What is the point of capture sharpening?

Discussion in 'Digital and Video Cameras' started by Throckmorton, May 27, 2012.

  1. Throckmorton

    Throckmorton Lifer

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    When you import raw files into Lightroom, they have a certain amount of capture sharpening enabled by default. Why? The native resolution of the image is almost never what you print at, so why sharpen at this resolution? Why not just output sharpen?

    The downsides are that by sharpening both the native resolution and the output resolution, you're messing up the data more than necessary, plus you're sharpening noise and making it worse.
     
  2. Gooberlx2

    Gooberlx2 Lifer

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    A lot of people never print anything. I almost never print. Since I use LR's sharpening in the develop module, I do disable output sharpening for the export (facebook, etc...) and print modules.
     
  3. Throckmorton

    Throckmorton Lifer

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    Well whether it's printing or exporting at a small size for Facebook, the capture sharpening gets lost
     
  4. Anteaus

    Anteaus Platinum Member

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    I'm not sure what your implying. I can't speak for anyone else, but the only sharpening I apply to images is during the processing stage. As for LR, it does apply a bit of sharpening on import, but it's post import and can be adjusted or completely backed out if needed. I think they do it because most images are going to be sharpened to some degree or another prior to final export and the default amount is more or less what you would get from the camera if you just went with JPG. It does offer more versitility if a particular image needs less/more sharpening than normal.

    As for outputting at different than native resolutions, I agree with you sharpening shouldn't be done twice, regardless of the final product. I think sharpening on export is more of a last resort tool but I could be wrong. It's turned off by default. I've only been using LR4 for about 3 weeks now so i'm no expert.
     
  5. Gooberlx2

    Gooberlx2 Lifer

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    Yeah, I'm guessing that the amount of sharpening they apply is based on their profile for that camera to make results close to in-camera JPG.
     
  6. Throckmorton

    Throckmorton Lifer

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    You never view an image at 100% except when you're pixel peeping. So why on earth would you sharpen the full resolution?
     
  7. Anteaus

    Anteaus Platinum Member

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    *shrug. I see your point. I guess I just want my archived images to be as good as I see in the processing window, and if adding some sharpening means I'm happier with the final product, then I'm going to sharpen it up. I agree with your premise. In the end it's up to the photographer as to what makes them happy, whether its actually discernable or not.