Removing Noise

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This topic contains 4 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  Caitlin Compton 7 months, 3 weeks ago.

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    Caitlin Compton

    I just recently watched a new video James put out to do with removing noise in post processing. In it he talked about the ‘detail’ slider. He said that the detail slider adjusts how much of the detail you want preserved after removing the noise. In Lightroom, the slider defaults to 50. Is there a reason that you wouldn’t want to make it higher than that? Don’t you want the most detail as possible in your images? Or does it introduce more noise back in? Just been doing some post processing this afternoon with the new technique and was curious about it! 🙂 Interested in hearing everyone’s thoughts!


    Logan Lamar

    Hey @creative-click-photography!
    I find it good to work in extremes when I am wanting to see exactly what a specific slider does on my own. So I would try cranking the noise reduction slider to the maximum on an image with a hideous ISO number (like 3200, 6400, or 128000) and seeing what effect the details slider has.

    That said, I don’t use Lightroom, but I know noise reduction generally makes things softer. It removes a lot of texture, which is fine detail. I think what the detail slider would do would remove the noise reduction from certain details. If you were to bring it down to zero, it would allow the noise reduction slider to blanket over the whole image. Sliding the detail slider back in would remove noise from certain parts of the image—and I would think that the lower the number, the coarser the detail would be brought in.
    If I were shooting a portrait of one of my little sisters (say, for your assignment, Little Girl in a Dress), and I used noise reduction, a low detail number might mean the noise redution removed on the edges of her face only: everything inside that face would be soft still. A medium detail number might mean that I could see more texture in her hair and her face. A high detail number would essentially remove noise reduction on even the finest details. But think about what noise is: ultra-fine detail. So the higher the detail number is, the more noise would be brought into the image. You want to find the happy middle number with as much detail as possible with as little noise as possible.

    Hope this helps!


    • This reply was modified 9 months, 1 week ago by  Logan Lamar.

    James Staddon

    I think so, @creative-click-photography. Increasing Detail would bring back some of the noise.

    But you’re right, preserving detail in an image is generally what I want (preserving “the most detail as possible” is not always what I want, but generally speaking, yes).

    After playing around a little more with some hideous-ISO-number images, it does seem like Detail does a very nice job of bringing back texture and detail without bringing back the noise. So yeah, it seems like moving it from 50 to something higher to even like 100 could be really good!

    Every picture is different. Logan said it well, “find the happy middle number with as much detail as possible with as little noise as possible.”


    blessings captured

    I use Photoshop Elements but this is how I remove noise most of the time. I use the highest strength to remove the noise with no preserve details. Then I add a mask and mask out the main subject. This work because the noise is more noticeable in the out of focused areas.

    This doesn’t work when everything is suppose to be in focused. That’s when I use the “happy medium”.


    Caitlin Compton

    Oops, didn’t realise I hadn’t replied to this either. 😊 Thanks very much for all your thoughts on this, @loganlamar, @jamesstaddon and @blessingscaptured! Very, very helpful! I’ll have to have a play around to see what you were talking about in action.

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