HDR or High dynamic range imaging is a very popular technique used to add more dynamic range and details to a photograph. HDR imaging is especially useful in real world scenes that contains high contrast, like an outdoor scene when you are shooting directly against the sun and there is a lot of sunlight in the background and shadow on the landscape. HDR in digital camera and smartphones is usually achieved by capturing multiple images of the same scene at different shutter speed and then combining them.
HDR Projects 2 is a comprehensive image processing application designed for professional photographers as well as casual users. It allows users to apply HDR effects on already captured images. The tool is a bit complicated if you have not used similar image processing suits in the past, but the preset algorithms should do the job for most novice users.
The application interface does not show a lot of options or menus at first. You can import a single image or multiple images using the exposure bracketing import method, or via drag and drop. Once you import your images, you are presented with the HDR preparation menu that allows you to set the color space, white balance, noise suppression, exposure correction, plus many others effects. The result of the selected parameters is displayed instantly in the main window.
The left sidebar offers exposure-bracketing settings that can be edited by moving the sliders left or right. The right sidebar on the other hand features some preset HDR algorithms that can be further adjusted by using the drop down smoothing levels menu, or by moving the slider of each linear luminance levels.
Additional functions include the ability to mirror, rotate, and align exposure bracketing. These settings are hidden by default and can be viewed by using the “show/hide functions” toggle button. Other features include the ability to view EXIF data, histogram and the ability to save the current progress in a project so that you can work on it later.
The developers of HDR Projects 2, Franzis, is offering our readers free full version copies of the program (Retail price $145). To grab your free copy, follow these steps:
- Access this page and register.
- You will receive a confirmation mail. Click on the confirmation link to receive your free “User ID” and “Registration Code”
- Download the setup:
- Run the setup procedure. Enter the user ID and registration code that was sent to your email.
- By default, the installation procedure will start in German. Hit “Weiter” to start the procedure. The language will automatically change to English.