaited sequel. Experience the new time-attack race mode and practice your best tricks in... | Read more »
One Button Travel (Games)
One Button Travel 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: “To cut a long story short, If you like interactive fiction, just go buy this one.” -“Oozes the polish that we’ve come to expect from TheCodingMonkeys.” - | Read more »
All contents are Copyright 1984-2010 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.