I am photographing mostly small birds nowadays. They are fast, jumping back and forth between bright light and shadow, so time for searching the best exposure such as in landscape photography just does not exist!
Unfortunately, those little birds always have bright feathers and I find it hard to recover details in those highlights using Photolab (P.S. I have read the topic about highlight recovery in PL). On the other hand, I find Nikon’s Capture NX-D better at highlight recovery as long as I start with a Flat Picture Control (Photo 1).
In comparison PL’s “No Correction Presets” output an image with more contrast and more colorful and looses details in highlight (Photo 2).
It seems to me like PL does more than just “demosaicing” the RAW file (may be sharpening or contrast or color correction or white balance …), therefore, the output image is not flat enough (I know flat picture is not for everybody but sometime is its very useful!).
I tried as well PL’s “Neutral Colors Preset”. While the highlight starts to have details, it is still not as flat as the Nikon’s Flat picture (Photo 3).
One may asked why do I bother using PL if the free Nikon software does a better job? While, in small bird photography, shutter speed is very important which means the ISO is always high which increases the amount of noise. I have tried several denoising softwares and found PL’s Prime to be the best out there and that is the main reason why I bought Photolab Elite. Unfortunately, Prime only work on RAW file!
I am new to PL and maybe I missed something.
My question are:
is the “No Correction Presets” output a plain “demosaiced” RAW image or more than that?
if it does more than just “demosaicing”, is there a way to tell PL to just “demosaiced” the RAW file and to not do any adjustment at all!