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Enter the Studio 2 Instagram Challenge to Win Free Topaz Software!

Let's See What You Can Do in Studio 2

Interested in winning up to $99 in Topaz credit towards the purchase of any Topaz Labs software? We’ve launched our Topaz Instagram Challenge! Share your best before and after images edited in the new Topaz Studio 2 for your chance to win.

How To Enter the Challenge

Enter the challenge in just three steps:

  1. Edit one of your best photos in Topaz Studio 2
  2. Upload the before and after images to your own Instagram account
  3. Follow @TopazLabs and include the #TopazLabs hashtag in your caption

We’ll be watching for your submissions on Instagram and giving away free Topaz credits throughout the month of September, ranging from $25-$99.

Download your free trial of Topaz Studio 2 to get started. 

Let’s see what you can do in Studio 2! 

Please see the complete Instagram Challenge terms and conditions

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The A.I. Evolution behind Topaz A.I. Clear

After a lot of effort from our team,  I am excited to share the latest version of A.I. Clear with you.  Topaz A.I. Clear is a software to remove photo noise and enhance sharpness. The update of A.I. Clear in Topaz Studio v1.12.5 is a completely new development. Not only does the new A.I. Clear do a better job of suppressing the noise, but further utilizes A.I. technology to transform noisy and blurry images into crisp and detailed images.

As a researcher in image processing for over 30 years, I cannot help but feel a little giddy about what our team has done.  Just take a look at the image above. Look at the clean removal of the noise. More importantly, look at the details in the output image!

It was a long journey to get here. Topaz Labs has always been at the forefront of image noise reduction. In 2010, Topaz Denoise had been already considered the best high-iso noise removal software in the market, a position it has maintained to this day.  The reason is that Topaz Denoise employed an algorithm that approached a theoretical upper-bound in terms of SNR (signal to noise ratio) increase. Therefore there were no much room for us, or anyone else for this matter, to improve it substantially. That is, until deep-learning in Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) emerged.

Hover over the blue plus signs to see more information.

Image

REDUCE NOISE

Topaz Studio Ai Clear comes with three distinct neural networks, each trained specifically on a set of images with specific noise and detail requirements.

AUTO SETTING

With one click, AI Clear automatically sets the noise reduction level using artificial intelligence to determine what setting is best for your image.

LOW STRENGTH

The Fastest of the three models, the Low setting is best for images with a range of subjects and a low to moderate amount of color noise. Cityscapes, landscapes, and architecture are great use cases for this model.

MEDIUM STRENGTH

With Double the complexity of the Low model, the Medium setting is best for images with a defined subject and a moderate amount of noise and artifacts. This setting is particularly good on portraits and skin.

HIGH STRENGTH

With double the complexity of the Low model, the High setting is best for images with a high amount of noise and artifacts. Evening shots, Long Exposures and Mid to High ISO images are cleaned and sharpened with this setting.

ENHANCE SHARPNESS

The new Enhance Sharpness feature allows you to manipulate the detail in your image to bring dull features back to life.

LOW STRENGTH

The Low setting is best for images with a smaller group of subjects. Works well on portraits, telephoto images, and astrophotography.

HIGH STRENGTH

The High setting is best with a lot of small detail. This model works especially well with landscape photography.

RECOVER DETAILS

If you find AI Clear to be removing a bit too much detail, increasing the value of this slider will bring back details that are removed by the adjustment.

EXPOSURE

Use this slider to increase or decrease the exposure of your result, higher values increase exposure, lower values decrease exposure.

CLARITY

Use this slider to increase or decrease the edge contrast of your image. Higher values increase edge visibility, lower values blend edges into surrounding detail .

A few years ago, the deep-learning based photo noise reduction in research started to produce a more promising result. A.I. Clear is the first commercial software that took advantage of this development.  It uses a “feedforward” neural network trained to suppress input image noise as much as possible. This type of method had proven itself to beat all known traditional methods in a research environment. Since Topaz Studio is an interactive app, the challenge was to discover a neural network architecture that could produce a good result at an interactive speed.  Through some pretty hardcore development work, we managed to deliver the first version of A.I. Clear, which produced better noise suppression than traditional methods without the need to manually fine tune every parameter. The reception from our customers was exceptional.

Then we began working on A.I. Gigapixel, the first deep learning desktop tool to enlarge photos. This long and detailed process vastly increased our understanding of A.I. based image enhancement. A.I. Gigapixel is based on a revolutionary concept in deep-learning called GAN (Generative Adversarial Network). It uses a “generative” neural network to synthesize plausible details that are non-existent in the input images. This process produces an unprecedented image enlargement result. The feedback for A.I. Gigapixel was so beyond our expectations and we knew we needed to use this technology for other purposes.

After the A.I. Gigapixel release, it was natural for us to try the same “generative” neural network idea on noise reduction and detail enhancement. So we did.  As expected, the “generative network” did not disappoint us.

But there was a catch. To produce the best result, this “generative” neural network needed a few orders of magnitude more “neurons and synapses” than the original one.  This much more complex network led to a very slow processing speed – an obvious no-go in an interactive app like A.I. Clear.  

Wanna Learn More?

Check out the AI Clear product page to learn more about AI Clear including pricing and to see more examples.

Eventually, our research scientist Dr. Acharjee found a pretty good compromise.  Through the work of our incredible development team, we managed to create a process that uses one-tenth the number of “neurons” than what we had started with. Not only did we match our previous speed – we exceeded it. Now, the speed is 2 to 3 times faster than the previous version of A.I. Clear, and we’ve improved image quality in most of our tests.  Still, for high noisy or blurry images it tends to synthesize unnatural-looking patterns (see image below) due to lack of enough “neurons” to remember the proper patterns.

While it was a pity that we could not put our best but admittedly slow neural network into A.I. Clear, we’re working on using this neural network in other ways. We’ve got a batch process image enhancer in the works that will use the no-compromise large neural network for those who want the very best possible result that A.I. technology can offer – regardless of how long it takes. A.I. Clear is impressive in what it can do, and even more capable technology is coming.

For now, I am excited to share the new A.I Clear with you. What do you think?

About the Author

About Albert Yang

Albert Yang founded Topaz Labs over 10 years ago, to form a company that adopts and implements the latest technology to introduce cutting-edge tools to the Photo market. With over 30 years of programming experience, he’s proud to offer his technical expertise to our users as the primary developer of our latest tools.

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Introducing AI Clear

What is AI Clear?

The second product in our Artistic Intelligence line. AI Clear™ is a powerful Pro Studio Adjustment that removes noise and sharpens detail in photos automatically.

AI Clear not only achieves much higher quality result than existing products but does so automatically without the need for any manual tweaking.  Other AI implementations require you to upload your image to an external server for cloud processing, taking control of your images out of your hands and taking minutes or hours to get you a processed result. AI Clear uses your machine to process and enhance your images locally without costing you time, bandwidth, and control.

The latest update to AI clear includes refinements to the interface, 2 completely new additional neural networks, and speed improvements to processing. Keep reading to learn more.

Get AI Clear Now!

Get clearer and sharper images automatically with the AI Clear adjustment.

AI Clear’s custom neural networks go further than noise reduction, it also consistently sharpens your images as well. By analyzing millions of images we’ve trained the model to recognize and remove some of the blur created from long exposure times. The result is a sharper and more detailed images for a truly clear result.

The New AI Clear Interface

Hover over the blue plus signs to see more information.

Image

MODEL STRENGTH

Topaz Studio Ai Clear comes with three distinct neural networks. Each trained specifically on a set of images with specific nouse and detail requirements.

LOW STRENGTH

The Fastest of the three models, the Low setting is best for images with a range of subjects and a low to moderate amount of color noise. Cityscapes, landscapes, and archetecture are great use cases for this model.

MEDIUM STRENGTH

With Double the complexity of the Low model, the Medium setting is best for images with a defined subject and a moderate amount of noise and artifacts. This setting is particularly good on portraits and skin.

HIGH STRENGTH

With double the complexity of the Low model, the High setting is best for images with a high amount of noise and artifacts. Evening shots, Long Exposures and Mid to High ISO images are cleaned and sharpened with this setting.

RECOVER DETAILS

If you find AI Clear to be removing a bit too much detail, increasing the value of this slider will bring back details that are removed by the adjustment.

EXPOSURE

Use this slider to increase or decrease the exposure of your result, higher values increase exposure, lower values decrease exposure.

CLARITY

Use this slider to increase or decrease the edge contrast of your image. Higher values increase edge visibility, lower values blend edges into surrounding detail .

New Features in AI Clear

Improved AI Toolset

In the latest update to AI Clear, we’ve included an additional 2 noise reduction models for medium and high noise levels, tripling the versatility of AI Clear and doubling the complexity of each of the new models.

Reorganized Interface

We took the feedback from our users and updated the AI Clear interface to clarify how to use the application, now just change the model strength first, and work your way down to tweak your result.

Better Performance

We’ve implemented an entirely new processing method in our engine to get you a better, more intelligent result from our AI products without costing you speed.

How to Use AI Clear

Install Topaz Studio

Get a free version from our downloads page!

Topaz AI Clear works exclusively within the Topaz Studio platform. So if you’re going to use AI Clear you need to make sure that you’ve got Topaz Studio installed.

Once you’ve opened Topaz Studio, you can add AI Clear to your image by selecting it in the Adjustments list.

Applying the adjustment is easy, simply add the AI Clear adjustment to your adjustment stack and our custom neural network will analyze your image to automatically remove noise, reduce artifacts, and enhance details.

How does AI Clear Work?

AI Clear uses the insight of a custom neural network trained on millions of images to detect and reduce noise
as well as enhance details in your images automatically.

 

Wanna Learn More?

Check out the AI Clear product page to learn more about AI Clear including pricing and to see more examples.

AI Clear Best Practices

AI Clear is best used at the very beginning of your workflow, as the AI was trained specifically on directly out of camera raw images and jpegs, any pre processing in lightroom or PS (especially sharpening and Noise reduction, which lightroom does automatically) will reduce the quality of result that you see from AI Clear.  

Turn off Noise Reduction in Adobe Camera Raw

Raw Images in Photoshop’s Raw Processor will automatically have some sharpening and color noise reduction applied. To remove this go to the detail tab in ACR, then zero out all the sliders there. You can then open the image in Studio as a plugin through PS.

Turn of Noise Reduction in Adobe Lightroom

Images in Lightroom will automatically have some sharpening and color noise reduction applied. To remove this go to the Develop module, then open the detail tab and zero out all the sliders there. You can then use the “edit-in” option to edit in Studio.

Compatibility and Requirements

Topaz AI Clear™ is available as a Pro adjustment with Topaz Studio, a standalone photo editor as well as a plugin for Photoshop CS4+, Elements 6+, Creative Cloud, and as an external editor for Lightroom. It is compatible with 64-bit Windows 7+ and Mac OS X 10.10+.

For more information about Topaz Studio’s AI Clear™ Adjustment, please visit web.topazlabs.com/ai-clear

 

Get AI Clear Now!

Get clearer and sharper images automatically with the AI Clear adjustment.