Real-world Review: DXO PhotoLab 1.2 with Nikon NEF


In my original comparison of raw converters for Nikon NEF files, I mentioned DXO Optics Pro briefly. While it appeared to be a decent RAW processor software, a major shortcoming was that it did not have any local adjustment capabilities. Hence it was a difficult option to recommend, especially since it was not significantly cheaper than competitors which do have local adjustment capabilities and which were selling at similar (or lower!) prices.

Fortunately, things have changed now. DXO Optics Pro has evolved to become DXO PhotoLab and now includes the very highly regarded U Point technology from Nik Collection Plugins for making local adjustments. With this change, the value proposition of DXO PhotoLab has improved dramatically and is now a serious challenger to the other tier 1 RAW processor giants including Adobe Camera Raw (from Adobe CC/Lightroom/Photoshop) and Phase One’s Capture One Pro. In this review, we will make comparisons with Adobe Lightroom and Nikon NX-D. My observations come from working with Nikon NEF files. Of course you can make the usual inferences if you are work with RAW files from another camera maker. However, please note that there may be differences in results among different RAW formats. If you want to be sure you will be satisfied with the results from DXO PhotoLab and your camera’s RAW files, download a trial of the software and try it yourself.

Continue reading “Real-world Review: DXO PhotoLab 1.2 with Nikon NEF”

Do You Need Photoshop/Affinity Photo If You Have Lightroom?

As I mentioned last week, the lack of recent updates is attributed to the fact that I just purchased a copy of Affinity Photo and is playing around with it. Oh, and there is my real-life day job of course. 😛

The topic of today’s blog post is to answer a frequently-asked-question: Do you need a full-featured photo editor such as Photoshop (PS) or Affinity Photo (AP) if you already have a copy of Lightroom (LR)? Continue reading “Do You Need Photoshop/Affinity Photo If You Have Lightroom?”

Affinity Photo Limited Time Offer


Serif’s Affinity Photo is finally available for both Apple Mac and Windows users! As people become wary of Adobe’s monopoly and subscription pricing model for the ubiquitous Photoshop, a capable challenger is welcome news for everyone!

At the moment only the Mac has a trial version, but you get a money-back 14-days guarantee anyway. In addition, you are receiving a limited time discount if you make a purchase now.

The reason why the number of updates on this blog have slowed down is because I am currently busy experimenting with Affinity Photo. Oh, and there is my career work of course. 😛

If you are interested, you can grab Affinity Photo here. In my limited time with it, it is easily a superior experience to both the Gimp and Paintshop Pro. A lot of people will still be satisfied with using Lightroom alone. However, it does not hurt to give it a whirl and see for yourself if you would like to expand your post-processing options. Even if you bought it and didn’t have time to evaluate it in 14 days, it is probably just the cost of a (relatively inexpensive) nice meal for two persons in a fancy restaurant. So you really don’t have much to lose. – WY